Aussie rocker Nick Cave has defended his band’s upcoming show in Israel, saying that he is taking a “principled stand” by having the Bad Seeds perform at Tel Aviv’s Menorah Arena later today.
Speaking at a press conference on Sunday, Cave said he felt it would be “cowardly” not to play in Israel, and accused the anti-Israel movement of bullying musicians if they sought to tour the country, as the Associated Press reports.
“So at the end of the day there are two reasons why I am here. One is that I love Israel and I love Israeli people, and two is to make a principled stand against anyone who wants to censor and silence musicians,” Cave said.
“So really you could say in a way that the BDS [Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions Movement] made me play Israel.”
Cave also said that musician and music producer Brian Eno asked him to sign an Israel boycott list around three years ago.
“On a very intuitive level I did not want to sign that list, there was something that stunk to me about that list,” Cave said.
A group of outspoken musicians also called for Cave to cancel his Israel show under the banner of Artists For Palestine UK, including the likes of Roger Waters of Pink Floyd, Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth and Tunde Adebimpe from TV On The Radio.
Artists For Palestine UK recently called on Radiohead’s Thom Yorke to cancel his band’s Israel shows as well, but the concerts went ahead as planned.