Pat Benatar And The Beach Boys Scrap Gigs Following Seaworld Controversy
Pat Benatar and the Beach Boys are the latest artists to distance themselves from SeaWorld and its related venues following the backlash from the recent Blackfish CNN documentary. The controversial doc shows the darker side of life for the creatures at the Orlando, Florida marine park, which resulted in the shocking death of one of its killer whales' trainers. Benatar and the Beach Boys are part of a growing number of acts -- including Heart, Barenaked Ladies, Cheap Trick, REO Speedwagon, Willie Nelson, and .38 Special -- to cancel gigs at the popular venue. Additionally, Joan Jett has demanded that SeaWorld stop using her 1982 chart topper, "I Love Rock N' Roll" as part of its animal performance shows.
Pollstar reported that Benatar and her husband/guitarist Neil Giraldo are up in arms about the documentary, releasing a statement regarding backing out an upcoming Busch Gardens gigs, saying: "It has come to our attention that Busch Gardens is an affiliate of SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment. In light of this we have opted to cancel our February 22, 2014 performance at Busch Gardens in Tampa, FL. We want to thank everyone for their patience and understanding."
The Beach Boys issued a statement saying: "The Beach Boys have canceled their performance on February 15, 2014. The band regrets any inconvenience this may have caused their fans and they look forward to returning to Tampa soon."
A Busch Gardens Tampa spokesman told CNN: "We regret to announce that the Beach Boys and Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo have canceled their performances at Bands, Brew & BBQ this year, but we respect their decision. We’re disappointed that there is a media controversy enacted by animal activists and based on misinformation."
Pat Benatar told us that although she still loves to record, she's realistic about where the studio fits into her present day career: "What happens is that it goes full circle. I mean, you end up doing exactly what you started out doing (laughs), which is playing live, which for me is always the attraction. Making records is great and I understand the whole process of that and I like it. But y'know, right now, people like us, in our age group and our genre, don't get played on the radio, so we make records basically for ourselves, which is nice. Live performance is the way that it always has been, so that's the best part."
Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo will next perform on February 7th at Temecula, California's Pechanga Resort & Casino.
The Beach Boys -- featuring Mike Love & Bruce Johnston -- will next perform on February 16th at Melbourne, Florida's Maxwell C. King Center for the Performing Arts.
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