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Jewish Journal

Pixies cancel Tel Aviv show

by Adam Wills

June 6, 2010 | 1:17 pm

The Pixies

Indie rockers The Pixies have pulled out of their Wednesday appearance at the Pic.Nic music festival in Tel Aviv. The band is the third to withdraw from the festival, following headliners Klaxons and Gorillaz.

Pic.Nic would have been the first Israeli show for The Pixies, which gained popularity in the Los Angeles and Boston music scenes of the late 1980s and early 1990s. The band reunited in 2004, and is known for such songs as “Here Comes Your Man” and “Monkey Gone to Heaven.”

The Pixies gave no reason for the cancellation, but organizers say the decision was likely tied to last week’s flotilla clash. The BBC reported that human rights groups had sent letters to The Pixies before last week’s raid, urging the band to cancel its appearance based on Israel’s policies toward the Palestinians.

The concert’s producers in Israel received the following message from the band’s management on Sunday morning: “The decision was not reached easily, and we all know well the Israeli fans have been waiting for this visit for far too long.

“We’d like to extend our deepest apologies to the fans, but events beyond all our control have conspired against us. We can only hope for better days, in which we will finally present the long awaited visit of The Pixies in Israel.”

Last month, Elvis Costello pulled out of two Israeli shows, saying his appearances would have been “interpreted as a political act.” Carlos Santana and Gil Scott-Heron also canceled planned Israel dates.

Following The Pixies’ announcement, Shuki Weiss, one of Israel’s top music promoters, attacked calls for performers and artists to boycott Israel.

“I am full of both sorrow and pain in light of the fact that our repeated attempts to present quality acts and festivals in Israel have increasingly been falling victim to what I can only describe as a form of cultural terrorism which is targeting Israel and the arts worldwide,” he wrote.

“Fans cannot be punished for the deeds of their governments.”

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