What would Bruce do? ‘B Street Band’ backs out of inaugural party
Just days before Donald Trump is set to be sworn in as the 45th President of the United States, a popular New Jersey-based Bruce Springsteen tribute band has backed out of an inaugural party.
The B Street Band announced in a statement that, "based SOLELY on the respect and gratitude we have for Bruce and the E Street Band," B Street will back out of performing at Garden State Presidential Inaugural Gala.
Springsteen is well-known for his liberal views, and has specifically said in several interviews he has deep concerns about the incoming Trump administration.
While the band has played the event in the past, Band Member Will Forte said in a Rolling Stone article that the group had received "thousands of emails from both sides," since it was first reported that it would be playing ahead of Trump's inauguration.
In an earlier Facebook post explaining the band's then-contention it would play the event, Forte said that the Garden State Inaugural Gala is a bipartisan event, sponsored by a nonpartisan organization, that is separate from the official Trump inaugural ball scheduled for the night of Jan. 20. Forte also said that the B-Street Band was asked to appear — and contracted almost immediately — following its 2013 performance.
B Street saxophonist Richie Taskowitz told New Jersey 101.5's Bill Spadea he is a Trump supporter and was not consulted about the decision to back out. “I’m shocked that he’s pulling out. Not Willie Forte, that guy’s tougher than nails. I’ve seen him, forget it. Those guys are one of the hardest-working bands," Taskowitz said.
“The B-Street Band has carried Bruce’s music. Bruce can’t play enough for his fans. These guys, I’ve watched, people are so happy just to hear the music. So he should be glad they’re out there doing it," Taskowitz told Spadea.
The decision to back out was reportedly made on Sunday night, with the performance set for Thursday night in Washington, DC.
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Contact reporter Adam Hochron at 609-359-5326 or Adam.Hochron@townsquaremedia.com