With War Under Way, Artists Rethinking Overseas Tours

Tenacious D, Blindside, Lisa Marie Presley pull out of European dates.

Though many artists and labels are taking a “wait and see” approach, Tenacious D, Blindside and Lisa Marie Presley have pulled out of European tour dates because of the war with Iraq.

Representatives for all three confirmed that the artists have postponed European appearances in light of the U.S. action in Iraq. Tenacious D were winding down a European tour and were slated to travel to Sweden for a few days when they decided to cut their trip short, a management source said.

In a note posted on their Web site, the D apologized to the producers of a Swedish television program on which they were slated to appear. The management source said the duo did not cancel out of security concerns, but rather because they felt that “doing their thing” was inappropriate during such a serious time.

Citing safety concerns, Elektra records called off a European tour by Swedish rockers Blindside. A spokesperson denied reports in the British press that the label had canceled international tours for all of its artists, insisting that decisions will be made “one band at a time.”

Just a few days after her first public live performance, Lisa Marie Presley scrapped plans for a European tour, according to a source at her label. “Lisa Marie was supposed to have gone to Europe … for a two-week promotional tour to launch the album in Europe,” the source said of Presley’s debut, To Whom It May Concern.

Sources at Columbia/Sony, Capitol and Universal said there are no plans to postpone European dates by any of their artists but that future decisions will be made based on the discretion of the artists and labels.

The Donnas, Avril Lavigne, Interpol, the Roots, Three Doors Down, Jurassic 5, Finch, Something Corporate, David Gray, Steve Earle, Jesse Malin and Evanescence are all currently touring Europe or about to begin tours and, at press time, their spokespeople said dates are expected to go on as planned.

Should the war with Iraq — and fears of terrorist attacks — continue for several months, it could seriously affect the traditional European summer festival season, according to Pollstar Editor in Chief Gary Bongiovanni. “Most heavy touring in Europe will occur in June through July, so I don’t think artists have to make decisions today,” he said. “I think everyone is waiting to see what happens before they cancel any dates. But if it continues, that could mean a lot of big acts canceling.”

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