Pearl Jam have pushed back the first leg of their Gigaton Tour due to coronavirus concerns. It was set to kick off on 18 March in Toronto.
Frontman Eddie Vedder made the announcement “with deep frustration and regret” through the band’s social media channels. He stated that the North American leg of the Gigaton Tour has been postponed and will be rescheduled at a later date.
“As residents of the city of Seattle, we’ve been hit hard and have witnessed firsthand how quickly these disastrous situations can escalate,” Vedder wrote. “It’s been brutal and it’s gonna get worse before it gets better.”
“This scheduled first leg of our PJ/Gigaton tour will need to be postponed and shows rescheduled for a later date. We’ve worked hard with all our management and business associates to find other solutions or options but the levels of risk to our audience and their communities is simply too high for our comfort level,” he added.
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As residents of the city of Seattle, we’ve been hit hard and have witnessed firsthand how quickly these disastrous situations can escalate. Our kids’ schools have closed along with universities and businesses. It’s been brutal and it’s gonna get worse before it gets better. So we are being told that being part of large gatherings is high on the list of things to avoid as this global health crisis is now beginning to affect all of our lives. Unfortunately, communing in large groups is a huge part of what we do as a band and the tour we’ve been busy planning for months is now in jeopardy… We have and will always keep the safety and well-being of our supporters as top priority. So it is with deep frustration and regret that we are forced to make this most unfortunate of announcements… This scheduled first leg of our PJ/Gigaton tour will need to be postponed and shows rescheduled for a later date. We’ve worked hard with all our management and business associates to find other solutions or options but the levels of risk to our audience and their communities is simply too high for our comfort level. Add to that we also have a unique group of passionate fans who travel far and wide. We’ve always been humbled by this and respect their energies and devotion. However in this case, travel is something to avoid. It certainly hasn’t helped that there’s been no clear messages from our government regarding people’s safety and our ability to go to work. Having no examples of our national health department’s ability to get ahead of this, we have no reason to believe that it will be under control in the coming weeks ahead. Again, here in Seattle what we are witnessing we would not wish for anyone. What we do wish for the rest of the country is that they can avoid the harsh negative effects of this and retain their sense of community and take care of one another. Just as we look forward to our next concerts and the ability to gather together and play loud songs as energized as ever. We are so sorry… And deeply upset.. If anyone out there feels the same based on this news, we share that emotion with you. – Ed & Pearl Jam
Pearl Jam, however, did not touch on the status of the European trek of the Gigaton Tour. That leg currently scheduled to kick off in Frankfurt, Germany on 23 June.
The tour is in support of Pearl Jam’s 11th studio album, Gigaton, which is due out 27 March. The record, their first full-length since 2013’s Lightning Bolt, was previously previewed with the singles Dance of the Clairvoyants and Superblood Wolfmoon.
The band also did not speak about “The Gigaton Listening Experience”, a special theatrical preview of the upcoming album, set to screen in 200 cinemas worldwide on 25 March.
The Gigaton Tour is the latest event affected by the going-on coronavirus outbreak. Austin festival SXSW 2020 was recently cancelled after major brands and participants such as Netflix, Apple and Amazon pulled out. Coachella – and its sister festival Stagecoach – may soon follow, according to organisers. Knotfest Japan, a metal festival organised by Slipknot, has also been cancelled. Musikmesse 2020 will also be rescheduled.
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