“Alan Parsons Rejects Roger Waters’ Anti-Israel Riff,” Paul Miller writes at Big Hollywood:
Lana Melman, Director of the Creative Community for Peace (CCFP), arranged an exclusive interview with Parsons and his band’s Israeli bassist, Guy Erez. The conversation, right before their Tel-Aviv performance, challenged Waters’ motives and took the BDS movement to task for “censorship.”
CCFP: Alan, you mentioned bringing people together. And as you for sure know now, there’s the cultural boycott movement which basically wants two main things: to prevent international artists like you [Alan] from coming to Israel and to prevent Israeli artists like you [Guy] from performing abroad. Do you guys see this as a form of censorship at all? And do you think it can have any particular impact on the artistic community?
Parsons: It’s totally censorship, yeah. I mean, people who follow it would be considered succumbing to censorship. But we didn’t. We said we want to do this.
CCFP: You had a lot of pressure. And not even just from activists but also from your fellow musician Roger Waters. How did it feel to be getting that pressure onto yourself and why was it important for you to not listen and to come here?
Parsons: Well, Guy would have killed me to start with.
Erez: If he doesn’t come and visit my country, we have a problem.
Parsons: No, the language of music has nothing to do with the language of politics. I don’t think… I have no aspiration towards political statements, contrary to what certain musicians do. I don’t think any of the band does, particularly.
Erez, a native Israeli who was discriminated against in the past at an undisclosed European venue, questioned Waters’ motives.
“Instead of saying don’t go here and there and play, if Roger Waters really wanted to be a peaceful person, why won’t you take a group of Israeli kids and Palestinian kids and make a camp of making music together. Use the power of music to put people together. But don’t just say ‘I’m taking a side, don’t share music with the Israeli people,” Erez said. “Why do the Israeli people or any other people have to get punished even though let’s say you disagree with their government? It’s just something I don’t understand how he even puts it together.”
Incidentally, I have a review of Alan Parsons’ new book The Art & Science of Music Recording at the PJ Lifestyle blog. If you’re into home music recording, it’s chock-a-block full of valuable tips from a man whose salad days were spent engineering for Pink Floyd and The Beatles.