Country icon Garth Brooks announced earlier today that he will perform at President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration. Brooks was asked to perform at the swearing-in ceremony by Dr. Jill Biden last week. He decided to perform yesterday and made the announcement today.
Garth Brooks has performed at several inauguration events. In fact, today is the twelfth anniversary of his playing Barack Obama’s inauguration in 2009. In a press conference, he said that he has performed for every president since Carter, except for Reagan.
Garth Brooks stated, “This is not a political statement, this is a statement of unity,” an important distinction in such politically volatile times. He went on to say that these performances were his way of serving the country. It doesn’t matter who the president-elect is, Brooks said. To him, playing a prestigious event like a presidential event is an honor.
Garth Brooks’ Statement of Unity
During a socially distanced press conference, Garth Brooks said, “in our household, this isn’t a political statement. It’s a statement of unity. That’s pretty much it. [I’m] just excited, nervous, all the good things, ya know? Because this is history.”
Later, a reporter asked if Garth Brooks would speak at the inauguration. He said that he and his publicist had decided that he should get statements out of the way now. This way, when the big day comes, he “can just focus on our only thing that we kind of hopefully know what we’re doing and that’s singing. And hopefully, through singing, there will be some smiling faces and hopefully a good outlook on what’s coming.”
When asked what he would be performing at the inauguration, Garth Brooks was pretty tight-lipped. He said that “We Shall Be Free” was probably not an option because he performed it for Obama. However, he said, “There are plenty of songs about love and unity that you could choose from, from the greatest writers around the world. Because we’re all humans. We live within the border of the United States, but the truth is, the message that goes out, goes out to all of us around the world.”
Garth Brooks continued his message of unity when asked how he would address Trump supporters who are also fans of his. He said, “Yeah, well, for me, man, there are the people that love music. So in this case, you must rise beyond red and blue. You must rise beyond black and white, gay/straight, male/female. Look at it from above. Look at it as America. So, that’s always kind of been my thing. You are all welcome at a Garth Brooks Concert. The whole mission of a Garth Brooks concert is for people who watch the show to leave the show loving each other more than when they came in. That’s never going to change for me.”
Brooks went on to offer a quote from Martin Luther King Jr. he said fits this time. “We can’t start living until we rise above the narrows of our own individualistic concerns and focus on the broader concerns of all humanity.”