#TheShowMustBePaused: Billie Eilish, Britney Spears and others unite against racism with 'Blackout Tuesday'
It started with two Atlantic Records executives — Brianna Agyemang and Jamila Thomas — who issued an impassioned plea that #TheShowMustBePaused
In the wake of protests all across the nation, the music industry is urging all artists to unite and protest on #BlackoutTuesday. It started with two Atlantic Records executives — Brianna Agyemang and Jamila Thomas — who sparked the movement with a fervent plea that #TheShowMustBePaused after the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and "other black citizens at the hands of police". Shedding light on "the long-standing racism and inequality that exists from the boardroom to the boulevard", the duo said that the billion-dollar music companies must "protect and empower black communities" that have enormously contributed to them financially, calling it not "just a 24-hour initiative". "We are and will be in this fight for the long haul," they added.
One of the first musicians to send out a message was Billie Eilish. She posted on Instagram, "Due to recent events, please join us as we take an urgent step to provoke accountability and change." Her post further read, "It's our responsibility to not only come together to celebrate the wins but also hold each other during a loss." Urging her followers to "join" the move, the post continued, "Join us on Tuesday, June 2, as a day to disconnect from work and reconnect with our community. #TheShowMustBePaused!" Britney Spears also lent her support to the movement. "To start I will be participating in #BlackOutTuesday tomorrow….. I won’t be posting on social media and I ask you all to do the same. We should use the time away from our devices to focus on what we can do to make the world a better place…. for ALL of us !!!!!" she shared on Twitter.
Quincy Jones tweeted it out to his followers, saying, "It's hard to know what to say because I've been dealing with racism my entire life. That said, it’s rearing its ugly head right now & by God, it’s time to deal with it once & for all. My team & I stand for justice. Convos will be had & action will be taken. #THESHOWMUSTBEPAUSED." Carrie Underwood joined the movement, saying, "We must use our voices to confront and protest the injustice that surrounds all of us."
Several other musicians, artists, guitarists and record producers chimed in for the movement. Twitter is buzzing with a flurry of angsty tweets in support of the movement. Nicholas Gunn wrote, "For the first time in many months I will not be posting tomorrow morning. I will be honoring silence to allow another type of voice to be heard. The voice of a culture driven to madness through years of abuse." Niles Rodgers said, "Due to recent events please join us as we take an urgent step of action to provoke accountability and change. Join us on Tuesday JUNE 2 as a day to disconnect from work and reconnect with our community."
One music lover posted, "As the shows have been paused for #COVID19 & now #TheShowMustBePaused because racial injustice on any level in this day & age is ridiculously and uncategorically uncalled for. #pleasestop," and another penned down, "In response to the recent events around the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbury, while I think tomorrows summit is important, we’re going to take part in #TheShowMustBePaused tomorrow as part of BlackOut Tuesday for the Virtual CTO Summit Series (sic)."