“I don’t apologize for performing for our country or military,” Keith said in a statement to Entertainment Weekly, after hearing some criticism for his decision. “I performed at events for previous presidents [George W.] Bush and [Barack] Obama and over 200 shows in Iraq and Afghanistan for the USO.”
Keith will be joined at the celebratory concert by 3 Doors Down, Lee Greenwood, The Piano Guys and the Frontmen of Country, according to an announcement posted on the Presidential Inaugural Committee site.
Broadway star Jennifer Holliday was also slated to perform but backed out. On Saturday, in a letter published by The Wrap, Holliday apologized to the LGBTQ community for agreeing to perform in the first place, calling the initial decision a “lapse of judgement.”
A handful of other celebrities, including Welsh singer Charlotte Church, have also turned down invitations to perform at any of Trump’s inaugural celebrations.
Rebecca Ferguson, Season 7 runner-up of the British “X Factor,” said she would only perform if she could sing the song “Strange Fruit,” which she said “speaks to all the disregarded and down trodden black people in the United States.”
Meanwhile, “America’s Got Talent” star Jackie Evancho will be performing at the inauguration ceremony on Jan. 20.