House of Blues Defends Decision to Book As I Lay Dying
Since As I Lay Dying returned to the music scene, many a music fan has been faced with a difficult decision. Are they willing to accept that singer Tim Lambesis has served his time behind bars and made appropriate amends and that it's now okay to see them live or does his previous murder-for-hire plot against his former wife continue to taint anything concerning the band? However, it's not just a music fan decision, but one for others who do business with the group as well.
The House of Blues venue chain, which is owned by Live Nation, was recently challenged about their decision to book the band after public outcry. Seven of the band's upcoming dates are at House of Blues venues.
Responding to calls about the band's scheduling, a House of Blues spokesperson told the Boston Herald, "Though staff and management may not agree with particular performers appearing at our venues, ticket buyers have the right to purchase tickets or not purchase tickets."
While response to the band's return at live shows has mostly been positive, they have hit a few bumps in the road along the way. Organizers of the Resurrection Festival removed the group from their bill, while stateside a Memphis venue canceled one of the band's shows after backlash over a booking.
Speaking after the Memphis cancellation, Lambesis offered, "I understand and accept the resentment some people have towards who I used to be. I stand against that person I became during the darkest period of my past, and it is part of my life's work to prevent others from going down destructive paths. It's now been almost six (6) years since I made the biggest mistake of my life, and I consider each day an opportunity to do something positive to turn my life around and to use my experience to help others."
While in prison, Lambesis earned a degree as a counselor, specializing on those with addiction treatment and mental health issues and tutored inmates who never finished high school. "I currently visit prisons quarterly to help inmates without job skills train for their release so that they can become productive neighbors and not a burden on society. Most end up back in prison due to lack of hope or a support system," said the vocalist.
Lambesis added, "Through AILD, our recent tours have allowed us the opportunity to donate proceeds of sales to organizations that help others. By listing all of the above, it's not my intention to gain praise or recognition. I simply want to make sure it's clear how seriously I take all of these issues."
The vocalist continued, "Throughout my four year incarceration and release, I’ve sought meaningful personal change and surrounded myself with family, friends and counsel. I’m grateful to have earned the support of my bandmates, my wife, family and fans who’ve also given me this chance. I will continue to move forward in my personal mission to help others and make a positive impact in the world around me, knowing there will be challenges, and believing that the next half of my life will be more meaningful than the first."
Earlier this month, As I Lay Dying announced their fall tour plans in the U.S. with After the Burial and Emmure. The news comes as the group prepares to release their first new album, Shaped By Fire, since Lambesis' return. Dates for the run can be seen here, while tickets are available at this location.
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