CHRISTCHURCH, NZ (CelebrityAccess) — A short tour of New Zealand by Pantera frontman Philip Anselmo came unraveled after several venues backed away from hosting performances in the wake of a deadly terror attack that left 50 dead.
Anselmo and his band The Illegals were scheduled to perform at the Empire in Christchurch on March 26th and Galatos in Auckland on March 27th but both venues canceled the performance, citing Anselmo history of using iconography associated with white supremacy in past events.
Promoter Valhalla Events relocated the Empire show to the Christchurch Club Tavern, but that venue also then backed away from hosting the show, announcing on social media:
“The Philip Anselmo gig has been cancelled. We do not and will not support white supremacy or racism.”
Anselmo’s performances were canceled following an attack on a Mosque by a suspected white supremacist, left 50 people dead and another 50 people with injuries.
In 2016, Anselmo sparked controversy when was filmed ending his performance at Dimebash 2016 by giving a Nazi salute and yelling “white power.” He later described the remark as a joke he attributed to drinking white wine during the evening.
Anselmo later apologized for his remarks, and in a statement issued on Housecore Records’ YouTube channel, he said: “I was at the Dimebash, and it was extremely late at night. There was heavy-duty talk between myself and those who love Dime. And heavy emotions were flowing, jokes were made backstage that transpired upon the stage, and it was ugly. It was uncalled for. And anyone who knows me and my true nature knows that I don’t believe in any of that; I don’t want to be part of any group. I’m an individual, and I am a thousand percent apologetic to anyone that took offence to what I said because you should have taken offence to what I said. And I am so sorry, and I hope you just … man, give me another chance to … just give me another chance. I love all of you. And anyone who’s met me, anyone who knows me knows that I love all of you. Bless you.” [SIC]
However, the Dimebash incident wasn’t Anselmo’s first brush with accusations of racism and Pantera has been criticized for its use of Confederate flags.
In a 2016 interview, ahead of the release of their book ‘A Vulgar Display Of Pantera,’ Anselmo addressed the issue, stating:
“Well, for one, I’ve always said, “Flags don’t mean a damn thing to me.” Two, by using the Confederate flag, despite what anyone says – and I don’t give a shit, because no matter what I say, I’m damned if I do, damned if I don’t – but the truth of it all is, it was about as innocent as innocent could be. We weren’t confessing to any clandestine power of structure or however you assholes wanna put it these days. I think we used the Confederate flag merely because of Lynyrd Skynyrd. We had learned from people before us. And it was never about anything other than that.”