Jason Isbell has decided to take a very specific stance on COVID for all of his upcoming shows. From here on, the singer will be requiring either proof that attendees have already been vaccinated or a negative COVID test in order to obtain entry into his concerts. This applies to both indoor and outdoor venues.
"We're now requiring proof of vaccination or a current negative test to attend all of our shows, indoors or out," Isbell explained in a tweet on Aug. 9. "If the venue won't allow that, we won't play."
In addition to his stance in the tweet, Isbell shared his interview with MSNBC in which he goes into more detail on his decision.
We're now requiring proof of vaccination or a current negative test to attend all our shows, indoors or out. If the venue won't allow that, we won't play. https://t.co/KSYmsT5qAl
-- Jason Isbell (@JasonIsbell) August 9, 2021
"I think the people who work at the venues, and who work in the music business, understand. From everything that I've heard so far, all the response that I've gotten so far from people in the business has been positive," Isbell explained in response to a question as to whether he thinks venues understand the importance of supporting the latest COVID-19 protocols due to rising casing of the delta variant.
"They understand that we could go back to not working at all, and a lot of these smaller venues, they aren't gonna be able to reopen if they go through another round of shut-downs," he notes.
Isbell thinks that part of the problem is these venues are receiving pushback from certain state governors who are trying to appeal to their political base and get things back to pre-COVID normal.
"I think the problem is, they're just getting so much pushback from some of the governors of certain states who wanna kowtow to their political base and try to make people think that their freedom is being encroached upon," he says. "You know, I'm all for freedom, but I think, if you're dead, you don't have any freedoms at all. So it's probably important to stay alive before you start questioning your liberty.
"It's life, and then it's liberty, and then it's the pursuit of happiness," Isbell says. "Those are in order of priority."