Members were denied visas just a few days before their arrival into the country.
Everyone is looking forward to the South By South West a.k.a SXSW festival but due to the current issues with international travel, members of a few bands have been denied a visa.
Drummer Yussef Dayes, who plays for two bands (United Vibrations as well as duo Yussef Kamaal), as well as members of Massive Scar Era, a hardcore band, were denied entry into America under the Visa Waiver Program and P-2 visas respectively, before the festival.
United Vibrations released a statement stating, “We are sad to announce we will NOT be performing at SXSW in Texas because our ESTA’s have been revoked under the new Executive order. We were looking forward to connecting with our brothers and sisters stateside to share our music. Why weren’t we let in? Our Names? The music? The color of our skin?”
Massive Scar Era members were questioned before their entry at the U.S.-Canada border. Vocalist Cherine Amr was even questioned about her ethnicity and a Customs and Border Patrol official also asked the band’s bassist, Dylan Pieter Wijdenes-Charles, to prove his ethnic identity. Amr posted this video as a statement from the band:
If Massive Scar Era’s allegations are true, the agent’s statements could be a breach of the Jay Treaty which allows First Nation members and American Indians free passage across the U.S.-Canadian border for many reasons, including employment and immigration.
It really IS a mad world at the moment.