Who Is Allowed To Play Music?

In Slant Jan. 26, you agreed with voices who called out The Shedd for cultural appropriation because Siri Vik covered music by Billie Holiday. So, it’s off-limits to honor someone’s music now? Really?

Is it appropriation when Christians dream of a “White Christmas” because it was written by a Jew, Irving Berlin? Did my grandson cross the line by learning to play “The Entertainer” by Scott Joplin on his piano? Are Black Americans appropriating British culture if they cover a Beatles song?

Is Motown music or Dixieland jazz off limits to performers in much of the world? What music is OK for a symphony orchestra to play? Who is allowed to play music written by Bob Dylan, a Nobel Prize winner? I guess Jimi Hendrix should have left “All Along the Watchtower” to a white man. I think Eugene Weekly needs to apologize for trying to be the morality police. Thanks, Shedd, and other venues for bringing our community quality entertainment without censorship. 

Richie Weinman


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