Eric Clapton has threatened to cancel performances at U.K. venues that require audience members to be vaccinated to attend his concerts.
Clapton’s message, which was posted on the Telegram page of Robin Monotti, who identifies as a pro-vaccine-safety advocate, was in response to U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson‘s recent announcement that COVID-19 vaccine passes would be required to attend events at nightclubs and other venues.
“Following the PM’s announcement on Monday…I feel honour bound to make an announcement of my own,” Slowhand writes. “I will not perform on any stage where there is a discriminated audience present. Unless there is provision made for all people to attend, I reserve the right to cancel the show.”
Accompanying the message is a link to Clapton’s rendition of the 2020 Van Morrison song “Stand and Deliver,” which criticizes the U.K. government’s pandemic-related restrictions on live performances.
In May, another message from Clapton was posted on Monotti’s Telegram page in which he revealed he experienced a severe reaction after receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine.
“[M]y hands and feet were either frozen, numb or burning, and pretty much useless for two weeks, I feared I would never play again,” Eric wrote. “[I] should never have gone near the needle.”
In a statement to Rolling Stone in May, a spokesperson for the U.K. government agency overseeing the vaccine maintained that “over 56 million doses of vaccines against COVID-19 have now been administered in the UK, saving thousands of lives through the biggest vaccination programme that has ever taken place in this country.”
The rep added, “Our advice remains that the benefits of the COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca outweigh the risks in the majority of people.”
Clapton’s next U.K. concerts are scheduled for May 2022. He begins a run of U.S. dates in September 2021.
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