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Mad Linx was scheduled to co-host the LIFEbeat: The Music Industry Fight AIDS Hearts & Voices Concert Series entitled Reggae Gold Concert Summer Jump-Off, co-sponsored by NYC radio station Power  105.1 FM on Tuesday, July 18th. International reggae artists, including Beenie Man, Wayne Wonder,  and a special guest performance by Foxy Brown, was supposed to come together for the first time to address HIV/AIDS in the  West Indies.

On July 14th, the event was cancelled due to outrage by the gay and lesbian community and supporters because of offensive lyrics by some of the artists. 

LIFEbeat stated, "The Music Industry Fights AIDS, wants the Caribbean American, AIDS activist and gay communities to know that we remain deeply committed to utilizing the power of music and the music industry to fight AIDS and we have learned many lessons while organizing the Reggae Gold Live concert.

"In our desire to do something positive within the Caribbean American community, we didn't realize the depth of the hurt in the GLBT community around the lyrics of  these artists,' commented John Cannelli, Executive Director of LIFEbeat.  "Once we saw how deep and real it is, it became very clear that canceling the concert was the right thing to do. We want to extend a heartfelt apology to those we offended and thank the individuals who raised their voices and helped us to see a more effective way to realize our mission. We also want to clarify the concerns of violence we felt. Those concerns didn't stem from any threats from activists or members of the Caribbean American community. They stemmed from threatening phone calls our office received from random individuals that led to concerns for the safety of our staff and others."  

Moving forward, the concert is cancelled but the issue still exists. * " We're not giving up and are continuing our commitment to this community," Cannelli adds. "The issues of homophobia, sexism, racism and poverty, key factors in the rampant spread of HIV/AIDS, need to be addressed openly. In looking at the bigger picture with the lessons we've learned, this concert wasn't the right forum for this important topic. Over the next few weeks, we will be reaching out to key members of the Caribbean American community and to AIDS organizations to join together in creating an appropriate forum, where our individual strengths as activists and the power of coming together under one important cause can make a real difference in this community." 

* LIFEbeat will have no involvement in nor benefit from any attempted resurrection of the Reggae Gold Live concert by any parties.


LIFEbeat- The Music Industry Fights AIDS, is a non-profit organization dedicated to HIV/AIDS prevention. Hearts & Voices is a music therapy program that shares the healing power of music through live entertainment for people living with AIDS in health care facilities across New York City.

Mad Linx can be seen on BET's "Rap City" Monday-Friday, 5-6pm (EST).

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