Hedley's Junos performance cancelled amid misconduct allegations
Published Wednesday, February 14, 2018 12:23PM PST
Last Updated Wednesday, February 14, 2018 7:21PM PST
Canadian pop-rock group Hedley will no longer be performing at the 2018 Junos, organizers confirmed Wednesday.
News of the cancelled performance comes as the band faces allegations of inappropriate conduct with underage fans. None of the claims, which emerged this week on social media, have been proven.
A message posted on the Juno Awards Twitter account said Hedley and the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences made a joint decision to call off the March 25 performance "after careful consideration of the situation."
The band is still nominated for three awards at this year's Junos ceremony.
In addition to the award show, a spokesperson for WE said the charity has no plans to work with Hedley in the future.
"WE has had a long relationship with Hedley, and the band has done much to support our charitable work at home and abroad," the charity behind WE Day and other empowerment campaigns said in a statement to media Wednesday.
"WE takes these allegations seriously."
Hedley, which originally formed in Abbotsford, B.C., posted a statement to social media Wednesday calling the claims "unsubstantiated."
"If we are to have a meaningful, open and honest discussion, we all have to accept and respect that there are at least two sides to every story," the group said.
"We would hope that people will bear-in-mind (sic) the context in which these unsupported accusations have been made before passing judgment on us as individuals or as a band."
Members of the band said they applauded the #MeToo movement, a social media campaign meant to highlight the prevalence of sexual assault and harassment. In their statement, the band commended the open discussion the movement inspired, especially within the music industry, and praised women who have shared their stories.
"We realize the life of a touring band is an unconventional one. While we are all now either married or have entered into committed, long-term relationships, there was a time, in the past, when we engaged in a lifestyle that incorporated certain rock and roll clichés. However, there was always a line that we would never cross," Hedley said.
The band said they feel the conversation is important, and that they would be evaluating their next steps.
Hedley is partway through its Cageless Tour, and is scheduled to perform in Medicine Hat, Alta. on Wednesday, then Moose Jaw, Sask. on Thursday. CTV News has reached out to Live Nation, the concert promoter, but emails and phone calls have not been returned.
Watchdog management also works with the band, but did not provide a comment.
Allegations first became public on Monday after a Twitter user began sharing screenshots of conversations with anonymous people who allege they are victims. Several other social media users have since shared allegations of inappropriate conduct with underage girls using the hashtag #outHedley2k18.
Following the allegations, some radio stations announced they would stop playing the band's music until they were verified.
A spokesperson for Bell Media, the company that owns CTV News, said its stations have "adjusted (their) playlists accordingly" and that the company would closely monitor the situation.
Michelle Hetu was a teenager the first time she saw Hedley live at a concert in Nanaimo, B.C. in 2007.
She showed CTV News a photo of then-26-year-old guitar player Dave Rosin licking her face, something she considered uncomfortable but not overtly sexual.
"Being 15, it kind of is odd having an early- to mid-20s (man) lick your face unprovoked, and just in general invading your personal space. That is kind of odd," she said.