Hampton, Va. — Hours after Pearl Jam called off a Raleigh concert, lead singer Eddie Vedder explained his reasons to a Hampton audience.
When the band took the stage for an encore Monday night at Hampton Coliseum, Vedder said, "We had to make a real tough call about what we would do about the situation in North Carolina because they've got a law there that broadly discriminates against a whole group of people."
"We thought we could still play and make things right," Vedder said. "We thought we could fortify all the people on the ground working to repeal this despicable law ... but the reality is, there's nothing like the immense power of boycotting."
He apologized to ticket holders angry that the Raleigh concert was canceled but suggested they redirect their anger at those who passed the law.
"Get them to change their minds because they made a mistake, a big mistake," he said before launching into a cover of Steven Van Zandt's "I Am a Patriot," which he dedicated to "all the soldiers in the LGBT community."