At a news conference held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia earlier today Erykah Badu delivered a statement to the effect that, as the Associated Press reported, “she holds no grudge against Malaysia’s government for barring her from performing after a photograph of her body art offended some Muslims.” After a long period of silence during which her only communication was a quote saying she was “worried and dismayed” and a tweet of “I deserve it,” Ms. Badu shared some of her feelings on twitter last night, including many RTs of some of the 1,500 fans who had purchased tickets to see her perform at the cancelled concert showing their support online–a flurry of digital activity which caused her name to trend globally overnight.
Although many of her Malaysian fans expressed their dissatisfaction with the government’s action (seen by some as a political stunt in an election year) Badu told the assembled reporters that even though “It’s sad, because we traveled a long way…I’m totally understanding of (Malaysian Information Minister Rais Yatim’s) protection of the laws and its people. He doesn’t want anything to happen. I’m good with that.” She went on to say:
I think art is often misunderstood in the realm of religion, and it’s OK. In America, it’s a lot different. Art is also misunderstood but it is not such a harsh gesture to promote the names of God. I am learning and understanding about Islam in other countries more as we travel.
Indeed, in addition to stating that she “absolutely” welcomed another opportunity to perform in Malaysia, Badu is scheduled to perform at a jazz festival this weekend in Jakarta, the capital of neighboring Indonesia–which also happens to be the world’s most populous Muslim nation.