Atlanta’s Music Midtown Festival Cancelled Over Gun Law

Music Midtown, which prohibits weapons and explosives, has cancelled the 2022 Atlanta festival due to Georgia’s unrestricted gun laws.

The annual Atlanta music festival Music Midtown is shutting down their two-day concert this year due to Georgia gun laws. While artists set to perform in September included Jack White, Future, My Chemical Romance, and Fall Out Boy, the plug was pulled on the festival just one month prior, according to Rolling Stone.

“[D]ue to circumstances beyond our control, Music Midtown will no longer be taking place this year,” Live Nation stated in an announcement on Monday (August 1). We are looking forward to reuniting in September and hope we can get back to enjoying the festival together again soon.”

Atlanta-based journalist George Chidi was first to speculate that the September festival was about to be canceled, voicing his concerns about Georgia’s gun law.

“My understanding is that it is because Georgia’s gun laws make it impossible to bar firearms from Piedmont Park, a condition required by many artists’ concert riders,” Chidi wrote on Twitter last Friday (July 29.)

The two-day music festival is annually held at Atlanta’s Piedmont Park, one of various public spaces in Georgia where guns are allowed to be openly carried. On the festival’s website, it states that “weapons or explosives of any kind” are prohibited.

In May, the festival’s gun ban was questioned by Georgia gun rights advocate Phillip Evans, per Saporta Report. One month prior, Evans lost a court case with Atlanta Botanical Garden in the pursuit of bringing guns to the public space. Evans first initiated the challenge in 2014 after former Governor Nathan Deal signed off on the “guns everywhere” deal, permitting open carry throughout Georgia.

Although Evans never pursued a case against Music Midtown, he sent letters to Live Nation and festival security about the firearm ban.

Jaelani Turner-Williams

Jaelani Turner-Williams is a contributing news writer for Okayplayer with bylines at Billboard, MTV News, NYLON, Recording Academy and more. Read her mind on Twitter at @hernameisjae.

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Jaelani Turner-Williams

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