Everyone Who Has Pulled Out of SXSW in Opposition to the U.S. Army Being a Sponsor

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Dozens of speakers and performers are canceling their appearances at the South By Southwest (SXSW) festival, in protest of the event’s sponsorship by the U.S. Army amidst the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.

The U.S. Army is one of six SXSW “super sponsors” for the event, which draws hundreds of thousands of visitors annually for a festival of panels, music showcases, film screenings, and exhibitions in Austin, Tx. This year, as many artists continue to boycott the ongoing event, they have been posting statements via social media, explaining their decisions and citing their discontent with the Army sponsorship, as well as SXSW’s partnership with private defense contractor RTX, a known weapons supplier to the Israeli Army. 

Texas Governor Greg Abbott responded to the protest in a post on X (formerly Twitter), saying,“We are proud of the U.S. military in Texas. If you don’t like it, don’t come here.”

In a series of comments posted to X in response, SXSW said, “We are an organization that welcomes diverse viewpoints. Music is the soul of SXSW, and it has long been our legacy. We fully respect the decision these artists made to exercise their right to free speech.”

“The defense industry has historically been a proving ground for many of the systems we rely on today. These institutions are often leaders in emerging technologies, and we believe it’s better to understand how their approach will impact our lives,” the statement continued. 

The U.S. military has shown continuous support for Israel since the country launched its Gaza invasion following Hamas’ Oct. 7th attack that killed 1,200 people. Since then, more than 30,000 people have been killed and more than 70,000 have been injured in Gaza, according to figures supplied by the Hamas-run health ministry, and reiterated by the United Nations. The U.S. has provided roughly $3.3 billion a year in annual military aid to Israel, per the Council on Foreign Relations.

“We’re proud to be a sponsor of SXSW, and to have the opportunity to showcase America’s Army,” Matt Ahearn, a U.S. Army spokesperson told TIME in a statement. “SXSW presents a unique opportunity for the Army to meet technology innovators and leaders, explore new ideas and insights, and create dynamic industry partnerships as we modernize for the future.”

SXSW has not yet responded to TIME’s request for comment.

Here's a full list of the acts who have pulled out of the festival so far:

Eliza McLamb, TC Superstar, Mamalarky, Proper, The Curls, c*mgirl8, Horse Jumper of Love, Abe Batshon, Buffalo Nichols, Buggin, BODEGA, The Armed. TAGABOW, Farmer’s Wife, Mei Semones, MEDUSA, TC Superstar, Omni, Trauma Ray, Mamalarky, Subsonic Eye, Birthday Girl, Groa, Winona Forever, Little Marzan. Tetchy, Discovery Zone, Friend, Lady Apple Tree, Allegra Krieger, Jess Cornelius, Lip Critic, Godcaster, Lucía Beyond, Gel, May Rio, Greg Freeman, babybaby_explores, The New Eves, Ben Aqua, Bloomsday, Strange Joy, Reyna Tropical, Being Dead, Proper, Enola Gay, Gavin James, Robert Grace, Chalk, Soda Blonde, Madison Baker, Luge, Vilagerrr, Font, Fust, Kolb, Frances Chang, Sarah Morrison, This is Lorelei, Conchúr White, Fantasy of a Broken Heart, Tomato Flower, Merce Lemon, Gold Dime, Vera Ellen, and...


“This decision will have a significant financial impact on Kneecap, both on lost income and on logistical costs already incurred, but it isn’t an iota of hardship when compared with the unimageable [sic] suffering being inflicted every minute of every day on the people of Gaza,” the band said in a statement on X.

Lambrini Girls

“We are pulling out of SXSW tomorrow. We won’t be going to Austin whatsoever,” said Brighton-based band Lambrini Girls on March 9. 


American punk band Scowl pulled out of SXSW on March 8. We came to this decision in protest of the U.S. Army’s sponsorship of SXSW. As well as the involvement of RTX (formerly Raytheon), Collins Aerospace, and BAE Systems whom have direct ties to the manufacturing and supplying of weapons used against Palestinians.”

Okay Shalom

“Thanks for the support and solidarity re dropping out of SXSW. There’s always a right thing to do and it’s almost never as complicated as the establishment wants you to believe, and sometimes it costs you a dream, but a dream is a dream and not a life. Palestinians deserve to dream. They deserve to live,” the East Coast-based artist Okay Shalom said on Instagram.

Squirrel Flower 

“Genocide profiteers like Raytheon supply weapons to the IDF, paid for by our taxes. A music festival should not include war profiteers. I refuse to be complicit in this and withdrawl [sic] my art and labor in protest.”


Dublin-based Irish punk band Sprints announced that they had pulled out of SXSW on March 13. “With an empty schedule in Austin we decided to honour our commitment and performed at the KUTX Austin Food Bank Fundraiser this morning and will be playing one pop up show in Lazarus Brewing at 7pm on Thursday. Neither event is affiliated with SXSW.

Rachel Chinouriri 

“I wasn’t aware until yesterday, that SXSW is being funded by the Army as a ‘super sponsor’,” English singer-songwriter Rachel Chinouriri said in a statement explaining her decision to withdraw from the festival. “This has been an enormous oversight by SXSW and hopefully a huge learning experience to be more considerate about this in the future.”

Mick Flannery

Irish singer-songwriter Mick Flannery withdrew from the festival on March 11. 

“I will not be playing the previously advertised official showcase at the SXSW festival. I do not wish to be associated with weapons manufacturers,” he said in a post on X.

Gurriers, NewDad, and Cardinals 

Irish bands Gurriers, NewDad, and Cardinals jointly announced their withdrawals on March 12. “To be clear, we, as ‘Music From Ireland’ bands will not be partaking in any official SXSW shows. We stand in complete solidarity with Palestine and others who have spoken out against, and boycotted SXSW,” they said in a statement. “Sponsorship of the festival from the U.S. Army as well as defense contractors/those sending arms to destroy innocent lives is an act we find disgusting and reprehensible.”

The festival’s Irish showcase was canceled after several Irish acts pulled out of their performances.

Chris Smalls

Labor union organizer Chris Smalls did not speak at the festival, instead putting on a free event for the Austin community alongside his brother.

Devon Price

Author and social psychologist Devon Price pulled out of a live panel scheduled for March 10. “In solidarity with the Palestinian people, I have withdrawn my participation from this panel at SXSW. The conference has close ties to Raytheon and the U.S. Department of Defense, and I will not accept normalization of the violent settler colonial regime,” their statement read.

Sarah Philips

Community organizer Sarah Philips announced that they had pulled out of a panel on censorship of abortion content “in solidarity with other speakers and musicians acting in solidarity with Palestine and in protest of SXSW’s ties to war profiteers.”

Leah Penniman

Farmer and food justice activist Leah Penniman announced that they would be pulling out of their SXSW panel in a post on Instagram. “The energy and resources that would have gone to speaking at SXSW are being diverted to participate in the Global Day of Fasting in Solidarity with the People of Gaza on March 9 and the 25-mile Gaza ceasefire pilgrimage May 15-17,” Penniman shared.

Yaya Bey

Brooklyn-based blues musician Yaya Bey shared that they would be attending two unofficial events in Austin in lieu of official SXSW shows. “For clarity I will not be playing any official SXSW shows because they played themselves by supporting the war criminals and it’s ‘Free Palestine’ all day where I be at.”

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Write to Simmone Shah at simmone.shah@time.com