The folk singer sits outside the Moe's Alley nightclub, having her mouth shut with 'Silenced by Fear' duct tape and wearing a plastic disposable suit for people to sign.
Michelle Shocked is protesting the cancellation of her show after she made anti-gay rant when performing at Yoshi's in San Francisco earlier this month. The Grammy-nominated folk singer showed up Thursday night, March 28 at Moe's Alley nightclub in Santa Cruz, where she was originally supposed to perform.
The 51-year-old entertainer wore a duct tape slapped across her mouth with message, "Silenced by Fear." She donned a white disposable suit and covered her head and face with white mask beanie. On the back of her plastic ensemble, there was another message written in red. It read, "Gimme wit not spit."
Shocked sat on the ground strumming her guitar near a sign board. She wrote messages on white papers and put them on the wall behind her. One of them read, "Does speech really scare you that much?" She refused to answer question and, instead, invited people to pick up a Sharpie marker and write on her suit.
In early of her career, Shocked openly said she was attracted to women. The singer then married a male journalist named Bart Bull, whom she split from some years later, and started to get involved with the West Angeles Church of God in Christ before eventually becoming a born-again Christian.
In her infamous speech that left her with no tour, Shocked said to the crowd, "When they stop Prop 8 and force priests at gunpoint to marry gays, it will be the downfall of civilization," before adding, "You are going to leave here and tell people, 'Michelle Shocked said God hates f*****s'."
"I do not, nor have I ever, said or believed that God hates homosexuals (or anyone else). I said that some of His followers believe that," she later explained in a statement. "If I could repeat the evening, I would make a clearer distinction between a set of beliefs I abhor, and my human sympathy for the folks who hold them."
The damage had been done though. Venues like the Hopmonk Tavern in nearby Novato and eTown Hall pulled the plug on her scheduled shows. It snowballed into mass cancellation as clubs in such towns as Santa Cruz and Evanston, as well as Telluride Bluegrass Festival in Colorado did the same.
Hours before she showed up outside the Santa Cruz club, she took to Twitter to hint that she would crash the show, "Moe's in S Cruz tonight ok? Its an art project 'My Summer Vacation' I want your autograph. Bring Sharpie. #truthvsreality #shortsharpshocked."
The performance by bands Beaver Fever and Frootie Flavors tapped to replace her went ahead without a hitch. "We will not be bashing Michelle Shocked," Moe's Alley owner Bill Welch said. "Rather we will celebrate music, diversity and send some healing Santa Cruz energy her way."