Riverbend drops Cee Lo, citing ban on “current, popular and relevant” acts

in Culture/Riverbend
Cee Lo (Used under the CC-BY-2.0 license. Source: http://flic.kr/p/5bADEf)
Cee Lo (Used under the CC-BY-2.0 license. Source: http://flic.kr/p/5bADEf)

To the disappointment of many Chattanooga music fans, it was announced today at a press conference by the Friends of the Festival, the group that organizes the Riverbend music festival, that unfortunately Cee Lo Green was dropped from the 2013 Riverbend lineup.

The reason behind the cancellation was a rule that has been in effect for the entire 31-year history of the annual nine-day summer music festival, which states that acts that are “current, popular and relevant” are barred from playing the festival.

“We deeply regret the error,” said head festival organizer Ginger Dewarr. “We thought enough years had passed since ‘Crazy’ by Gnarls Barkley was a smash hit, but we totally forgot about Cee Lo’s ‘Forget You.'”

Riverbend Festival regulations state that a performer must not have had a bona fide hit song within the last five years, and Cee Lo Green’s “Forget You,” also known in an unbowdlerized form as “F-ck You,” was both a commercial and critical success in 2010.

“Brandy was able to stay on the bill, because her star had fallen enough in the last few years with her last couple of albums,” explained Dewarr.

“’80s one-hit wonders, past-their-prime rock dinosaurs milking the county fair circuit, ’60s acts with only one original member left: that is the true spirit and bread-and-butter of Riverbend,” said Dewarr.

The current 2013 Riverbend Festival lineup includes the bands Lynyrd Skynyrd, Psychedelic Furs, and 10,000 Maniacs without Natalie Merchant.

“Although Cee Lo fans may be disappointed,” said Dewarr, “we are pleased to announce that the money that would have gone to Cee Lo was used to put seventeen more acts on the lineup, including the ’70s British rock band Foghat, Marcy Playground, Fred Durst Unplugged and a Guttermouth cover band called ‘I Can’t Believe It’s Not Guttermouth!'”

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