The Recording Industry Association of America has booked country music performers Big & Rich for its inauguration event benefiting Musicians on Call.
The duo of Big Kenny and John Rich, who was a winner on “Celebrity Apprentice,” will perform the evening of the inauguration on Jan. 20 at the 9:30 Club in Washington, D.C.
The concert is independent of events being planned by President-elect Donald Trump’s inaugural committee, which has been trying to book acts. Jackie Evancho has said she will perform the National Anthem, and there has been speculation that Andrea Bocelli will also perform at the swearing-in ceremony.
Musicians on Call brings live and recorded music to patients in healthcare facilities. The RIAA also hosted an inauguration event in 2013, with Kesha as the headliner.
But music industry sources say that the inaugural committee faces resistance from performers who fear a backlash, given the contentious nature of the presidential race. Idina Menzel told Vanity Fair that it was “karma.” “I mean, look: All the artists in the world got up and tried to get our girl (Hillary Clinton) elected, and it still didn’t happen, so we’re all still trying to recover from that,” she said.