Greta Van Fleet singer Josh Kiszka has apologized to Indigenous fans for culturally appropriating clothing worn on stage.
The band’s fans had recently adopted a #SpeakUpGVF hashtag online, calling on the singer to address the issue, as well as to remove particular photos Kiszka posted in 2017 showing him wearing “copies of sacred Indigenous garments.”
Kiszka has now posted her regrets on Instagram.
“To our Indigenous fans, I see you,” he wrote. “I took the time to listen and collect my ideas. My appreciation for aboriginal culture is greater than myself. I recognize the harm ignorance can have on marginalized communities, something I would never wish to perpetuate. Hate, disrespect and prejudice of any kind are not welcome in this community. Since I became an adult, I have been able to grow and learn. This growth has not stopped and will not stop here.
Kiszka is not Native American, although he noted that the Chippewa tribe, an indigenous people with populations in the northern Midwest and Canada, “had a particularly profound impact on my life, having been exposed to their ceremonies. and customs during my early years growing up in Michigan, I made a charitable donation [to] the First Nations Development Institute to help keep Aboriginal traditions like theirs alive and healthy. If you would like to support me, please visit firstnations.org.”
Greta Van Fleet recently postponed her entire US spring tour while her guitarist, Jake Kiszka, recovered from a case of pneumonia that required hospitalization. They are now set to return to the stage on April 27, when they will open for Metallica in Santiago, Chile.
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The torch has passed.