Singer: Anthem Performance Axed Because of My Shirt

Sevyn Streeter wore 'We Matter' shirt to 76ers game
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 27, 2016 12:15 AM CDT
Singer: Anthem Performance Was Axed Because of My Shirt
This photo provided by Atlantic Records shows Sevyn Streeter before the game.   (Sevyn Streeter/Atlantic Records via AP)

Philadelphia 76ers national anthem singer Sevyn Streeter says she was told by the team she could not perform because of her "We Matter" jersey. She was scheduled to sing before the Sixers' season opener against the Oklahoma City Thunder Wednesday, but she tells the AP that just minutes before her performance, she was told she would not sing. "I'd say two minutes before we were about to walk out ... the organization told me that I could not wear my shirt while singing the national anthem at their game," the R&B singer says. "I was never given any kind of dress code. I was never asked beforehand to show my wardrobe."

The Sixers, who had a member of their dance team sing the anthem, declined to say why Streeter's performance was canceled. Streeter has written songs for Chris Brown, Ariana Grande, and other stars. She says she was very hurt by the NBA team's actions. "I was angry, extremely, extremely angry and disappointed and honestly brought to tears by all of it. It broke my heart," she says. "Honestly, I was very excited about being able to perform the national anthem. I was really looking forward to that." This isn't the first time the Sixers were dragged into a national anthem controversy. A woman performing the national anthem before an NBA preseason game in Miami did so while kneeling at midcourt. (Read more Philadelphia 76ers stories.)

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