After a concert was forced to end, the Swiss band “Lauwarm” wants to discuss with their fans what inspiration and what cultural appropriation is. The background is an incident from July 18, which is now making waves: the band, made up of mostly white musicians, had to cancel a concert in Bern because it bothered some visitors that they were playing Jamaican music and some were wearing African clothes and dreadlocks.

“We treat all cultures with respect,” the band wrote on their Instagram account on Wednesday. “But we also stand by the music we play, our appearance and the way we are.” The band invited fans under the hashtag

Band boss Dominik Plumettaz told the Swiss newspaper NZZ that the current concert was canceled was anything but nice. “We felt alienated because no one from the audience approached us when we were playing that night.” Instead, a few visitors complained directly to the organizer.

He also qualified the allegations against the newspaper. His band’s performances are neither about provocation nor about cultural appropriation. “We get inspiration from other cultures and other genres of music, develop them further and make our music that way,” he said.

Cultural appropriation means that people use a culture that is not their own, for example through music or clothing. Dreadlocks are formed when hair becomes matted. Blacks in particular identify with dreadlocks hairstyles. In March, the Fridays for Future movement in Germany disinvited the white musician Ronja Maltzahn, who was supposed to perform at a demonstration in Hanover, because of her dreadlocks.

The Brasserie Lorraine restaurant in Bern, where the group performed on July 18, also made a statement. “We too were not aware enough of the scope of this topic and what it can do to people,” said the operators on Tuesday. However, they do not find “that members of the band or white people are automatically racists”.