By Alexandra King
An inflatable pig with Donald Trump’s face on the side. Screens that show doctored images of the President throwing up. Photos of Trump with Russian President Vladimir Putin, as a big baby, and as Hitler.
They’re just a few of the images music fans can catch on Pink Floyd co-founder Roger Waters’ 54-date North American tour, “Us + Them,” which kicked off on May 26 and coincides with the release of Water’s first studio album in 25 years, “Is This the Life We Really Want?”
The political nature of his show, Waters told CNN, is a calculated and defiant response to what he calls the “charade” of the American presidency.
In an interview with Michael Smerconish, the 73-year-old Waters said he has no regrets about turning parts of his 2 1/2-hour performance into what the CNN host described as just “as much an anti-Trump rally as a rock concert.”
“It would be a lot easier to be on tour if I wasn’t doing any of this, if I didn’t have opinions,” said Waters, a longtime Trump critic.
But, he said, 20 gigs in, people — even in red states — are “getting it.”
“We started in Kansas City and then we went Louisville, Tulsa, St. Louis,” Water said. “And that was like a — that was a kind of, whoa, I wonder how this is going to be.”
‘Go see Katy Perry’
Generally, the shows have gone “great,” he said, though some fans have demonstrated their objections by walking out.
“In my view, you have to make your choice as to whether you do the right thing or the thing that makes you the most money,” Waters said.
As for fans who leave during the show — a cadre Waters estimated at “maybe, 10” per night — it’s been “no big surprise,” he said.
“If you’re looking for an escape from a connection with other people on this planet, if you want to be, you know, separated from your potential to empathize with others, if you want a life in an ivory tower where everybody is an enemy and you need to build walls and you’ve got to do a better deal with the Chinese or whatever it might be, that this leader that you’ve elected thinks is a good idea, well, that’s what you believe,” he said.
As for what Waters might say to someone who’s looking for escapism rather than politics at a rock concert, the musician didn’t mince his words.
“Go see Katy Perry, you know?” he said.