Politics

Toby Keith To Perform For Trump's Saudi Arabia Visit

| by Sarah Zimmerman

Country music star Toby Keith has announced he will perform a free, men-only concert in Saudi Arabia during the same weekend President Donald Trump is visiting the country.

Keith will perform with Saudi singer Rabeh Sager, according to the Daily Mail, and the event is meant to blend the styles of American country and traditional Saudi music.

"An Arabian lute and American guitar unite in a star-studded night," reads an advertisement for the event.

The concert is unusual for Keith, who typically performs overseas only for U.S. troops. In accordance with the country's strict laws, only men over the age of 21 can attend the event, and attendees must wear traditional Saudi thawb tunics. The concert, which will take place on May 20, is free. 

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According to NBC, Saudi Arabia's laws and customs follow a strict interpretation of Islam. Alcohol is banned in the country, and men and women must remain segregated in public.

It remains unclear whether Keith will avoid singing some of his greatest hits that revolve around drinking alcohol, including "Whiskey Girl," "Beer For My Horses" and "I Love This Bar."

Keith spokeswoman Elaine Schock noted that this will be the first time that Keith performs in the country, but refused to comment on the fact that the event would be male only. 

The concert, arranged by the country's Middle East Broadcasting Center, is part of a number of events for Trump's two-day visit to Saudi Arabia. 

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This young teenage singer was shocked when Keith Urban invited her on stage at his concert. A few moments later, he made her wildest dreams come true:

Keith is only one of a number of guests meant to help welcome Trump to the country. Trump is expected to meet with other figures, including Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and Fox News host Bret Baier. 

The Saudi Arabia trip will be Trump's first visit to a foreign nation since his January inauguration, notes the Daily Mail. He will be holding a summit with Arab and Muslim leaders on May 20.

Keith was one of the performers during one of Trump's inaugural events. The country music star faced backlash for performing for Trump, especially as many other celebrities and musical acts refused to attend due to Trump's politics. Keith downplayed his connection to Trump, defending his decision to play saying that he has performed for previous presidents. He did not say who he voted for in the 2016 presidential election, according to NBC.

"I don't apologize for performing for our country or military," he said in a statement on Jan. 14. "I performed at events for previous Presidents [George W.] Bush and [Barack] Obama and over 200 shows in Iraq and Afghanistan for the USO."

Sources: Daily Mail, NBC / Photo credit: U.S. Army/Flickr

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