Country duo Big & Rich and country rapper Cowboy Troy have been announced as performers for the Great America Alliance Inaugural Gala, set for January 19th in Washington, D.C. The pre-inaugural event will be presented by the Republican Party of New York and Great America Alliance, an organization formed by leaders of the Great America PAC, an independent Super PAC which supported the candidacy of President-elect Donald Trump, who will be sworn in on January 20th.
Big & Rich member John Rich has long been a supporter of conservative politics, even writing Republican presidential candidate John McCain's campaign song, "Raising McCain" in 2008. He was also the 2011 winner of Trump's NBC reality series, Celebrity Apprentice. VIPs expected to attend this inaugural event include former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani and Oscar-winning actor Jon Voight.
"We're thrilled to be performing in our nation's capital during this historic moment in time," Rich said in a statement. "A presidential inauguration is a uniquely American event, so we are honored to be a part of it and hope to help make it a memorable event."
Great America Alliance, a 501(c)4 organization, advocates "for a stronger economy, a more secure nation and society with less government intrusion and more freedom for American citizens," according to the release announcing the inaugural event.
The securing of performers for Trump's inauguration has been contentious. Confirmed performers thus far are the Radio City Rockettes, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and America's Got Talent singer Jackie Evancho. The Rockettes' booking caused a firestorm of controversy when announced just before Christmas. The dancers had received a letter from management saying that if they were full-time, they were "obligated" to perform, according to The New York Times, but the American Guild of Variety Artists reached an agreement with management that made participation voluntary. The company later issued a statement, saying, "we had more Rockettes request to participate than we have slots available." Rockette dancer Phoebe Pearl wrote on Instagram that same day that she felt "embarrassed and disappointed" that the company had decided for them that they would be performing at the inauguration.