Seattle resident Dave Matthews responds to violence in Charlottesville, where band started

(Left photo: David Iliff/Wikimedia Commons. Right photo: Getty Images)

Seattle resident Dave Matthews released a statement about the violence Saturday in Charlottesville.

The statement was released on behalf of the Dave Matthews Band, which formed in Charlottesville in 1991.

Matthews was a bartender at Miller’s Bar in downtown Charlottesville when he approached some of his future bandmates about collaborating on songs he’d written. Millers, which is still open, is about four blocks from where one person was killed and 19 others were injured Saturday when a 20-year-old man plowed his car into a crowd of protesters objecting to white supremacists.

"Dave Matthews Band is heartbroken and disgusted by the acts of racism, violence, and domestic terrorism in our hometown this weekend," the band said in a statement on their Facebook page. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families of these hateful acts. This is not the Charlottesville we know and love; we will work hard, hand-in-hand with our community to help us all heal from this sickening display of hate."

“Hate speech disguised as free speech is cowardly and shameful. Such speech gives permission to the hateful acts we witnessed today; there is nothing pure or acceptable, or philosophical about Nazism and racism masked as heritage or cultural purity. The multicultural tapestry of America need to come together, acknowledge our difficult history and set out to move directly away from it toward an inclusive, kinder, more intelligent future.”

Last year, the Dave Matthews Band played a 25th anniversary show in Charlottesville. Watch a video of that show below.