Beth Orton has come under fire for her music video for “1973,” one of the tracks off of her new album Kidsticks. As Billboard reports, the desert-set video, directed by photographer Tierney Gearon, shows Orton spray painting a cholla cactus and a Joshua tree, which is protected by the U.S. government. In response, a resident of Joshua Tree, California has started a Change.org petition calling for Orton to make a donation to the Mojave Desert Land Trust to pay for cleanup.
— Jay Babcock (@jaywbabcock) May 28, 2016
— team love records (@teamloverecords) May 28, 2016
Orton has taken down the video and responded to the controversy on Facebook, apologizing and saying that she was told that the tree was already dead. “I am so sorry. I feel sick with disgust,” she writes. “I was told the tree was already dead. I will take the video down now. Please let me know what I can do to help make some kind of amends. I did not direct the video and was following direction but now I know what I have been part of I feel utterly devastated and of course take responsibility for my part. I am truly and deeply sorry.”