Kanye West pulls out of Coachella
Kanye West has pulled out of his scheduled Coachella appearance, a source confirms Variety. Representatives for West and the festival did not immediately respond to requests for comment; the news was first reported by TMZ.
The reason for its cancellation was not immediately clear, although a source tells Variety that he had not rehearsed or prepared for the apparition. While West played a full set, accompanied by Drake, at the Los Angeles Coliseum in December, Coachella is North America’s biggest music festival and, by necessity, runs a very tight operation.
Still, there are plenty of reasons why the news doesn’t come as a shock, as West’s unpredictable and combative behavior in recent months has cast doubt on his appearance even as it was announced in January; he had been kicked out of a scheduled appearance at Sunday night’s Grammy Awards due to what was described as his “concerning online behavior”. West canceled the closing dates of his “Saint Pablo” tour in 2016 and was hospitalized for mental health reasons soon after, following incidents similar to his behavior in recent months.
West was scheduled to play the closing night of the two-weekend festival, which runs from April 15-17 and April 22-24. The first two evenings will be led by Harry Styles and Billie Eilish.
The festival essentially hedged their bets by charging EDM titans Swedish House Mafia to an unspecified lineup spot listed at the bottom of the official announcement poster, leaving open the possibility of the band replacing West. as Sunday’s headliner in case he retires. With the festival just 11 days away, that seems a likely scenario.
Rumors swirled that Travis Scott would join West for the performance, but TMZ says he won’t be appearing either. Scott has been keeping a low profile since 10 people died in a rush to the stage during his headlining performance at his Astroworld festival in Houston in October.
Such an appearance would send a message to West, who in recent months has publicly embraced ostracized celebrities such as Marilyn Manson, who is accused of sexual assault, and DaBaby, who has made shameless homophobic comments in recent months.
West headlined the festival in 2011 and recently performed a full set, backed by Drake, in Los Angeles in December.
The festival, which is already sold out, is set to take place at its usual location of the Empire Polo Ground in Indio, Calif.
Coachella is North America’s largest music festival and has already sold its 125,000 tickets a day, and the sheer logistics of over 100,000 people traveling and congregating in one location creates immeasurable opportunities for disease transmission .
While the original headliners for this 21st installment of the festival – first announced in January 2020 – were Travis Scott, Frank Ocean and Rage Against the Machine, the festival has been postponed four times due to the pandemic. Last year Ocean moved his appearance to 2023 and Scott was dropped from the bill following the Astroworld tragedy in November, although sources tell Variety his agent fought to keep him on on the bill. West and Scott are frequent collaborators and linked by a former marriage (West’s ex, Kim Kardashian, is Kylie Jenner’s half-sister, who shares a daughter with Scott).