Families and loved ones are still dealing with the aftermath of Travis Scott’s Astroworld Festival on Friday, Nov. 5. The first night of the rapper’s two-day concert in Houston, Texas, left dozens of injuries and ten casualties, including a 9-year-old boy whose family declined Scott’s offer to pay for the funeral.
The eight-Grammy-nominated rapper sat down with Charlamagne Tha God to unpack the Astroworld tragedy in nearly an hour-long discussion shared on Charlamagne’s YouTube channel.
Scott began the interview by acknowledging the grief millions of fans, including himself, are currently experiencing.
“I been on different type of emotions…[an] emotional rollercoaster. It gets so hard because I always feel connected with my fans,” he revealed. “I went through something. I think fans went through something. People’s parents went through something, and it hurt the community. It hurts the city and it’s been a lot of thoughts and feelings and grieving.”
Scott expressed that he wishes he could “be there” to “hold” and “heal” his fans, whom he referred to as “family.”
When Charlamagne asked if there was any hesitation to speak out after being hit with hundreds of lawsuits, the “Antidote” rapper said, “It’s not about that.”
“You’re an artist, you are whatever people think you are. But at the end of the day you’re a human being and you have emotions,” Scott shared. “You want to communicate them emotions and try to find the best way to communicate.”
He admitted he had no clue what had occurred during Astroworld until “minutes before the press conference.” He also denied hearing any screams of distress from the audience that would cause him to stop the performance.
“It’s so crazy because I’m that artist too. Anytime you can hear something like that, you want to stop the show,” said the 30-year-old. “You want to make sure fans get the proper attention they need. Anytime I could see anything like that, I did. I stopped it a couple times to just make sure everybody was OK. And I really just go off the fans’ energy as a collective, call and response. I just didn’t hear that.”
The “SICKO Mode” artist explained that between the music, the band, the lights, and other stage effects, it was difficult for him to understand what took place. He also discussed the popular “raging culture” at concerts and said he’s been “working on … trying to show these experiences are happening in a safe environment.”
“‘Raging’… there’s not a textbook definition,” Scott continued. “But in concerts, we’ve grown it to be just the experience of having fun. It’s not about just … harm. It’s not about that. It’s about letting go and having fun, help others love each other. It’s not about harm. That’s not what it’s all about. The show is just rambunctious for an hour.”
To the backlash, Scott added that he regretted sharing his initial response to the tragedy in a now-deleted Instagram video after Astroworld.
“Because you just don’t know what’s going on. But at the end of the day, I just wanted to get something out,” he expressed. “How my message came out … I can only go off of what I know, but my true intentions of it [were] really just trying to get a message across. I really wanted to touch the fans and touch the families and [acknowledge] that we’re grieving, we’ll get through this process.”
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