By Mitch Cohen
After Astroworld Festival 2021, Travis Scott’s concert antics caught up with him. Not only did 10 people lose their lives, but over 300 lawsuits were filed. With all this controversy, the public wondered how Scott would bounce back. On December 9, 2021, radio host Charlamagne Tha God interviewed Scott to get his perspective on the Astroworld tragedy.
Throughout the interview, Scott expressed that he felt disheartened by the deaths of his fans, claiming they are important to him. “It gets so hard because I always felt connected to my fans,” he said. When asked about not receiving forgiveness, Scott felt unsure of the idea. At that moment, Scott knew the families wouldn’t forgive him. He felt unsure because he was scared of becoming irrelevant.
Radio host Charlamagne Tha God
From Scott’s perspective, he claimed the press conference is when he found out about people dying. As an artist, Scott is responsible for performing, while security handles the guests' safety. “You can only help what you can see and whatever you’re told,” claimed Scott. This relates to my last article (Volume 77, Issue 5) , where I claimed the loud concert environment made it challenging for people to communicate with Scott about stopping the show.
On the topic of safety, Astroworld Festival had horrible security. According to rollingstone.com, two security guards named Samuel and Jackson Bush sued Scott, his label and LiveNation for injuries they sustained. “For the most part, they told us where to stand, not to let people run in, and to be safe and not put our hands on anybody,” said Bush. Without training, the venue became overcrowded, leading to the deaths.
“It just felt like they needed bodies, like they were hiring anyone who passed a background test,” said Darius Williams, another security guard who feared for his safety at the festival.
In terms of helping the grieving families, Scott offered to pay the funeral costs. Unfortunately, his offer was rejected. Nevertheless, Scott wanted to assist the families. “I’d say to them that I’m always here,” Scott said. “It’s not just a right-now thing, it’s a forever thing,” he added. Throughout the interview, Scott said he intended to ensure everyone was having fun. “I want them to really know my intentions … wasn’t to harm their family at all,” claimed Scott.
Despite good intentions, Scott needs to let the families grieve on their own right now.
Even after the interview, Scott suffered consequences for his actions. Music festival Rolling Loud implemented an 18-plus policy to prevent a similar event from happening. “We encourage everyone to rage safely,” captioned Rolling Loud’s Twitter account. Scott’s Cacti Seltzer beverage was also discontinued to respect those who died at the Astroworld festival.
Making matters worse, A bipartisan investigation was launched by the House Oversight Committee. In a letter to LiveNation, the panel claimed there were serious concerns regarding the safety of the 50,000 concertgoers at the Astroworld festival. The letter stated inadequate security and a lack of barricades were concerning. These points further prove that it’s security’s job to enforce safety policies to ensure guests are being safe and having fun.
In the end, the interview between Travis Scott and Charlamagne Tha God was a great way for Scott to explain his side of the story. Despite all the criticism, I commend him for discussing what transpired. However, I believe that facing consequences is an important way for Scott to learn that the safety of others comes before one's image. Although Scott is respected in the industry, it’s clear that this festival has soured his reputation for good.