Rappers Danny Brown and Schoolboy Q have both criticised this year’s SXSW festival, which took place in Austin, Texas last week.
Both hip-hop artists spoke out about what they perceive to be the increasing commercial aspect of the festival, which attracts thousands of music, film and tech fans to America every year. Similarly, both Brown and Schoolboy Q said that there was too much focus on established artists and not as much on newer acts, which SXSW is famous for helping get established.
Speaking to Complex, Danny Brown criticised this year’s festival and said: “The best thing for me was, I remember coming out here years, years, years ago, before it was like all the major label guys and all the guys were coming out here,” Brown said recently. “It was pretty much an up-and-coming artists—it was really more so about bands at that time. It wasn’t even that much Rap going on. In those days, it was just more about you got put up on something. More so than now when people coming here they just going to see the Kanye show or they going to see—now you don’t really get put up on nothing. It kind of lost a little something with that. My thing is, when I come out here, I try to go see all the people that I don’t know”
Meanwhile, Schoolboy Q, who recently released his latest album ‘Oxymoron’, said he would not return to SXSW in the future unless things changed. “It’s stupid,” he told Washington Post. “They changed it all up. It’s corporate. I don’t ever want to come back unless they change it to where the fans are in. I’m tired of performing and seeing my fans outside the gate…That’s not fair. It’s not about the fans no more. It’s all about money [and] who can give you the best look.””
South By South West 2014 saw a performance in which Lady Gaga was suspended over a grill and later vomited on. Jay Z and Kanye West reunited The Throne for a one-off performance, Jarvis Cocker unveiled the new Pulp documentary, Neil Young announced plans for his Pono music service and Coldplay previewed tracks from their new album ‘Ghost Stories’.