Kanye West drops out of Coachella 2 weeks before it begins


Kanye West has bailed on Coachella, where he was to have headlined both of the music festival’s two weekends later this month, The Times has confirmed.

The cancellation leaves the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival less than two weeks to find another headliner, as West was booked for April 17 and April 24. Travis Scott was to have joined the rapper — now known as Ye — but he won’t perform either, according to TMZ, which first reported the news.

Reps for West and for Coachella did not respond immediately to The Times’ request for confirmation or comment Monday.

Page Six reported that the festival — scheduled for April 15-17 and April 22-24 in Indio, Calif. — was trying to get the Weeknd as a replacement headliner.

Ye previously headlined the event in 2011 and performed his Sunday Service at Coachella on Easter 2019. The 2011 Coachella show, which followed his “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy” album, was widely hailed as a masterpiece of attitude and theater — “the purest form of hip-hop at the highest level,” as rapper Pusha T, who joined West onstage that night, later described it to Complex.

But Ye threatened earlier this year to pull out of the booking after fellow headliner Billie Eilish didn’t apologize to Scott for something she never said. (Harry Styles is the festival’s other headliner this year.)

The “Praise God” hitmaker and beauty mogul Kim Kardashian share four young children and have been in the process of getting a divorce since February of last year. Kardashian was declared single at the beginning of March, over Ye’s objections.

On Friday, Page Six cited unnamed sources in reporting that West told Kardashian he was “going away to get help” after weeks of random social media attacks on her and her boyfriend, Pete Davidson. Ye had even posted a claymation video of himself kidnapping and burying a figure in the “Saturday Night Live” star’s likeness for his song “Eazy.”

People on Twitter deemed the video “weird,” “disgusting,” “disturbing” and “scary on so many levels,” and Ye ultimately took it down. Not long after that he posted another “Eazy” video in which a Davidson character is beaten up.

“There’s no acceptable rationale for that behavior, which comes as close as West has to hurting another person,” Times pop music critic Mikael Wood wrote recently. “But to the extent that an artist can be considered separately from his art — a fraught proposition we seem willing to keep reexamining — the emotional wisdom in West’s old music suggests he may yet explain himself.”

Before any explanation came, however, the rapper was banned from Instagram for a day in mid-March after posting a racial slur about Grammy Awards host Trevor Noah. Noah tweeted a response: “I said counsel Kanye not cancel Kanye.”

About two weeks ago, Ye was also barred from performing at the Grammys due to his “concerning online behavior.” He did not attend Sunday’s ceremony but won two of the five awards he was nominated for. Ye won the awards for rap song (“Jail”) and melodic rap performance (“Hurricane”).

He was also nominated for album of the year, which ended up going to “We Are” by Jon Batiste — who led this year’s nominees with 11 nods.

Six of the 10 acts nominated for album of the year were tapped to perform at Sunday’s ceremony. Doja Cat didn’t perform, and Ye, Taylor Swift and Tony Bennett were absent.

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