Last night, at one of Washington D.C.’s one billion inaugural parties, Chicago rapper Lupe Fiasco shook up the happy party times vibe by performing an extended version of his song “Words I Never Said,” which has a mad-at-everyone political fierceness that organizers StartUpRockOn totally could have Googled ahead of time and thought about before inviting him to perform.
You can watch highlights of the song’s most salient political jabs, Fiasco dancing strangely, and then some security guards with really unwelcoming body language getting him the fuck out of there, below:
In their official statement, organizers denied that content had anything to do with it: “Lupe Fiasco performed at this private event, and as you may have read, he left the stage earlier than we had planned. But Lupe Fiasco was not ‘kicked off stage’ for an ‘anti-Obama rant.’ We are staunch supporters of free speech, and free political speech. This was not about his opinions. Instead, after a bizarrely repetitive, jarring performance that left the crowd vocally dissatisfied, organizers decided to move on to the next act.”
Those guards do not look like Dead-heads, it’s true. To be fair, outside of Bonnaroo or a NYE Phish show, going over 30 minutes on a single song does tend to make people really, really edgy. Even if the song is “My Sharona.” But the statement seems a little too convenient, and the political connotation of pulling the plug shouldn’t be much of a surprise. Unless you are crazy, crazy clueless.
Oh, here’s a Tweet from event sponsor Hypervocal:
Disappointed that an artist took opportunity to use an event celebrating innovation/startups to make a political statement. #StartUpRockOn
— hypervocal (@hypervocal) January 21, 2013
To remind you, this is from a group treating a traditional political ceremony like it was SXSW, and they were throwing a tent party with a branded cool-down zone. So, sorry if the focus wasn’t on start up innovation, you guys, but you were the one piggybacking and splitting focus, and also, you are terrible. Shit, the treatment of governance as an empty excuse for a party (Note: I watched the election in a bar and high-fived drunkenly, so I am a hypocrite, probably) was more than enough justification for Fiasco to make the people in attendance a little uncomfortable. Because they were def. a little too comfortable.