Lupe Fiasco Pulled Off Stage For Anti-Obama Rant At Inauguration Party
The Grammy Winner headlined the Inauguration Celebration Party presented by StartUp RockOn, but things soured in the middle of his set, when Fiasco reportedly performed a 30-minute version of his anti-war track “Words I Never Said,” repeatedly criticizing Obama and refusing to move on to another song. He was escorted away by security personnel.
“Lupe Fiasco just got thrown off stage here at the Hamilton Live after he went on an anti-Obama diatribe mid set,” wrote Josh Rogin of Foreign Policy. He added, “So Lupe played one anti-war song for 30 min and said he didn’t vote for Obama and eventually was told to move on to the next song.”
CNN staffer Matt Dornic added, “Things going terribly wrong at @LupeFiasco performance during #SURO. Kicked off stage, bashing obama.” HyperVocal, one of the companies behind StartUp RockOn, tweeted, “Disappointed that an artist took opportunity to use an event celebrating innovation/startups to make a political statement.”
However, in an official statement early Monday, organizers clarified the characterization of events:
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.
Fiasco’s beliefs probably should not have come as a surprise to organizers.
The anti-establishment rapper has been an outspoken critic of Obama in the past, once saying in an interview, “The biggest terrorist is Obama in the United States of America.”