For those of us who live in Ottawa, the Bluesfest is among the summer’s biggest-ticket festivals. That’s because it’s among the city’s most diverse bashes: This year, Chvrches, Skrillex, Deep Purple, the Tragically Hip, and Keith Urban are all scheduled. More curiously, the festival will also be headlined by rappers, with Iggy Azalea, Run the Jewels, De La Soul, Chance the Rapper, and Kanye West—arguably the festival’s biggest musician, period—confirmed.
And while the festival isn’t limited to the blues anymore, fans seem to be taking exception with the fest’s rap content. Specifically, with its Kanye content.
After an explosion of anti-Kanye sentiment over social media, a Facebook group has emerged, called Stop Kanye At Ottawa Bluesfest. Using some very strong language—it stopped short of using the all-too-common descriptor of “sickened”—the group expressed its distaste for Yeezus.
Here’s what the group wrote.
[quote]Monday March 30th 2015 Ottawa Bluesfest Go’ers were shocked to hear the news of Kanye West as a major headliner for the night of Friday July 10th! Some were pleased but of course most were extremely appalled! Post your support against this travesty![/quote]
While the group doesn’t explain why they think the event is a, uh, “travesty,” its founders sounded off in Metro News. “I am not a fan at all,” says group founder Amy Lamothe. “He publicly humiliates himself on a weekly, monthly, daily basis. I feel the money should have been spent on relevant rock artists.”
Her sentiment echoes a petition circulated around Glastonbury, which pushed for Kanye to be replaced by an act like the Foo Fighters.
The petition, however, raises a few questions: If festgoers want to replace Kanye, why displace him with specifically a rock act? Why not another rapper? Or an EDM star? Or—gasp!—a blues musician?
So, let us know what you think: Should they replace Kanye at Bluesfest?