Travis Scott Breaks Silence on Astroworld Tragedy in First Interview Since Festival

Travis Scott broke his silence about the Astroworld tragedy in a 50-minute conversation with Charlamagne Tha God that was posted Thursday.

In his first interview since the Houston festival on Nov. 5 that killed 10 people, the rapper reiterated that he did not know anyone died until after his performance.

“I’ve been on different types of emotions, an emotional rollercoaster,” Scott said. “It gets so hard because I always feel connected to my fans, and I went through something and my fans went through something and people’s parents went through something and it really hurts. It really hurts the community, it hurts the city. It’s just been a lot of thoughts, a lot of feelings, a lot of grieving, and just trying to wrap my head around it.”

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As for why he decided to sit down for an interview a month after the tragic events — as well as the pending litigation against him and the festival’s organizers — Scott added, “Something happened and I needed just a way to communicate.”

Charlamagne asked Scott when he first realized people were killed at the Astroworld festival. “It wasn’t really until minutes until the press conference [after the show] that I figured out what happened. Even after the show, you’re just kind of hearing things, but I didn’t know the exact details” Scott said. “And even at that moment you’re like, ‘Wait, what?’ You just went through something.”

Scott added, “People pass out, things happen at concerts, but something like that…”

The rapper said he didn’t hear fans screaming between songs for him to stop the concert. “It’s so crazy because I’m that artist, too — anytime you can hear something like that, you want to stop the show, you want to make sure fans get the proper attention they need,” Scott said. “Anytime I could see anything like that, I did. I stopped it a couple times to just make sure everybody was OK. And I really just go off the fans’ energy as a collective — call and response. I just didn’t hear that.”

Scott also offered a timeline about why the show continued on for another 40 minutes after Houston police determined it was a “mass casualty event,” with Scott saying he was only told that the show must end after the guests (in this case, Drake) appeared onstage. However, Scott said he wasn’t provided a reason for why the performance was being cut short.

In the aftermath of the tragedy, much of the blame has fallen on Scott, even though some — like Chuck D — said the organizers should bear the brunt of the responsibility.

“I’m the face of the festival, I’m the artist, so the media wants to put it on me, but at the end of the day I don’t think it’s more so about that, it’s more so about stepping up to figure out what the problem is. And I could take that,” he said. “I could take stepping out to figure out what the problem is, I could take stepping up to figure out what the solution is so that it never happened again.”

Scott later talked about reaching out to victims’ families, some of whom rejected his offer to pay for their loved ones’ funerals. “All things are understandable. At a time where they’re grieving and trying to find understanding and they want answers. It’s not about that,” Scott said. “I’m always gonna be here to want to help them. I got to continue to show up for that.”

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