Fyre Festival organiser Ja Rule says he is 'heartbroken' after festival descends into hell

The hip-hop artist insists the music festival he founded is 'NOT A SCAM'

Emily Shugerman
New York
Saturday 29 April 2017 11:04 BST
Promotional video for Fyre Festival

Ja Rule has responded to the chaos unfolding at his highly anticipated music festival, saying he is “heartbroken” by the situation.

The hip-hop star had billed the festival, called Fyre Festival, as an upscale Coachella, complete with “first-class culinary experiences and a luxury atmosphere.” The event boasted stars such as G.O.O.D. Music, Migos, Lil Yachty, and Major Lazer, and an enviable location in Exumas, Bahamas. Attendees reportedly paid as much as $12,000 to attend.

Despite its ostentatious billing, attendees arrived at Fyre Festival to find a dishevelled array of tents, rows of port-a-potties, and meals consisting largely of white bread and cheese slices. Making things worse, one of the top-billed acts – Blink-182 – cancelled their performance.

In a statement posted to Twitter Friday afternoon, Ja Rule promised he was “working right now on getting everyone [off] the island safe.”

“I’m heartbroken at this moment. My partners and I wanted this to be an amazing event it was not a scam as everyone is reporting,” he wrote. “I don’t know how everything went so left but I’m working to make it right by making sure everyone is refunded.”

The artist added that he is “deeply sorry to anyone who was inconvenienced by this.”

Fyre Festival organisers announced they were chartering complimentary flights from the island to Miami on Friday.

“The festival is being postponed until we can further assess if and when we are able to create the high- quality experience we envisioned,” read a statement from the Fyre Team.

The festival was promoted by celebrities like Kendall Jenner, Emily Ratajkowski, and other Instagram “influencers.” Promotional materials promised “a variety of sonic, communal and artistic activities,” and “a marina which serves as VIP docking space for yachts.”

The reality, however, was quite different according to guests.

"It was horrible, (like) summer camp," attendee William Finley told CNN. "Everything about it was a sham."

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in