I received an interesting call from a reporter at the Post and Courier last week about a show involving rapper Lil Wayne at the Colonial Life Arena in Columbia, South Carolina, my old stomping grounds from my days at Venues Today for the SEVT conference.
As the story goes, on Sept. 30, Weezy was to join Camila Cabello, Tory Lanez and 2 Chainz for the Fall Ball concert by local promoters All For One. According to Andy Shain’s story, someone involved in the concert (promoter and venue are pointing fingers at each other) wanted artists going backstage to pass through a metal detector, likely in a bid to not allow weapons backstage. When Lil Wayne arrived, he was not happy about the metal detector situation — he apparently negotiated his arrival and screening in advance, and when he arrived wasn’t happy with the security screening situation.
After about an hour Lil Wayne bailed and the concert went on without him. The building’s GM Lexie Boone and Ticketmaster wanted to issue refunds worth $409,000 for 5,299 tickets sold, but All For One argues that Lil Wayne wasn’t really the headliner and fans got their money’s worth. The promoters convinced a judge to block the refunds with a temporary injunction, but a Circuit Court judge lifted the order and the refunds are now going through. Both sides are likely to fight it out in the court over the next couple months.
I told Shain “If the industry is not watching this, they should be,” noting that the case was interesting because it looked at the issue of guns backstage for artists, the disproportional demands for security by local police departments on hip-hop shows and liability concerns when a headliner (or co-headliner) doesn’t take the stage.
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