Despite high ticket prices, Coachella, Lollapalooza, Outside Lands, Bottle Rock, and other music festivals are looking pretty good right now. This week, Rapper Ja Rule’s inaugural Fyre Festival held in the Bahamas on April 28-30 has publicly gone down in flames, canceling plans for thousands of attendees. The epic failure was well documented over the weekend, and this morning Ja Rule and business partner and entrepreneur Billy McFarland were hit with a $100 million class-action lawsuit.
The lineup originally boasted Blink-182, Migos, Lil Yachty, Major Lazer, G.O.O.D, and more, promised “first class culinary experiences and a luxury atmosphere,” and offered yachts and private plane options for VIP ticket holders. Instead, guests were met with camper tents, unfinished festival grounds, and bread and cheese in styrofoam trays.
Apparently, Fyre organizers warned musicians and celebrities not to attend the festival but failed to warn their attendees. McFarland confessed:
We were overwhelmed and just didn’t have the foresight to solve all these problems. We thought we were making timeframes that were correct. We were a little naïve in thinking for the first time we could do this ourselves. Next year, we will definitely start earlier. The reality is, we weren’t experienced enough to keep up.
— 👌🏻Garrett Garner🎺 (@garrettgarner12) April 28, 2017
The thousands of attendees who were stranded with inadequate resources and no festival are still awaiting refunds. Ja Rule canceled Fyre Festival’s second weekend May 5-7 and put out his statement:
— Ja Rule (@Ruleyork) April 28, 2017
Hollywood attorney Mark Geragos filed a $100 million class-action lawsuit against Ja Rule and McFarland “on behalf of plaintiff Daniel Jung, who is seeking $5 million in damages for alleged fraud, breach of contract, breach of covenant of good faith and negligent misrepresentation.”
— William N. Finley IV (@WNFIV) April 28, 2017
According to Rolling Stone sums up the fiasco:
This outrageous failure to prepare, coupled with Defendants’ deliberate falsehoods in promoting the island ‘experience,’ demonstrates that the Fyre Festival was nothing more than a get-rich-quick scam from the very beginning. The festival’s lack of adequate food, water, shelter, and medical care created a dangerous and panicked situation among attendees — suddenly finding themselves stranded on a remote island without basic provisions — that was closer to The Hunger Games or Lord of the Flies than Coachella.
Believe it or not, Fyre Festival released their statement on their official site:
After speaking with our potential partners,we have decided to add more seasoned event experts to the 2018 Fyre Festival, which will take place at a United States beach venue. Also, all guests from this year will have free VIP passes to next year’s festival.
Good luck with that.