performance at South Africa’s
annual Macufe African Cultural Festival
has been lambasted by local artists for the star’s alleged elitist and disrespectful behavior.
Several artists have reported that they were kicked out of the backstage changing area because T-Pain refused to share space with them.
Others stated they were harassed simply for attempting to watch the American
star’s set from the vicinity of the stage.
Artist Thembi Seete
verified that she had a confrontation with security guards, and feels that the U.S. artists look down on their peers from other countries.
“I want to thank Macufe organizers for allowing me to perform there, but what happened to me was unacceptable,” she explained to the Sunday World. “I wasn’t allowed to stand next to the stage when T-Pain was performing. It is sad that these U.S. artists think they are all that and [can] treat local artists the way they treated us.”
Seete’s manager Kgomo Modise
said these issues are nothing new, and happen every time an international star makes their way to the country.
“My artist was seated next to the stage waiting to perform when local security guards came and ordered us to leave the vicinity,” Modise explained to Sunday World
. “We asked him why because we had ‘all access’ cards and artists tags but he insisted we leave the place. It was only when we threatened to expose them in the media that they left us alone. It is bad that local artists are treated like this every time an international artist is here.”
Festival organizer Joe Chakela
vehemently denied the accusations, but conceded there was a policy in place to make sure no artists remained on stage after a performance.
“People must not come with their own stories. Nobody was manhandled or chased away from the stage,
” he stated. “The policy was that artists who had finished performing must not go on stage or near it to watch T-Pain perform.”
T-Pain is working on a new album, tentatively titled Revolver.