Rapper Azealia Banks claims she hasn’t been paid for her ill-fated Australian tour, and is publicly demanding the organisers pay up.
But both the promoter and touring agent responsible for bringing the 212 star to our shores have hit back at her claims, insisting they’ve fulfilled their contractual obligations.
Tensions exploded yesterday when the promoter (Bizarro) and touring agent (Point Productions) who organised her visit both issued statements responding to Banks’ complaints about her time in Australia.
Bizarro’s was a blistering, three-page read, labelling the star’s conduct “disgraceful” and making detailed allegations about the havoc they say she was causing behind the scenes.
Banks addressed the statement overnight in videos posted to her Instagram stories.
“Everybody knows Azealia Banks is a f**king diva … I don’t have time for the bulls**t.
In this statement, in all this hooting and hollering, there’s no mention of MY MOTHERF**KING MONEY. Where is the money, bitch? Where the cash at, n***a, where the cash at? This is not the f**king ‘music friends’, this is the music industry. I don’t give a f**k what you think about my character, where’s my money?” she asked.
“You’re trying to use a character assassination as a means to not pay someone for work that they did,” said Banks, who cancelled her Brisbane show a few hours before it was due to start and performed for just 37 minutes at her hastily rescheduled Melbourne show.
“Just say you’re broke and go,” she continued.
In separate communications with news.com.au today, both promoters insist they did in fact pay Banks for the tour. A representative for Bizarro stated they had paid Banks touring agent, Point Blank Group (owner of Point Productions) in full for the tour – including a 50 per cent deposit back in May.
The representative also stated that “multiple sources” had assured them Banks had been paid the majority of fees for the shows on the tour that went ahead
When contacted by news.com.au, a representative from Point Productions stated that the company had met its contractual obligations “and statements of non-payment are untrue.”
The back-and-forth comes after Banks yesterday dubbed Australians “broke and racist” and labelled those who organised the tour “pubic lice”.
“So this will be my last time touring Australia,” she wrote on Instagram. “Y’all white people down here are broke and racist LMAO.”
“The ever-charitable, generous queen Azealia Banks. I’m not just a charity for f**kin’ Australia. I hope y’all enjoyed the shows. I had fun – I did, I enjoyed myself. (But) I’m not coming back down here,” she continued.
Problems with the Azealia Banks tour began with the first show, at Auckland’s Spark Arena, as fans who’d paid more than $90 for tickets fumed when her headlining set turned out to be just five songs long.
The next day, her planned Melbourne concert was postponed mere hours before the doors were due to open, with Banks slamming her promoters – who in turn blamed Visa issues for her last-minute inability to make it from New Zealand into Australia.
Fans were left upset when Banks insisted the date wouldn’t be rescheduled, telling them: “I have sh*t to do”.
In fact, the concert did get rescheduled, and went ahead on Sunday night – although Banks arrived onstage almost an hour late and played for just 37 minutes.
On Sunday December 11, Banks performed to a near-sellout crowd at Sydney’s Enmore Theatre and delivered what was definitively the show of the tour: Arriving onstage a mere half-hour behind schedule, she performed an hour-long, 15-song set, busting out all the cult classic hits she’s released over the past decade to a rapturous reception.
But a few days later, the wheels came off again, as Banks announced on the morning of her Brisbane show that it would not be going ahead.
The reason? Banks blamed the behaviour of crowds she’d played in the past, telling fans that last time she was in the city she’d been hit by a can while performing.
“I am a beautiful Black woman and I am not going to get in front of some audience of white people for them to be throwing sh*t at me,” she said.
It was unclear why Banks had left it to the morning of the concert to enact the Brisbane ban, given her last show in the city was back in 2013.
As ticketholders complained on social media, Banks let it be known the feeling was mutual – calling this her Australian farewell tour, because the country makes her “utterly miserable”.
Overnight, she issued a new statement to the faithful, advising fans who attended her Australian tour to “request refunds. I’m so serious.”
Originally published as Azealia Banks and Australian tour organisers’ ugly pay dispute