Travis Scott Speaks About The Astroworld Tragedy

Last month (November 5), Travis Scott’s third annual Astroworld Festival ended in tragedy in Houston, Texas. Ten people died, and hundreds were injured on a day that was supposed to be about music. There have been legal actions against Scott, Live Nation, and other parties tied to the event in the nearly five weeks since. Scott offered to pay funeral expenses for those who passed, with some loved ones refusing the gesture.

In a new video interview with Charlamagne Tha God, Travis Scott sat down for nearly an hour to speak specifically about the event, the things that may have caused the fatalities and injuries, and his pledge to make sure nothing like this happens again. The conversation’s mood is somber, and Charlamagne asks direct questions about responsibility, accountability, and whether Travis feels targeted by media and lawyers as a prominent figurehead.

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Several minutes into the conversation, Travis opens up about when he learned of severe injuries and possible deaths at his November event. “During the show, [I was] hearing things. But I didn’t know the exact details until minutes before the press conference. Even at that moment, you’re kinda [confused].” Scott doubles down that he was unaware of any death during the concert, which included an appearance by Drake. Travis mentions that the information going into his earpiece during the show. Although event partner Live Nation has claimed they were attempting to shut down the event early due to incidents, Scott explains what he was told. At 16:45, he admits, “They just told me, ‘Right after the guests get off stage, we’re gonna end the show.’ That’s what we did. Other than that, there was no other communication.” Scott asserts that in his earpiece, he was never instructed to stop the performance, which was live-streamed. Earlier in his interview, Travis maintains, “If you don’t get a hard ‘stop,’ you just go off what’s goin’ on. Which makes it so crazy; I feel like if anyone would’ve known it wouldn’t have gone [as far as it did].”

Scott does admit that at one point, he stopped the concert briefly for medics to help a person in or near the front row earlier in the set. He was also made aware of a daytime incident at the merchandise booth. Near the 36:00 mark, Travis also suggests that he was unaware that lights in the crowd at other points during the concert were from ambulances.

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While he has reportedly denied any legal liability earlier this week, Travis does take accountability for a social media post following the event that may have understated the severity of the situation. “You’re an artist; you’re whoever people think you are. But at the end of the day, you’re a man. You have emotions; you want to communicate them emotions [in] the best way.” However, Scott seemingly defends himself for being photographed at a golf gathering with Michael Jordan, Mark Wahlberg, and others. The Epic Records superstar says that he took time for his Thanksgiving holiday.

Throughout the interview, Travis Scott drives home his desire to reform concert safety. “I’ve got to step and become a voice for these people, so this doesn’t happen again in the future at these shows, period. Or figure out the bottom solution of what’s going on.” He also acknowledges that this event is not the first. “If you look at festivals, this isn’t the first time [this happened]; there’s been a long history of this.” At the 14 minute mark, the artist takes accountability for the work to be done. “Fans come to the show to have a good experience. I have a responsibility to figure out what happened here. I have a responsibility to figure out the solution. Hopefully, this takes the first step for us as artists having more insight [into] what’s going on [at events].”

Scott also defends his fans. “People didn’t show up to be harmful; people showed up to have a good time, and something unfortunate happened. We just gotta figure out what that was.” Charlamagne asks Travis about the raging that transpires specifically at his concerts, something he denies. Later, Scott asserts, “The whole idea why I brought this festival to the city was to show that Houston is something different, and show that there’s all different types of lives, types of energy, and bring that morale to the city.”

As far as work to be done, Scott points to Live Nation and Score More as having resources to assist. “They can help figure out what happened, in a sense.” He adds, “At the end of the day, collectively, everyone needs to just figure out a bottom-line solution.”

Charlamagne asks Travis if he feels he has received unfair blame for the tragedy. “I’m the face of the festival, I’m an artist, so the media [wants] to put it on me. I don’t think it’s about that, I think it’s more about stepping up to figure out what the problem is, and I can take that,” he admits. “I can take stepping up to figure what the problem [and solution] is.” Later in the interview, Scott mentions using technology with wrist bands to monitor the health and well-being of show-goers as one possible solution. For his future events, he suggests doubling security and crew on behalf of safety.

At 19:20, Travis Scott is asked to share what he wishes with the families of the 10 people who died. “I’ll say to them that I’m always here. I’m in this with you guys, and I love you. I’ll always be there to help you guys heal through this. I understand that they’re going through the grieving right now and finding understanding right now, and it’s not just a right-now thing; it’s a forever thing. These people that came to the show, they are my family. I’ve always had that connection to the [fans]. That’s why it’s really hard on me, even just to even [comment]. They lost their loved ones, you know.” Charlamagne points out that Travis is a father and asks if this is what he would want as a parent. The artist states yes. Later, Scott says he understands why some victims refused his gesture to pay for funerals.

Travis does defend his image at a time when some media have attacked his lyrics and imagery. “I always preach love and understanding,” he says, adding that taking care of one another is a tenant of his message. Later, asked if he is hesitant to perform again, Scott responds, “I’ve always seen performing as healing; that’s why I’ve been so into it.” He believes the audience achieves a mutual understanding in the crowd. However, he mentions that safety must be in place for that fellowship. “I think it could be cool for people to practice that healing again. I don’t think we should run away from it. It’s a form of healing.” Scott also forecasts “more progressive music” in his future.

Towards the end, Charlamagne asks Travis Scott if he can ever forgive himself for last month’s tragedy. “It’s tough. It’s real tough. I want them to know that my intentions [were not] to harm their family at all; it was for them to have a good experience.” He brings up that his family was present on November 5, and has offered him emotional support. “I’m not in this alone.”

In the end of the video, Travis Scott is asked for any closing remarks surrounding the death of 10 people and the injuries of hundreds. “Something tragic happened here, and what I’ve just been trying to get to the bottom of is what happened here, how it happened here. I feel like the families are owed that, the community is owed that, I feel like we’re owed that, to know what happened here. I don’t want to speak too soon; I just want to figure out what happened,” he declares. “I want everyone to just continue praying for the fans. I want people to continue praying for the fans that was lost [and their] families. I want people to continue to reach out for healing [and] be there for each other.” He closes with additional points of love and healing.