tupac1

Saul Williams Connects Iggy Azaela To The Failure Of Tupac-Inspired "Holler If Ya Hear Me"


(AllHipHop News) A post-racial America may still be an illusion. During a recent interview, Saul Williams explained why the Tupac-inspired Broadway musical Holler If Your Hear Me recently closed and explained how its failure is connected to Iggy Azaela’s success.

Williams starred in the musical which was forced to shut down this past Sunday (July 20th) after only two months and 55 performances. In a statement from producer of Holler If Ya Hear Me Eric L. Gold, “financial burdens of Broadway” caused the play to have to be discontinued. Rolling Stone reported that two weeks before the musical ended, ticket sales were less than 17% of the projected sales expectation. Williams laughed off the excuse of financial burdens causing the play to stop in a recent interview with Rolling Stone stating “everyone knows you can’t come to Broadway with short money”. Following that statement, Williams explains a “deeper sociological reasoning” behind the play’s failure:

 I think it’s something deeper. There is no disconnect between this and Iggy Azalea, an Australian girl rapping with a southern accent, being Number One on the charts. It’s all related to where we are right now as a culture and within the culture of the arts.

Williams also recalls instances during the play’s run when members of discount Broadway ticketing company TKTS would give bad reviews to interested pedestrians. Williams states that one of the producers of the play asked one of the TKTS employees about Holler If Ya Hear Me:

One of our producers came in really angry because he had spoken to one of the TKTS people [who man Broadway ticket-selling booths] — not saying she was a producer — and asked them, “What about Holler? Should I see that?” And the response of the person who is supposed to guide tourists to plays was like, “It’s a bit of a downer. It’s not necessarily as fun as” whatever other play they mentioned. Then she approached another one and that person was like, “Oh, it got really bad reviews.” We started a street team at the last minute to counter those TKTS people who are really supposed to be promoting everything on Broadway.

Check out the full interview here.

  • sean

    Okay this getting out of hand … anything goes wrong blame Iggy lol, c’mon why can’t we just admit that the broadway fan don’t care about tupac. to Us hiphop fan pac is all time great but to general Person they don’t real care about pac

  • Eli Pinilla

    It was a bad idea from the jump.

  • oliguti

    In Saul Williams ” We Trust”!!!! the guy is a genius. PPl might say he’s angry blah blah, but when you have a person literally exploiting Hip Hop or what some idiots label as Hip Hop ,but Hip Hop shouldn’t just be about riddles and stripper beats. Sadly a lot of other so called rappers are doing the same.

  • El Dogga

    A Tupac Musical is only going to appeal to a small niche audience……maybe in 2000-2001 this would’ve been good. Now? Not so much. Music has changed. Pac is for the “old heads” these days I think.

    • BIG MIKE SOMETHING SERIOUS

      “Old Heads”. Smh!

      • El Dogga

        Sad but true my dude.

      • BIG MIKE SOMETHING SERIOUS

        Old School. Different Generation, Remember, Father time will see u too.

      • Twonpass

        no need to explain, let them enjoy the surprise…..
        hahahahahah

      • El Dogga

        Get back on the bench you D-rider! lol

      • Twonpass

        slow down lil silly muafuka…

      • El Dogga

        Look at your avatar! How dare you call someone silly! Have a seat young man!

      • Twonpass

        really an avatar…….
        lets stop now, because your clearly a lil kid. I am a grown ass man.. avatar is nothing but a dam pic… SMH
        get a clue

      • El Dogga

        Not only am I a grown man. Also, I’m obviously smarter than you since you displayed your lack of reading comprehension and immature use of the English language.

      • Twonpass

        look lil dude or man or whatever you like to be called.

        move on…..Im not with the gay shit…..ur acting suspect…

      • El Dogga

        So your illogical to! I never mentioned or eluded to anything sexual! Grow up! Keyboard Killa……you ain’t bout it for real gtfoh.

      • BIG MIKE SOMETHING SERIOUS

        LOL!

      • El Dogga

        Don’t assume I’m talking negatively! Pac is my generation! What I’m saying the type of music that’s poppin now doesn’t correlate with the 90’s era…..hell even early 2000’s.

      • BIG MIKE SOMETHING SERIOUS

        No Problem with your comment, Just the “Old Heads” part, still all good tho.

      • El Dogga

        Nothing wrong with being an “old head” I put quotations to demonstrate how our generation is now viewed and I’m farrrrr from considering myself old!

    • Screwface

      What’s an “Old head” to you? Someone in their mid 20’s or early 30’s? That may be “old” to someone who’s 16.

      • El Dogga

        My point exactly. Notice the quotes around the phrase! Kids from 18-24 don’t listen to Pac and would consider that Old School because when “All Eyes on Me” dropped they were in 1st – 3rd grade.

    • Twonpass

      hahaha, old head….
      really….. and most of us old heads can still whoop most of yall young heads, we smarter then a lot of ya’ll and got more going on then the fake fag / swagg ya’ll love to hold onto.

      youngstas dont know shit these days always poppin off at the mouth…

      guns n butter lil muafuka …figure it out

      • El Dogga

        You are an idiot! Not once did I say I was a youngsta or say being called an old head was a bad thing.

        If you go to a 18 and up club….you’ll be called an old head. Nothing wrong with that.

        Go ahead with that keyboard killa gangsta talk fool. You IP Posse gangsta! lol

      • El Dogga

        Talking about guns n butter…..try COMPREHENSIVE READING!

  • Nicole Sampson

    The downfall of hip-hop happened way before this white girl started rapping. We as black people need to check ourselves on some of the shit we put out.

    • Brindle

      you misunderstood, he’s saying “this white girl” is proof of the downfall of hiphop… you’re agreeing with him

    • ladynamor

      The problem is, she is saying the same ignorant things in the same dialect and climbing the charts rapidly. Murda Bizness? Its not like she is making songs to uplift the community or even acknowledge posititivity in the black community at all. She doesn’t even make songs that identifies with her actual life at all. She exploits all the negative stereotypes of black people and no one mentions that. She got away with a song called Pu$$y with a kid on the video in the middle of a ghetto she never knew existed. Come on now, you see it? The world is separated and supporting their own kind, good or bad.

      • Casor_Greener

        if she was black and made that trash it would have been the same. the wack ass song is catchy

  • Brindle

    the audience for this is too small… most people that are into 2Pac are not into plays and vice versa… it was a bad concept… they should’ve done a straight to DVD like the Madea plays

  • yunguerilla337

    I think ppl are missing the point he’s trying to make. He’s not saying its Iggys fault directly for the play failing, he’s saying where we are right now as a hip hop community is so far disconnected from where we once were & more importantly from the direction we were headed in so u have to take a step back & look at the bigger picture. I also agree that rap music has changed but I don’t think the target audience of Broadway plays are the teenagers & new generation of fans that the radio & tv cater to.

    • Arrie Mental Woodard

      he still did not have to bring her into it this conversation at all. he knew it would generate headlines and im a Saul Williams guy but this is ridiculous

  • ladynamor

    To a large extent this rings true because the more people fight against it, the worse it seems to get. They are force feeding us this chick literally. Reminds me of the Lady Gaga movement. Shove it down our throat till we puke it back up. Now no one can stand Gaga really. Not too long ago, people would have found a play on Pac ideology as an eccentric must-see play, you know this!

  • diggdoug

    ok, lets do this . name 10 white girl rappers…. better yet …. 5 ! i’ll wait

    • Papi Peligro

      White girl mob.

    • Papi Peligro

      I don’t hate on White people at all. I think IGGY IS SUCCESSFUL BECAUSE SHE DUMBED IT DOWN. Not because she’s white. I think he had something with the second point. People that’s deciding what’s hot listen to Fancy and not Pu$$3. Work to me was better than Fancy. Work didn’t get no radio play and she was a bust. She dumb the lyrics way way way down on Fancy and re did the Happy Oh Mickey Anthem someone was like that’s a hit. Its not race. Nikki Minaj had how many hits with LYRICS song and how many hits with singing songs. .

      • timwest1000

        Funny how YOU think SHE dumbed it down and SHE thinks she is really making complex songs. Besides, SHE more than likely had the Brat write those lyrics no one really listens to. The key to her hit song is the hook (from George Bensons Give me the night) and the beat from (Newcleus Jam On It) and obviously the clear channel payola situation from the Tom Poleman guy, who is never seen near black people, ever.

  • King Cold

    Even in death he still has haters. RIP Tupac

  • diggdoug

    as far as the play, it would have done well in LA markets. were he is beloved . if your gonna do a play in NY, do a play on hiphop and inject tupac in it .

  • Markus

    This generation isn’t interested in Tupac Shakur. The best era of hip hop featuring some of the greatest artists in the genre are only Jeopardy answers now to the youth. Young dudes move to foolishness and while Tupac had his moments, for the most part a play featuring Iggy Azalea would indeed be more popular at this time. Hip hop is dead. Long live pop rap.

    • atlantahiphopshop

      Must be hard breathing in that bubble. What rock you live under? Or better yet, what rock you smoking? You are funny. Pop Rap, LMAO!

      • Markus

        You’re making jokes but I don’t get the point you’re trying to make.

      • MR..ASS..TO..MOUTH..

        you come off just like todays music.making no point no sense and have no clue what the hell you want to say.

      • atlantahiphopshop

        Being that Iggy is today’s music, You are making the point for me. I will entertain your ignorance. There are millions of young artist that respect Tupac, Biggie and all the pioneers, this person is speaking for himself. Even the Iggy chick say’s she started faking rap because of Tupac, And I have no clue of what to say? What’s in your weed? PCP gringo?

      • MR..ASS..TO..MOUTH..

        awww look at him trying to construct an intelligent sentence.just because you put a bunch of words together doesnt mean its going to make any damn sense.your little weak ass attempt to prove some kind of point has fallen flat somewhere along the way……what was your point again???

  • Dope

    It has nothing to do with Iggy, or any other public person. Tupac died long time ago, and audiences that go to theaters aren’t really the same people who really give a damn about who Tupac was, and his fans from back then probably don’t find it much interesting to go see a show based on Tupac’s lyrics or whatever, they simply remember him for the music. So there’s simply no target audience that would be interested in this show for it to have any kind of success.
    And yea, a show about Iggy right know would fill the theater, as would a show about Niky, Drake or any other hot artist because they have those young impressionable fans.

    • therealjjohnson

      This play isnt about Tupac. It just uses its music. Its about a drug dealer who is released from prison and tries to do good in his hood. And the struggles that ensues after it.

      • Dope

        Thanks for clearing it up, didn’t even know which says again something about this show and the audience that may be interested, as much as I like his music, I only went from what I saw here and didn’t even bother to check what’s the show really about.

      • therealjjohnson

        Yeah. I first heard about the play from this site too. It made it seem as if Saul was playing tupac. Wasn’t until I watched his interview with The Breakfast Club that I got a better understanding of the play. It’s a shame this site won’t spend the $40 to see it and write a review. Something other than the gossip and beef post. Peace to you.

  • JD

    Surely it couldn’t be because the play is sh’t.

  • HATER PROOF

    Lol…at even the thought of HIP HOP not existing anymore! grown folks and kids use rappers as ROLE MODELS and always will! ( especially in the suburbs) …kids in the suburbs look up to them waaay more than kids in the city, but its STRUGGLE MUSIC with a message…iggy will never have a “REAL” message because she don’t have any “REAL” struggle in society..unless she goes out her way to make some, like most white artist! shes only major because, she got a major deal…no underground fans! smh! main stream fans are very fickle, and flaky, hot today and not tomorrow! her skin in this game will always a just a gimmick! and tupac…. is “not” a UNDERDOG! and because of that, FACT i expect for kids!! to NOT want to pay homage…same thing with jay z
    but not with NAS he is a underdog! when compared to them! ijs

    • disqus_wP9qaQP4Hv

      Eventually she will have a struggle if we continue to call her irrelevant. Its about time we just appreciate instead of spending too much time knocking things down.. Saying she has no real message when she’s the only Australian standing, doing things we all continue to call her out for, i swear she must and does have a thick skin. Hip hop is meant to be the only avenue for the have nots… A have have nots can be about anything be it money, poverty, parents or condemned by society eventually the rose will grow out of the concrete if the seed keeps falling into the cracks. What i’m saying so i don’t sound like i’m defend Iggy as i’m not a fan… Why can’t we all live in a world where its not about the colour of your skin or about the way you look or walk or where you are from but on the merits of your contribution to society, arts, history, whatever floats your boat, just do it with your heart in it. make it about the amount of people you lift their spirit or put a smile on their faces. Trust me, somewhere deep in Australia, there’s people really proud of her, that she’s touched with her journey and she can do no wrong just like we all have someone that cares. IJS

      • HATER PROOF

        she is irrelevant…she’s only Major because she has a Major deal!! like most white artist! soon as 1 of her albums flop, she will disappear!!!
        like kreayshawn and v nasty…HIP HOP seen it all, and her time to will come to pass! no big deal! RIGHT NOW …….the media trippin on her (because she got a HIT) but the hood aint! NEVER HAVE! were not impressed as a whole! and its “not” Australia’s respect she wants, its ours (black folk) respect she wants…and she did’nt earn that, to get or keep her deal…ijs

      • ladynamor

        The reason it comes down to color is she is literally imitating black people to make it, slang and all!!!!SHE IS ACTING, THIS IS NOT ART!!!! You know she wrote that she thinks what she does is hilarious? How could someone in Australia be proud of someone who is ashamed to represent Australia? You really think some kid in Australia has dreams of sounding like an ignorant black chick from Atlanta now? LMAO The fakeness of her whole persona makes black people question, are the fans just liking her to make fun of blacks? Are they liking her fakeness to make us mad? This world you dream of cant exist in this environment. People are supporting artist based on familiarity and programming. Clear Channel wants to promote white rappers by having them played hundreds of thousands of times a day, (taking advantage of the less hip hop educated bandwagoning hype-beast teenage suburban polarized fans via youtube, itunes and billboard) and their will to accept whatever the media says is hot really is. The media has also started printing stories of how Macklemore and Iggy run rap. Award shows are leaning toward white artists as well. YOU SHOULD BE WONDERING WHY THE INDUSTRY IS CATERING TO THE RACIST LISTENERS OR THE LISTENERS ARE CATERING TO THE RACIST INDUSTRY!!!!!

        This new generation is afraid to be left out, so they support what is promoted. Black people are not having the advantage of gaming this rigged system in the music industry anymore, based on economics, and some personal reasons in this volatile economy. I did not like how the Music Industry used payola for the black artist back in the day either! They was too happy and bragging on the mic like it would never end!!!! I warned that this power would be used against them one day!!!!!! Well that day is here!!!!! The Industry pushed these ignorant black artist message out for years and left the hood confused as hell!!!!Now Iggy and Macklemore is to the rescue and saving rap from these guys who promoted such negativity!!!!SMMFH!!!!!! The myth that white people have created that it was OK for Nicky to get “pushed” to the top needs to be fixed as well. Real hip hop did not like Nicky!!!!! Black or White!!!! Nicky was made popular by the same white fans who love Iggy!!!!! The Industry knew that!!!!!!!Iggy is just the more familiar more personal to white heritage Nicky Minaj!!!!!!!!PERIOD!!!!Your dream is just that, a dream. Kind of like MLK back in the day, Dream of equality but expect a rigged system to cater to the majority.

      • Brindle

        You’re sick in the head for trying to defend an Australian white female who imitates southern black women… quit being satisfied with stupidity and open your eyes… its a mentrel show

  • Using Iggy for clicks? really?

  • The project failed, and a loss was taken. Connecting the downfall to Iggy is uneccessary and a cop out.

    • water_ur_seeds

      Co-sign, I don’t like Iggy and never really heard much from her TBH but I hate all that type of music and what it stands for but this is a cop out excuse from Saul Williams…

      Did he not consider that adults cant be assed to go watch a Pac play on Broadway??? For me the thought of someone imitating Pac in a movie is bad enough, letnlone on a stage… Not too mention we seen a 100 documentaries, read countless books and online reports, I feel I know Pac’s story off by heart… And going to Broadway isnt the sort of thing kids are gonna do, so its not surprising its been cancelled…

      Im not knocking Broadway, Ive been and watched shows before, but this doesnt appeal to me…

      Pac is the GOAT though, RIP…

    • HATER PROOF

      i agree with you on…THAT!

  • i’mreloaded!

    Maybe da play just plain sucked.

  • ZUBU

    I’m older so I don’t even listen to the chick, nor do I listen to most of the new era. I don’t even list to new Jay Z, Kanye, etc. Now I will rock with Nas until the end. Nas on a different level and has always been in a different zone. If Pac was here I’m sure I would still listen to him. A lot of these dudes are just clowns feeding people junk food. Some true artists feed your mind and soul.
    People need to understand that rap is a relatively new artform. You have R&B, Soul Rock, Jazz, etc. artists still rocking the stage in their 70’s or older. Hopefully we support our true artists as we all age….

  • Rick Dodger

    I think Saul Williams is wicked but I think it ridiculous to take issue with Iggy’s accent! Has he ever taken issue with KRS One rapping with a Jamaican accent!?

    • Brindle

      you trying to hard

      • Rick Dodger

        Interesting! How so?

  • dbfromdc

    SAUL WILLIAMS NEEDS TO STOP MAKING EXCUSES AND JUST ADMIT THAT THE PLAY SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Megapsycho84

    This some punk ass shit lol. Because of Iggy? Lmao

  • J_buddha

    Hip Hop is dead. Time to make something else.

  • Immortal

    Does anyone see a pattern here? When Maclemore won a grammy some that weren’t even nominated blamed him saying he was the reason “rap” was beginning to go downhill. Now this cat blaming Iggy. Now I have nothing against the woman and don’t listen to her, but it’s not her fault this play went downhill anymore than rap going downhill because of Maclemore. Just admit that someway somehow you ish wasn’t that good and fix it for the next go round. Personal accountability folks.

    • plsDontreply

      nah white people have no soul and therefore should not rap…

      • Immortal

        That’s a close minded and rather ignorant attitude, but you’re allowed to believe the bs you’re spewing.

      • plsDontreply

        Sorry I defend “my” culture. Continue cooning

        ——– Original message ——–
        Subject:Re: New comment posted on Saul Williams Connects Iggy Azaela To The Failure Of Tupac-Inspired “Holler If Ya Hear Me”

      • Immortal

        You’ve been doing a great job so far…”Oppressed Man”. FOH

      • plsDontreply

        Well when you figure out why so many minorites are in prison please give me a unbias reason why.
        ——– Original message ——–
        Subject:Re: New comment posted on Saul Williams Connects Iggy Azaela To The Failure Of Tupac-Inspired “Holler If Ya Hear Me”

      • Dope

        And you’re probably the same racist idiot who will say on any other post how white people are racists, when it’s all just you being one.

      • plsDontreply

        I’m being oppressed its not logical to say “I’m racist”.

        ——– Original message ——–
        Subject:Re: New comment posted on Saul Williams Connects Iggy Azaela To The Failure Of Tupac-Inspired “Holler If Ya Hear Me”

      • Killuminati

        Lol oppressed your an idiot

      • Dope

        Oh sure, and how are you oppressed if I may ask? And how does that mean that no person of white skin has a ”soul” (I don’t believe a thing called ”soul” exists at all, but to assume it does and then limit it to one group of people, or take it from one group based on nothing but skin is pure racism boy).

      • plsDontreply

        You clearly lack soul bruh…

        ——– Original message ——–
        Subject:Re: New comment posted on Saul Williams Connects Iggy Azaela To The Failure Of Tupac-Inspired “Holler If Ya Hear Me”

      • Killuminati

        Lol. Man I love reading dumb porch monkey comments they make my day!

      • plsDontreply

        What is porch or monkey?  I know what a white devil is.

        ——– Original message ——–
        Subject:Re: New comment posted on Saul Williams Connects Iggy Azaela To The Failure Of Tupac-Inspired “Holler If Ya Hear Me”

  • Stay Phokus

    When was the last time you heard someone in the hood say
    “Imma go watch a broadway musical”
    That’s why it was a failure because the hood don’t do musicals

  • Killuminati

    So blame it on a white chick? Typical move by the black man,,,shit don’t go right blame the whites…..you lost your job cuz your lazy, it was the white bosses fault, you got arrested for drugs, the white cop was racial profiling. You got a dwi driving drunk? You call it a driving while black. You can’t sell a musical about a black rapper on Broadway? It’s an Australians fault! Whoever thought black people would go to a musical is probably the dumbest mf’er in the world…..blame it on the blacks who would rather buy some Lebron kicks a bag a weed or hit a club so they can shoot it up after not the white people who could give a fuk about your dumb musical…..