Another Australian hip hop fest has dropped out of the game.
Organizers of Hype festival have shelved plans for its inaugural run, without having announced its line-up or itinerary.
Hype had quietly positioned itself in Australia’s summer festivals space, and tentative plans were to launch in the last quarter of 2013. That won’t happen this year.
“The market for hip hop is very unpredictable,” Hype founder John Denison tells Billboard. “We have made a responsible decision to sit back and wait till there's more confidence in the genre.”
Right now, confidence in hip hop festivals Down Under is struggling badly.
In the space of a few days in April, two major hip hop events evaporated from the festival calendar. Live Nation’s inaugural Movement fest – five scheduled dates featuring Nas, 2 Chainz, Chiddy Bang, Joey Bada$$, Angel Haze, Spit Syndicate, Thundamentals and homegrown hip hop chart-toppers Bliss N Eso -- was canceled. And its rival Supafest – which would have featured T.I., Ne-Yo and 50 Cent, Akon, J. Cole, Waka Flocka Flame, Young Jeezy and others over four dates -- announced its postponement until later this year. No new dates have been announced for Supafest, and its official Website apparently hasn’t been updated since April 18.
In an interview at the time, Supafest promoter Dwanyne Cross said there was a “100% chance” the shows would go ahead in November.
Last year was also a tough one for hip hop fests in Australia. The January 2012 Heatwave Festival – with Kid Cudi, D12, Chamillionaire, Obie Trice, Tech N9ne and others -- was a massive flop amid poor ticket sales, negative publicity and D12 and Chamillionaire missing some of the six gigs. Heatwave no longer exists. Supafest’s 2012 edition also endured well-publicized problems with its line-up.
It’s not all gloom. Clockwork Entertainment’s Sprung festival will go ahead in Brisbane (Sept. 21) and expands with a date in Melbourne (Oct. 19), headlined by homegrown acts 360, Drapht and Seth Sentry.