Questlove is taking a stand. The Roots co-founder slammed DaBaby in an Instagram post late in the evening on Wednesday (July 28) after the “Rockstar” rapper made homophobic comments during his July 25 set at Rolling Loud Miami.
In the image, Questlove shares a list of artists: The Roots, A Tribe Called Quest, The Isley Brothers, Rihanna, Sade, Megan Thee Stallion, DaBaby, Hiatus Kaiyote, Sault — but DaBaby’s name is crossed out. “I was hypothetically asked if I was curating an updated version of #SummerOfSoul who would be my acts?” the artist, who directed the music documentary Summer of Soul, began his caption. “I gave my dream list.”
“And now I’m updating my list — because it’s 2021 & f— the bulls—,” he declared before getting into the details of why he’s upset with DaBaby. “I’m especially not here for any savagery (if you’re lost: Google the idiocy of the crossed out).” Questlove went on to explain that he’s not trying to be “all performative smurf” or make headlines, but simply to do what he feels is necessary.
“Right is right & his actions are wrong,” the five-time Grammy winner insisted. “Somebody Gotta say it: Homophobia/Transphobia/Xenophobia/Misogyny/Racism–this should go w/o saying is morally wrong.”
Questlove went on to admit that he was “slow to do this” because DaBaby doesn’t know him, and acknowledged that “black people already have a code about publicly criticizing.” He went on to note some past instances where he “barely said anything” and shared his excuses at the time, including Rihanna (“lemme mind my business”), when Kanye West shared his support for former president Donald Trump and wore a MAGA hat (“he going thru thangs let him work it out”) and when his rap heroes “damn near becoming f*x news talking points w their russian bots reposts & misinformation on all things facts.”
So why now? Questlove explained, citing the co-founder of the Black Panthers: “Huey Newton wisely stated in the early 70s that we as a people should NEVER go so low in life (with what we been through) that we start oppressing/terrorizing the next man in the way we been terrorized for centuries.”
He concluded: “Y’all gonna learn that there are other human beings living in the same space you are.”
Questlove is just the latest celebrity to criticize DaBaby for his rant at Rolling Loud. Dua Lipa, who collaborated with the rapper on her “Levitating” remix, said she was “surprised and horrified” by DaBaby’s comments after fans tweeted to urge her to remove him from the song. Elton John also spoke out to help debunk the rapper’s misinformation about HIV and AIDS.
During DaBaby’s Rolling Loud set in Miami, he shouted to his fans, “If you didn’t show up today with HIV, AIDS, or any of them deadly sexually transmitted diseases that’ll make you die in two to three weeks, then put your cellphone lighter up! Ladies, if your p—- smell like water, put your cellphone lighter up! Fellas, if you ain’t sucking d— in the parking lot, put your cellphone lighter up!”
The set was livestreamed, and people on social media quickly called out DaBaby for his comments. After first doubling down on his comments in a video, the rapper — who has since been dropped by fashion collaborator boohooMAN — walked things back a bit and admitted his comments were “insensitive.” GLAAD in a statement called them “inaccurate, hurtful and harmful.”
Late on July 28, DaBaby — who did receive some support, most vocally from T.I. — released a video that appears to address his controversial comments. The “Giving What It’s Supposed to Give” visual ends with a rainbow-colored message that reads “Don’t Fight Hate With Hate,” in addition to “My apologies for being me the same way you want the freedom to be you.”
See Questlove’s full message below: