Mos Def misses Soulfest due to “travel issues”

Yasiin Bey – the rapper you know better as Mos Def – has missed his flight due to “travel issues” and won’t be appearing at Soulfest in Sydney today.

According to an announcement by the festival posted on Facebook, Mos Def is expected to land in Australia tomorrow morning and will perform at the Melbourne leg of Soulfest as scheduled. Mos Def is also scheduled to play a sideshow at the Enmore in Sydney on Monday and co-headline a show in Perth on Wednesday before heading to Brisbane for the final leg of the Soulfest tour next weekend.

Billed as Australia’s first ever neo-soul, jazz and hip-hop festival, the Soulfest lineup also features nine international artists including Maxwell, D’Angelo, Common, Aloe Blacc, Angie Stone and Leela James. Speaking to FL shortly after the lineup announcement Soulfest promoter John Denison was keenly aware of the (perhaps undeserved) reputation hip-hop festivals have in Australia. “We have to avoid any cancellations,” he explained. “Any cancellations and everyone will jump all over us. Irrespective of who it is – even if Leela James cancels they’ll be down our throats.”


Mos Def last visited Australia in 2011 and caused headaches for promoter Sam Speaight who claims to have lost around $250,000 on the tour. “From memory, [Mos Def] cancelled four out of 11 shows,” Speaight revealed after the tour. “All the pre-planning in the world couldn’t have prepared me for the living nightmare that was the reality of doing that tour and dealing with Mos Def.”

Soulfest dates and venues

Saturday, October 18 – Victoria Park (Broadway), Sydney

Sunday, October 19 – Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Melbourne

Saturday, October 25 – The Riverstage, Brisbane