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Santigold has cancelled her forthcoming North American tour, citing inflation, post-pandemic touring issues, and an increasingly “unsustainable” music industry that doesn’t protect artists’ welfare.
In a statement posted on Instagram last night, Santigold – real name Santi White – expressed her uncertainty over the current state of the music industry. “For the past several years we have all been through immense challenges,” she said.
“I am both sad and proud to announce my decision to cancel the Holified Tour. I am sad because it breaks my heart to disappoint those of you who consistently come out to show love and support me for what I do, those of you who have bought tickets and planned trips to come and see me,” she started.
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Santi went on to explain the “physical, mental, spiritual, and economic” issues over the years spent in lockdown. “As we have begun to trudge on, much of the toll of that experience has been left untended as we rush back in, attempting to make up for lost time, reconnect, catch up on bills unpaid, to escape the insanity that had begun to set in.
“For many of us, the landscapes we are re-entering are not the same,” she said. “As a touring musician, I don’t think anyone anticipated the new reality that awaited us.
“We were met with the height of inflation—gas, tour buses, hotels, and flight costs skyrocketed—many of our tried-and-true venues unavailable due to a flooded market of artists trying to book shows in the same cities, and positive test results constantly halting schedules with devastating financial consequences.
“Some of us are finding ourselves simply unable to make it work,” she explained. “In my case, I have tried and tried, looked at what it would take from every angle, and I simply don’t have it. I can’t make it work.”
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Later in the statement, Santi acknowledged the many musicians who are now cancelling tours to “prioritise themselves” over a “relentless industry”.
In April, Little Simz cancelled a string of US tour dates, citing the financial unviability of touring as an independent artist, as did Arlo Parks earlier this month in order to “prioritise her mental health”.
For Santi herself, relentless touring has led to “anxiety, insomnia, fatigue, vertigo, chronic pain, and missing crucial time with my children”.
“I’m coming to you with the honesty that is inherent in my music. How could I release Spirituals, an album about honoring yourself and refusing to cross your own boundaries, and not take this opportunity to do just that for myself?”
Santigold’s forthcoming string of shows, named the Holified Tour, was due to kick off in just two weeks starting in Atlanta, Georgia. All tickets are due to be refunded, per Santi’s statement, and fans will receive a ‘VIP membership’ in return allowing access to exclusive experiences and merchandise.
Read the full statement here.
Gemma Ross is Mixmag’s Editorial Assistant, follow her on Twitter
Written by: Tim Hopkins