Photos: Free Wyclef Jean 420 show at CU in Boulder draws unbelievably paltry crowd
Update: YouTube video of Wyclef Jean's freestyle added below ("For the record," he sings, "I would never sell out," presumably in response to the anti-MJ clause of the contract), along with video from the Denver Post of Jean's brother surrounded by students and smoking up in an effort to get more people to the show and a recap from the show.
Nick Callaio The arena didn't change too much from sound check to the end of the show.
• Wyclef Jean contract with CU confirms $80K fee, plus a look at the performance rider
• 4/20 at CU Boulder: Wyclef Jean concert, police crackdown to shrink event?
• Wyclef Jean at Coors Event Center on 4/20
From the sounds of it, there are probably more people lingering on the sidewalks surrounding Civic Center park right now than are at the Coors Event Center on the University of Colorado campus for the free Wyclef Jean show. Backbeat's own Nick Callaio is on hand and says there's maybe 400 people in the arena right now. "The crowd looks like a herd of penguins huddled together," he says. "It's almost like a private party with the dude who ran for the president of Haiti."
Nick Callaio The scene from CU this afternoon. Wyclef Jean doing his best to rock a meager crowd. William Breathes The scene today at Civic Center Park. Looks like a few more people showed up. 2MX2 rockin' the crowd at Civic Center on 4/20.
As you can see, there's a lot of empty seats in the arena, which holds eleven thousand and some change. Not to mention, if the figure that has been floated are accurate in terms of Jean's guarantee (it is, $80K), that's a large sum of money for such a paltry turnout.
Nick Callaio Plenty of room to groove up there apparently. Security guard to spectator ratio looks to be almost one-to-one.
"You can tell he's a little irritated by the turn out," Callaio offers. "Before he went on, him and his brother were out on a golf cart trying to recruit people." According to Callaio, despite a clause in his contract that reportedly prohibits him from mentioning marijuana, Jean was freestyling about how the people who put on the show said not to talk about marijuana.
Even though it's a meager crowd, Jean is still giving it all he's got and treating the people to a show, and those who are there seem to be very enthused about the set, which so far has included some Fugees tracks, some Bob Marley covers (appropriately enough), a "Smells Like Teen Spirit" cover into Jackson 5. "He is doing anything to hype the crowd," Callaio reports.
Page down for a full recap of the show, more photos, including a shot shared by Wyclef Jean himself on twitter and a video of Jean's brother smoking up on the quad.