When Shaggy cancelled his New Zealand performance, only days before he was due to appear at the One Love festival, promoters blamed “unforeseen circumstances”. His actions since have cast serious doubt on that excuse.
The day after it was announced Shaggy would not perform at the festival, the 1990s reggae hitmaker released a single and promised a new album.
The single, made with 66-year-old rock star Sting, had been in production a long time. Sting and Shaggy had been posting pictures together from a recording studio, since early December. Shaggy’s place at the top of the One Love bill was announced in June.MATT SAYLES/APFestival promoters from Pato Entertainment were said to be furious at Shaggy’s cancellation, conveyed to them on the Tuesday night before his Sunday slot.
Then, on Monday – one day after Shaggy was supposed to have performed in New Zealand – he made a surprise appearance at the Grammy Awards in New York, US.ALEX HUCKLE/GETTY IMAGES
The reggae artist has not responded to repeated requests for comment.
Feedback following his live performance with Sting was fast and forthright.
British newspaper The Telegraph covered their performance with the headline: “What on earth were Sting and Shaggy doing at the Grammys?”
They appeared twice in the televised Grammy Awards, despite being nominated for zero awards.
First, they appeared in a Carpool Karaoke skit and later, they performed a medley that included their new song Don’t Make Me Wait.
Lorde, who was nominated for the top award of Album of the Year, was not offered a solo performance slot. The decision to include acts such as Sting and Shaggy, rather than nominees such as Lorde – the only woman nominated for the top award – was met with criticism from many spectators.
The hashtag #GrammysSoMale took off on social media as a way for viewers to vent their frustrations.
Shaggy and Sting’s joint album, a reggae release, would be out in April, Interscope Records said.
A One Love spokeswoman said Shaggy’s management had promised to “make good” and perform at a later date, this year, in New Zealand. One Love attendees would be offered discounted tickets.
The festival wouldn’t be drawn on comment at the time having heard the news Shaggy had performed at the Grammy Awards.
About 20,000 people attended the two day festival in Tauranga this weekend, that included performances from Common Kings, Stan Walker and Katchafire.