Last week, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney slammed the fate Jay-Z’s “Made In America” festival into imbalance. After hosting the festival at Ben Franklin Parkway for six straight years, Mayor Kenney decided it was time for a change, essentially “evicting” the festival from its longtime home. In response, Jay-Z penned an op-ed against the decision, citing the festival’s importance to both the city and the culture. It seemed so grim that Milwaukee ficials even slid into the proverbial DMs to hold it down as a potential backup. Still, Jay and his team remained determined to salvage the relationship, and it would appear he can now deem that mission accomplished.
According to a report from HHNM, Mayor Kenney has ficially issued a statement confirming that the festival would indeed stay in Parkway. “I am greatly appreciative everything that Made in America has done for the City Philadelphia and I remain committed to its continued success. The Made in America festival belongs in Philadelphia – the birthplace our country – and I’m optimistic that we can turn an unfortunate misunderstanding into a positive outcome and even stronger event,” he writes. “I look forward to working with Roc Nation and Live Nation, and maintaining this Philadelphia tradition for years to come.”
Roc Nation issued a statement their own, courtesy Desiree Perez. “We are happy to announce the Made in America festival will continue at the heart the Philadelphia, the Benjamin Franklin Parkway for many years to come,” says Perez. “After a candid and constructive discussion with the Mayor, we are confident any miscommunication is corrected, and we are proactively addressing any concerns. We are committed to bringing the best experience possible to Philadelphians and all music lovers as well as the continuing prosperity the city.”
Earlier this week, news broke that this year would be the last year Philadelphia’s Ben Franklin Parkway hosted Jay-Z’s Made In America festival. Ben Franklin Parkway has hosted the festival since its inception in 2012. Jay-Z’s stated his disappointment in the Philly mayor for his decision for not only evicting the festival, but not taking into consideration that the festival also employs many locals. While Jay-Z and Roc Nation have intentions keeping the festival in Philly, in the case that doesn’t work out, they have other opportunities to host it elsewhere.
According to the Associated Press, Alderman Khalif Rainey wrote a letter to Jay-Z and Roc Nation inviting them to host Made In America festival in Milwaukee after the Philadephia Mayor evicted them. In his plea to bring the fest to his city, he said that Milwaukee is known as a city music festivals since they host dozens events each year The letter was signed on Thursday by four Rainey’s Common Council colleagues.
The Mayor Philly recently responded to Jay-Z’s criticism in the op-ed he wrote for the Philadelphia Inquirer after Made In America’s eviction news broke out.
“The City Philadelphia supports the Made in America festival and is greatly appreciative all that it has done for Philadelphia.” He said in a statement to Billboard, “We hope to be able to resolve what has been an unfortunate misunderstanding. We are working with Roc Nation and Live Nation to resolve this issue and we are committed to continuing our partnership with the Made in America festival.”
It’s unsure how they could resolve this issue but we’re hoping this all works out at the end.
The Mayor Philadelphia has reportedly announced that it’s annual Made In America festival will no longer be taking place at the Ben Franklin Parkway. An ficial statement from the mayor’s fice says the city is interested in discussing its future location, but “the need for an event this scale at Ben Franklin Parkway] may no longer be necessary.”
Although they say they look forward to continuing a partnership with Jay Z and his festival, it seems as though Jay isn’t so pleased with the move since the eviction from the park comes without warning and without an ficial meeting to discuss the matter.
“The Made in America festival is a multi-cultural platform that represents strength, freedom speech and perseverance for artists and music lovers. Philadelphia, an iconic city, represents those ideals. The location is integral to the pulse the festival,” the response reads. “The Parkway is a cultural arts center that is symbolic to over 600 artists that have performed at this event. The Parkway captures the freedom and spirit inclusivity that drew us to the city Brotherly Love. The celebratory nature and essence this festival has inspired locals as well as visitors from across the nation to enjoy Labor Day in Philadelphia.”
It adds: “We are disappointed that the Mayor the City Philadelphia would evict us from the heart the city, through a media outlet, without a sit-down meeting, notice, dialogue or proper communication. It signifies zero appreciation for what Made In America has built alongside the phenomenal citizens this city.”
Read in full here.