All hell broke loose in Manhattan last night after police pulled the plug on a free concert by singing rap megastar Drake. South Street Seaport staff had been expecting 10,000 people to attend the event celebrating the release of Drake’s debut album, Thank Me Later. When an estimated 25,000 turned up, the NYPD shut the show down amid fears that the crowd was too large to be safely policed. Their worst fears were realized as angry fans took matters into their own hands, fighting, flinging bottles and chairs, surging barricades, and breaking sound equipment. Armed police dispersed the crowd using mace. Numerous injuries were reported. Two arrests were made.
Drake immediately issued an apology. “I love performing for my fans but unfortunately the show was canceled by the NYPD due to over crowding, leaving me without the chance to give my fans a real show,” he said. “I’m thankful for the support that the fans have been giving me… I thank you now.” Openers Ninjasonik and Hanson (I know, right!) also weighed in. “We are really bummed,” Hanson brother Isaac tweeted last night. “I wish we could have played!” Ninjasonik member Jahjah criticized the event’s lack of security: “You can’t integrate a free show when a guy’s album is dropping and have 15 security there.” Paper Magazine, who sponsored the event as part of their Sounds Like Paper concert series, have been shockingly silent about the event since the show went belly up, which is unfortunate. Their shortsighted event planning got a lot of kids hurt last night.