Why Outkast made André 3000 feel like he was “selling out”
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Why Outkast made André 3000 feel like he was "selling out"

Outkast’s André 3000 has always had artistic integrity and has always shown himself to be nothing but a musician in the purest form of the word. However, on one occasion, the Atlanta rapper (real name André Benjamin) felt like he was selling himself out.

André 3000 and Big Boi (real name Antwan Patton) as Outkast were a massive hit in the late 1990s and 2000s. With a catalogue of eclectic original music that sounded like nothing else in the mainstream, their creative genius set them apart from everyone else.

However, in the eyes of Benjamin, the music they made during their heyday was representative of how they were creatively minded during that specific period of their lives. As such, when the duo disbanded in 2006, Benjamin and Patton left their music as a time capsule for music lovers.

However, in 2014, the duo went on a reunion tour that André 3000 felt was incredibly inauthentic. To him, it was a desperate attempt to revive something from the past and recreate what they had artistically preserved.

After eight years of inactivity, the duo rejoined forces and performed a string of shows, including a headline slot at Bestival. However, to make a statement, André wore a price tag reading ‘sold’ at each event.

Speaking to fashion and music magazine The Fader, Benjamin disclosed, “I felt weird about going out onstage and doing it again. I felt people would be like, ‘Y’all are doing all these festivals, y’all are just doing it for money. I felt like a sell-out, honestly.”

He continued, “I was like, if I’m in on the joke I’ll feel cool about it. I’m 39, I got a 17-year-old kid, and I gotta support certain things. So I felt like there was a certain sell-out in a way because I didn’t wanna do it – I knew I was doing it for a reason. So maybe if I’m telling people, ‘I am selling out’ then it’s not as bad as pretending.”

In fact, Benjamin admitted that he felt he had to send a message with his clothing because he couldn’t with his old music, stating, “I didn’t wanna do the tour. We hadn’t performed in ten years. It was old songs. I’m like, how am I gonna present these songs? I don’t have nothing new to say. So I was like, maybe I can start saying new stuff while doing these old songs.”

You can watch Outkast performing at Bestival in 2014 below.