Travis Scott is speaking out over the controversy surrounding his Super Bowl performance.
The “Sicko Mode” rapper signed on to perform at next month’s halftime show with Maroon 5 earlier this month despite backlash over the NFL’s treatment of players kneeling during the national anthem. Scott’s decision was reportedly made with the condition that the NFL would donate $500,000 to social justice organization Dream Corps.
“I back anyone who takes a stand for what they believe in,” Scott said in a statement. “I know being an artist that it’s in my power to inspire. So before confirming the Super Bowl Halftime performance, I made sure to partner with the NFL on this important donation. I am proud to support Dream Corps and the work they do that will hopefully inspire and promote change.”
After the announcement was made, Variety reported that Scott consulted with Colin Kaepernick, who was drummed out of the league for kneeling, and had “at least one phone conversation” prior to agreeing to the Super Bowl.
A source close to Scott said that the two did not see eye to eye, but they left with a mutual respect and understanding. Travis felt that the donation to Van Jones’ charity Dream Corps, along with the platform provided by the Super Bowl, would do some good.
However, Kaepernick has denied that he gave his approval. The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback retweeted Hot 97’s Ebro Darden, who shared a link to Variety’s story, adding, “Kap did not approve this bullshit! Get the fuck outta here….”
Kaepernick’s girlfriend, Nessa Dias, also disputed the claim, tweeting, “There is NO mutual respect and there is NO understanding for anyone working against @Kaepernick7 PERIOD. #stoplying.”
Kap did not approve this bullshit! Get the fuck outta here…. https://t.co/yyMVAXQB3k
— El Viejo Ebro (@oldmanebro) January 16, 2019
— NESSA (@nessnitty) January 16, 2019
An additional report from TMZ claims that before the Super Bowl contract was signed, Travis reached out to Kap to get his support, but not to ask for permission. Colin was not supportive of Travis performing at the Super Bowl, but their conversation was reportedly “cordial and not hostile.”
The NFL contract was only signed a few days ago following the conversation between Colin and Travis and included a $500,000 donation to Dream Corps.
A source adds that while Travis has respect for Colin, Kap “doesn’t tell Travis what he can and can’t do. That’s Travis’ decision.”
Scott will perform alongside Maroon 5 and Big Boi at the Pepsi Super Bowl LIII Halftime Show at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Feb. 3. Other entertainers, including JAY-Z, Rihanna, and Cardi B, reportedly turned down the gig in support of Kaepernick.