Anita Baker’s concert in New Jersey left many fans upset after she apparently asked opener Babyface not to perform.
Last night during the New Jersey stop of Anita Baker’s 15-date “The Songstress” tour, concertgoers became disgruntled and disappointed. Not only did fans report waiting two hours for the “Sweet Love” singer to hit the stage, but ticket holders also did not get to see co-headliner Babyface perform.
Adding to the chaotic night, one fan told VIBE that she witnessed a lady passing out while waiting for the show to start and that a fight also erupted in the audience.
Following the backlash on social media from the show date, Babyface spoke out to clear up rumors about Ms. Baker allegedly being a “diva” towards him.
“I am truly sorry to my fans who have been waiting for us to hit the stage this evening at @PruCenter,” he tweeted on Wednesday night (May 10). “I was asked not to perform in order to give Ms. Baker her space and time to perform her show in its entirety. My band and I are extremely saddened we didn’t get to perform for y’all tonight.”
I am truly sorry to my fans who have been waiting for us to hit the stage this evening at @PruCenter. I was asked not to perform in order to give Ms. Baker her space and time to perform her show in its entirety. My band and I are extremely saddened we didn't get to perform for…
— Babyface (@babyface) May 11, 2023
According to one attendee, the 65-year-old songstress asked Live Nation (who organized the tour) if they came out to apologize to fans for the delay. Another fan vented to Twitter about the delay and also having to work in the morning. He then asked for a refund.
“I am at the Anita Baker concert, it is 2 hours late!” the disappointed fan wrote. “This is unacceptable! Ppl have to work tomorrow, others don’t live in NJ and traveled here. No announcements have been made. Tickets were expensive. Disrespectful! Who is responsible for this? Shameful. #refund”
See Tweets below.
Anita Baker apologized for the 2 hour delay and asked if Live Nation apologized to us ? #Newark #PrudentialCenter pic.twitter.com/0vJqowodW0
— Lanette Espy (@NJLaLa) May 11, 2023
I am at the Anita Baker concert, it is 2 hours late! This is unacceptable! Ppl have to work tomorrow,others don't live in NJ and traveled here. No announcements have been made. Tickets were expensive. Disrespectful! Who is responsible for this? Shameful. #refund
— Diane Nathaniel (@diane_nathaniel) May 11, 2023
In another video, the host of the show could be seen getting booed after announcing to ticket holders that there were “technical difficulties” — which he claimed caused the delay.
“First of all I want to thank everyone for coming out tonight,” he began. “We did have some technical difficulties tonight. However, Ms. Baker isn’t going anywhere ya’ll she’s coming out tonight. Unfortunately because of these delays Ms. Baker wanted to be sure that she gave ya’ll the best that she could give.”
“So unfortunately Babyface will no longer be performing. I deeply, deeply apologize,” he added as the audience roared with “boos” out of frustration. See below.
??Boooooooo @babyface #anitabaker refund everyone who came out, flights, hotels, rentals to see you and no show because of “technical difficulties” pic.twitter.com/RAyOfLJQC1
— Prettyuhmazing (@prettyuhmazing) May 11, 2023
Baker’s team has yet to release an official statement regarding starting her set two hours late and Babyface being unable to perform.
Check out some of the responses from attendees and social media below.
Note to self: ??Never go to an Anita Baker concert
— Ava Jonath??? (@avajonath) May 11, 2023
Sounds to me like a full refund is needed. If you go to a restaurant and they bring you the wrong food you send it back and don’t pay for it. This wasn’t the concert that anyone ordered. They brought you the wrong “food.”
— Sean Silverman: Silverman Bar Exam & LSAT Tutoring (@BarExamTutor) May 11, 2023
Anita Baker needs to stop having Co-headliners if she going to continue to act this way. She did this a while back with Maxwell.
— Anthony Tilghman (@AnthonyTilghman) May 11, 2023
We have got to be better than this! I am saddened by the fact that you have to make this statement. One would think as older artist who are considered “Iconic” and or “Legendary” we would treat each other with respect and dignity. @Babyface We can tour together ??
— Stephanie Mills (@PrettyMill1) May 11, 2023