Hip hop artist slaps female photographer at Voodoo music festival

Photo provided by Amy Harris.

POSTED: Monday, October 31, 2011 - 12:57am

UPDATED: Tuesday, November 1, 2011 - 2:41pm

THIS IS AN NBC33 NEWS UPDATE: A representative with the Voodoo Experience issued a statement shortly before midnight on Monday, Oct. 31 regarding the Odd Future performance and the allegations of misconduct against media photographers.

The VOODOO EXPERIENCE does not in any way condone the behavior of Odd Future towards the approved media assembled in the photo pit during the band’s set yesterday (Sunday, October 30). Festival organizers would like to apologize to their media guests who experienced and/or witnessed this abusive behavior.

THIS IS AN NBC33 NEWS UPDATE: Pitchfork Magazine reports that the publicist for Odd Future has responded to the allegations that a member slapped a female photographer during the group’s performance at the Voodoo Experience on Sunday, Oct. 30.

"There simply is no truth to the accusation floating around the internet. It’s no secret that Odd Future has a love/hate relationship with photographers at shows simply because sometimes they are given access the group wishes their fans would have instead. After telling the photographers to clear out multiple times (as they've done before) Vyron (Leftbrain) took a swipe at a few cameras, NOT people. To manipulate the situation to insinuate an attack on a woman specifically is careless and manipulative."

ORIGINAL STORY: An incident in the final hours of a three day music festival in New Orleans shocked fans, as well as organizers of the festival.

The hip hop collective Odd Future performed at the Voodoo Experience just before 4:00 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 30. The group is based out of California and is known for its use of extreme explicit language and graphic lyrics that often depict violence against women. The imagery, however, became all too real at this performance.
The show got heated at the close of the first song when the lead vocalist known by his stage name, Tyler the Creator, 20, began addressing the crowd about his disliking for photographers. In his explanation he says that the barricaded area where the photographers work is not fair to the fans. Other members of the group backed up his words.

Vyron Turner, aka “Left Brain,” got physical with the less than two-dozen photographers in the pit area. He slung water at them, and then pushed and kicked cameras. The truly shocking moment was when he slapped freelance professional photographer Amy Harris across her face, knocking her camera to the ground.

“I have worked many shows before, and I’ve had to deal with a band flinging water at the photographers, but I never expected this to happen,” Harris told NBC33 News shortly after the incident occurred. “In the pit, the male to female ratio is about 20 to 1. There were way more men in that pit than women.”

Harris had a prearranged interview scheduled directly after the Odd Future show with festival CEO Steven Rehage. Harris informed Rehage of the incident and Harris says he immediately addressed the situation.

Harris declined the option to contact Police to file charges of assault. She also says her equipment was not damaged during the incident.

Odd Future was not available for comment.

The Voodoo Experience is held annually since 1999 in New Orleans' City Park over Halloween Weekend. Although its primarily considered a rock festival, the roster of musical acts includes everything from funk, electronic, and hip hop.

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Photograph for this story provided by Amy Harris.  


Comments News Comments

From the view of some pics, it looks like he slapped her camera. STILL NOT ACCEPTABLE!!

I was there as well....He lunged at me as well...JazzAndHiFi (Skip) is totally correct....

I seen one article where it said Amy was slapped in the face...NEVER HAPPENED!

To the band's publicist: You say in your statement that "Vyron (Leftbrain) took a swipe at a few cameras".

WELL.... Where do you think those cameras are?? In front of the photographers' faces!!

anyone with half a brain could realise that odd future would get rowdy during their concerts, i mean seriously have you ever even heard one of their songs?

Listen you ***** little *****...left brain

We were basically attacked in the pit. This PR person is trying to COVER UP what actually happened. These bastards BELONG IN A CAGE

Odd Future wolf gang kill them all

Unfortunately the statement from the Odd Future publicist is very very incorrect about "After telling photographers to clear out multiple times" - Vyron (Leftbrain) never told photographers to clear out multiple times, he immediately exploded into his vile hatred of photographers, and then hit one male photographer first - breaking his Nikon 70-200mm lens and a split second later hit the female photographer Amy Harris in front of me - it was clearly assault and battery. It's clear from the statement that the publicist was NOT there at this particular event yesterday because if they had, they would have realized the severity of what Vyron (Leftbrain) did was very wrong.

If Odd Future has a problem with photographers, it should be stated in their clause before performing so no photographers are allowed in the photo pit.

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