Public Enemy’s Break-Up Was a Hoax, But Flavor Flav Says He Wasn’t In On It


About a month ago, Chuck D said he was throwing Flavor Flav out of Public Enemy because they had disagreements over the band’s performances for free at political rallies and fundraisers. Chuck really made Flav sound like an asshole, too, basically saying Flav only cared about money and didn’t feel any sense of civic obligation.

Now he’s saying it isn’t true. Pitchfork is reporting that Chuck recorded an interview with Talib Kwel back on May 10th saying the whole thing was planned and he had intended to reveal the hoax at Coachella, which was cancelled, so he did it for April Fools’ Day instead.

We already talked about this beforehand. Public Enemy Radio went up [at the Bernie Sanders rally]. His lawyer sent out a cease and desist. I’m like, “Good move.” Then, publicly: “Man, you don’t fuckin’ sue me again.” He ain’t suin’ me. But I can say it! If the public is confused about this, that, whatever—they’re gonna be confused about what’s a lawsuit and what’s not. “Yo, man, you suing me again publicly? Boom. F**k that. You’re fired dude. This is my last thing with you.” OK. We knew what was gonna come. I’m not sayin’ it’s a hoax, I’m sayin’ that the original intention is to get your attention and not play attention, but get you to pay attention.

Seems pretty straightforward, it was meant to hype up Public Enemy Radio’s new album Loud Is Not Enough which features Flav on the single ‘Food as a Machine Gun.’

Chuck also put out a statement saying he was inspired by Orson Wells’ famous War of the Worlds broadcast.

Thus came the HOAX. A wake-up call.

I had watched Orson Welles’ ‘War Of The Worlds’ from 1938 when he pulled the wool over the public’s eyes as they put 100% belief in the technology of radio. Most people followed like a Pavlovic dog just like they do now.

This isn’t actually true, for what it’s worth. War of the Worlds was broadcast on Mercury Theater on Halloween and the number of people fooled into believing it was real (which was never Wells’ intent) was massively inflated by newspapers after the fact. Which makes Chuck the one buying into media hype like a Pavolovic dog. Which is not a real word.

Also, Flav says Chuck never ran any of this by him.

Chuck’s explanation doesn’t really prove anything anyway, it’s not really foolish for people to believe things about Chuck D that Chuck D says publicly. But he did get people talking, and by that metric it’s a success.

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