Culture

Dave Chappelle Went Off During Blue Note Jazz Festival Napa Valley

While closing out Blue Note Jazz Festival Napa Valley, Dave Chappelle broke curfew, prompting him to threaten to boycott Napa Valley.

Napa Valley isn’t sitting well with Dave Chappelle after Blue Note Jazz Festival Napa Valley. On the second final night of the three-day festival on Sunday (July 31), the comedian attempted to get headliner Robert Glasper to close out the concert. At the time, just after 10 PM when Maxwell ended his performance, Napa Valley’s noise ordinance policy went into effect.

“Robert, real quick, let’s be late. They’re not going to kill us,” Chappelle said, according to Datebook. “We’re going to close this festival. We got to. Trust me on this. The keyboards are right there, Robert.”

Chappelle, who spoke to the festival’s crew continued, “Don’t power him off. Turn him back on!”

“Napa Valley, forgive us for disrespecting your noise ordinance,” Chappelle said. “It’s not noise. This is the best that America has to offer in music. What a festival. What a weekend. What a group of people standing in front of me.”

The previous night, Chappelle pushed for rap duo Black Star to continue their set past 10:30 PM. While urging Robert Glasper to perform on Sunday night, Chappelle sensed that festival organizers were hesitant to proceed.

“They won’t do it,” Chappelle said. “Could you imagine if Martin Luther King wanted to do the ‘I Have a Dream’ speech but they wouldn’t turn the sound on?”

The comedian continued to call out to the Black Radio III artist. “Robert, sit on the piano and hope for the best. We’ve got to close the festival,” Chappelle said. I’m only here because of you. Make some noise for your bandleader, Robert Glasper! You’ve got to do it. You’ve got to do it, please. Whoever is in charge, get us out of here the easy way. Robert, Robert, Robert, Robert, Robert.”

Chappelle then threatened to “never return” to Napa Valley if his demand wasn’t met by the festival.

“I’ll never drink a cup of wine from this dusty a** field,” he said. “I’ll drink Italian wines and French wines and South African wines. You cannot shut down Robert Glasper, ever. Let that be known.”

As a few other musicians came to the stage to acquiesce for a jam session, Chappelle continued his protest for Glasper.

“Yo, Robert Glasper has got to close this festival,” he insisted. “Napa Valley, if you kick us out we’re going to do it in another valley. You’re not the only valley in town.”

Ultimately, Glasper appeased Chappelle with an impromptu set, which ended by 10:15 PM. Satisfied, Chappelle assured the audience that he would return to Napa Valley.

“Napa Valley, we’ll see you next year,” he said.

Jaelani Turner-Williams

Jaelani Turner-Williams is a contributing news writer for Okayplayer with bylines at Billboard, MTV News, NYLON, Recording Academy and more. Read her mind on Twitter at @hernameisjae.

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Jaelani Turner-Williams

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