Chuck D Explains Why Public Enemy Passed On Jay-Z’s “Made In America”

Public Enemy’s Chuck D opened up about the legendary group’s decision to turn down Jay-Z’s request to perform at the Made in America Festival, which took place in Philadelphia on Labor Day weekend.

The star-heavy event, which featured a headlining Jay-Z as well as Kanye West, D’Angelo, Drake, Pearl Jam, Jill Scott and more, was further elevated by the much welcomed return of Run-DMC.

But while Chuck praised the Rock & Roll Hall of Famers’ appearance—the first since the tragic 2002 shooting death of Jam Master Jay—he said the event didn’t fit with his political convictions.

SEE ALSO: Run-DMC Reunite, JMJ’s Sons Take Turns In The Spotlight

“I was inspired today by Run-DMC in Pennsylvania,” Chuck told CBC Music. “I know I’m made in America but I’m really made on the planet. I’m not made by America, or in it. So, we like to protest and be difficult. But I salute them for bringing Rap music to the forefront and being able to have Run-DMC to get that slot.”

Public Enemy is no stranger to making anti-establishment statements. The groundbreaking hip-hop unit first came to prominence by injecting socially conscious awareness and Black Panther ideology into such platinum landmark albums as It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (1988); Fear of a Black Planet (1990) and Apocalypse 91… The Enemy Strikes Black (1991).

P.E. isn’t showing signs of slowing down. The group, which continues to tour across the globe is set to drop their new album The Evil Empire of Everything on October 1st. The new set will feature appearances by Rage Against the Machine’s Tom Morello, Ziggy Marley, Henry Rollins and more. —Keith Murphy, CBS Local


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