Vanilla Ice has indefinitely postponed a Texas concert that drew fierce criticism for being scheduled in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.
The rapper, best known for the 1990 hit single “Ice Ice Baby,” had been scheduled to play an outdoor concert outside of Austin on Friday, but postponed the event at the Emerald Point Bar & Grill as cases continue to surge in the Lone Star State.
“Due to the increase in COVID-19 numbers in Austin, we’re gonna move the concert to a better date,” Vanilla Ice, whose real name is Robert Van Winkle, tweeted to his more than 340,000 followers. “We were hoping for better Coronavirus numbers by July but Unfortunately the numbers have increased quite a bit so for the safety and health of everyone we’re going to stay home.”
Emerald Point owner Barrett Brannam said he fielded several complaints about the concert before the postponement was made. He would not speculate on when the concert will be rescheduled.
“Hard to say. Could be later this summer or not until next summer. We don’t now how long this virus will be around,” Brannam said.
Vanilla Ice, 53, played the same venue in 2019 and attracted 1,800 people but had only sold 84 tickets for this year's event, per Brannam, who also added he postponed concerts by Coolio and Tone Loc that had been scheduled for the weekend of July 11.
Austin is located in Travis County, which has recorded 128 coronavirus deaths since the pandemic began.
The postponement comes as beach closures are being announced throughout many parts of the Texas Gulf Coast. Galveston announced it was closing its popular beaches on Wednesday.
Cases were relatively low when Gov. Greg Abbott (R) reopened the state's economy in late April, but over the last two weeks the state has seen rising cases, raising questions about whether things opened too quickly. Abbot has since slowed the reopening and ordered bars to close while scaling back restaurant capacity to 50 percent.