It’s come to this, Anita Baker says, regrettably, that she has had to remove Babyface Edmonds as the headliner for her songstress tour, after Babyface fans whom she calls “Kenny’s Crazies” mounted an online harassment campaign against the singer for preventing Babyface and his band from performing on one of the tour dates.
“After Silently, Enduring Cyber Bulling/Verbal Abuse & Threats of Violence from the Fan Base, of Our Special Guest/Support Act. In the Interest of Personal Safety. I will continue, The Songstress Tour, alone. Appropriate refunds will be made. Blessings,” Baker wrote alongside a new tour poster that doesn’t feature her former opener’s name on it.
In a statement to Billboard, Babyface said that he is “saddened” that he’s no longer on the tour. “It’s unfortunate and disheartening to see how things have played out via social media,” he said. “While I was looking forward to the rest of the dates, I have nothing but love and respect for Anita and I wish her the best for the remainder of her tour.”
The tour celebrating Baker’s four decades in the music business that kicked off in Florida in February — and is slated to run through a Dec. 23 show at Oakland Arena — had featured opening support sets from singer-songwriter-producer Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds. But after Edmonds was unexpectedly cut from a May 10 show at the Prudential Center in New Jersey due to reported technical issues that pushed that night’s start time by two hours, she said his fans have been relentlessly harassing and trolling her.
“I am truly sorry to my fans who have been waiting for us to hit the stage this evening at the Prudential Center,” Babyface wrote at the time. “I was asked not to perform in order to give Ms. Baker her space and time to perform her show in its entirety. My band an I are extremely saddened we didn’t get to perform for y’all tonigh
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