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Rock the Bells hip-hop festival at RFK has been canceled, organizers confirm

Columbia, MD - August 30th, 2010: After waiting for over two hours between main stage performances, the Merriweather crowd was ready to let loose. (Photo by Kyle Gustafson/For The Washington Post) A scene from the last D.C. edition of the touring hip-hop festival Rock the Bells, held in 2010. (Photo by Kyle Gustafson for The Washington Post)

This post has been updated.

Sorry, D.M.V. hip-hop fans – Rock the Bells has been canceled.

Guerilla Union, the organizers behind the hip-hop mega-concert announced Thursday evening that they have put the kibosh on tour stops in Washington and at Meadlowlands in New Jersey due to poor ticket sales. The D.C. festival was scheduled to take place on the grounds of RFK Stadium on Saturday and Sunday. Full refunds will be honored at the location where fans purchased their tickets.

Multiple sources with knowledge of the situation, including an artist slated to perform, had confirmed the cancellation earlier in the day.

Read: Rock the Bells hip-hop festival set for D.C. stop

As of Wednesday evening, the concert appeared to be all systems go, with organizers tweeting: “#RocktheBellsDC is almost here! Who's catching @BIGKRIT's set this weekend?!” This weekend’s bill at RFK also promised performances from Kendrick Lamar, Wale, J. Cole and many others.

The touring festival kicked off its 10th-anniversary go-round in San Bernadino, Calif.,  earlier this month and was reportedly dogged by various logistical snags.

"We did everything in our power to save the show," Chang Weisberg, founder and owner of Guerilla Union, which promotes Rock the Bells, said in the statement released Thursday. "Unfortunately, the financial loss would have been devastating. I am truly sorry we could not produce the show for all the fans who did buy their ticket in support of.”

Related stories: D.C.'s Wale wrestles with fame and anxiety

Chris Richards has been the Post's pop music critic since 2009. He's recently written about the bliss of summer songs, the woe of festival fatigue and a guide on how to KonMari your record collection.



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