Why You Never See These Rappers On Tour

The following references mental health struggles.

With record sales not being what they used to be, rappers and other musicians have to shore up their income in other ways. Some have gotten into reality television, while others have launched businesses that have nothing to do with music. Still, touring seems to be the best way a hip-hop artist can make money, which is why many of them are constantly on the road. But not all rappers tour extensively and some don't do it at all.

So, we've gathered some of those artists to see just why they're not traveling to various cities and countries to perform for their fans. And there are all kinds of reasons, whether it be something inside they feel or not being able to tour due to a situation that's beyond their control. Some of the artists stopped touring in the prime of their careers as well and others quit when their popularity started to dwindle. (Although Travis Scott took a break after the Astroworld tragedy, he eventually planned to tour again.) But don't worry, we broke it all down for you in detail. Shall we begin?

Joe Budden retired

Unless Joe Budden is heading out to promote his podcast, it's highly unlikely that he'll be crisscrossing the globe on tour. The former Def Jam artist retired from rap in 2016 and made it clear that he was done with tour life. Put it like this: The name of Budden's last group of concerts was "the last Budden shows ever," just to give an idea of how decisive he was about retiring then. He's become a successful podcaster since that time, launching his "I'll Name This Podcast Later" in 2015, which was eventually called "The Joe Budden Podcast."

Budden also replaced his touring money with reality show dollars, joining the cast of VH1's "Love & Hip Hop: New York" in 2012 and the network's "Couple's Therapy" later on. He began working with Sean "Diddy" Combs as well, hosting the talk show "State of the Culture" on Combs' Revolt channel.

The ex-rapper spoke about walking away from music in a 2018 interview with Vibe and explained why he's done with touring and songwriting. "I've written enough in my professional career, which was part of the reason I decided to retire," Budden explained. "You put your blood, sweat, and tears into an album and you think that's where it ends but no, when you go on tour you're still carrying the life of that album and the life of those songs until you put your next project out ... It wasn't very pleasant."

André 3000 talked about having a social disorder

One day André 3000 was a globetrotting superstar rapper, the next he stopped touring. The man born André Lauren Benjamin had some very productive years with his OutKast group member Big Boi, releasing six critically acclaimed albums. Then Andre's musical output lessened. After that, new music and shows stopped altogether. That largely has to do with the Grammy award-winning artist having a social disorder, which he talked about with GQ in 2017.

"I was diagnosed with this social thing. I didn't notice it until I became an entertainer," he stated. "I don't know if it's the shock of all kind of people coming up to you or the expectations, but I got to this place where it was hard for me to be in public without feeling watched or really nervous ... So I just started getting to myself ... and stopped touring."

The "Hey Ya!" writer also opened up to Rick Rubin on the "Broken Record" podcast about his relationship with music, admitting that he lacked the proper focus and confidence to churn out new material. Plus, Andre talked about OutKast's success possibly hindering his creativity. "Maybe my history is kind of handicapping in a way. So I'm just trying to find out what makes me feel the best right now," he told Rubin.

If you or someone you know needs help with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.

Fetty Wap has to serve time

"For My Fans," "The King Zoo," and "Welcome to the Zoo." Those are just some of the names of New Jersey rapper Fetty Wap's tours. For a while there, he seemed to be a pretty busy guy after breaking onto the scene with his 2014 song "Trap Queen," and his self-titled album the following year. But things would come to an abrupt halt for Wap because he was arrested on a drug trafficking charge in 2021 at New York City's CitiField. He later pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess and distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine, according to CNN.

The "My Way" rapper was booked with five others. It's said they all belonged to a drug distribution ring that operated on both U.S. coasts. Wap is facing a max of 40 years and will be sentenced on January 18, 2023, according to AllHipHop. So, as of this writing, it hasn't been determined how much time he'll get but his touring days have certainly been put on hold. That hasn't stopped Wap from having a positive outlook, however.

"If it ain't life it ain't forever," he wrote on Instagram in 2021. "I'll be back better wiser and smarter."

Eve has been busy with other things

The year 2013 was pretty eventful for Eve. That's when she released her album "Lip Lock" and announced the "Lip Lock Tour." Before that, the Philly-raised rhymer didn't drop an LP for 11 years and didn't seem to tour much, if at all. Still, no one can accuse Eve of slacking off or wasting her rap skills. It's just she's been super busy doing things outside of music.  

In 2003 the "Scorpion" creator starred in her own sitcom "Eve," for example. She's played in popular films like "Barbershop," and "The Woodsman" as well. Not to mention, she hosted CBS' "The Talk" from 2017-2020. And while Eve did tour with Gwen Stefani in 2016, hitting the road for multiple dates was somewhat of a rarity for her.

What's more, her personal life stays busy, too. Eve welcomed a son named Wilde Wolf Fife Alexander Somers Cooper with husband Maximillion Cooper on February 1, 2022. Of course, we're not saying that Eve has put her touring days behind her for good, but if that's the case, she seems to be doing just fine without it. 

Run became a reverend

Al Green did it. So did Joseph "Run" Simmons of the legendary group Run-DMC. We're talking about those who've worked in ministry after being famous musicians. Simmons became a man of the cloth in 1995, per the Los Angeles Times, and changed his stage name to Reverend Run. That certainly had something to do with his tour life coming to an end. But it was only that. He and group member DMC broke up after third member Jam Master Jay was killed in 2002.

"We can't perform anymore," said Simmons during a press conference that was held after Jay's murder, later shared by AllHipHop. "Nobody wants to see Run-DMC without Jay. ... Run-DMC is officially retired. I cannot get out in front of my fans with a new DJ. Some rock bands can replace the drummer and I don't know any other way but to be the three original members. That's all I can say. We are retired."

Now, it's true that Run-DMC has played some shows since Simmons became a reverend and the tragedy involving Jay. Like in 2014 when they played at Brooklyn's Barclays Center, their first show in more than 10 years, according to The Village Voice. But Run has still been a pretty busy guy because besides handling his reverend duties, he's had a successful show on MTV called "Run's House" that ran from 2005-2009. He's also released a few books.

Kreayshawn didn't like the lifestyle

Kreayshawn's career was off and running after the Oakland rapper scored herself a hit song with "Gucci Gucci" in 2011. Tours followed after that, including "The Group Hug Tour," and the "Noisey College Tour." So at that time, it would be easy for one to assume the tours would continue but that wasn't the case. In fact, after Kreayshawn released her debut album "Somethin' 'Bout Kreay" in 2012, she pretty much walked away from music and touring. Her follow-up project "World's Biggest Idiot" wouldn't be released until 2021

"It's not just as simple as, 'Oh, poor me. I got famous and I got a record deal' ... It's like, I grew up terribly. I have child abuse. I have anxiety, depression, terrible PTSD. I was having seizures all the time," she told Stereogum in 2021. "That's why it sucked. If I was more of an outgoing person and didn't have all these problems, then it probably wouldn't have been a terrible story. But that lifestyle was not for me at all."

If one were to do an Internet search for a Kreayshawn show in 2022, that person wouldn't see a whole lot of dates. So even though the rapper released that project in 2021, it doesn't seem like she hit the road for an extended period to perform or promote it.

If you or someone you know needs help with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.

Quando Rondo lost a show

Before 2020, Georgia rapper Quando Rondo was on his way to what looked like a fruitful career. He released some mixtapes, which got some traction, he had a big social media following and was booking shows. But everything changed for him when Chicago rapper King Von was killed on November 6, 2020. Per TMZ, that night, Rondo and Von were involved in a fight at Atlanta's Monaco Hookah Lounge. Eventually, gunfire broke out, leaving six people shot, three fatally, including Von. The late artist was shot by Rondo's friend Timothy Leeks, who was later arrested and released on a $100,000 bond, as reported by XXL.

Right away, there was talk online about Von's friends possibly retaliating against Rondo for the shooting, and Rondo's live show schedule took a nosedive. He told "All Around TV," "Nobody wanna book me 'cause they terrified. That's the truth." What's more, an existing gig got the axe. And as XXL noted, one Rondo show that did happen after the incident didn't exactly boast a teeming crowd.

All that said, his touring days may not be totally done: In September 2022, NBA YoungBoy's manager told fans watching his Instagram Live (via HipHopDX) that his client and Quando Rondo apparently plan to hit the road together. 

03 Greedo got into legal trouble

In 2022, Los Angeles rapper 03 Greedo released a song titled "Drop Down," a single from his mixtape "Free 03." He wasn't able to perform the song at a venue, however, and the name of the mixtape might indicate why. In 2018, Greedo was sentenced to 20 years in prison. As per Pitchfork, two years before, he was hit with drug and unlawful firearm possession charges. He eventually pled guilty.

A little before news of Greedo's sentence hit, he apologized to his fans on Twitter. "Sorry i let my fans down," he tweeted. "At least we got some great music before i left yall. I wish i coulda stayed with my family but life isnt fair to some of us. Plenty music will be released while im gone. Promise me you will love me forever ... Never thought id have to retire the year I blew up," added Greedo. In 2020, The Washington Post reported that he was trying to get his sentence overturned because he felt that his legal representation dropped the ball in his case. There was also another report about the rapper being denied parole.

Mahershala Ali was bitten by the acting bug

From the rap stage to the Oscar stage. That could be one way to describe actor Mahershala Ali's career. It may also explain why he won't be seen touring as a rapper. Before starring in films like "The Hunger Games" "Moonlight," and "Green Book," Ali was a hip-hop artist who went by Prince Ali. He signed a record deal with the label Hiero Imperium as well, owned by legendary Oakland rap collective Hieroglyphics. The deal resulted in Ali's 2007 album "Curb Side Service." In 2018, he spoke to Jimmy Fallon about his music, saying that he got into graduate school while still pursuing a rap career.

"What's crazy is that he's been grinding since before he was even signed to our label," Hieroglyphics member Tajai Massey told HipHopDX in 2017, after Ali won Best Supporting Actor for "Moonlight." "To just sort of watch him bubble from the underground, from 'Benjamin Button,' to '300,' and all that kind of stuff all the way up to now ... So it's just good to see it culminate in some accolades for him," added Massey.

But again, don't expect to see Ali touring, because he's fully immersed in his acting career and has said more than once that he's a retired rapper. Still, he did tell "Good Morning America" in 2018 that he was working on a music project. It was for an acting role, however.

The Roots became a house band

It's not that The Roots never tour. They do. But it's not like they used to because members now have a daily job. At one time, the Philadelphia band toured extensively. But their lives and careers shifted in 2008 when it was announced they'd become the house band for "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon." So no, they are not hitting the road like they once did, but that's not to say they've stopped performing. Far from it.

"I see the possible chance of this being a bigger move," wrote the band's drummer Questlove in a now-deleted message on Okayplayer, later published by MTV News. "I don't know if I want to be 40 on the road and single no more," he continued. "And ain't no one taking a man serious who is in his own home for only 3 months out the year. I been in my crib since 2006 and I still ain't unpack everything yet." He also noted that the gig gives his bandmates an opportunity to spend more time with their kids.

In 2016 Quest spoke to Fallon about the scary decision to leave tour life since the band was making a solid living from it. "But [at]that point, we were in our fifteenth or sixteenth year of performing," Quest said. "We just really got to a comfortable place. So the thought of just turning our back on that for, like, something uncertain ... We were like, 'Nah, we're not going to do it.'"