Though the LA Times incorrectly cited “security concerns” earlier today, several sources have indicated that low tickets sales were behind the surprising cancellation of the HARD LA festival that M.I.A. was supposed to headline next weekend.

L.A. beatmaker (and LA Weekly cover guy this past May) Flying Lotus, one of the musicians who were going to support M.I.A. at HARD LA, exclusively told Chris Martins:

“i heard it was about ticket sales”

“some artists will play in august.. i might”

This is consistent with several reports from people close to the festival who spoke with the LA Weekly on condition of anonymity. Following the initial headline at the LA Times Pop & Hiss blog (“Citing security concerns, HARD L.A. canceled”), the festival's organizers and publicists rushed to issue official statements about how the “reasons beyond their control” they had initially alleged did not have anything to do with city-wide concerns about “raves” following the recent death of a teenager at the Electric Daisy Carnival.

Our attempts to contact HARD organizer Gary Richards (aka DESTRUCTO) and his publicists at Chicago's Biz 3 about the reasons behind the cancellation were unsuccessful, beyond their promotion of the August 7th HARD date (headlined by Soulwax, Crystal Castles, and Major Lazer) and this Saturday's fill-in show by Die Antwoord at the El Rey.

Richards did speak with the LA Times and when asked about the rumors about low ticket sales, he answered “I'd rather not comment on that.”

LA Weekly