Thoughts on Tupac Shakur’s Coachella appearance
So you’ve probably already heard: hologram technology has now advanced to the point where we can bring dead performers “back to life”. This week Snoop Dogg and Dr Dre’s festival-closing Coachella set featured a performance by a holographic Tupac Shakur. In case you missed it:
So do we really want to bring performers back from the dead? Especially when we’re putting words into their mouths that they couldn’t possibly have said during their lifetime.
Tupac gives a shoutout to Coachella – a festival that started in 1999, 3 years after his death. MTV UK Host Zane Lowe took this thought a step further, tweeting:
Personally, I think it’s a great idea, as long as it’s used in moderation and with taste. I’d hate to see Tupac advertising McDonalds as much as the next person, but let’s be honest, it’s not that much worse than what has gone before.
Would I like to see a holographic Elliott Smith performing a series of stadium gigs around the world? No, of course I wouldn’t. But this was a fun interlude to what was already a great set. Snoop and Dre have performed their duets with Tupac live since his death with just a voiceover, and this was simply taking it up a notch.
Think of it as a really spectacular light show. Holograms will never replace real touring musicians for the same reason that Coachella’s web livestream hasn’t affected ticket sales for the actual event.
Of course, a lot of people loved the appearance too. I know that Dave Chappelle and Questlove have been thinking about it for quite some time:
All I want to know is this: now that we’ve got the technology for the holographic shark from Back To The Future 2, how long till we get the hoverboards?