Nearly a month after Odd Future’s Earl Sweatshirt emerged from a hiatus to inform fans of his whereabouts at Coral Reef Academy, one of the rapper’s friends has come forward to set the record straight.
According to the Academy’s alumni Tyler Craven, Earl’s New Yorker statement was compromised.
Now it appears that doubts about the authenticity of Earl’s New Yorker quotes may hold some merit. Coral Reef Academy alumni Tyler Craven, who indirectly led Complex to Earl’s initial discovery when we stumbled onto his Facebook, is back from Samoa and bent on telling people “the truth” about Earl. After putting this piece together, I called Tyler Craven for the first time (his number is public on Facebook) to get his approval on running his likeness in the story. He was more than supportive, telling me how much the New Yorker story upset him and how Earl probably did write what was published, but that it was heavily influenced by therapists at the academy who need to see positive behavior if he wants to graduate. (Complex)
Odd Future publicist Heathcliff Berru also recently questioned the piece’s authenticity.
Heathcliff Berru, the group’s longtime publicist, told XXLMag.com that he doesn’t believe the comments actually came from the OFWGKTA lyricist, but instead were written by the 17-year-old rapper’s mother. “With them on tour [Odd Future] don’t want to talk about it,” he told XXL, “but it makes me wonder if that was Earl speaking or his mother speaking on his behalf. [New Yorker scribe] Kelefa [Sanneh] never technically had directcommunication with Earl. All I know is that doesn’t sound like Earl. My only thought is for his safe return.” (XXL Mag)
On May 16th, Earl’s mysterious statement emerged online.
“Initially I was really pleased that all these people claimed that they wanted me released because I thought that translated into ‘they care,'” Earl wrote. “So time progresses and the fan base gets bigger and the ‘Free Earl’ chants get louder but now with the ‘Free Earl’ chants come a barely indirect ‘F*ck Earl’s Mom’ and in the blink of an eye my worry changes from ‘will there still be this hype when I get back’ to ‘Oh sh*t I just inspired a widespread movement of people who are dedicated to the downfall of my mom.’ … The only thing I need as of right now is space. I’ve still got work to do and don’t need the additional stress of fearing for my family’s physical well-being. Space means no more ‘Free Earl.’ I miss home. I don’t have any definite date though. Even if I did I don’t know if I’d tell you. You’ll hear from me without a doubt when I’m ready.” (New Yorker)
Initial speculation developed suggesting he was deliberately taken out of the spotlight by his family.
The leader of the group is a 19 year-old named Tyler, or Tyler The Creator. The second-most prominent of the group is a rapper named Hodgy Beats. The rest of the group splinter off into sub-groups. The youngest member is Earl Sweatshirt, who was recently sent away to boarding school by his parents. (Esquire)
Check out some recent Odd Future footage below: