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Rock the Bells Organizer Explains Ol’ Dirty Bastard and Eazy-E Virtual Performances

Old Dirty Bastard Eazy-E
Evan Agostini, Getty Images / XXLMag.com

When the lineup for this year’s Rock the Bells music festival was announced, some fans were shocked by the news that Ol’ Dirty Bastard and Eazy-E were being resurrected for virtual performances.

Although having the late rappers return from the dead to rock the mic sounds morbid to some, organizers of the festival say they are only honoring the legacies of two hip-hop icons.

Guerilla Union CEO Chan Weisberg, who organizes Rock the Bells, insists that these are not “holograms” as being reported by the media, but “original digital performances.”

“I think it’s going to look and feel like what a lot of people say is a hologram,” he explained to HipHopDX. “You never heard me say hologram, right? It’s a combination of multi-media and a lot of effects.”

Chang also added that Eazy-E’s widow, Tomica Wright, and ODB’s mother, Cherry Jones, gave their full consent to have these virtual performances take place at the festival.

“I can confidently tell you that I have spoken with RZA and Cherry Jones and Divine, who is RZA’s brother, who helps manage Wu-Tang Clan. I’ve talked to Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and Tomica Wright. I shared with them the vision and the knowledge and it was after those discussions that they entrusted me with the responsibility,” he said.

TMZ is also reporting that N.W.A. member DJ Yella co-signs the virtual appearance of his late friend Eazy at RTB as well.

“It’s cool that a younger generation will get to experience [Eazy's] music,” he says.

As we previously reported, a virtual ODB will be used when headliners the Wu-Tang Clan perform, while a digital version of Eazy-E will appear when Bone Thugs-N-Harmony hit the stage.

It would be interesting to see how organizers honor the legacy of two revered hip-hop artists.

“This is bigger than hip-hop,” said Chang. “I can’t even fathom right now. It’s really about inspiring people that it is possible.”

Next: 10 Tragic Hip-Hop Deaths

Watch Tupac Shakur’s Virtual Performance at 2012 Coachella Music Festival

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