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André 3000 Playing the Flute in Public Is the Purest Story of 2019

The rapper has been spotted with his flute "at least a dozen times" in Philadelphia and Los Angeles.
Chicago, US
andre 3000 with a flute
Marcus Ingram/Getty Images; Illustration by Bettina Makalintal

André 3000 boasts a commendable resume. The 44-year-old born André Benjamin is one half of Outkast, one of the most iconic rap groups of all time. He’s also an actor, starring as Jimi Hendrix in 2013’s All Is by My Side, and most recently appearing in Claire Denis’ 2019 sci-fi art film High Life. Now, the iconic rapper has added becoming a flautist to his repertoire. That alone is an incredible development and it's even better to realize one of the men behind Stankonia now walks around public places showing off his new talent.


Last month, Three Stacks was spotted at Los Angeles International Airport roaming the terminals and playing the flute. Traveler Antonia Cereijido recognized him, quickly snapped a photo with the rapper, and tweeted it out. According to Cereijido’s tweets, Benjamin was playing a Mayan double flute made by Guillermo Martinez at Quetzalcoatl Music. Cereijido’s post went viral and according to a CNN report, when they landed Benjamin was “very kind” about the potential invasion of privacy.

Fortunately, that was only the beginning of the saga as André 3000 and his Mayan Double Flute were spotted “at least a dozen times” around Philadelphia this month.

According to Russ Jack on Twitter, Benjamin said he was filming something in the area for two weeks. So it’s no surprise this wasn’t the only sighting.

While the flute may seem like a left-field choice for André 3000, the rapper did play the bass clarinet on his latest EP, 2018's Look Ma No Hands. It scans that in his post-Outkast career, Benjamin has been following his bliss much like his bandmate Big Boi, who has taken up obsessing over Kate Bush and having pet exotic owls, Hootie and Hoodini.