I Am Still Music Tour with Lil Wayne and Nicki Minaj (Live) [Review/Photos]
Vancouver, B.C. – It was a bit of a mixed bag as Lil Wayne and his Young Money counterparts (including Nicki Minaj, Miss Shanell and Mack Maine) presented the I Am Still Music Tour with Rick Ross and Travis Barker. You had the stark sounds of Rick Ross’ Maybach Music followed by the more flashy, catchy Young Money gleamers: Nicki Minaj played the diva while Weezy played the hero.
Not to say Ross didn’t perform well, but his words were unclear and his stage presence seems better suited to a club than a stadium. Highlights included a track for the “sexy ladies,” “Here I Am,” as well as “Aston Martin Music” featuring an absent Drake. Considering that our Canadian rap hero has collaborated with virtually every artist on the “I Am Still Music” Tour, it’s quite a shame that he wasn’t present. Ross satiated the audience appetite for some bad boy rap with “B.M.F” and “I’m not a Star” off 2010’s Teflon Don, all while plugging the new Self-Made which will debut May 24.
Lil Wayne came on in a suitably dramatic style, rising through the floor and donning a Canucks jersey. The young superstar – finally out of jail, thank goodness – started out the night with “I’m Goin In,” backed by a live band. He was also kind enough to impart some words of wisdom to the audience: “I believe in God, do you?” he asked a crowd that would have probably cheered just as loudly if he had said God was dead.
The night built to climax early on with Weezy’s performance of “A Milli,” which was certainly a high point and wound down into a guitar jam. Following that were “Right Above It” and “Sky’s the Limit,” plus “Got Money.” Favorite lyric of the night came from “Popular” off I Am Not a Human Being: “I’ma tackle her/ Get in back of her/ Buss it open, suck that pussy like a Dracula.” No one raps about pussy like Lil Wayne and the girls in the audience showed their appreciation.
As Weezy exited the stage to change, a hooded figure appeared, solemnly spreading glitter. It was obviously time for Nicky Minaj. She kicked it off with “Dungeon Dragon,” leading straight into the strangely empowering “Did It On Em,” followed by an audience lap dance and the tender and somewhat corny “Right Through Me.” Decked in a spandex rainbow and several feet of wig, Minaj created a more cinematic feel than her counterparts and although her performance itself wasn’t as strong, it was a little more interesting. And although the music was fine, even more impressive were the dance crew who writhed and bounced their asses in adorable outfits, changing costumes often.
As Minaj ended with “Moment 4 Life,” Lil Wayne stepped back in and did another set. This one had shooting fire, dancing which could make a girl sore just thinking about it, and an express desire to “fuck every girl in the world.” Nice. Minaj reappeared for the rawkus “Bed Rock,” and then a couple of Drake tracks – “Forever” and “Miss Me” – again made Drizzy’s absence obvious. “Mrs. Officer,” perhaps one of Weezy’s most playful tracks, featured some scantily clad police dancers and was immediately followed by the addictive “Lollipop,” ending the night with “6’7”” and an a capella freestyle for the I Am Still Music Tour.
It was a long night but well worth the time. The magnitude of this show was something seen less in hip-hop and more in pop, and in some ways the two didn’t mesh; there’s just something so personal, so intimate about hip-hop that it feels empty to put it into such a huge space full of drunken teens. But this girl will take what she can get, and although I have never felt so old or so frumpy as I did surrounded by 19-year-old girls in tiny dresses, I had a swell time.
Written by Amalia Judith for HipHopCanada
Photography by Tyler Simpson for HipHopCanada