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Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Review/Photos]

Editor’s note: HipHopCanada’s own Ajani Charles was on hand for this year’s Toronto Frosh Festival with the A$AP Mob including A$AP Rocky, A$AP Ferg, Twelvy and the rest of the crew. Check out the full review and photos after the jump link below.


Toronto, ON – This past Sunday night, Toronto’s first year college and university scene was set ablaze by Toronto Frosh Festival 2014 at the Molson Amphitheatre.

After acquiring my media pass and upon entering the Amphitheatre grounds, one of Live Nation’s reps navigated me through the packed labyrinth of wild youth enveloped by glow sticks, lasers, balloons and earthquake-like bass.

The festival grounds were so saturated with teenage bodies, I found it difficult to keep up with the Live Nation rep (and my associates) and I was relieved to arrive at the backstage area, wherein there was profoundly fewer people, comfortable seating, snacks and drinks.

The Toronto Frosh Festival and Live Nation team definitely took care of me and after indulging in some Chipotle, I proceeded to make my way on stage to take in a dirty EDM and Trap music set by Los Angele’s own DJ Carnage.

Soon after, I was told that A$AP Mob would be arriving shortly and after about an hour-long wait, a stream of black SUVs entered the backstage area. I knew that the caravan housed A$AP Rocky, A$AP Ferg, A$AP Twelvy and the rest of the Harlem super group and even though I had briefly met Rocky about a year ago, I was interested in having a chat with the Mob and I was excited to take some dope pictures of them.

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com


Since A$AP Rocky’s rise to prominence in 2011 (as a result of the hit record “Peso”), the rest of the Mob has ran with the platform and audience created by Rocky, A$AP Yams and their management, releasing an onslaught of gritty, New York hip-hop and Trap music projects that have appealed to hip-hop purists, the pop culture masses and the fashionable elite.

A$AP Mob’s emphasis on being fashionable, jiggy and street was more than apparent to me, after they settled into the backstage greenroom and as I found myself chatting with A$AP Ferg while observing his multi-coloured, BBC Ice Cream-like sneakers.

Soon after our chat, I did a short photo shoot with Ferg in the green room and proceeded to head into the media pit to capture the Mob’s electrifying performance.

After I witnessed Ferg bring a quarter of his audience on stage with him at the North By Northeast Festival (this past spring), I was excited to see what he, Rocky, Twelvy and the rest of the crew would bring to Frosh Festival.

Within minutes, it became obvious that they would not disappoint, beginning their set with some of A$AP Rocky’s greatest hits and eventually going through the Mob’s entire catalogue of hits, with electrifying crowd control. Their riot-inducing show involved Twelvy jumping into the first row, as well as A$AP Ferg causing Toronto’s frosh to go ballistic by performing “Shabba Ranks” with a seemingly endless supply of energy and confidence. At this point, I was onstage and the energy from the crowd was practically spilling onto the platform’s surface.

What’s more, one of the best parts of the concert was towards the end, wherein they began to pay tribute to the late, great Ol’ Dirty Bastard and to the entire Wu-Tang Clan by covering some of their iconic records.

They definitely did not let one of hip-hop’s greatest acts down while solidifying the fact that A$AP Mob is not only a group of great MCs, but also avid and attentive students of New York street life, as well as hip-hop culture and music in general.

After they wrapped up their performance, the Mob went into the green room to have an important post-concert meeting, while I waited outside with some of my associates.

An hour later, their two oversized bouncers called me into the green room, which was filled with the pungent smell of weed, a number of champagne bottles and a few groupies.

I immediately began showing Twelvy some of my photographs of him from the concert and started a video interview with Ferg about twenty minutes later.

My interview with Ferg will be released in the coming weeks (through HipHopCanada and through the “Knowledge of Self” documentary) and overall, Toronto Frosh 2014 and the A$AP Mob concert was a huge success, an amazing experience and a great Toronto hip-hop moment.

I have met, have worked with and have photographed countless musicians, ranging from icons to up and coming artists and the Mob are definitely some of the coolest, most humble and down to earth musicians that I have encountered throughout the course of my journey.

They are hardworking; creative professionals that definitely deserve to be in the musical lane that they are currently in and I foresee great things for the group in the future, not only in terms of music and live performances, but also in terms of fashion and the other aspects of their branding.

Written by Ajani Charles for HipHopCanada
Photography by Ajani Charles for HipHopCanada


Photography by Ajani Charles

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com


Coming Soon: Exclusive Interview with Ajani Charles & A$AP Ferg

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com

Behind the scenes of Toronto Frosh 2014 with the A$AP Mob [Photos] - HipHopCanada.com



Twitter: @ASAPMOB | @AjaniPhoto


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@AjaniPhoto

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Ajani Charles is a professional photojournalist, advertising photographer and cinematographer based in Toronto -- the Canadian city famed for its cultural diversity and the creative dynamism of its artistic community. A graduate of the nationally acclaimed Claude Watson Arts Program, Ajani also apprenticed at the Toronto School of Art, the Art Gallery of Ontario and at 235 Films. Though his images bear the distinctive stamp of his unique regard and sensibility, his work evidences an eclectic panoply of influences which includes Markus Klinko and Indrani, Jill Greenberg, Yousuf Karsh, Ansel Adams, Alexander Rodchenko, Richard Avedon, Nabil Elderkin, André Kertesz, David LaChapelle, Steven Spielberg, Hype Williams, Zack Snyder, Martin Scorsese, Helmut Newton, Annie Leibovitz and Jamel Shabazz. Ajani is also the founder and executive director of The Young Visionaries – a Toronto-based photography and cinematography program, providing education to youth from the city’s priority neighborhoods. In addition, Ajani has gained considerable notoriety in the Greater Toronto Area through his first photographic documentary, “Project T Dot” -- a visual chronicle of the city's Hip-Hop culture and community in its entirety through a wide-ranging collection of intimate and dramatic black and white photographs. In production since 2007, “Project T Dot” is currently scheduled for an early 2015 publication date.

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