Edmonton rings in 2015 with Kid Ink [Review]
Edmonton, AB – After solid and successful year of putting on shows for our city; Eiffel Tower Entertainment, Nightshift Entertainment and Pearl Entertainment (with support of Hot 107 FM and New Amsterdam Vodka) teamed up for one last hurrah for 2014. On December 31, West Coast-sensation, Kid Ink, graced the stage at Encore to ring in 2015 with some of his biggest fans in Edmonton. Kid Ink’s debut in Edmonton, on New Year’s Eve? It was a no-brainer that my right-hand, Andrew Lynn, and I jumped on the scene.
It takes an event such as New Year’s Eve, to get the night on and poppin’ early. I arrived at the venue around 10:30 p.m.; to see almost all of the bottle service tables full and the dance floor busy, was a good sign that the night was headed in the right direction. Everyone was suited, booted and feeling those good vibes. It also helped that DJ Grizz was in fine form, as usual, warming up the crowd and keeping everyone moving and shaking. When you spend your New Year’s Eve at the club you come for two things – drinking and dancing – Grizz took care of the latter and killed it.
Local opening acts for the night included; Sully, Deuce Fantastick, Loonie Tunez, and Evrlove. While all four acts put on fine performances, special mentions go to Duece Fantastick and Evrlove: Deuce Fantastick is truly an artist in his craft when he performs onstage; exuding with passion and even incorporated a band in his set. Evrlove has been laying low on the Edmonton scene (as far as shows go) lately, so it was great to see them with more fire than ever.
The opening acts wrapped up around 11:30 p.m., leaving only 30 minutes left of 2014. The anticipation was on but somehow the lines of communication didn’t quite cross when it came to the countdown. As in – there wasn’t one.
Cue story: I was posted up onstage and beside Grizz for the majority of the night. While deep in his element mixing, it wasn’t until 11:59 p.m. when I gave him the ol’ tap on the shoulder and showed him the time on my phone. Giving me the “Oh Shit!” face, Grizz turned down the music to start the countdown but the crowd was already on it, “5! 4! 3! 2! 1! Happy New Year!.” Hugs, kisses and daps all around. We couldn’t help but shrug and laugh it off (only at a rap-show I tell ya). As Grizz continued on with the music; the whole room was dancing, loving life and celebrating a new year.
Shortly after midnight Grizz’s P.I.C. and hype-man, Dizzy, finally graced us his with his presence after wrapping up another party at Union Hall (that’s the Nightshift Entertainment hustle). It was great to have Dizzy on the mic, engaging with the crowd and keeping them hype for Kid Ink’s arrival.
At 1:00 a.m., the wait was over and Kid Ink hit the stage. The night was going off without a hitch, and right from the jump, guess what happens? Technical issues with Kid Ink’s DJ’s equipment, which left a good 15 minute gap of dead air. Definitely not a great way to start off the show and people were starting to get salty about it. Kid Ink did his best to improvise in hopes to distract the crowd from the issue; chatting it up, a little freestyle, even spraying a bottle Veuve Clicquot into the front row (I won’t lie, I would’ve rather him just pass me glass, but the crowd didn’t seem to mind at all).
I give Kid Ink mad props for his effort, for real. A lot of artists would have thrown a fit and stormed off stage until his [or her] set was ready. The lengthy technical glitch was all kinds of awkward, but Kid Ink rode it out with his fans who paid major dollars to see him.
Finally, what seemed out of nowhere, the speakers erupted with the intro music to Almost Home’s “Money and the Power” and the crowd erupted with screams. Immediately Kid Ink got so busy it was as if the whole mishap didn’t even happen. A great comeback with the perfect song to start the show.
With his popularity at an all-time high in 2014, so were my expectations. You hear him all over the radio, in the clubs, and his YouTube hits alone are in the 10’s of millions. But can he get down live? That answer would be, yes. From “Bossin Up,” “Iz You Down,” “Hello World,” “Movement”, among many others Kid Ink shred the stage and exceeded my expectations. He came correct with energy and enthusiasm from beginning to end. Not to mention, his interaction with the crowd was solid. He’s celebrating a new year too after all, and what a way to do it by partying with his fans.
And can we please talk about “Show Me” and “Main Chick?” The classic DJ Mustard-produced hits were with out a doubt the highlight of his performance and no surprise that he saved the two for last. “Show Me,” especially, is that song that gets everyone on the dance floor every time it comes on in the clubs. To see Kid Ink perform it live in the flesh and watching everyone on their feet, dancing from the floor to the couches, and belting out every word – beautiful.
It’s moments like this when I feel so blessed to be able do what I do. To be able go to shows, be behind the scenes, and then share the my experience with ya’ll. As he closed off the night with “Body Language” while signing autographs for his fans, I just stood back and took it all in. Kid Ink showed up with an ill performance and the perfect way to wrap-up 2014. I couldn’t have spent my New Year’s Eve any other way.
Special thank-you to Eiffel Tower Entertainment, Nightshift Entertainment, and Pearl Entertainment for making HipHopCanada a part of this event. Cheers to all of your success in 2014 and plenty more in the new year!
Written by Rosa Jason for HipHopCanada
Photos: Kid Ink at Encore in Edmonton
Photography by Andrew Lynn for HipHopCanada
Twitter: @eiffeltowerent | @HOT107Edmonton | @kid_ink | @Nightshift_Ent | @PearlEnt780