After spending many years following Saturday night home games with retro and Latin acts like Poison, KC & The Sunshine Band, and Willy Chirino, the Florida Marlins held their first hip-hop concert after Saturday’s 8-4 loss to the New York Mets: Miami rappers Pitbull, Flo Rida and DJ Laz.
Local pride outweighed good performances, as all three artists had lackluster showings.
I was initially shocked by the production value. I expected a DJ and dozens of hypemen, but was instead greeted with a modest sized stage (with instruments!, although they were only used during Pitbull’s closing set).
The “Pimp With The Limp,” DJ Laz, started the show. The Power 96 Morning Show host had backup dancers and some homeboys whose names were never mentioned. Besides a mix of booty music for the dancers to get down to, he performed “She Can Get It,” and the ultimate Miami staple, “Oye Morena.”
But Laz’s friends were badly lip syncing, as the DJ played the actual songs (not the instrumental versions), a problem that plagued not only every performer of the night, but that is slowly becoming more and more common in live hip-hop.
That is lazy and should be completely unacceptable.
Flo Rida’s performance had less fluff, but was also plagued by him struggling to scream loud enough into his mic to be heard over his own recorded vocals on the song.
Flo also needs lessons in creating a good set list, as he performed his two biggest hits, “Low,” and “Right Round,” in the middle of his set, leaving the otherwise enthusiastic audience seated and bored as he finished with less-known songs.
Pitbull deserves the most credit for his performance, because he had a few musicians onstage (a drummer, a percussionist, and a keyboardist), although they were so low in the mix early in the set, they were inaudible.
The drummer and percussionist shined several times with Latin breaks and fills on songs like “Ay Chico (Lengua Afuera).” They also kept the beat going between songs, creating seamless transitions that kept the fans dancing (unlike Flo Rida’s performance, where the DJ ended every song with jarring, excessive explosion sounds).
But as with the other performers, Pitbull’s DJ played the actual songs, not the instrumentals, which means he was screaming over his own recorded vocals. This is just plain lazy, and enables the rappers to be bad performers and rely on their recorded vocals.
Pitbull, Flo Rida and DJ Laz closed the show together with a performance of “Move Shake Drop” from Laz’s Category 6 album.
Neither of the three are worth paying money to see, but none of the performances were a trainwreck either.
If you like any of the artists, and they happen to play after a Marlins game you’re already attending, you won’t hate yourself for sticking around. But that’s about it.
The complete setlist of the show:
- DJ Laz “She Can Get It”
- DJ Laz “Oye Morena”
- Flo Rida “In The Ayer”
- Flo Rida “Low”
- Flo Rida “Right Round”
- Flo Rida “Sugar”
- Pitbull “Ay Chico (Lengua Afuera)”
- Pitbull “Toma”
- Pitbull “Culo”
- Pitbull “I Know You Want Me (Calle Ocho)”
- Pitbull “Shake”
- Pitbull “The Anthem”
- Pitbull “Krazy”
- DJ Laz, Pitbull, Flo Rida “Move Shake Drop”