Concerts Events

Erykah Badu & Thundercat Gave FOMO To All Of Los Angeles

February 14, 2018

Tuesday, February 13th

Happy Tuesday. Woke up to some mad disrespect and decided I’m no longer going to put up with it. It’s important to stand your ground, even if that means taking an L in the long run. Fuck disrespect. Will not tolerate it, and that applies to me and my peoples.

Side note, my interview with Tech N9ne got published. Shout out Okayplayer, that made my day a little better.

Tonight was a show everyone in Los Angeles wished they were at. No lie. If you weren’t here, you fucked up. Erykah Badu and Thundercat at The Shrine across from USC. To sell out one of the city’s biggest venues is not only impressive, it’s admirable. And queen Badu made it seem effortless. I’ve seen her multiple times at festivals, but never her own headlining show. This was going to be special.

BUT FIRST. One of the most talented, sought-after, mysterious, and just overall intriguing artists in the game: Thundercat. DJ, singer, producer, bass player, entity — whatever you wanna call him, he’s dope as hell. Ask anyone who knows about Thundercat, and they’ll get the pass for knowing good music. Having him on the bill opening for Badu is pure gold. And he’s from here! Los Angeles-bred. Which meant half the people were out to see him as much as the headliner.

His set time was at 8pm, which I must say was a little difficult to work with, but luckily he had an hour set! His music is psychedelic almost. He has this ability to fuse together all genres — into this hybrid of pure magic. He’s his own Soulection lmao. The crowd literally kept screaming out “Thunder!” as if they knew him personally. He literally slayed on that bass guitar. “Heartbreaks + Setbacks” was a gem to see live. And his vocals were just as good.

At this point, he wishes everybody a Happy Valentine’s Day, or what I like to call, Single Awareness Day. Hi, single af. Thunder goes on to give the people the most energetic performance of Kendrick Lamar’s “Complexion.” He was literally rocking out up there on stage. And everyone in the crowd was genuinely here for it, just bathing in his aura. “Them Changes” was the perfect closer, as he reveals his full name and introduces his live band. Drums, keys, and Stephen Thundercat Bruner — the recipe for success, and the cure for my headache.

Forever by my lonesome lmao. Dua Lipa last night, and Erykah Badu tonight.  I was trippin’ at first, but the second I hear Thundercat’s live music, all was forgotten. That man can move mountains. There were so many people out already! This was a show you could enjoy from wherever you wanted: in the front, in the back, on the balcony upstairs — they all did the trick. No pushing and shoving to get to the front. The ultimate world peace lmao. Huge thanks to Jess and Shea, I was so excited to cover.

This was an actual concern for a second lmao. Set time was 9:15pm and it was 10:15pm and no sign of Badu. At least I got to make a friend in the photo pit, shout out to Dana! My migraine carried over from the day so I just sat and told myself I would make it. Mind over matter. I can also totally appreciate the venue for providing water for all those in the pit. Major key alert. Found out this one girl was waiting outside since the afternoon for this show! Brazy. She definitely swooped front and center though. Well-played.

Make way for the queen! Erykah Badu is not of this earth. Everything from her outfits to her makeup to her hair… beyond her beauty, her personality seals the deal. She’s literally her own entity. She’s weird af, and we love her for it. I was so honored to be in her presence, along with the rest of the room. The stage was beautifully set up with a live band and bright lights. I couldn’t help but notice Thundercat on the bass. He’s so low-key and so talented, which ironically makes him epic. A song from her 2015 But You Caint Use My Phone mixtape starts playing and sets the tone for her grandiose entrance.

“Hello” is that joint. This is that record that makes you appreciate Badu’s art. Her sound is so smooth and angelic. Literally have nothing negative to say about her.

And it just kept getting better and better! “Out Of Mind, Just In Time” was made for me.” I’m sure of it.

“On & On” had the security guard in front of me so hyped. He knew every word! As did the rest of the arena. It was beautiful.

So nostalgic — this one’s a classic. Badu kept shouting out Los Angeles the entire night. With Thundercat to the right of her, this was history in the making.

She started playing Aaliyah’s “Rock The Boat,” which had everyone cheering. “Love Of My Life” featuring Common followed, which reminded everybody why Erykah is GOAT. This was intertwined with some Mario “Just A Friend” drops, which warmed my heart. Shout out to back when mainstream music stood for something beautiful. I definitely, unfortunately, think it’s washed now.

Here’s the rest of the set-list: “Me,” “Appletree,” Umm Hmm,” “Back in the Day (Puff),” “I Want You,” “Window Seat,” “Next Lifetime,” “Time’s a Wastin,” Danger,” and the finale, “Bag Lady.” But don’t forget “You Got Me” by The Roots and Badu — one of my all-time favs.

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