The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a lot out of and away from us all. Something I miss most about the pre-COVID era is concerts. As things get a little better and concerts open back up, I’ve been trying to see some of my favorite artists while I can.
Last semester I saw MIKE. A few months later I saw Rico Nasty and Playboi Carti. And, most recently, I saw Aminé at the Fillmore in Philadelphia. A few weeks beforehand, I made a Spotify playlist of his most recent setlists. And, I will say, I listened to it the whole way there.
My girlfriend and I arrived at the doors around 7:15, went through the metal detectors, and made our way up to the stage. The room was packed, buzzing with anticipation. The show started at eight with the two openers—454 and Cochise—going on first.
He had one of the coolest set designs I have ever seen at a concert. The stage was decorated with large set pieces, almost like you’d see at a play. Each piece represented a key place in his upbringing. On the far right side of the stage, he had a sign labeled “Woodlawn Park”, which also happens to be the name of one of his songs. Aminé explained that it represents a park in his hometown. He had a giant statue of his dog, Ollie. All the way on the left he had a mock corner store called Alberta Market he used to go to as a kid. It was a really neat set and the way he interacted with it was great as well.
A pre-show performer started playing one of Aminé’s most popular songs “Caroline” and cut it off right after the intro, teasing the crowd only for Aminé bring it back later in the show.He started his performance with “Mad Funny Freestyle” a very short, hype song off his newest album TWOPOINTFIVE. He played his song “Spice Girl” going directly into a cover of the Spice Girls “Wannabe” after. Then, as the crowd insisted on an encore at the end of the show, he capped it off with another playing of “Mad Funny Freestyle”.
Aminé created a very interactive atmosphere throughout the show. As many performers do, he had us singing along to his show, holding up our phone flashlights, etc. But one of the coolest, most unique things he did was create a call and response he used throughout the show. He said, “when I say you’re beautiful, say I know”. He aimed to spread positivity in his audience and outside of it. He repeated the phrase all night and we all responded.
While it’s still important to be safe during this pandemic, it is also important to do the things we want to do. It’s hard to live a life with so many social constrictions, but we, as a society, have been developing ways to keep ourselves safe. Make sure to wear a mask, get vaccinated, and get tested!