Walking through the Stage AE gates, Lauren and I prepared ourselves for the connotative stigma attached to Mac Miller that we would experience in the next couple of hours. Rap concerts, in general, have a stereotype of being rowdy, unkept concerts, filled to the brim with screaming fans… and this stereotype held up at Mac. The concert was unlike any other most of the crowd had been to because it was the first of ten release shows celebrating Miller’s new album, “GO:OD AM,” this Sunday night, in his hometown. A grad of Allderdice High School, Miller is a hometown favorite and has a strong following here in our city of Pittsburgh.
After waiting in line for over an hour, just to be let into the venue, we were a little anxious to “get the show on the road.” Our spirits weren’t necessarily in the garbage, for we had unexpectedly met up with some Avonworth alumni, shared good conversation and caught up, and decided to hang together once inside. Already, we knew there was a certain “group,” or cliche of people that we were surrounded by. Most people seemed almost rude, or standoffish, which we concluded immediately as we walked through the gates, from people rushing by us, throwing elbows and shoving to get into the pit. Because the concert was outside, Lauren and I were very careful about wardrobe, due to the forecast of high 50s and low 60s. We immediately regretted our choice of jeans, because once in the immensely overcrowded pit, we realized the temperature was hovering around mid- 80s.
Disappointed that our feet already hurt from standing for so long, and annoyed that it was already eight pm and nothing had happened, we were ecstatic when the first openers appeared on stage. There were so many other rappers on stage, Lauren and I could not recognize even one. We now know Miller brought special guests, Tory Lanez, Goldlink, Domo Genesis, Earthgang, Michael Christmas, and Alexander Spit on tour with him. While we waited, the openers got the audience hyped with hits like “Get Low.”
The openers finished their set lists, and Miller was still nowhere in sight. The crowd was getting restless and Lauren and I couldn’t even tell you how many hands groped our bodies as we tried to breathe in the midst of the cesspool we were emerged in. Lauren got so fed up, she literally sat down in the middle of the pit, surrounded by thousands of people.
Finally, Miller appeared on stage. We thought people were ruthless before, but the audience seemed to move four feet towards the stage, although it seemed impossible because you couldn’t stand still without touching at least five other people. The sheer amount of smoke- mostly marijuana, some vapes and cigarettes- was so overpowering that Lauren and I felt our lungs were on fire. It got so rambunctious by his second song that we decided to trek our way out of the pit and sit in the grass at back of the venue, by the tin bathroom trailers, and rested our legs, proceeding to enjoy the rest of the twenty plus song set list away from the smoke clouds, though some eventually drifted our way.
Unfortunately, Miller mentioned he was under the weather, and the sickness was definitely apparent through his raspy voice as he was performing.
Nevertheless, Lauren and I had a decently good time. I think when one is deciding whether or not to go to a concert, especially a rap or hip hop concert, one must thoroughly enjoy the music, and the music alone. Well, unless of course you love rude people, strangers’ sticky bodies pressed unwanted against your own, and thick, smoky air, because then you would have been set at the Mac Miller concert, on September 20th at Stage AE.