Outkast took the stage at the Molson Canadian Ampitheater in Toronto yesterday night to headline the first day of OVO Fest. In and of itself, this isn’t notable, considering the Atlanta duo’s been on a music festival tear this year that’s spanned coasts and continents.
What is notable is the fact that Andre and Big Boi brought out Bun B during 2007’s “Intl. Playas’ Anthem,” and that Nigel D. has some kick-ass footage of the whole song being performed. Watch that whole clip below. Sadly and perhaps appropriately, they did skip the late Pimp C’s verse.
Now, the shame in all of this–yes, there is some shame when one of the greatest rap songs from the past ten years is performed with three-fourths of its make-up–is the crowd. Even when the beat drops around the 1:20 mark, the animation of limbs is minimal and the audience foreground is made up primarily of phones’ recording, as opposed to AGGGHHHHHH, OUTKAST AND BUN AND THE MOST FACE-MELTING SONG OF 2007 IN MY EARS AND EYES!!!
OutKast took notice:
…[T]he OVO crowd came amped for the hits (frequent festival opener “B.o.B.” was once again called upon to kick things off, with “Gasoline Dreams” and “Rosa Parks” quickly trotted out), but didn’t quite keep up the same energy for the deeper cuts. Halfway through the downtempo “Aquemini,” for example, Big Boi had to interject a “Toronto, y’all still with us?” just to make sure his and Andre’s rather meandering performance hadn’t killed the buzz before the halfway mark had even arrived. Luckily, “Ms. Jackson” was on DECK next, and immediately the vibe was restored.
Yet, there might be an honest-to-goodness reason for the alleged apathy:
Because OVO boasts a median age a good five to 10 years younger than the indie rock-skewing festivals OutKast have been playing this season, a little more effort to engage the millennial crowd always went a long way. Even Big Boi had to trot out a fake British accent on several occasions to ask, “Are you having a good toyiiiime?”
Which makes sense, and I’ll even personally admit to being OutKast illiterate until a few years ago. But the performance probably did go a long ways toward extending ‘Kast’s brand among teens and twenty-somethings (not that their decade-long hiatus did anything to make them more visible to Millennials), even if it didn’t seem so apparent in Canada’s largest city.
However, there could’ve apparently been something a little something extra.
Kids, I tell ya.