Mr. West & The New Era

I attended the Saint Pablo Tour here in Houston which was my third Kanye show. The previous two I attended were Yeezus and WTT. Pablo was without a doubt my least favorite of the three. I mean it’s hard to top Jay Z and Kanye, and to me Yeezus was an actual show. A play of sorts. The stage design and plot for Yeezus felt more thought out in comparison to Pablo’s floating stage. The stage was cool but that’s all there was to it. A floating, rotating stage with some lights here and there. The light show could’ve been much better too. Maybe my thoughts on it are too heavy because of who we’re talking about but this whole Pablo era seems a little lazy.

But what did I expect from an album cover like Pablo. I expected more from someone constantly climbing the highest mountain to shout, “ART,” at the top of his lungs. 

This video doesn’t exist

The seed was planted as I was waiting in the merch line. My immediate reaction when I saw what was being sold, “for a fashion guy these designs are really mediocre.” Gildan tees? But what did I expect from an album cover like Pablo. Then I began to look at my surroundings, “there is a lot of IG hype here.” At my seat while the show was going on, “damn they’re live down there I want to be down there.” When the old school tracks like Jesus Walks and Flashing Lights come on, “it’s mighty quiet in here.” And here is when I realize the transition Kanye made to appeal to the newer generation, the youth.

This is when I realize I am from a different time. I never owned a pair of skinnies, I have no intentions of dyeing my hair, and I am not rapping lyrics into a selfie video. I’m watching, enjoying the concert instead of snapping it. 

Bars do not matter as much these days, not like I’m a hiphop purist anyway (I don’t care if it’s lyrically crazy but does it convey me to feel something?). Lyrics don’t matter much and that’s why Drake was able to survive rap’s Final Destination. We are talking the biggest pop rapper using a ghostwriter, and making more money now than ever. Everybody looks and sounds the same these days. Social media, a way to interact and connect with the world has made everyone more to themselves. Real life interaction has dwindled. Times are strange. We are living in the Digital Era AKA the Do-It-All Era (as I like to call it). A time I do believe is similar to The Renaissance. Everyone has the opportunity to create how, what and when they feel. Standing ovation because as a whole we are doing so, however, I am very underwhelmed because everyone is so inside the box and conventional. We must push boundaries. Local artists, let us shift the tide, take a chance to stand out and do better.

Feel free to leave a comment,

I’m not a writer, 

Jackie Tran

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