Fetty Wap & Post Malone Test Their Star Power at House of Blues

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Fetty Wap, Post Malone, RGF Family
House of Blues
March 9, 2016

The most interesting thing about a Fetty Wap show is how random it could be. When I was walking into House of Blues, I overheard a conversation between a middle-aged white couple about Fetty Wap. Heading up the escalators, a dude-bro in full hipster regalia yelled, “Swag!” to a friend nearby. One woman claimed she saw Wiz Khalifa near a tour bus earlier in the night, which proved to be pretty false.

As I milled about during Post Malone’s set, a woman pushed past me while getting chased by security, obviously pissed off. As opposed to falling asleep watching Post sing his melodies that sound more like background noise when you’re drowsy and in the midst of a seriously messed-up headache, I followed her out. She was flippant, bumping up against security, flailing her arms about and more. It was easily the livest demonstration anybody had shown at that point of the night. By the time she was finished screaming, she was a full three feet away from the venue — still ready to knuck, and buck, and quite possibly ready to fight.

The Welcome to the Zoo Tour, Fetty Wap’s first national headlining moment, is stacked with every single artist who may claim RGF — rappers, singers, reggae artists, entertainers and more. Some of them are nondescript; others have comical names such as House Party (sorry, PartyNextDoor) or Guwii (pronounced Gooey). Aside from Inas X, none of them really moved a melting pot of (mostly white) teenagers, adults, curious onlookers and people dragged to HOB by the power of Fetty. The crowd mostly came to sing Malone's “White Iverson” and ride along with Fetty’s incredible wave of radio hits.

If you don’t know Fetty Wap, he’s the proud owner of one of rap's more interesting recent backstories. He’s a singer who doesn’t necessarily rap but makes his voice come off in multiple variances of a rap cadence. He’s got a gift for melody and an even stronger gift for crooning trap spirituals. The most fascinating and yet hilarious thing about “Trap Queen," his 2015 hit single now known from soccer moms to little kids, is that people want him to perform it at Nancy Reagan’s funeral. Why not honor America’s greatest trap queen with that?

He's also missing an eye thanks to glaucoma and doesn't shy away from it. Wednesday, he performed in a T-shirt and sweatpants, truly showing us that you can wake up out of bed and engage a packed-out HOB and have people love every second of it.

After Post Malone’s rather laborious 25-minute set, where he quickly scanned through his Soundcloud page of tracks and performed “White Iverson” twice, Fetty, his best friend, Monty, and the rest of the proper RGF Family hit the stage for their hour-long closing set. This wasn’t some sort of machine-gun burst of hits right out the gate, though. Fetty, at least through his young touring life, has at least navigated through crowd control and keeping people engaged at all times. Each record may drone on a bit, but he’s still onstage giving most of his all. When Fetty Wap sings about love, people tend to get rowdy and happy — and even fight.

Just as he was to segue into more deep cuts from his self-titled debut album, a near-fight broke out near me, forcing me to somehow garner the strength to keep two women at bay. Apparently a mom, here because her daughter needed a chaperone or because she just wanted to feel young again, kept pushing other fans just to get a clear spot. Braces, a sweatshirt that read "SLUTS" across the chest, the woman literally could have been fortysomething embarrassing the hell out of her daughter, but nope, they turned it into a tag-team fracas. They got kicked out and attention was diverted back to Fetty onstage, but that wasn’t all of it. Right before he and Monty decided to create a hole in HOB with “My Way," a shirtless bro was found swinging on some unsuspecting white guy who had pissed him off. He was also ejected. How did Fetty and company react onstage?

They shrugged and went on back to playing the hits such as “Time,” “Again” and “679.”

Somehow, a Fetty Wap show with Post Malone turned into Fight Night at House of Blues. As Fetty reared into the final turn with a smatter of hits from “Jimmy Choo” to a raucous performance of “Trap Queen," the floor crowd at HOB had noticeably gotten smaller. Either the kids had realized it was curfew or parents had just given up. Either way, Fetty Wap, despite ending the night as the umpteenth performer to sing/rap over his own vocal tracks, proved he was a bit of a star.

Post Malone? The jury’s still out, even if “Fade” from The Life of Pablo could have helped his case. The crowd enjoyed “Too Young” and of course “White Iverson,” but who's to say how they’re going to react when he opens for Justin Bieber next month?

I know this: There probably won’t be any adults willing to fight other people to hear and see “Trap Queen” there, though.

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