We drive by the venue & see a line. We had no expectations of what this show was going to be like. Our (more so mine) experiences have been opening shows or local Ohio shows, where Cal is from. His first headlining tour. HEADLINING.
This. Is. A. Big. Deal.
His first stop of tour: this show. Denver, CO. I can’t explain to you how exciting it was to be at a show outside of Ohio surrounded by other Cal fans (even though people still think his last name is pronounced SCRUB bee – it SCREW be, people).
It’s snowing…not ideal for waiting outside before the doors open. We get there early – my friend & I of course bought VIP, the only way to go to a show when you’ve been following him since 2012.
Eventually we are able to enter the venue & make our way over to the man himself. It had been a few years since I’d seen him, so I was nervvvvvvy. Why? Prob cause I’m a big Cal supporter, but a sucky fan (I sorry Calvin). We catch up, get our picture & then plop our butts on the speakers in the front row. This venue (Lost Lake Lounge) was so small & intimate, which is my favorite kind of venue. You can get an up close & personal show in this kind of place, it even had a disco ball in the middle of ceiling!
Let me start by telling you: there was NO OPENER. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good opener as it gives me the opportunity to see someone I may not have heard of or known otherwise. But, getting right to the nitty gritty & the person I came for: that is the icing on top.
Performing almost all of his legendary Unsigned album, the show starts with none other than: Shut Up. The beginning of the song inundated with a monologue of Cal talking about how people didn’t believe in him, how his old label was BS, & everything people try to tell him about making it in the music industry. Proud of you Cal – you do you, booboo.
The entire show, Cal just spit fire, with everyone around us in the crowd spitting game right along with him. I cannot describe what a cool feeling it is to be at a show where EVERYONE (except me: bad fan, remember?) is rapping all the lyrics along with Cal. An artist who deserves everything he’s worked for. Although, I’ll never personally experience that feeling (thanks to my terrible voice & non musical abilities), that has to be one of the coolest things to experience as an artist.
Continuing to take us through a musical experience: Cal hit us with some upbeat songs [Taylor Swift, Kobe with the Fro, Who are you?], took us down with some very real, very emotional songs [My Anxiety, Worst Day of my Life], & got WeIrD in between them all. I’ll never forget Cal referencing a tweet that he would take a shit on stage if he sold out the show (JOKES, OBVI – if you followed Cal, you’d get his weird humor) & a fan next to us yelling “let’s all shit our pants together.” Let me tell you….that was fckn weird.
Even though I spent most of my time in the front row pretending to know the lyrics (my brain & mouth cannot compute the lyrics & raps that encompasses Cals songs), I had a very real moment when it got to the point in the show for the song: My Anxiety. I’ve been in a weird season in life, more anxious than normal, more stressed than normal, & a lot of change happening outside of my control. I’ve felt off balance & sometimes not like myself. God is definitely testing me & teaching me to rely on Him right now, but this song really resonated with some of how I’ve been feeling. I shed a few tears listening to the lyrics, these one’s especially:
I’m looking happy online but it’s not what you think
I’m losing touch if I’m touching a screen
One minute, I think I love everybody
And then I’m like fuck everything
For anyone who struggles with anxiety or depression, the lyrics of this entire song put so many feelings into words. It’s crazy how perfectly Cal describes it. If anything, I hope this song can help anyone who may be feeling that way, to help them get out of that head space, & to make people realize they’re not alone, even if it may feel that way.
We eventually find ourselves at the end of the show: Kobe with the Fro. Cal expresses that he is unable to do an encore, but whaddya kno, he comes back out & performs one of his classics; Wasted. Us bitches for sure got basic. It was the BEST way to round out the first night of tour. To top it off, his manager advised against hanging after shows with fans, but here we were: waiting in line again to spend some quality time with Cal himself.
The amazing night still lingering in my mind, a month and a half later. That is post concert depression, y’all…