The reason for this post is to talk about tonight's Lupe Fiasco concert held at the Melbourne Zoo here in Australia.
I want to explain how this embarrassing evening unfolded and apologise to Lupe on behalf of the REAL Melbourne supporters.
I (along with my group of friends) arrived at the gates early and lined up along with twenty or so other fans who also got there early in order to secure a good spot right up front. We stood in the one place for three and a half hours watching the opening acts with growing excitement. Unfortunately for the openers, who might not have been completely aware, the crowd could not enjoy their music to the fullest extent due to unusually bad acoustics.
Once the time came for Lupe to come out it was well and truly dark and the crowd was at full capacity. Lupe came out accompanied by the lead in to Shining Down. The crowd was very excited to hear this song live and as Lupe approached the mic our eyes were wide and we listened impatiently for the opening lyrics. However, due to the aforementioned acoustic troubles, Lupe's voice was barely heard and our excitement turned into confusion and disappointment (obviously this was not Lupe's fault and no blame is given to him or his people).
Anyway, Lupe continued with a classic and a new song along with the song 'The National Anthem' off his recent 'Enemy Of The State' mixtape. Unfortunately the crowd was plagued with "fans" of Lupe that didn't even know his material so the only people that bounced along with 'The National Anthem' were a tiny pocket (including my group) of real Lupe addicts, all the while the rest of the crowd stayed silent. Because of the lack of familiarity with Lupe's work, certain members of the crowd began to get rowdy. Here is where the BIG problem occurred.
When 'Hip-Hop Saved My Life' began, a huge wave of pushing swept the crowd and hit the front with full force. All of the early arrivers (I should note that many of them were girls) were therefore sandwiched up against the metal guard rail. The security (or lack there of) could not figure out how to contain the crowd and resorted to spraying water over everyone (a hugely ineffective tactic). Soon after this the worst happened. One of my group members went into shock because of the violent and frightening behaviour of the crowd and had to be pulled out by security. Then, a group of five or six girls (among the first to arrive that afternoon) had to be carried out to safety. Another of my group members suffered a knee injury and quickly my whole group and many, many others had been pulled out and taken behind the stage.
Yes this might just sound like a whining fan who couldn't take the heat but I should mention that I recently attended the Tech N9ne and Wu-Tang Clan concert where I witnessed nothing even close to the fiasco (excuse the pun) I and many others experienced tonight at the Melbourne Zoo concert. My theory as to why this happened is because the Zoo (being a zoo and all) was ill equipped and lacked vital experience to hold such a large scale event. One example of this is that alcohol was being served in glass bottles which is strictly prohibited at proper concert venues as is a huge safety risk. Another example is that the security seemed inexperienced to handle such a large crowd, exhibited by the treatment of my injured brother who wasn't helped by security and offered first aid but who was basically dragged out and had to ask numerous times for medical attention.
I'm very worried that this has left a dark imprint in Lupe's mind about doing shows in Melbourne again, especially since last year's show was so damn successful. I would like to apologise on behalf of the real Melbourne Lupe fans and hope that in the future, event organisers can put together a safe, enjoyable show and we can put tonight's ordeal behind us.