Wiz Khalifa at the Ogden Theatre - 10/07/10
10.07.10 | Ogden Theatre
Last night at the Ogden Theatre for the Denver leg of the Waken Baken tour, Wiz Khalifa completely set it off. The scene at the beginning of the night was set by throngs of teenage girls in Wiz Khalifa shirts, mixed in with a thick crowd that included several DJs from the scene milling about looking creatively inclined, and enough weed smoke to choke a camel.
Yelawolf, the wiry, scrappy fella from Alabama, opened the show with songs from his mixtape Trunk Muzik to a lukewarm reception. Despite a strong national buzz and a performance that included cuts like "I Wish" with Raekwon and "Mixin up the Medicine," his hit single with Juelz Santana, which famously samples Bob Dylan, the MC didn't really seem to resonate with the crowd.
Wearing an oversize hoodie and backed by a DJ who knew what he was doing on the decks, Yelawolf bounced back and forth on the stage confidently, completely oblivious to seeming disinterest of the crowd. His attempts to amplify the audience failed further after he brought several girls up on stage and ordered them to "turn around," highlighting the fact that this was an all ages show and sometimes young girls of all ages do questionable things -- especially with rappers who have questionable rhymes.
Vocally, though, Yelawolf was impressive as he roared through his set. The only problem is he went about six songs too long. While it was surprising how unfamilar the audience appeared to be with his music and mission, Yela didn't do himself any favors with a hideous freestyle over Rick Ross's "BMF."
Boldly proclaiming that he's "Johnny Cage and Hank Williams," the rapper floundered until finally some disgruntled fan who evidently had had enough sent a water bottle flying. While not a particularly recommended approach to expressing displeasure, it worked. Yelawolf had security call the guy out, to which he then encouraged chants of "fuck you" and promptly exited the stage, leaving the crowd with fevered anticipation for the night's headliner.