PHOTOGRAPHERS: Kenny Bobby, Jorgie Films, Nassacre & Pablo Vasquez
The people at Dope Ent once again bringing the state and surrounding areas to rage under one roof. The city of Tampa’s streets were filled with hundreds of Death-like personas, all ready to rage from noon till midnight. Once the festivities kicked off, the fire never died. Even when the weather turned into a shit bag, Tampa remained un-phased, still out for blood.
Experienced music producers, Henry Daher, NIck Leon, Nuri, and Cool & Dre sat in at The Ritz to discuss their influences, production, styles, and the tracks that they wished they had sampled. Between The Ritz and MF Arts, Florida’s next wave of elite visual artist displayed their installments throughout the 14 hour venture. Robert Gallardo leading the way as the curator. Unkle Luc, Rob Regis, Todd The Painter, Hanna Ali, Uzumaki, Milli, Data Synced, Julia Updegraff, and Marilyn all exposed their talents to the city, attracting rave reviews from the attendants.
A Dutch Masters sponsored Wrap Party was in effect at MF Arts. A area full great performances by a cascade of creatives that are continually pushing the culture forward. From brain-wavy sets like LeMieux‘s to addikting stage presence like Nik SB‘s. Tampa made it’s presence felt while showcasing some very talented and originally styled acts. From Betty Dawl, Gatsby, Big Baby alongside Lil Xela, Boy Wonder, OG Layla Johnson, and She.Go.
At The Crowbar is where the pressure began to be applied. 4th Quarter Quan DJ’ing setting the ambiance for the building. DoLA, one of Florida’s next promising artist came out with the poise of Julius Caesar, owning the stage and it’s spectators when he performed “Stranger Than Fiction”. They ended the set beautifully with a back to back act out of “Addikted” by Nik SB, while the man himself was posted on stage turning up along side.
21 Savage followed suit, kickstarting the mosh filled venue. Tag teaming the stage with Key! and ManMan Savage. Completely tearing the knob off when he performed “Gang”, “Skirtt Skirtt”, and “One Foot”. Close by at all times, Key! retained steady control of the crowd, there wasn’t a spot on the floor lacking bounce or head bobbing. Performing with two microphones, only adding to his rock star persona.
The Orpheum was next in line for arson. After the crowd was drown in by the supporting acts, Pouya alongside Fat Nick and Mikey The Magician caused total mayhem. Inciting an indoor riot with the help of special guests Denzel Curry, SDotBraddy, Yoshi Thompkins, and Wifisfuneral. Parting the sea of fans, just to bring them back together just to mosh their brains out some more. Then the New Jersey devil known as Retch took the stage. Displaying an organic IDGAF presence, that made you appeal to his performance because you knew that he wasn’t here to front, he was on stage to give the fans what they came for, and showing sincere admiration for them.
Although OG Maco‘s performance was cut short due to back spasms, he didn’t leave before he gave crowd the remainder of his strength and energy. ” Ape Shit” was performed with the image that the title paints falling down at times because of the pain, Maco held on long enough to give bystanders a middle finger before the crowd erupted into a “Fuck Em x3″ rant.
The headlining venue, The Ritz is where it all came together. Wifisfuneral and Swamp Posse, both finished off the night with multiple performances, proving that they can thrive no matter the stage size. Audience members walked out with new playlists favorites with “Lightskin Trick Daddy Pt. 2″ & “White Magic”. Missing two members (SKYXXX & Keez) the young men displayed rock star qualities, emphasizing on “star”.
The entire place place erratic now, Nuri performed an electric DJ set before bringing out Robb Bank$ to “2Phoneshawty”. The crowd at an uproar as anyone would’ve guessed. Many acts started mosh pits, but Robb Bank$ demanded one for his single “Pressure”. Reminiscent of a young Zack De La Rocha. That alone could have been the headliner, but we were still blessed with two remaining acts.
Denzel Curry didn’t miss a beat once he pounced onto The Ritz stage. Giving us hits “Chief Forever”, “Envy Me”, and “Ice Age”. All before having the crowd raise their arms to the sky to absorb energy for a spirit bomb. The set still didn’t see it’s highlight until Denzel brought out SDotBraddy and Yoshi Thompkins to share the wealth with his C9 family, and making the crowd explode when he brought out The Buffet Boyz and Robb Bank$ on stage to perform “Threatz”.
Full of high octane energy and attentiveness Travi$ Scott came out demanding total control during every second of his set. Stressing the importance of a great performance from head to toe. Practically performing every song on each free album and dropping inspirational gems to remind the audience that dreams are meant for reality. Ending the blood, sweat and teared set with the crowd singing “Drugs You Should Try It”, a final mosh to “Antidote”, giving The Ritz one last burst of excitement before concluding an epic night that the great city of Tampa will remember and appreciate until next time.