“He sings that one song, Caroline…”
“Oh, yeah! Cool!”
This is how the majority of people responded when I told them I was going to the Aminé concert at the end of last month. While I respect that ‘Caroline’ was definitely a major bop of 2016, I’d like to clarify that the artist of such bop is most certainly not a one-hit-wonder.
Good For You, released on July 28 of this year, was Adam Aminé Daniel’s first album. With fourteen songs (and a bonus track), his album is filled with clever pop culture references, one of my favorites being ‘stuntin’ with my dogs like my first name Cruella’, outright petty-ness, talented featured artists, and way more potential hits other than ‘Caroline’.
My point is: listen to the album.
While having good music is a start, an artist must have strong stage presence to really be ‘good’. The particular concert I went to took place at Cat’s Cradle in Carrboro, North Carolina. His tour ‘Tour For You’ is worldwide, and many of the shows sold-out. Because tickets were pretty cheap, I splurged for the meet-and-greet VIP ticket. While waiting in line to take my Instagram-worthy picture with the up-and-coming rapper, I noticed how he gave full attention to everyone, making eye-contact and actually talking with each VIP ticket holder. This scared the hell out of me, as I had no idea what to say and just prayed that he initiated the conversation. When it was finally my turn, I stepped up to the spot and was immediately hugged and then asked my name. I could barely respond to that simple questions, prompting him to ask me if I’d like to stand or sit for the picture. I replied with, “Whatever you think,” which truly expresses how nervous I was, as I have an opinion on everything and am usually very willing to share it. We ended up sitting and he wrapped his arms around me for the picture (which my mom did not approve of—she texted me asking where my friend Eric was and why Eric let him essentially touch my boob).
After snapping the picture and letting my heart rate return to a state of homeostasis, the concert began. Towkio was his opening artists, and this is where I do have a few criticisms. While Towkio had a few good songs, he gave off the same vibe that you would expect from a man smoking on a street corner in poor weather, catcalling at any and all girls who have hit puberty. After Towkio finished his set, we waited about thirty minutes—as one does at a concert—for the artist we paid to see to come to the stage.
With every movement on stage before Aminé arrived, there was the false-hope shrieking of impatient fans. When he really did arrive on stage, his presence commanded everyone’s attention. With a live band backing him up, Aminé went through the entirety of his album along with a few of his singles. About halfway through the show, Aminé explained to unknowing fans that in every city he goes to, he wears these jeans and has an audience member write something on one patch of the jeans. He called up an incredibly enthusiastic fan to stage, and asked us what we wanted written for the state of North Carolina. As expected in the Chapel Hill area, there was a chorus line of “DUKE SUCKS,” to which the artist responded “Really? You all want to be remembered as Duke sucks? For the whole state?” We ended up going in another direction.
Saving the biggest hits for last, Aminé waited until the end to perform Spice Girls. The song is a reference to the Brit-pop band, and about halfway through the song he played a snippet of their song ‘Wannabe,’ which fans went crazy for, myself included. Of course, his closer was ‘Caroline’—giving the fake fans the moment they had all been waiting for. Because it was the Friday of Halloweekend, my friends and I dashed out of the venue once he finished his performance, but were left with the vibes we needed to begin the celebrations.