Last night Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa blazed an energetic performance at the sold-out Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre in Tinley Park. IL for the Chicago stop of their current joint, The MERRY JANE presents The High Road Tour. An appropriate title for a tour that boasts two of the biggest weed advocates in not only Hip-Hop, but possibly even music history.
So it was no surprise there was plenty of weed smoke being blazed throughout the night from most of the crowd. One that seen some pretty solid opening acts in Jhené Aiko, Kevin Gates and DJ Drama.
DJ Drama knowing he was in the Chicago area, sported a Chicago Bulls jersey, while keeping the crowd live and rocking in between sets. Playing everything from current hits to the classics, Drama definitely kept the crowd rocking and showed unlike what most people think, he isn’t just your regular mixtape DJ, who just shouts over tracks.
The beautifully talented Jhené Aiko took the stage for her Chicago fans for the first time in almost two years and showed why she’s the nice perfect change of pace, from all the rappers that are mainly on the tour’s lineup. Providing the perfect sound that rap fans across the board can still enjoy, me and I’m sure many of Jhené’s Chicago area fans were glad to see her live again for the first time in such a long time. Backed by a band and with some pretty creative mushrooms and other animated entities, as well as bubbles on stage, Ms. Aiko came out in a dreamy pasty styled getup to go with an alien dad hat, that matched the singer’s just as dreamy voice and performance. One she didn’t disappoint with either going through many of her best records and hits to date such as To Love & Die, The Worst, Comfort Inn Ending Freestyle and Bed Peace to name a few. Jhené even spoke highly of her TWENTY88 collaboration from earlier this year with Big Sean and asked the people in the crowd, “If they had love for Big Sean and knew about the project?” Before she proceeded to go into the group’s very successful and amazing single, Selfish. While it wasn’t as intimate and great and timeless as her Lollapalooza performance from a couple of years ago, it was still a pretty solid one from Jhené that showed she will be around for many more years to come. Which is saying a lot considering she was an opening act for the show too and didn’t have as intimate of a crowd as I’m sure she had during her aforementioned Lolla performance.
Next up and hit with the tough task of going on before Snoop and Wiz was street rap aficionado Kevin Gates, who brought many records from his 2015 debut album, ISLAH’ for his performance. Known most for his hits Really Really and 2 Phones, which he performed during his set, the Louisiana rapper, was more than well received from the crowd and really got the crowd to turn up the tempo. Even if you weren’t really a fan and tried to sit at certain points during his performance, you found yourself getting right back up out of your seat.
Fans weren’t given much time to catch their breath after Gates turned up performance either. As Drama came out one last time, asking fans if they were ready for Snoop and Wiz and also thanking all the fans that have ever bought or listened to any of his Gangsta Grillz mixtapes. It wasn’t long after that and a hilarious animated short showcasing Snoop and Wiz getting high in a Cadillac, that the Doggfather himself came out for his Windy City fans on the highest note possible by opening with a medley of some of the biggest Dr. Dre guested hits he was on in Nuthin’ But a “G” Thang and The Next Episode. Reminding everybody of the chemistry he had with his mentor. Before you knew it, Snoop disappeared off stage and let his counterpart Wiz take the stage. With Khalifa opening his portion of the set with one of his latest singles, Bake Sale, that has nothing to do with baking the kind of bakeries most of you probably think. Wiz’s solo portion of the set to open was full of energy, as he also added his street hit, We Dem Boyz, before passing the stage back to Snoop. If you would expect a slow paced and mellow performance from the two together, you would be greatly mistaken, as Snoop and Wiz put together a mostly high energetic performance together. One that seen the two performing one lengthy set together, sometimes pairing as a duo and also often taking solo cuts. They both seemed to know what songs would work better together and which ones would be better to let the other one shine alone.
Many of the solo performances were towards the beginning of the show, with both going back-and-forth for a few two or three song rounds before Snoop took his portion of the show to a very unattainable high with a sampling of his verse from the All I Do Is Win Remix, Gin and Juice and his collaboration with the late great 2Pac, 2 Of Amerikaz Most Wanted. The record complete with 2Pac vocals on a backing track.
Snoop and Wiz shared the stage from that point forward for the rest of the night. With Khalifa getting the crowd going with No Sleep and Ink My Whole Body. After about 16 or maybe slightly more songs, which went by pretty fast, they ended up doing their first joint together, That Good. Occasionally passing a blunt back and forth, and even at one point sharing a blunt with fans in the front row, who had to reach to get it, Snoop and Wiz blew through, This Weed Iz Mine, French Inhale and Kush Ups. With both Snoop and Wiz eventually going shirtless by the time they got to Kush Ups. They also added in some great covers of House of Pain’s Jump Around and two tracks Snoop was featured on, in Akon’s hit, I Wanna F*^k You and Fat Joe’s remix of his current megahit, All The Way Up.
Late in the set the two performed their own anthems with Wiz performing, Black and Yellow. As the two twirled Terrible Towels during the performance and before Snoop performed his very own anthem, about himself, with Who Am I (What’s My Name) that has the memorable sing-along of “Snoop Doggy Dogg.” There was one final hilarious animated short with the two goofing around and driving through Amsterdam, Jamaica and Denver looking for weed. When Snoop and Wiz came back out there was cell phones and lighters dimming throughout the packed amphiteatre, as Wiz performed his smash-hit from Furious 7 with See You Again. Snoop and Wiz would ask the crowd one last time if they, “Came to get high and f*^*ed up with Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa tonight?” Then the last song was really for them. As the two went out with the perfect feel-good sendoff in their collaboration, Young, Wild & Free.
Though it was nowhere near among the best concerts I have ever been to, let alone even the one’s I have been to this year, Snoop & Wiz showed such a great chemistry together that was undeniable. One that as they promised may have the two touring together now for years to come.