Concert Photography: Freddie Gibbs "AOTY Tour"
Freddie Gibbs performing in Austin, TX fresh off his Madlib collaboration release Bandana.
Four years ago I photographed Freddie Gibbs at this exact same venue in roughly the exact time of the year, just a few days apart to the day. I was a fairly new fan then, barely getting to know his music through his first project with Madlib, Piñata. It didn't take long for me to become a fan of his music and would get the chance to photograph him again a few years later in 2018. Now, fresh off their latest collaboration Bandana, Freddie came back to Austin with a joy I had yet to see on his face. While Freddie seems to enjoy himself heavily on stage at all of his shows, this night was different. You can see the excitement and pride on his face immediately from having recently released arguably the greatest rap/hip hop record of 2019, maybe even number one across all genres, and definitely number one for Gibbs as the tour name suggests, "Album of The Year Tour". Freddie simply looked happy. Or maybe he was just super high. There's that too. In any case, once the lights hit, Freddie did what Freddie does best and that's bring some of the rawest deliveries of some of the illest cuts in the game today. Paired with Madlib's musical genius, Gibbs'prowess shines heavy on stage as he hit licks from Bandana, Freddie, Piñata, and I'm fairly certain there were a joint or two from Roma, his collab project (dubbed Fetti) with Curren$y.
The crowd is bigger, the smoke is thicker, and my love for this guy and his music is too. It's hard not to smile photographing Gibbs because his presence is just so authentic and rugged. You can feel every bar whether it's thug, sex, or smoke--all things I enjoy as a participant or for entertainment. Seeing the way this larger crowd reacted and played along with his onstage antics brought a sense of strange relief to my own little world this night and allowed me to really just enjoy the show with or without the camera to my eye. Suffice to say Freddie once again gave an incredible performance with sharp precision, excellent timing, and youthful play expressing his evolution as an artist and as a person. Do yourself a favor and catch this guy live if you ever get the opportunity because the crowds are only going to keep increasing making these shows less intimate.
View the full set on Awake & Moving's blog, awakeandmoving.com. Enjoy!
It ain't a complete Gibbs show until the shirt is removed and the cannabis is lit.
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