Last week we got a chance to open for the Black Eyed Peas… It wasn’t just at any spot – but in Sarnia – a city that I grew up in and a place not known for Hip-Hop. Yeah they did have Snoop Dogg several years ago, but besides that Sarnia isn’t known as a spot for Hip-Hop. But this is Bayfest. One of the biggest annual concert events in Canada. In the last few years they have had everyone from Kiss to Aerosmith to Nickleback… all the big dogs. At some point they had to have some hip-hop… right?
The opening spot didn’t just fall in our laps.
When I got the word that they were coming all I could think was – How can we make this happen!?
I made several calls to the head of Bayfest but everytime I called it went straight to voicemail. Then I followed up with emails. After several messages and emails I eventually got through and I was told to send some material and press clippings. Months went by. It wasn’t looking good. But then we got the official announcement that we were added to the bill.
The day of the show turned out to be crazy, starting with the morning. Coming from Toronto, I had to pack up all the new T’s and all of the cd’s in the ride. I was just about to leave when we ran into a crisis – Turntables!? A couple of months ago when we discussed the equipment needs, they told us that we would have to supply turntables. This is something that is usually taken care of so I hadn’t thought of it – till now! The problem was DJ Nana was almost there. I couldn’t get him to turn around and head back two hours to get the turntables. It was a Sunday so it would be difficult to rent.
I had one Haily Mary in me… I called my man DJ Phatfingers… a DJ from Sarnia that we’ve worked with over the years. Thankfully he picked up on the first ring and his response was music to my ears – “Cool man, no problem.” Ahhh yeaaah…
When we hit Sarnia, we knew the party was on. We had a hotel right beside the spot and there were lots of people already there. From then, it was on! We went right into soundcheck and half an hour later we were on the stage.
Things were going good, until in the middle of the set when it started to rain… at first it was just a few drops, then you could feel it picking up… then it comes down HARD! Just when it was looking like it might kill the event, it turned out alright. There was really no where to go to get dry, so people stayed and partied jumping up and down and waving their hands in the air.
After the show we came out in the crowd and it was good seeing old highschool friends, family, and fans from some of the schools that I’ve gone to speak at.
The night was only beginning though… And that’s after the Peas came out and did their thing!
We headed to the legendary bar Paddy Flaherty’s – right beside the concert – and joined our boy Andrew Austin on stage to rock Small Town. At this point it was about 2 in the morning. But the crowd was still there and going strong.
As I say in my track, “Some people move away and never come back, I could never do that, its where my heart at!”
Shout out to Kerry Belliveau for the pics
As well as the homie Doug…