WHAT. A. NIGHT. Thee Appreciation Day show was a success! THANK YOU to everyone that came out and supported the young gods. It's because of good folk like you why the show was phenomenal! Shout out to my team and the band as well. You guys are great!
So this was the first Respect The Cool event of 2016 as well as the first event centered around my Appreciation Day [EP]. I almost had a breakdown putting this event together hahaa. Seriously! I wanted it to be as close to perfect as possible. From the performance to the gift bags to the DeeJay to the merchandise to the aesthetics to the winnings for the raffles and so on. So much work and preparation went into this event. I wanted it to be an intimate experience so we set up chairs and dimmed the lights so folk would be able to relax and enjoy themselves.
One hour before the doors opened me and the band, RTC Experience: Justin Clouden on the drums, Hassan on bass & Tina K on vocals, did a quick rehearsal to make sure we had everything down pat. I was visibly a nervous wreck up until that point. This was my first event after all and I was so uncertain of how the turn out would be. By 7pm the deejay, Skate Key, started spinning and thirty minutes later people started pouring in.
Lindsay Lee Long hosted the event. She was as charismatic as ever, disarming the crowd with her charm and prepping them for the night ahead. The homie Mic Blaque opened up the show with an electrifying performance once people were seated and comfortable with their drinks and snacks. The crowd loved his high energy, hard hitting lyrics, African centered message and occasional jokes.
After Mic's performance we had a brief intermission to do the raffle tickets and give out the prizes. I gave out 3 prizes which consisted of an RTC hat, RTC hoodie and an Appreciation Day shirt. I even gave away an extra Appreciation Day shirt because I felt so good about how things were going. It was time to dim the lights again and start my performance.
I've trained for this! I've put my time, energy, money and life force into this! I've gotten little to no claps before. I've gotten blank stares before. I've listened to all the constructive critiques from my peers and teammates. Everything I've been through culminated through my performance that night! All the anxieties, self doubt, depression, glossophobia, brilliance, arrogance, short comings and so on were put on display. I let people inside my world that night. I gave them all of me and left no stone unturned.
I played with RTC Experience to give the music a live element to it. I would have the band groove in-between songs so I could speak about the experiences that lead me to write each record. I ended the show by displaying two unrecorded songs, the band only heard the music but not the songs, which the crowd welcomed with applause.
After the performance I was met with hand shakes and hugs. People told me I inspired them! Me! They connected with me that night. I connected with them. We related to one another through our pains, aspirations, hopes and goals with the help of a funky bass, hard drums, sultry vocals and ferocious yet emotion filled lyrics.
It was an experience that i'll never forget. thank you to everyone that came out to the Appreciation Day show. Thank you for lending your ears for my 1 hour on stage. Thank you for the love and support. Thank you.
Check out the photo gallery of the show at the bottom.
All photos by MoNae Mayweather