It was an epic night last night in the city of Irvine, CA as some of the West Coast’s biggest names gathered at the Verizon Amphitheater to put on one of the year’s best shows. Snoop Dogg (not Lion), Ice Cube and Game were at the top of the bill which was rounded out by veteran acts such as The Dogg Pound, Xzibit (joined by King Tee and The Alkaholiks), Jayo Felony, Kid Frost and Rodney O & Joe Cooley.
In true Southern California fashion, the crowd was still filing in just as the 3rd act (Jayo Felony) was finishing up, however, those in the crowd were setting the party atmosphere to jams like Felony’s “What Cha Gonna Do,” Kid Frost’s “La Raza,” and Rodney O & Joe Cooley’s “Everlasting Bass.” The crowd was finally good to go once Xzibit hit the stage as he launched in to memorable cuts like “Multiply” and “What’s the Difference?” X to the Z then let his Likwid Crew brethren Tha Liks and King Tee perform their signature songs from the 21 and Over and X.O. Experience albums.
Vets Daz and Kurupt of The Dogg Pound took fans back with “We Can Freak It,” “Let’s Play House,” “What Would You Do,” and other West Coast classics. Kurupt’s little brother Scoe joined them on stage as backup as well as longtime affiliate Bad Azz.
Game was late to take the stage and the crowd was getting a little restless and rowdy as a few scuffles broke out in the seats. I also witnessed a few ambulance stretchers with people who had passed out drunk. After nearly a 40 minute wait, Game took the stage and immediately took everybody back to The Documentary days. After going in to newer songs like “Ali Bomaye,” Game was joined on stage by Tyga for a performance of “Faded,” and afterwards given his official YMCMB chain by his new labelmate. Some songs later and after 10 G-Unot’s, Game went back to The Documentary for “Hate It Or Love It” and teased a performance of “One Blood” before his time ran out. Actually, according to the timer on the side of the stage, it had been up for about 10 minutes. He killed it though. I got some feedback from audience members and they agreed with my overall assessment.
Ice Cube, WC and DJ Crazytoones took the stage and once again proved why they are one of the best live acts in all of Hip-Hop. Stage presence, chemistry, classic hits – it’s all there. The audience’s frenzy was at its height at this point and all it took was Cube’s verse from “Natural Born Killers” to set it off. The trio performed “Gangsta Nation,” “We Be Clubbin’,” “Put Your Back In To It,” “You Know How We Do It,” and “Check Yo’Self,” just to name a few. Ice Cube ended with “Today Was A Good Day” and naturally everybody in the damn arena sang along word for word… It really was a sight to behold.
Snoop Dogg took the stage and came out to an awesome screening that included clips of The Godfather, Scarface, with images of his own film performances including the one used on the Up In Smoke Tour (where Snoop and Dre blast away together in the liquor store). It was a combination of old and new for The Doggfather with sets ranging from backup dancers to just about his entire Dogg Pound crew (Daz, Kurupt, Soopafly, Bad Azz, Warren G). I noticed that quite a few in the audience were leaving so I went out to ask a few why they were leaving during Snoop’s performance and of course it came down to the usual Southern California attitude of wanting to beat the traffic. All in all, it was a truly epic night. I’ve been to quite a few shows out here on the West and this was about the livest I’ve seen an audience get. I brought back some pictures from the show. Check them out below!