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Rappin' in the rain

It was probably evident from my Death Cab for Cutie T-shirt that I did not belong at Club Skye in Tampa on Sunday night. I clearly looked like I should be down the street at New World Brewery or the Orpheum.

But Club Skye was where I was, for Wild 98.7 DJ Christion's Birthday Bash, featuring Fat Joe, Ace Hood, Dorrough and more. Sean Kingston had been billed to perform, but he was a last-minute cancellation.

If you take only one thing away from this item, make it this: At least once in your life, you need to be down in the pit when a rapper makes it rain. You need to experience what it's like to have more than $1,000 worth of $1 bills rain down all around you.

Add it to your bucket list. Thank me later.

• • •

After Fat Joe, I made my way down to the side of the stage for a better view of the show. This was where the action was happening, and it made for better viewing experience. Promoters were handing out CDs. People were tossing out T-shirts. And the energy from the stage was palpable.

So on comes this guy Bizzle, a rapper I can't say I've ever heard of, but whom I will never forget. He walks out onstage, and tbt* photographer Luis Santana (who's right there with him) passes me a note that says he's got $1,000 in $1 bills, bundled into stacks.

And then all that money went airborne.

I was standing just on the periphery of where the money landed, so I didn't catch any of it. All I can say is: Pac-Man Jones, I totally feel where you're coming from. Making it rain is awesome, and I honestly couldn't give you a good answer why. It's not like you're going to get rich from this free money; at most, you might walk away with enough to cover your ticket for the night.

Oh, but it got better. This was toward the end of the night, so a ton of rappers and rapper-buddies emerged from the stage and the VIP lounge with bottles of Ed Hardy champagne* and Patron tequila, and started handing THAT out to the crowd. One guy passed out plastic cups so everyone could get a taste. A couple of girls standing right next to me got full, unopened bottles of champy.

Brooklyn's Maino, a last-minute addition to the lineup, performed a few songs, including the popular Hi Hater. Much-hyped Dallas rapper Dorrough staggered onstage about 3 a.m. to perform his fantastic single Ice Cream Paint Job, and that was it. The club cut off the music, the house lights went on, and Orlando from Wild 98 chanted from the stage: "You gotta leave the building. You gotta leave the building."

So we left the building. Some of us were $8 richer. Others (like me) left with nothing but a couple of promo CDs and a fond memory of getting caught in the rain.

* God only knows what this stuff tastes like. My guess: Diesel cologne, kickboxing sweat and spray-on tan.

. Editor's note

Counting down to 50

This eyewitness account comes from SoundCheck blog editor Jay Cridlin, who attended this concert as part of his 50 concerts at 50 venues quest. You can read the full account and see more photos at

Rappin' in the rain 07/20/09 [Last modified: Monday, July 20, 2009 9:05pm]
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