October 15, 2017 is a day I won’t ever forget. I got to see one of my favorite artists with friend and roommate, Riley. Not a lot of things can top that, but little did we know it would only get better.
The concert venue was a place I had never heard of before, The Grog Shop in Cleveland Heights. I’ve been to Cleveland quite a few times, and I had only ever passed through. Let me say that Cleveland Heights has to be one of the prettiest towns I’ve ever been in. It was so aesthetically pleasing. Once Riley and I found a place to park; we had time to kill since we had reached our destination at 5:00 p.m. and the concert doors weren’t going to open until 8:00 p.m. When we walked by Grog Shop we couldn’t see inside, but the entrance was very tiny. I thought we had missed it the first time we walked by; it sorta reminded me of The Basement in Columbus, Ohio.
After making sure we knew where the venue was, we found a two-story Magnolia Barbeque that we just had to eat a second dinner at (cue another reason why this day was amazing). An hour later we made our way back over to the Grog Shop to find our spot in line and wait for the doors to open. We were close to the front of the line and in my head I was thinking, “Oh this’ll be great we’re basically going to be able to touch him!” But as it came closer to 6:30, Aminé’s tour manager and close friend started passing out VIP tickets and having people who paid for those to line up on the other side of the door. Unfortunately, that line was long. I realized we weren’t going to be as close to the love of my life anymore.
Also I should probably mention that we waited in line for about 2 hours, and the temperature only got colder. I wasn’t wearing the warmest of outfits, which was my fault, but I knew inside the venue I’d be sweaty. As we were shivering and standing in the cold, we saw Aminé walk by us twice with a winter coat covering his head. Riley and I turned to each other and immediately started whispering about how that was must’ve been him.
Soon enough, the wait was over and the doors opened. Riley and I filed in and found a good spot over to the left of the stage. Towkio opened for Aminé, and he was pretty cool because he had a paperclip in his ear. To be completely honest, I had never heard of him before, but his music cool and the crowd was dancing hard to his songs. He stayed on for about 30 minutes and Aminé started his set right at 10:00 p.m.
He opened with “Baba” which was the single he released to Spotify before “Caroline”. “Baba” has a catchy beat to it so you just have shout out every lyric. After about 2 minutes into the song, he started rapping a verse to “Gold Digger” by Kayne West. This got the crowd excited and eager to singing along. He sang his entire “Good For You” album and in-between songs he would thank us and crack jokes. He did one thing in particular which I thought was adorable, he would say “you’re beautiful” and have us yell back at him “I know”. He did that a few times and it played with my emotions if I’m being honest. After going hard to “Heebiejeebies”, “REDMERCEDES”, and “Spice Girl” (he even sang a part of Wannabe), he began “Caroline”. Aminé started speaking the lyrics with no music backing up his vocals. By doing this we could hear ourselves singing along with him to the song. In the middle of the first verse the beat dropped and gradually the rest of the background music came. Directly after that song was over, he thanked us one last time and left the stage, Riley and I were in shock at the amazing performance we had just seen. We bought some yellow shirts from the merchandise table and called it a night. The drive home we talked about it the entire time, dying to relive it. All I have now are some very shaky concert videos and a t-shirt to remember the night.