Last Night: Pitbull at Reliant Stadium
Pitbull, for those of you who don't know, used to be a rapper. In fact, he was a pretty good one. In the early 2000s, he even joined the Anger Management tour alongside Eminem and 50 Cent, performing crass hits like "Dammit Man," "Back Up" and "Culo" off his debut album, M.I.A.M.I.
He was never phenomenal, but M.I.A.M.I. showed potential.
These days, however, he's more of a hype man than anything else, a Flavor Flav without a Chuck D to validate his presence in the music industry. He's on his suit and tie shit now, too... And it's not fitting.
Commercially, it was the best decision Pitbull could have ever made. His album sales, Bud Light endorsement and the crowd of 75,217 people at Reliant Stadium last night (the second-largest in RodeoHouston history) was proof of as much, but it doesn't change the fact that the music he's putting out now is just terrible.
Pitbull's performance involved awkwardly shaking his hips, rolling imaginary dice in his hand, sweating profusely and occasionally causing pandemonium in the crowd by speaking en Español. But the most memorable (and musical) instances of the evening didn't involve him at all.
The backing tracks and beats, his backing band and the musical guests who were shown on the screens overhead Early on in the show dwarfed Pitbull's own activity. And had the same cameras not occasionally flashed back to him as shouted "Let's go! Let's go! Let's go!" roughly 300 times during musical breaks, I would have forgotten he was even there.
No matter how many hits he releases that top the iTunes charts -- to name a few, "Rain Over Me," "Don't Stop the Party," "I Know You Want Me" and Thursday night's closer "Give Me Everything" -- his is still just fleeting club music that teenagers download before road trips and twentysomethings dance to (poorly) before they wake up with hangovers, regretting the previous night's decision.