Trap Queen For A Night: Ritz Raleigh Hosts the Last Stop on the Fetty Wap FMF Tour
Ritz Raleigh Hosts the Last Stop on the Fetty Wap FMF Tour
By now whether you’re a fan of hip hop or not, you’ve heard of Fetty Wap. Originally from Paterson, NJ, he was a breakout star a couple years ago with the infectious track “Trap Queen.” Uniquely mixing R&B by singing melodies and lyrics throughout his verses, Fetty Wap produced a song that perfectly meshed street life harsh realities with a sentimental side of that life that is rarely shown. It’s been done before but 1. Fetty Wap can actually sing so it’s without the widely overused auto-tune effect, and 2. It’s a trait not often methodically used in the trap music songs of hip hop. And if his music has never grabbed you as memorable then his appearance does, having lost an eye as a small child. Fetty Wap as a whole is not easily lost amongst the crowd.
That being said I’m not actually a fan of Fetty Wap. I’ve only listened to his music on the radio but I follow and like him as a person. He is enjoyable in his interviews and I like his strong sense of family and community. Particularly when it comes to his Remy Boyz crew or his hometown. I’ve watched videos of him singing classic R&B and respect the fact that rather than run from being a hip hop artist that sings, he fully embraces both sides of his artistry. Plus his disability has become a platform, inspiring youth with similar eye abnormalities to become embolden as in the case of Jayden, whose story went viral on Facebook.
So when I heard Fetty Wap’s F2F (For My Fans) Tour was ending here at the Ritz Raleigh I was game. This was a 19- date tour, in preparation for his upcoming sophomore release “King Zoo” that is currently in production. The end date had been pushed from the 18th to the 25th so I wasn’t sure how it would affect crowd attendance. I should have been more concerned about my own attendance unfortunately. Due to a hiccup in logistics, I ended up waiting for an hour and a half outside the venue. Much love to the staff at Ritz Raleigh. Even though it wasn’t due to any fault on their part, they not only jumped in to assist but were pleasant the entire time we were forced to hang out with each other. Having great folk like them to work with at a venue definitely makes all the difference at an event. Not only did I end up missing the last minute opener, I missed most of his DJ’s set as well. The show was running stereo-typically late so I made it in time to catch Fetty Wap himself. As a former artist, hip hop shows starting late is old news to me. They are notoriously known for never being on time and being disorganized in some fashion so I was already prepared to wait mentally. Right up until I actually had to but still, all’s well that ends well.
When I finally made it through the doors, the crowd was already in full amped mode. I had expected to see mostly younger heads attending but most of the fans I saw were late 20s and up. Some of the Remy Boyz team were already on stage, getting the crowd primed for his appearance.
Once Fetty Wap did appear, it was all screams and mass exuberance. In person Fetty Wap is a slight young man with an easy going smile. He looked genuinely as excited to be on stage as the crowd did to see him perform. I find fault with emcees that don’t utilize the stage or crowd your vision with so much crew up there that you can barely figure out who is performing. Fetty got it right. This dude not only sounded good (live vocals mean a lot) but moved and engaged with the crowd the entire time. I had noticed the crowd barrier was awfully close to the stage once I got in the venue. I quickly learned why. Fetty Wap really made the show about his fans. He constantly reached out to touch their hands and at one point jumped down to the barrier to fully connect with them. To my surprise this man rocked his way down the entire length of the stage barrier and made sure no one was left out.
He performed all his big hits “Trap Queen” of course, “Again” and “My Way,” even doing an acapella to show off his vocal chops. The crowd loved it, and sang all his lyrics back to him. I was also surprised to see so much dancing in the crowds, with Fetty and crew doing their fair share of cutting a rug on stage themselves. It genuinely felt like one hugely enjoyable house party and it was a dope way to end the night and a successful tour. I may not be a fan but I more than had a great time and if this is just a sample of what Fetty Wap brings, I’m looking forward to what “King Zoo” will give the party people.