Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, known to fans as The Weeknd stopped through the Moda Center on his “Starboy: Legend of the Fall” tour. He also brought some killer opening acts with him as well. The first act he brought to the stage was Canadian rapper Nav. He’s a signee under The Weeknd’s label, XO as well as Republic records. The South Asian rapper found himself the catalyst of debate a earlier this year in which fans and other music lovers questioned Nav and other non African-American rappers of color using the “N” word in his music. There was an entire article that circulated around the web for a while about whether he should get a pass or not.
Despite the debacle, the rapper has come into his own and also decided to no longer use the word in his music. Following the XO imprint of music with his own personal drugged-out style, Nav has found a home with the label. Nav has only been on the scene a couple years but made tremendous strides nonetheless. Just this year alone he released his self-titled mixtape, as well as his sophomore follow up, “Perfect Timing” that was produced entirely by Atlanta’s own Metro Boomin.
Nav hit the stage to a rapidly filling moda center. Although he only has a few albums under his belt, hits like “Up” and “Myself” had the Moda jumping. The Toronto rapper played songs from his most recent project, “Perfect Timing”. Nav has followed the XO blueprint and brought his own style to it. It won’t be long until he’ll be headlining his own major national tour.
The next act Abel brought on tour lit the stage ablaze. Gucci Mane has made exponential strides since his release from prison last year. He’s released at least a dozen of projects including getting a few number one songs along the way. He went thru a major lifestyle change, wrote a book, and just recently married long-time girlfriend Keyshia Ka’oir. Needless to say, Gucci Mane has been a busy trap god. Gucci played songs from his most recent album “Mr. Davis”. The trap god himself kept the Moda rocking with cuts like “Members Only” and “I Get the Bag”. Gucci has been on his grind like no other. Inspiring others with his lifestyle turnaround, Gucci has rebranded himself and is showing the world Mr. 1017 is here to stay.
The Weeknd came to the stage ready to shut the Moda down. His stage setup looked like something you would see in the movie “Tron”- A simplistic lighting design with a long hallway. At the end of the hallway was his microphone.The XO CEO has been at the top of his game for the past couple of years. Some would even say he’s the Michael Jackson of today’s generation. The Toronto native has been featured on multiple major motion picture soundtracks. His catalog is pretty diverse and it has placed him in the position he’s in now. Abel played songs from “Trilogy” and “Starboy”. Songs like “Wicked Games” and “The Morning” literally had the Moda Center shaking. Abel played a few oldies from his catalog like “Go Tell Your Friends” for his day one fans. He finished with his hit “I Can’t Feel My Face”. The crowd went crazy for an encore when Abel left the stage. The Weeknd has not showed any signs of slowing down. He has hit his stride with his level of comfortability in his music and it shows. Portland was left wishing The Weeknd never ended.