ComplexCon day 1 was the most fun I’ve had in public. The moment I walked into the Long Beach Convention Center, I knew something special was happening.
Beats 1 Radio with Zane Lowe live streaming to my left, fine dining to my right, Martha and Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party in front of me: This was going to be a good time.
I went to ComplexCon for the music, to find new artists to love. And boy did they come through. Khalid was one of my favorites on the day. Decked out in black and white, his smooth as silk jam “Location” lit up the room. Always lovely when someone sings as well live as they do on record.
The next big hitter for me was the alt-rap duo They. I haven’t seen such a musically varied set in forever. They really did it all, but never lost the emotional through line. They are sad boys, I am a sad boy, we are all in this together.
My favorite was “Working For It,” which almost sounds like a Fitz and The Tantrums tune. In parts. Can’t wait to catch them at their own set.
MadeinTYO was great, too. His big hit is “Uber Everywhere,” and I sing it all the time, because I Uber everywhere. His set was decidedly more machismo-laden, with songs about having illicit, NSA sex. It was entertaining as hell.
Music wasn’t the only attraction, though. There were lively basketball games, panels on weed entrepreneurship, a live Ebroji-themed gif station. Call of Duty set up a VR station. There was always a massive line.
High fashion and high end sneaker culture dominated most booths, and people were dropping coin. ComplexCon got exclusive drops, too. Choice.
This was a good-looking crowd, and I tried to get a date. Failed.
The night’s headliners lived up to the hype. Travis Scott, Kid Cudi and Virgil Abloh and Skrillex played to a bursting-at-the-seams crowd. Cudi’s set was particularly joyous, a glorious moment for an artist battling personal demons.
Notes from ComplexCon’s Official Press Release:
+ Beats 1 Radio live-streamed from the ComplexCon lobby with Zane Lowe and Ebro
+ Jeff Staple announced his collaboration with Puma at the PumaLAB
+ Vince Staples surprised us, and shot a live episode of Sneaker Shopping with Joe La Puma
+ Metro Boomin hung out with fans at the PumaLAB
+ Takashi Murakami did a meet and greet with fans at the ComplexCon entrance
+ During a taping of Hot Ones Live with Tony Hawk, LA Laker D’Angelo Russell walked on set and grabbed a wing to go.
+ DRAM performed a special set at Nike’s Culture of Force space
+ Pharrell’s first appearance at ComplexCon was at GStar’s new collection unveiling