First things first. Wow. Wait…was that my initial reaction to when I first witnessed 2Pac Shakur grace the heavenly stages at Coachella while watching live via Youtube? More importantly, did I really believe the audience was seeing a holographic image of 2Pac on stage screaming “Coachella?” Was technology taking a turn for the hearse? So many questions ran through the minds of many the night of April 15, 2012.
Not only was Coachella putting on the most amazing performances in music, but they broadcasted it live which was the most amazing thing; at least for some that were unfortunate to attend the 3-day festival.
Anyways, the topic of discussion here is the main act of the last day at Coachella. Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg sure as hell in the blazing desert heat put on a performance that was heavily reminiscent of the legendary Up In Smoke Tour. Not only did the two Hip-Hop icons perform some of their most memorable songs such as “Nuthin’ But a G Thang,” “Still D.R.E.” and their very first collaborative, “Deep Cover”, but Dre also brought out his calvary to Indio, California.
Kendrick Lamar proved to the world once again why he’s more than deserving to be anything but the next hype in Hip-Hop; but rather to be entitled as Dr. Dre’s next protege. Hailing straight out of Compton, Lamar delivered verses that was reminiscent of Andre 3000 before he stepped out of his spaceship. The night wouldn’t have been right without the crowd singing along to a Nate Dogg tribute. 50 Cent sure as hell lit up the stage with gun shots as him and Tony Yayo rushed the stage performing “What Up Gangsta.” It’s been a while since fans have seen 50 Cent active in the rap scene and personally, it was refreshing to feel his raw energy and presence as he kicked things up a notch.
If that wasn’t enough for surprises, now came the moment of truth, so to say. The lights went dark. Haunting bells that sounded all too familiar rang throughout the speakers as music continued to play. Lightning bolts struck from the TV screens as the crowd grew very curious as to what they could possibly be witnessing. Could this be something I just might remember when I get home after fearing and loathing in Coachella? A body slowly rose from the stage with his head down; “Thug Life” tatted across his belly with a microphone in his hand. Those that were puffin’ away in the crowd most definitely thought they were trippin’. Yes, 2Pac Shakur rose from the grave to rap “Hail Mary” as the world stopped spinning for five minutes. Holographic technology allowed for such a miracle to happen, leaving many 2Pac fans all around the world shedding a tear while others felt confused and some even angry.
How did I feel? I couldn’t have been more shocked and at the same time, amazed from what I just saw. I wasn’t offended at all since the only people warranted in this world to do such a thing is Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg. 2Pac is still resting in peace and if anything, he’s smiling down. He ain’t mad at them. Coachella 2012 was a night to remember, and maybe the year to remember for the rest of Coachella history. That might be a stretch but I stand by what I said.
Of course, after the most mind-blowing experience, how could you stop there? Skylar Grey appeared on the screen as we all knew who was coming next. It was unfortunate Dr. Dre’s set was only one hour limited. Otherwise, we would’ve seen Eminem perform more than one verse from three songs. I can’t complain though. Coachella 2012…I wish I was there but at least I watched it live. Also, this was a piece definitely worth writing.