Ticket holders coming to Bric’s Block Party, Friday’s event at The Bomb Factory, knew they were in for a star-studded night of hip-hop. After all, the headlining sets included superstar rapper Wiz Khalifa and up-and-coming sensation D.R.A.M. But little did they know that a slew of surprise guests were waiting to take the stage, including Dallas royalty Erykah Badu.
By the time headliner Wiz Khalifa strolled onto the stage to “We Dem Boyz,” the packed, 4,000-person capacity venue was already in a celebratory mood. All he had to do was keep the party going.
A few songs into his 90-minute set the weed-obsessed rapper tossed out oversized inflatable joints to be batted around by the crowd. The Pittsburgh rapper performed some of his biggest hit songs such as “Bake Sale,” “Young, Wild and Free” and “Work Hard, Play Hard.” In the middle of his set he brought out Taylor Gang associate Chevy Woods to perform a couple songs. Lil Flip performed a surprise set between DJ sets.
From there Khalifa continued to run with the reunion theme and brought out another close associate in Curren$y, who Khalifa credited on stage with launching his career through their collaborative mixtapes. In all, Bric’s Block Party night was nearly a dedication to Taylor Gang associates with opening sets from Sosamann and Smoke DZA.
Of all the billed acts, D.R.A.M. was the Taylor Gang outlier. There's a buzz surrounding the 28-year-old artist and his hit song “Broccoli” (featuring Lil Yachty) which peaked at No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100. Near the end of a charismatic, light-hearted set that nearly lost the Wiz Khalifa-obsessed crowd, he rallied with a three-song run that brought the crowd to life again.
His critically-acclaimed debut album Big Baby D.R.A.M. features the Queen of Neo-Soul Erykah Badu on the track “WiFi,” a sexy, tongue-in-cheek R&B song. She strolled onto the stage midway through the performance of “WiFi.” D.RA.M bowed as she took a seat onstage. The two performed the song with a remarkable chemistry. It’s worth noting Badu stayed on stage behind the DJ booth for the remainder of D.R.A.M.’s set singing along as he closed out with last year’s breakout single “Cha Cha” and 2016’s smash single “Broccoli.”
Khalifa hit a 180-degree turn to finish his set. He closed out the night with “See You Again,” the 2015 track dedicated to actor Paul Walker, who died in 2013. The downtempo closer certainly helped clear the venue in a hurry.