The band

First things first. It must be noted that Young Thug was not wearing a dress when the crowd sang line for like with him from his verse on T.I.'s “If ain't about the money.” from at Newport January 23rd.

If you're not familiar with Young Thug; he is from Atlanta and often referenced by the fact he is a Blood that boasts Rich Gang Affiliations as well as your usual Waka/Gucci overlaps.

He has a stream of consciousness, sing-songy cadence that is post-Lil Wayne/Future in terms skating with melody and sometimes not discernible.

Rappers like Thug, Rich Homie Quan and Migos are developing a nuanced version of Weezy.

Why do I mention him wearing a dress? Because dudes who rock the same circuit as Kevin Gates and Plies with the word Thug in their name don't usually wear dresses. Sort of. 

Young Thug does.

 I could go through several theories on why gender fluidity exists in Blood Branded rappers compared to similar organizations. My guess it boils down to the people involved, molly commerce, prison culture, New Orleans Sissy Bounce and perhaps just the entertainment industry.

Remember the photo of Birdman and Lil Wayne kissing that made the rounds on the net?

Lil Wayne dissed Young Thug at Xclusive Elite a few months ago which ended up with Lil Wayne's tourbus getting shot at in Atlanta? Which seemed to correlate with Lil Wayne's feud with Birdman.

Fortunately Wayne and Birdman are friends again from photos of them hanging out recently.

Yep in my pink tee could be a write in vote in the New Hampshire Primary.

There was no need for thinking of violence at Young Thug's sold-out show.

My joke prior was “Where do you keep a gun in a dress? Do you rock a garter?”

Humor not withstanding. There was absolutely no feeling of any looming problems.

The crowd was just ready to have fun.

DJ Hylight was able to keep the crowd hyped by playing hits and making jokes between records and openers.

Thug eventually took the stage at 11:30 waving peace signs, and exuding a playful, youthful charisma.

He deftly moved around and sang his pothead anthem, “I'ma Stoner.”

He did have braids and a slightly glam appearance in movement.

You couldn't help to think of David Bowie looking down on Young Thug and smiling.

Bowie called out MTV in 1983 for not playing Black Artists.

Kanye West, A$ap Ferg, Talib Kweli, M.I.A., EL-P, Danny Brown, Diddy were amongst the many Hip Hop performers that tweeted their regards for Bowie as an influence.

In a 1993 interview with Bryant Gumble Bowie said “a lot of us came out of Art School. I think that had some bearing on the visual side of Rock Music.”

In the same interview Bowie said that he found Hip Hop truly creative saying, “The Quality and significance of the social message has moved very much fundamentally to the Black and Hispanic Market. With Black Music there is a very strong point to make. There is a means of discovery and a purpose.”

This was prior to Puffy being sampling Bowie during the Jiggy era. We all saw Ye's proclamation on who made it ok for rappers to wear tight jeans.

Don't get me wrong. You can point to androgyny in black music in Al Green, Prince, all the way down to Andre 3000.

This week, Young Thug told Sway in the morning that he “dresses like a Prince” when asked about his affinity for drag.

So I wouldn't give Bowie sole credit in Young Thug challenging the presentation of manhood and conformity however I would imagine all these factors mix together.

However, Prince did cover Bowie's “Let's Dance” with Nile Rodgers of Chic so there is probably an indirect influence.

This is something Bowie can take to grave past Vanilla Ice sampling him for “Under Pressure.”

Gender, art and fashion politics aside; people loved Young Thug's music at the Newport.

So when he transitioned the end of his set from “LifeStyle” to “Best Friend” the crowd sung together thinking about how much love they had for their best friends which is pretty onto itself.

Young Thug does have six children which he takes care of so he is obviously a multi-faceted man that engages in heterosexual intercourse and nurturing of human growth.

My only complaint is Thug didn't perform his Jamie XX remix of “Good Times” but then again this really wasn't a hipster event.




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