Post Malone is probably one of the most talked about musicians in pop music today, which makes his appearance in Sioux City last week all the more impressive.
The artist's sold out performance kicked off Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Sioux City's 2018 Battery Park Concert series, a mere seven days before his second studio album "Beerbongs & Bentleys" was released and saw great commercial success and would eventually accumulate more than 431 million streams.
Post is beloved by fans who set songs like "Rockstar" and "Congratulations" on repeat on their playlists. And yet he also remains a controversial figure among his critics and contemporaries who accuse him of being a culture vulture and question his own remarks on the merits of hip-hop.
Dissension aside, there's no denying his popularity at this very moment, which is at an all-time high for the guy who is poised to earn a nomination for Best New Artist by the time Grammy Awards return -- I'm almost certain he'll win it, too.
With all that being said, I cannot stress enough how important it was for us to have him here in Sioux City. Although our town's venues can get a hold of some huge names in entertainment, to get someone as commercially relevant as Post is right now to perform here is truly a remarkable feat.
Hard Rock Entertainment Manager Brad Streeter really out did himself -- this might be on-par (maybe a little less) than when he booked country artist Chris Stapleton at Battery Park during his rise in popularity. It seemed impossible, but Streeter managed to pull through and deliver.
Post is all people were talking about online the day of the concert -- both positively and negatively.
Some poked fun at all the hype and spam statuses about the concerts while others lamented the fact that they couldn't go because ticket scalpers had jacked up their prices way too high, charging an arm and a leg and next month's rent for a chance to see pop's/hip-hop's latest commercial darling onstage.
Others seemed to scoff and bite their thumb at Post, his music and his crowd of fans, which was kind of disappointing. There's no need to get on a high horse and start judging people's tastes in music.
Did we all forget that we're different people with different likes and dislikes? So you don't like Post's music. That's fair. I can't say I'm a fan either, but I do enjoy a big chunk of his songs (especially his newer ones). But there's no need for arrogant superiority over something as subjective as music tastes. Let's not be silly.
From what I've read in Bruce Miller's review of the show, Post was a gracious and self-deprecating performer onstage, and played the hits everyone wanted to hear -- just what you'd expect many of your favorite bands and artists to do. What makes Post any different? As long as the fans liked it that's all that matters.
After seeing the photos by Matt Downing and Sioux City Journal photographer Justin Wan, I think it's safe to say this was a very successful kickoff to the Battery Park Concert series. One of the biggest names in the music industry just played in Sioux City.
More importantly, it was an act outside of Sioux City's "comfort zone."
It wasn't traditional country or "new" country.
It wasn't a huge rock/metal festival with a dozen acts attached to the billing.
It was a portly rapper with a happy disposition and a young, devoted fan base that enlivened downtown Sioux City with strange music. And I'm sure there will be more to come in the near future.