Lupe Fiasco at Gustavus Adolphus College

On an unusually warm Saturday evening this April, I was packed into a crowded Gustavus Adolphus Hockey arena. Through the Ed Hardy and cubic zirconium studded crowd I was able to spy one Lupe Fiasco.

Every year Gustavus Adolphus College, or as it is affectionately known GAC, holds a concert for its students and opens it to the public.  GAC’s past concerts have included performers such as Ben Folds, but this year they hosted the college radio favorite Lupe Fiasco. Lupe visited the small town of St. Peter as part of his Steppin’ Lasers tour.

Opening for Lupe was the Twin Cities’ own Unknown Prophets, a duo consisting of MaD SoN and Big Jess.  The Prophets’ set was great and used their relatively unique sound of metal and rap to build up to Lupe’s opening. They also hyped Minnesota pride that acted as a good contrast with Lupe’s international acclaim.  The only pitfall of the concert: the crowd.

Most concertgoers were present to hear Fiasco’s handful of uber-famous songs such as “Daydreamin”, “Superstar”, and “Kick, Push”. This dynamic between fans and infrequent followers, while not ideal, didn’t harm the overall experience. The energy that Lupe and his band gave off was infectious. New songs and old had everyone in the crowd getting down. Not only did Lupe set the bar but his band mates stepped it up with hard guitar riffs, intense drum beats, and scratchin’ on the turntables.

Lupe also debuted some of his new material. One song, “Beautiful Lasers”, was noticeably different from songs such as “Go Go Gadget Flow” and he cited the fact that he was “really f*#cked up” for a long period and the energy from that time went into this song. Although darker, the energy of the entire concert was phenomenal and included fan participation two audience members were invited onstage due to the fact that they had “We Are Lasers” tattooed on their biceps in homage to Lupe. The show culminated with some words of wisdom about the power of education from Lupe: quite the collegiate experience.

Saraya Boghani


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