Rick Ross has achieved near-God like status of late in the US, named as The Source’s Man of the Year 2010 and gathering together his Maybach Music label with the signings of Wale, Pill and Meek Mill. His return to London’s Forum saw a packed venue drenched in sweat welcome him with open arms, chanting his name before the big man had even appeared on stage. When he did, gun fingers shot up in adoration, howls of support echoed all around and the party had well and truly started.
Ricky Rozay has many, many hits and whilst his set wasn’t the longest [something those who had paid £35 complained about] it was certainly one of the most entertaining rap shows I’ve witnessed in a long time. Without a hype man on stage with him, it could have been hard between tracks, but he was ably supported by his DJ who stood behind the decks on a pedestal that bore the legend “Rick Ross / The Boss / Maybach Music / Kiss The Ring Tour” and made sure the crowd’s response to his calls were nothing short of deafening.
Running through his bangers Hustlin’, B.M.F. and MC Hammer whilst bellowing out his guest spots on Meek Mill’s Tupac Back and Lil Wayne’s John, he allowed the crowd to be as much a part of the proceedings as he was, nodding his head at the choruses being chanted back at him, wiggling his ample frame to the beat and generally exuding an aura of total control and enjoyment. He even made sure the locals [who had been told to rep their hood] were looked after by bringing out Estelle for a track, though her mic hardly allowed her voice to flourish.
By the time the show was over and the steam was rising from the crowd, there was little doubt that the man who threw his shirt off for the final track, showing off his huge belly much to the surprisingly large delight of the women in the crowd is exactly what he refers to himself as: THE BAWSE.