By Adrianna Elias
I finally had the incredible opportunity to witness Thundercat perform live, a moment that had been on my bucket list for so long. Ever since I delved into Mac Miller, The Internet, Kendrick Lamar and Childish Gambino’s music back in 2016, I had heard these artists speak highly of Thundercat. It was a dream come true to be able to see him in action.
On the night of Oct. 24, my partner, Bri, and I excitedly made our way to Stubb’s in Austin. Our initial expectation was a low-key experience like a previous Rina Sawayama show, where we met a short line and a relaxed crowd before the performance. To our surprise, this time was entirely different. The line for the Thundercat show wrapped around the venue, and as we walked towards the end, we could not help but overhear the expressions of awe from other concertgoers. “Damn” and “Oh my God, damn” echoed through the air as the line seemed never-ending. We patiently waited in line for about 15 minutes—not the worst wait, but not as breezy as the Rina Sawayama experience.
As we finally got inside the venue, it was evident that it was packed to capacity, filled with a diverse mix of nerdy anime enthusiasts and interracial couples. We quickly made our way to the photo pit, where my photographer friend Carolina was waiting for us, offering a safe vantage point and a pleasant view of the stage.
While we navigated our way through the crowd, Zack Fox took the stage and began his performance, including an acapella segment where he showcased his lyrical talent. Seeing Zack Fox live was a surprise, it was an opportunity I had not expected. Known for his humor and internet fame, he made for a perfect opening act for Thundercat. It was funny to note the alignment of their names – Thunder “Cat” and Zack “Fox,” a perfect connection that was not lost in the audience. A shout from the crowd, “We loved you in Abbott Elementary,” added to the entertainment as Zack Fox left the stage.
I spotted some familiar faces from KTSW, adding to the sense of community and connection that comes with attending live events.
When the moment for Thundercat to grace the stage arrived, the entire arena held its breath in anticipation. He opened with “Lost In Space / Great Scott / 22-26,” followed by a well-orchestrated jam session with his talented band. Thundercat shared stories from his past, including his experiences in Japan with someone he admired, and continued to captivate the audience with more of his signature songs. The concert was nothing short of mesmerizing, both literally and figuratively. Thundercat’s exceptional guitar skills and funky vibes left a lasting impression, making it a must-see performance for anyone who appreciates exceptional musicianship and a groovy atmosphere.
Written by: Preethi Mangadu