Even though no one is still really sure why, the Doggfather himself graced Pinnacle Bank Arena with a weed day performance this Wednesday. If you were wondering what exactly a Snoop Dogg concert on 4/20 would entail, but couldn’t justify buying tickets, then let me fill you in on what went down and my main takeaways.
The night started out with a rather subdued crowd waiting to get into PBA — except for the hordes of people with petitions to legalize marijuana — and the energy level didn’t get much higher for the rest of the night. The first act was Tye Harris, though most people spent his set waiting in line for food — a common theme throughout the night.
After Tye Harris came some random dude who the person behind me had no trouble informing everyone in a 50-yard-radius that was “that guy from TikTok.” He basically came out, stood on stage as the big screen played one of his TikToks, wished us a happy 4/20 and peaced out.
TikTok Dude gave the stage to Justin Champagne, a flashy enough lad whose combination of country, rock and hip-hop was actually pretty banger. Think Nickelback and Uncle Kracker-type vibes. He tried to get the crowd hyped up a couple times, but he realized his attempts were rather futile and stuck to jamming.
At this point in the concert, my friend and I had already seen three different groups move because they were in the wrong seat, and one group got into a fight because someone was claiming they were in their seats when they actually weren’t.
I was getting a bit tired, seeing as it was 10 p.m. and we hadn’t even gotten to the first headliner of the night. Koe Wetzel gave a good enough performance, but I think my favorite contribution of his was the fact that one out of every 10 college-aged dudes at the concert were fully dripped out with their big belt buckles, cowboy hats and bolo ties.
He tried to get the crowd riled up with his song “Drink,” and asked the crowd how many of them were drunk. Then, after a moment, as if his agent got on his headset to tell him it was the wrong day for that, he asked how many people in the crowd were high. There was significantly more noise at that, as well as a chain reaction of vape clouds floating up around the arena. It felt like being at Yellowstone National Park when the geysers are at their most active.
For a town full of Husker fans, it was really hard to get the crowd at Pinnacle Bank Arena hyped up on 4/20, even for Snoop. Before he got on stage — at 11 p.m. — we were graced with a professional hype man performing on stage. I don’t think I’ve ever heard “What the f*** is UP, Lincoln?” so many times in my life.
They tried to do the thing where they play a song and then cut it out so the crowd will be singing a cappella, but no one was actually singing, so it just sounded like “From the window …. [dead silence] … till the sweat drop down … [dead silence].” After that, the hype man resorted to desperate measures. He called for all the ladies in the house to sing along with the next song he was going to play.
I turned to my friend and we shared a little laugh at how he thought he had a song that could make every woman in the crowd sing along. Then we heard the opening riff to “Before He Cheats,” and heck, we were singing along, too. After that, the hype man had an idea of what the crowd wanted, and played “Friends in Low Places” before finally — finally — turning the stage over to Calvin Cordozar Broadus Jr.
Snoop turned out on stage in what looked like a matching knitted sweater and sweatpants outfit, complete with a knitted white hat. The performance was great, but what stuck with me the most was honestly how chill Snoop Dogg was. I’ve been to a fair number of concerts, but this was the one where the performer seemed to be having the best time. He knew what he was about, and he wasn’t worried about impressing anyone, much less Lincoln, Nebraska.
He crip walked, danced and just generally vibed on stage, throwing out a random assortment of songs. Even though I’m not a Snoop Dogg expert, this was one of the best concerts I’ve been to in a while. Usually, I have to deal with crowds of loud, drunk and rowdy people, but at PBA on 4/20, everyone seemed to be okay with just enjoying the show while quietly sitting down. There were a few bangers that got people out of their seats, like “Gin and Juice,” “Who Am I (What’s My Name)” and “Drop It Like It’s Hot,” but for the most part, the crowd was just soaking in the experience.
At the end of the night, Snoop led PBA in singing his national anthem, “Young, Wild & Free,” before sending us on our way. He didn’t even stick around for an encore, which, honestly, I respected. I’ve never really understood why we have to go through the motions when artists could just play the songs they’re going to play and then leave.
My friend and I headed out and had a nice walk back to my dorm, since it was nice out and Ubers were $54 to get back to their house. And now, as I’m sitting outside on this beautiful spring day, writing a column about seeing Snoop Dogg, I’m inspired to take this Doggma of chillness with me through my final few weeks of college.
So if you’re reading this, this is your sign to take time for yourself as we come up on dead week. Snoop Dogg coming to town on 4/20 wasn’t just a concert. It was a message to the people of Lincoln to chill, a sign to all the overachievers and Type-A’s — like me — to take advantage of their college years and live young, wild and free.
Sydney Miller is a senior psychology major. Reach them at firstname.lastname@example.org.