Celebrity·Posted on Jan 27, 2023Drake Performed At The Apollo Theater In New York And Here Are 12 Thoughts I Had During His ShowTo those of us who grew up watching Degrassi, Drake will forever be Jimmy Brooks.by Terry Carter Jr.Director of Pop CultureFacebookPinterestTwitterMailLink This past weekend, I was invited by SiriusXM to attend Drake's highly anticipated show at the famed Apollo Theater in Harlem, New York. Cindy Ord / Getty Images for SiriusXM The concert marked Drake's first concert in five years and brought out celebrities like Justin and Hailey Bieber, Odell Beckham Jr., Kevin Durant, and more. Somehow, this was my first time seeing Drake live in concert, and I had a lot of thoughts about his performance. Ahead is my unfiltered review of the show: 1. To many of us who grew up watching Degrassi: The Next Generation, Drake will forever be Jimmy Brooks. Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for SiriusXM At the top of the show, Drake acknowledged his teen acting days as Jimmy Brooks in Degrassi: The Next Generation by wearing a jersey with the show's title on the front and his character's name on the back. It was a not-so-subtle reminder that his iconic role will forever live in millennials' hearts. 2. Drake *still* has a bone to pick with his naysayers. CATV / Courtesy Everett Collection During the show, the Thank Me Later rapper called out record labels for rejecting him at the beginning of his music career. According to Drake, many labels had a hard time taking him seriously following his stint in Degrassi: The Next Generation. The Toronto native also believes he was doubted because he hails from Canada. "Canadians can make music," he quipped. For someone with four Grammys and a reported net worth of $150+ million, it may be time to let that chip go. 3. Drake would (definitely) most likely travel back to the early 2000s if he had a time machine. Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for SiriusXM Drake's nostalgic set at the Apollo included a bed and notebook filled with old rap lyrics. He reflected on times spent sleeping in a basement while dreaming of making a name for himself in the music industry. His stage outfits were also reminiscent of early 2000s fashion, with slick braids, an oversized jersey, a gold chain, baggy jeans, all-white Nike Air Force 1 sneakers, and conspicuous diamond earrings. I mean, does it get any more early 2000s than that? 4. Drake is fully committed to his "lover boy" act. View this photo on Instagram Instagram: @champagnepapi In 2021, Drake released his sixth studio album, Certified Lover Boy and it's clear he doesn't take the title lightly. Throughout his set, Drizzy swooned his devoted fans with songs like "Hold On, We're Going Home," "Controlla," and "Passionfruit." He closed out the show by serenading the audience with his own version of Ginuwine's "So Anxious." The moment was fitting, considering that he previously sampled the R&B track for his 2015 song, "Legend." 5. I'm 99.9% sure Drake has seen some of the backlash he gets online. Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for SiriusXM If you've been on the internet lately then you know that Drake has found himself in hot water on a few occasions. Most recently, he received backlash for lyrics referencing Megan Thee Stallion on his collaborative album, Her Loss. While Drake didn't address the recent backlash directly, he did say, "I know it’s the cool thing to do — if you wanna be hip — to be like, ‘Fuck Drake.’ ... People are like, 'Fuck Drake, don't listen to fucking Drake,' but I'll tell you that I deeply appreciate everybody just for continuing to support [me]." 6. The "Nice For What" rapper is very observant. Cindy Ord / Getty Images for SiriusXM In the middle of one performance, Drake pointed out a mini-altercation that broke out between fans. "I've never seen somebody fight and apologize for it," he joked. It was one of the few glimpses of his biting sense of humor that I wish we'd seen more of during his set. 7. Whether you hate him or love him, it's hard to deny that Drake has hits. Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for SiriusXM "I got more slaps than the Beatles," Drake proclaims in the 2019 song "Going Bad." Fun fact: it's true, and it was evident at the Apollo Theater as he ran through his catalog of hits, including Billboard chart-toppers like "Best I Ever Had," "Started From the Bottom," and "God's Plan." And if the earthquake-like ground shakes were any indication, the crowd loved every second of it, too. 8. 21 Savage brings out the best in frequent collaborator, Drake. Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for SiriusXM The energy in the building went, to quote Drake, "zero to 100" when 21 Savage arrived on stage to perform songs from their latest project, Her Loss. The synergy between the two rappers is truly one to witness. Drake even referred to 21 as his "favorite rapper on planet earth," and hinted at a joint tour this summer. Sidebar, I'd be lying if I said I didn't chuckle during their performance of "Rich Flex." If you haven't seen the TikTok memes, you're missing out. 9. Autotune is Drake's best friend. Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for SiriusXM It's one thing to hear an artist singing on wax, but it's another thing to hear them singing live. As an equal part rapper and singer, Drake was surprisingly pitchy while performing his more melodic tunes like "Marvin's Room." However, he hit his stride when he fully embraced autotune for songs like "Calling My Name." Hey, no one said he could be good at everything. 10. The moody, dark lighting during Drake's set was an interesting choice. Cindy Ord / Getty Images for SiriusXM Although I wasn't in the front row, there were several performances where it was extremely difficult to see anything besides a silhouette of the Grammy Award winner. I spoke to a fan outside of the venue who was up close, and they too were disappointed with the lack of visibility due to the lighting. Better luck next time. 11. Dipset really is an iconic hip-hop collective and deserves their flowers. Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for SiriusXM The Diplomats, also known as Dipset to every New Yorker, made a surprise appearance that was a true highlight of the show. Set against the backdrop of a bodega in Harlem, Cam'ron, Jim Jones, Juelz Santana, and Freekey Zekey hit the stage to remind anyone who may have forgotten exactly why they are considered hip-hop legends. Drake, a student of hip-hop, clearly understood their impact on the culture. The 36-year-old joined Dipset on stage wearing Cam'ron's original — and now iconic — pink mink coat and headband. "By the way, this Cam's actual mink...I just wanna make that clear. I didn't just get some new shit made, this is the real one," he boasted. Drake also paid tribute to another Harlem legend, rapper Big L, with a mural of the late emcee — who was murdered in 1999 — on the left side of the makeshift deli building. 12. Wait, what are Drake fans called?! Cindy Ord / Getty Images for SiriusXM As previously mentioned, the voracious crowd had the floors inside the Apollo Theater literally shaking. I couldn't help but wonder, what are Drake stans called? A quick Google search reminded me that they're known as Team Drizzy. In between recording footage to flex for the 'gram, Team Drizzy sang along to every word. At the end of the night, Drake returned the love, saying that he has "deep love" for them, too. Now I wanna know, have you ever been to a Drake concert? Did you enjoy your experience? Tell me in the comments below!