No Balls, No Glory; A Polaroid Story

ORANGE SWAG

Posted in ODD FUTURE, Polaroids by Ouni on May 9, 2011

Amsterdam 30/04/11,



 - taken with Impossible Project Black Frame Polaroid - 

Not bad hu?

I used the black ones. :-)

honestly? I was saving those for Hova.

What…?

Of course I will snap Jigga Man aka Shawn Carter one day. #Kanyeshrug

But I had to try that film out first anyway and I thought…

If there was ànyone else that would match with this type of film, yeah… than ODD FUTURE would fit the bill perfectly.

Here above you can see 4 members of the LA based collective called ODD FUTURE aka OFWGKTA on Polaroid.

If you are still wondering who the fuck ODD FUTURE is, well then my dear friend, you are clearly not part of this digital era and you landed on my blog by accident. Which is fine of course. Welcome!

The first time I heard about ODD FUTURE was a year ago. I stumbled upon their Tumblr while surfing the web but I remember not having the time to check it all out because 4 mixtapes and 8 studio albums, that’s a lot to digest you know.

The second time I heard about ODD FUTURE was while I was interviewing MARK RONSON. He told me that I really had to check out their music, and although he was telling me that he himself might be to old for it, he definitely wanted me to check out their music.

He especially mentioned Tyler The Creator & Earl Sweatshirt. So when I came home, I did my homework and downloaded the Odd Future RADICAL mixtape.

Odd Future consists of Tyler The Creator, Hodgy Beats, Earl Sweatshirt, Frank Ocean, Syd tha Kyd, Domo Genesis, Mike G, Matt Martians, Jasper Dolphin & Taco. (amongst others)

There are 3 sub-groups within the main group:

MellowHype  - with Hodgy Beats (rapping) & Left Brain (producing) -

The Jet Age Of Tomorrow – producers Mat Martians & Hal Williams (SUPER3

Earlwolf  - combo with Tyler & Earl -

Yeah… those kids are definitely keeping themselves busy, what can I say.

The very first track I heard from Tyler was this one.

The first track I heard from Earl was this one

Only a few months after I interviewed Mark Ronson the whole OF hype exploded all over the internet on blogs, magazines and the word of one sold out show after the other was spreading like a disease and suddenly the name Odd Future was a household name in the game.

Things got even worse after they played the Coachella and SXSW festival.

I mean, I could hardly keep up with all the news surrounding Odd Future. And did I mention all the concern about their lyrics?

OK, I raised a brow here and there when I really took the time to check out all their lyrics, and you probably wont see me lip syncing their rape inspired lyrics or “Like Ellen Degeneres clitoris is playing with dick.” or “It’s fucking immaculate the way your daughter smacking dicks” but in all honesty there was something I found really interesting about the group.

I think a lot of kids can somewhat relate to having no real adults or parents in your life, I mean, even I went through that “me against the world” phase and fuck all of you who have parents, I want to kill yours and I wish I could kill mine. Or something.

And when this video came out, I didn’t find it ‘shocking’ or ‘disturbing’ I thought it was brilliant. Less is definitely fucking more!

This video to me was the confirmation that Tyler was above all extremely talented. He got that aura.

YONKERS is the first single from Tyler’s second solo album called GOBLIN officially out today (!) May 10th.

Definitely check out his first solo album called BASTARD aswell. You can download it for free here.

These are a few of my favorite track of the BASTARD album

A lot of ink has been spilled about the group and especially about Tyler lately,  it annoyed him, hell it even annoyed me a little bit. I thought it was so predictable for the press to constantly fall over his swearing.  I think the kid is talented as – excuse my french – FUCK.

Now, nobody can predict in what direction these individuals will go, because even though Odd Future is a group, they are individuals with each their own interests, personal Tumbler/Twitter page and each their own collaborations.

Tyler & Hodgy working with Om’Mas Keith from SA RA , Frank Ocean working with Pharrell Williams, hell even Beyoncewas spotted in the studio with Frank Ocean. Rumours of Diddy wanting to sign them. I mean. The whole world is tapping on the back of these kids and it looked like even the big boys in the industry were dying to get a piece of  ‘Odd Future Fresh’.

I think I could go on an on about Odd Future, I mean, every second a Tweet is spilling out something new about the group, but if I somewhat triggered your attention I suggest you hit the web, and follow them on Twitter and Tumbler and form your own opinion whether you are going to jump on that GOLF WANG train or not.

Now.

This is the fuckin story.

So uhm… the OFWGKTA Belgium concert tickets sold out before I could say ODD FUTURE WOLF GANG KILL THEM ALL.

So I did what I always do and asked The Mighty Web for help.  After I volunteered or begged, depends how you look at it, twice (?!) to be someone’s plus one/date to the Belgian Odd Future concert on Twitter and that was clearly not going anywhere,  I realised that I probably had to try to contact some big shot at the Odd Future management department in order to

a) get into the concert

b) get some time for a Polaroid with the Wolf Gang.

After some online research I quickly found out that a man called Christian Clancy is responsible for all things Odd Future management wise.

I watched this interview with him and I don’t know, but this man looked like the type of dude I could actually have a real nice conversation with in another lifetime. Does that sound awkward? I don’t know, I knew that if I could reach this person in one way or another, I might have good chance in getting my Polaroids.

although I really hate doing that, I decided to message him via Facebook and pitched my blog. As expected I didn’t get any reply. At least I tried.

In the meantime the date for the OF Belgian concert came closer and closer and I knew I had to step it up a little to get what I wanted.

Desperate times call for desperate measures, so I couldn’t think of anything better than ask my followers on Twitter to help me and tweet Christian Clancy that he had to check his Facebook mail and needed to contact me asap.

I have awesome supporters from all over the globe, so I think I could vouch for a dozen of tweets directed to him, but it was in vain, because even that trick didn’t really work out. It remained silent from the OF management camp.

Can you blame them? Here you are managing a group that in over little than a year the whole damn world wants some something from. My twitter timeline has been infected with Odd Future related content for the past 3 months.

Terry Richardson here, Nardwuar there. NME there, BBC here, Billboard Magazine there. Jimmy Fallon here, SXSW there.

And so on and on and on and…

If you think I had àny aspirations of getting an email back for a feature on thìs little blog….?

Ttrust me, I did not.

Anyway, when suddenly The Mighty Web was spitting out the big news that Odd Future signed with Sony/Red Distribution for their own record deal, I decided to send an email to that side of the industry aswell. Unfortunately my connection was on holiday and it looked like  even that angle didn’t seem to work out.

In a final act of despair I decided to put a last request for help on Facebook, and asked  if there was someone, ANYONE that  could -PLEASE- help me with an Odd Future ticket.

I was ready to throw the towel into the ring after that one untill suddenly a girl named NAI SAM replied:

“Yo Ouni. I got a ticket for you.’

I recently worked together with Nai Sam for a little LACOSTE thingie and apparently Nai Sam is a hùge Odd Future fan.

She told me that she didn’t want to go to the concert, because it was Queensday, and that reminded her of some very traumatic past experiences (something to do with going to the toilet and stuck between to many people) and that she didn’t want go to the concert and that I could have not 1 but even 2 tickets!

I didn’t really understand what she meant with Queensday untill it hit me… Nai Sam didn’t have tickets for the Belgian concert, she had tickets for the concert in Amsterdam!

You know. The one that sold out in uhm… 2 minutes?

Now things were getting réally interesting. Queensday in Holland is quite….special. The whole country is drenched in Orange and people go ALL out like they can only do in Holland, and if you are not a fan of loud situations with a lot of people dressed in orange…well…than Queensday might not be for you.

So Nai-Sam decided that this situation was indeed not for her, and she gave me the tickets.

I immediately hit the web and announced that I needed a serious assistant to feature the story with me in Amsterdam. I thought my mail would be spammed with volunteers but it turned out that there were fewer people interested than I expected.

I was like…- ???? – Did nobody want to go to Holland to check out OF in concert with me for free?!

(I did have some offers from some of my male friends, but it’s already hard enough for me to get backstage, let along if I take a dude with me…)

Later that night I received another email from Nai-Sam.

“Ouni. I’ve been thinking. Can I please come with you to the concert and be your assistant? I thought about it and it just doesn’t make any sense that I would not go, since I am such a massive Odd Future fan, I mean, my friends asked me to stop talking about Hodgy & Frank Ocean and Earl Sweatshirt  because they don’t even know who these people are and I use those names too much in 1 sentence and I mean, I just hàve to go, and I think I’ll just have to put my issues with the whole Queensday on the side… What do you think?”

Haha. You gotta love Nai Sam.

How could I refuse the girl who gave me tickets in the first place! I was glad she was going with me and I thought it was only right that she would be the one to assist me, ìf there was any chance of getting a Polaroid picture ofcourse.

I didn’t hesitate to go, Queensday or not, hell could freeze over, I’d still go.  Foremost because I wanted the check out the concert first. I had no expectations for a Polaroid picture what so ever and I told Nai Sam the same thing. I was simply very curious to see them in an actual live performance.

And so on saturday morning 30th of April we took the train to Amsterdam, straight into the Queensday madness and ready for the Odd Future anarchy chaos.

The minute we arrived in Amsterdam, things went smooth. Sun was shining, and although it looked like the whole country was hanging on the streets of Amsterdam, we arrived perfectly on time at the Paradiso venue, where the OF concert was scheduled.

Here are some quick disposable snaps I took from the Orange Madness during my way from the station to the venue.

(I’m really not happy with the colours of these disposables. I tried another lab that developed them much quicker but the colours turned out very ashy. I told you before analogue clearly equals patience, and if you are not, you might not be happy with the results….)

At exactly 3PM we walked into an empty concert hall. The concert was scheduled at 5PM.

I immediately told Nai Sam that we had to make a decision if we would go front row or not. I’m not afraid to go front row, I think I have proved that in numerous occasions, I even risked my precious camera in the liquid madness concert from Meth & Red. Remember?

But that day I had not 1 but 2 Polaroid cameras with me and we both decided that I really could nòt risk my cameras being smashed by the Vans of some dude doing a dropkick while he jumped into the crowd.  I mean…that would be…unfortunate. No?

So we positioned ourselves safely on the left corner of the stage and waited.

I was afraid that Nai Sam would be bored quickly from all the waiting and that she would be annoyed a little bit, but I forgot one essential element about Nai Sam.

She is a model. And you know about models and waiting….they kick ass at it.  It was a match made in heaven.

So we waited. We had serious doubts that the venue would be packed. There were not so many people the first hour and it looked like with the sun shining and Queensday in full effect, people would not come to an indoor concert.  But around half an hour before the concert the venue slowly started to fill up.

When the group’s DJ & sound engineer, Syd the Kyd came to the stage, it was the official kick off of approximately 90 minutes of complete madness.

It took 40 seconds for the first stage dive to happen. Well. Actually you can check it yourself.

Exhibit:

There was even a dude who jumped off the balcony and smashed right into the stage and nearly missed the PA/sound engineer. I can assure you, the sound guy  was nòt amused. :-)

It was complete insanity. Both Tyler, Hodgy & Left Brain jumped in and out of the crowd during their performance, the audience were yelling WOLF! GANG !WOLF! GANG! like they were obsessed by a demon called SWAG and the moshpit was a very desired place to hang out and share some elbows, fists, legs and ripped shirts.

But all the madness aside I really looked at their performance. I came to this concert slightly skeptic. I’ve been to so many concerts by now, to know that it’s a very underestimated job to keep an audience entertained.

And for this upcoming collective that all of sudden has been called THE NEW thìs , THE NEW thàt, it’s very easy to fall from that pedestal.

But honestly. I was happily surprised. I saw a massive focus in especially Tyler & Hodgy their eyes. They give attention to all sides of the venue, They never stopped running back, forth and to the middle of the stage. Looking left, right, and up. Something I also noticed with Pharrell Williams, and we all know I saw enough N.E.R.D. concerts by now. :-)

It might seem weird, but while they were performing you could see somewhere in their eyes that they could not believe that they were standing in Amsterdam in a sold out venue with 1200 insane Odd Future fans.

It’s nice to see that look in an artist eyes, you know, a certain look that shows that they are still surprised of what they see and not yet used to all the perks of fame and sold out venues are not just another day of work.

All the FUCKS, BITCHES, SWAG and SUCK MY DICKs aside, for such a young band I had nothing but respect watching them perform. I mean, a year a go these kids were skating the LA streets, now they are touring the world and scheduled on huge festivals!!

Sure the performance was very guerilla style, but I really enjoyed the few acapella’s Tyler & Hogdy did. You can say a lot of things about their performance, but it definitely was not boring.

Here are some disposable snaps I took during the concert:

Exhibits:

The concert finished with an INSANE stage raid requested by Tyler and you know…people took that invitation very seriously.

Exhibit:

Shit was hilarious. People were going completely mental and kept on yelling the RADICAL lyrics: “KILL PEOPLE, BURN SHIT, FUCK SCHOOL.”

The whole thing just cracked me up for some reason, I’ve seen a lot of insane stuff, but that was fucking intense. Hahaha.

Definitely check out this video to capture the real essence of Odd Future intensity that sunny afternoon in Amsterdam.

Exhibit:

And another angle

All the madness aside, it was time for me and Nai Sam to focus as FUCK.  I briefed her about the manager that we need to grab whenever we had the chance. We left our safe left corner and jumped right into the stage raid madness, I tried to snap some final disposables when I suddenly noticed Christian Clancy.

He was clearly looking for his OF members in between the huge crowd that invaded the stage. I immediately went straight to him and reached for his pants (he was standing high above me on the stage) and pulled it.

He looked down to see who was grabbing his pants when he noticed me. I immediately pitched my blog or better, yelled about my blog because I was standing next to a massive soundsystem who was blasting dub step tunes right into my ear.

I told him that I already tried to contact him via Facebook and Twitter about the possibility for me to take some Polaroids and if he would please consider my request.

He asked me: “So all you want is a Polaroid picture.”

I replied (or yelled): “YES.”

He asked me to wait untill he came back and he left the stage.

Nai Sam asked me: “Will he come back…?”

I told her: “That my friend, is something we’ll just have to see. Maybe no, Maybe so. But if he is not back in 15 minutes, we are checking the outsides of the venue.”

But my positive instincts about Christian Clancy were right, and he did came back and pulled me on stage and I pulled Nai Sam on stage and I told her: “Whatever happens backstage, make sure you get the disposable exhibits.” and before we knew it, we were descending some dark stairs and I hear Christian telling me: “I didn’t tell them yet, so we’ll have to see how they feel about it.”

He opened the door to the backstage, I noticed Tyler still out of breath from the concert in his bare chest with a towel hanging around his neck.

He told Tyler:”These girls would love a Polaroid picture, what do you think?”

Tyler looked up, slightly curious,  nodded and said: “Sure”

I didn’t really knew what to do, I didn’t really felt like pushing Tyler to take the picture, I wanted him to do it whenever he was up for it,  so while Tyler was fooling around a bit on a piano standing in the hallway, I carefully took out my Polaroid cameras and placed them on the piano.

Exhibit:

In the meantime Sid, Hodgy and Left Brain all arrived in the backstage area and I quickly explained them that I just needed one Polaroid and that I would be out before they even knew it.

Every single one of them was very receptive to my request, I especially liked Hodgy, he was very playful and simply very nice; asking my name, telling me how he liked how it sounded.  They all were very nice of course but I was personally  drawn to Hodgy after watching him perform.

What can I say. The kid got talent. :-)

It all went very quickly because I wanted to respect the time Christian gave me and not hang around for no reason, so I did what I came to do, positioned every single one of them against a white wall and it was on.

3.2.1. Flashing. Lights. Bingo.

Exhibits:

Syd the Kyd

Tyler, The Creator

Hodgy Beats

Left Brain

And that was it. I didn’t really have the time to really thank Christian, he was too busy running everywhere and no where, so if you are reading this mister Christian Clancy: THANK YOU for giving me some time for my blog. I really appreciate the fact that you took 5 minutes of your time to listen to my request and took me with you backstage.

And that was it, my dear troopers, readers and supporters.

Nai Sam, being the massive Odd Future fan she is, was in an ultimate high, still not fully grasping what just happened.

She was like: “OMG. I am SO happy I decided to come with you.”

Things couldn’t be more perfect. A concert on a sunny saturday afternoon in an Orange dipped Amsterdam.

What else can one wish for?

When I came home, I received a reply from the person in charge of all press requests for the Odd Future Belgian concert with the message that “guestlist was completely full ” and my request was denied.

I smiled.

and pushed PLAY while doing my  victory dance.

Love,

Ouni

Very special thanks and massive shout out to my assistant of the day, the lovely, awesome and dope NAI SAM. #SWAG

3 Responses

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  1. Richard said, on May 10, 2011 at 14:03

    Howdy,

    first timer on your blog, but I like it already.
    Cool objective, nicely written with colorful vocab, and I can only imagine the satisfaction felt when you succeed and go home with the pictures you wanted.

    Cheers

    Richard

  2. thepearlmic said, on May 13, 2011 at 21:47

    This was dope, Ouni. I was buggin’ out when I first saw Yonkers on MTV’s Sucker Free countdown a few weeks back. He is repping L.A. in a whole different way. Sounds like the easiest concert that you have worked so far though. If you are ever in Los Angeles and you need an assistant, let a sista know. haha

  3. Shaadiq Haynes said, on May 25, 2011 at 15:42

    I was there In A’dam, too and I gotta say you really managed to describe the special vibe durin’ the concert (in both pictures and in words). I do understand Nai Sam’s restraint -all that orange made me sick to my stomach- but I forgot all about that watching dozens of kids climbin’ that stage havin’ the time of their life… I just stumbled upon your blog via Twitter, and I gotta say I love reading your stuff, keep up the good work!


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