Tee Grizzley Brings Detroit to Los Angeles at The Roxy
It was a crisp October night when I stepped into The Roxy Theater Tuesday to see rising Detroit rapper Tee Grizzley perform a medley of hits from his latest project My Moment. I arrived around 8:30 and grabbed a drink from the bar, intrigued to see what Tee's openers had in store: Hardo, OMB Peezy and SadaBaby.
Hardo, whose record "Today's a Good Day" I heard earlier in the day on Beats 1 radio, set the vibe off for the night. With turnt energy and flashing lights, it didn't take long for him to jump in the crowd of the packed 500 person venue and mosh. Fans loved every second of it.
Next came OMB Peezy, who effectively won over the crowd after being on stage for two minutes. His personal DJ was struggling to get the sound to come from his laptop, so while there was awkward silence, OMB Peezy, walked around the small but intimate stage screaming, "on the count of three, say ,'Fuck the DJ and the sound man!' 1, 2, 3..." It consequently drew some laughs from the crowd, including myself. Once they figured it out, he ripped through a 25 minute set, as I quickly became surrounded by fans who were singing every word.
His final act, SadaBaby, who happened to be Tee Grizzley's right-hand man took the stage dressed in a vintage Detroit Pistons jersey rocking a royal blue bandana that draped down to the floor. Passionately delivering bars over his bass-heavy tracks, SadaBaby's set was just a prequel for the rowdiness that was to come.
"Ain't it a blessing?" asked Tee's DJ to the crowd before he hit the stage, playing hits like "Bodak Yellow" and "Bad and Boujee" to ensure that the energy would be pouring through the roof once the Detroit rapper touched the stage.
Once Tee Grizzley stepped out, pandemonium ensued as The Roxy turned into a straight party. Running through deep cuts off his latest album, it only took a few a songs for Tee to take a second and realize that Los Angeles was the "livest city on the tour. Believe that."
Starting with his more underground tracks, he swiftly moved into his more popular songs. That's when the energy skyrocketed. Lil Yachty-assisted song "From the D to the A" had everyone singing the chorus until he slyly ended the track a capella changing the chorus appropriately to "From the D to LA put respect on it..."
His two radio smashes "No Effort" and "First Day Out" ended the night while his crew partied on stage with him, flinging water into the crowd as every fan danced along to the Michigan native's tale of how he "went to trial back to back, bitch I'm 2-0." As if it wasn't enough, he even ran back "First Day Out" a second time simply because, "We're in LA. It's only right."
Going into the show, I honestly had no idea what to expect. Sure, Tee's gotten some love on the radio with a few of his singles, but I had no idea he would have so much charisma and energy on stage. And who knew his fans would be as great as they were?
Often I saw fans coming up to new Grizzley admirers, bonding over his music; people who were previously strangers threw all that in the rear view and enjoyed a night with their favorite artist. The doors of Los Angeles' Roxy clearly were a gateway to downtown Detroit on Tuesday and everything inside was a blessing.
Written by Corey Fuller