EAST RUTHERFORD, New Jersey — Lil Wayne stood tall this weekend. While major acts from Mötley Crüe to 30 Seconds to Mars and Wiz Khalifa all rocked the 2011 Bamboozle festival in the Meadowlands parking lot, it was Weezy who capped off the party with his Sunday set, which went on for a little over an hour.
With the sun completely set on a brisk 53-degree Jersey night, Wayne took the stage, wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and blue fitted cap, and spit his verse to Drake’s “I’m Going In.” Tunechi fired up his band as he went on to thrill the crowd of thousands with his I Am Not a Human Being cut “Bill Gates” and Chris Brown’s “Look at Me Now,” before launching into a rock-tinged version of “A Milli.” The crowd remained in full support throughout, shouting song lyrics on each of Wayne’s cues, rapping “OK, you’re a goon, but what’s a goon to a goblin,” as DJ 45 dropped out the beat.
While some expected a star-studded guest list, the Young Money boss proved that he needed no help, though he did invite Mack Maine onstage for “Got Money” and “Every Girl in the World.” Birdman also emerged from backstage to do his 2009 hit “Money to Blow.” There was no Nicki and no Drake, but Wayne made sure to rep for his YM soldiers, rocking Drizzy’s “Miss Me” and “Forever.”
In the past, Bamboozle has catered more to the punk and rock crowd. And though 2011 featured more hip-hop acts than ever before, Wayne gave a nod to the festival’s history and dusted off tracks from his rock project Rebirth, jamming “Prom Queen” and “Drop the World.”
Still, it is Weezy’s upcoming album that seems to have his fans most excited these days. So when the DJ began to play Harry Belafonte’s “Banana Boat,” transforming the song into Tha Carter IV ’s first single, “6 Foot, 7 Foot,” the crowd embraced the set-closing song with open arms.
As fans bounced toward the exits, it was clear, on a weekend that showcased over 100 acts on nine different stages, it was Lil Wayne who stood as number one.