PITTSBURGH, Pennsylvania— Despite last week’s reported riff, Drake and Future found time to share the stage during Friday night’s Would You Like A Tour? kickoff in Pittsburgh — and they welcomed a certain Pennsylvania native to the stage as well.
What would transpire during Drake’s set in Pittsburgh wasn’t immediately evident in Future’s opening performance. Accompanied by a DJ with a set that included an exhilarating transition from “UOENO” to “Karate Chop” to “Bugatti,” Future seemingly avoided his opportunity to address his critical comments of Drake that were rumored to have put his involvement in the tour at risk.
Following a set by Miguel, the stage was reassembled with a lit-up, ring-shaped platform and Drake immediately began running through past hits and new music, starting by splitting the six-minute “Tuscan Leather” in half to squeeze “Headlines” and “Crew Love” in between. After a performance of “No New Friends,” the Toronto native stopped the music to address the situation involving Future.
“I try my best to stay away from the bullsh–,” he said. “I got my brother here with me, and together we are the future.”
Future then made his way to the stage, singing the chorus to his and Drake’s “Love Me.” Drake then watched on as Future performed “I’m Just Being Honest” and “Same Damn Time,” which brought Drake to his feet as the energy weaved through the amped-up audience.
The focus then returned to the night’s headliner, and Drake’s transitions were seamless as he ran through his verses on “Versace,” “F—in’ Problem,” “The Motto” and “HYFR.” He then slowed things down a bit when songstress Jhene Aiko for “Come Thru” and “From Time.”
Following a brief DJ set that took the audience on a journey through Drake’s early music career from “Successful” to “No Lie,” smoke filled the stage as Drake arose from a platform to sing the now-ubiquitous “I got my eyes on you” opening line of “Hold On, We’re Going Home.” And after performing a few more tracks from Nothing Was the Same, Drake surprised the audience with one final guest.
“I’ve made a lot of songs but never an anthem like this,” he said as Pittsburgh MC Wiz Khalifa’s “Black & Yellow” began playing. People seated throughout the audience stood and scrambled closer to the stage as Wiz appeared and performed his 2010 hit.
After a few more NWTS tracks, Drake performed “All Me” before concluding the performance with “Started From the Bottom,” as lights shot from the corners of the stage toward the ceiling and fireworks exploded above the audience.