Expectations for homecoming events were at an all-time high following a year of COVID cancellations. The homecoming concert, the big event leading up to the game, needed to be exciting.
When LSU Campus Life booked Swae Lee as the headliner for the homecoming concert, students shared their reactions on Twitter. Most students knew of the musical artist, but not all were thrilled with the selection. Students made jokes and shared their desired performers.
"They should’ve got Drake but he probably too expensive," said political science freshman Patrick Connelly.
Imagine failing a mid term in himes and walking out to hear swae Lee talking bout no flex zone— $ ko $ (@korentairez) October 12, 2021
To many students' surprise, Swae Lee began interacting with students before the concert. He retweeted positive comments from students anticipating his performance and responded to a few negative comments as well.
Swae Lee tweeted at one student, "I hope you miss out."
Swae Lee is best known for being half of hip hop duo Rae Sremmurd, which is responsible for the song/viral dance combo "Black Beatles." His musical success caused him to be surprised by the negative reactions to the concert announcement, but he did not take any of the comments personally.
"I was shocked for a minute, like yo what? It's all fun, cause you know it's uneducated Twitter fingers," Swae Lee said.
The shock disappeared when Swae Lee peeked at the crowd before heading to the stadium.
"In reality, it's going to be like this, cause you see what's outside. It's packed out, everybody excited. Just shows you the difference between real-life and social media, this is a perfect example." Swae Lee said.
As soon as the Homecoming Court presentation ended and the beat for "No Flex Zone" dropped, the crowd went crazy and the negative energy evaporated.
Freshman biology student Cameron Duval was lucky enough to have Swae Lee borrow her phone to record a video.
"Event of a lifetime for me, I'll remember this forever. I'm thriving," Duval said.
Turned out they were all turnt really was just TL outrage but the energy was diff in person https://t.co/aXACTsiF9c— Ugo (@ugo1of1) October 13, 2021
After finishing his set and exiting the stage, Swae Lee ran back up for an encore performance to leave a lasting impression for fans.
"Corona must have made them forget who I was." Swae Lee said.
The concert did much more than help students to remember who Swae Lee was. For the first time since 2019, students were able to enjoy a campus tradition halted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Older students were given a reminder of a time before masks and social distancing, and the freshmen and sophomores got to enjoy a new experience.
Sophomores in particular were able to discover what they missed out on last year.
"[LSU] didn't have this last year but this year, they definitely made an effort. I feel like they're doing a pretty good job," said business and fashion merchandising sophomore Simone Sears.
Swae Lee's memorable performance kicked off the homecoming festivities and set the tone for the rest of homecoming week. Students now look toward the return of Fall Fest and most importantly, the homecoming game on Saturday.