Friday evening, 40,000 people traveled to Paris La Défense Arena, in Nanterre, to see 50 Cent celebrate the twentieth anniversary of his very first album, Get Rich or Die Tryin'. A classic. Twenty-year-olds therefore mingled with thirty-year-olds, forty-year-olds and even fifty-year-olds in the pit and the crowded stands. But before seeing him on stage, the New York rapper spared his effects. Like any self-respecting artist, he obviously did not start at the time indicated on the poster, namely 7 p.m.
Singer Jeremih was in charge of the first part... while the audience took their seats in the room. At 8:35 p.m., after a few whistles of discontent, Busta Rhymes entered. Accompanied by his sidekick Spliff Star, the 51-year-old rapper, always all smiles and ready to do some humor, offered a medley of his best tracks. On Look At Me Now, he showed that he has lost none of his energy or his fast delivery. His passage closed with a powerful “Don’t this shit make a nigga wanna, jump jump!” from Pass the Courvoisier (Part II). The room is on fire. But it will quickly cool down while we wait for the one they all came to see.
At 10:02 p.m., the lights went out again, sirens rang out to pierce the eardrums, a transparent rectangle surrounded by neon and smoke then opened to reveal 50 Cent! We on Some Shit, Wanksta, I Get Money, Hate It or Love It, If I Can't, Magic Stick, How we do, Just a Lil Bit, Ayo Technology... The rapper played a series of titles. For Candy Shop, one of his biggest successes, the artist took some time out to reappear suspended in the middle of moving screens.
Disco Inferno, Window Shopper, Best Friend, 21 Questions... Throughout the show, 50 Cent was surrounded by former G-Unit member Tony Yayo and Uncle Murda. Rapper obliges, scantily clad dancers regularly came on stage to twerk lasciviously. Unusual in rap concerts, musicians mixed in with the instrumentals. Like Beyoncé, the artist took out part of her Louis Vuitton wardrobe for the occasion. Like Arturo Brachetti, 50 Cent even went from a red tracksuit to a white outfit in just a few seconds and then reproduced the same effect with several shirts... Louis Vuitton. Still without giving up her huge diamond necklaces, diamond rings and luxury watch.
In the stands, some spectators were wild, chanting the words of the titles in chorus. Others made video calls to share their moment. For Put It Down on Me, Jeremih returned to the stage. The singer then sang Birthday Sex on the piano, on which a young woman finished with her legs apart and the artist's head in the middle of her thighs.
The show was punctuated by a tribute to Pop Smoke, killed by bullets in February 2020 and by the broadcast of the interview with Duane “Keefe D”, charged with the murder of Tupac Shakur 27 years after the fact. At 11:12 p.m., In Da Club, lasers and confetti seemed to mark the end of the concert but 50 Cent returned for another twenty-five minutes. If some were won over by the show, others were left wanting more and would have liked it to last a little longer. As a consolation prize, they will be able to endlessly rewatch the videos filmed with their smartphone.