It’s not often you get to witness someone of Pitbull’s stature end a concert by announcing he has diarrhea. However that’s what happened on the first Canadian stop of the Planet Pit World Tour at Rogers Arena. The Cuban-American battle rapper turned global pop superstar thanked the crowd and complimented the city. Then he announced he got Montezuma’s Revenge in Mexico a few days ago and hurried off the stage without doing an encore.
Mr. Worldwide’s diarrhea isn’t the only thing that’s currently exploding. He put out his sixth and best selling album to date, Planet Pit , back in June and videos for five singles he’s released or appeared on in the past year have clocked over a billion YouTube views. The guy sitting shotgun on the tour, Flo Rida, is no slouch either. He’s moved over 40 million singles and currently has the number one song on iTunes Canada. Though it was surprisingly poorly attended, that didn’t put a damper on the party. The bridge-and-tunnel crowd, sporting only the finest tribal tattoos and bejewelled Ed Hardy gear, wouldn’t even let the show starting 45 minutes late keep them from knocking back Mike’s Hard Lemonades and having a fist-pumping good time.
Flo Rida boldly started with his biggest tune, “Right Round”, and easily kept the crowd excited for the whole show. Whenever the hit-maker from a yet-to-be-determined U.S. state commanded “put your hands in the air” those in attendance always obliged enthusiastically. The only hiccup was a cringe-inducing pop interlude courtesy of 16-year-old Tyler Medeiros from Toronto. Fortunately, that agony immediately ended when Flo Rida returned and performed monster hits “Club Can’t Handle Me” and “Wild Ones” before finishing with “Good Feeling”.
It didn’t go so well for Pitbull. A few songs into his set he launched into “International Love”. The song, which could be the most unintentionally ironic pop anthem ever penned is dedicated to women all over the world while featuring a hook sung by Chris Brown who so famously Auto-Tuned Rihanna’s face. A few minutes in and the sound went out and the big screen was off then flashing the Pioneer Electronics logo. Oops. Pitbull, like a pro, proceeded like nothing had gone wrong and began the next number.
He played all his current hits, a few old ones like “Culo” and even did a medley of popular songs he’s done guest appearances on. Despite six albums of original material, a sizable chunk of the show was devoted to playing club hits by Black Eyed Peas, Martin Solveig, LMFAO (twice!) and others while he salsa danced in his finely tailored suit and encouraged the crowd to make some noise. It was Pavlov gone awry, a Pitbull ringing a bell and making an audience salivate even though they shouldn’t.
The show ended with “Give Me Everything”, the biggest hit off Planet Pit . It would have been nice if Pitbull gave us everything. Instead, attendees got all the hits and nothing more. Salsa dancing with the runs can’t be comfortable and it didn’t seem like anyone who bought a ticket left disappointed. Clearly we’ve become too complacent with the entertainment at Rogers Arena. He was, after all, on a stage just metres above where we’ve seen Roberto Luongo crap the bed in far more epic fashion.