Amidst the ambient violet stage lights and thin haze of downtown Baltimore’s Pier Six Pavilion, Sir Bobby Hall II exclaimed to his hometown fans, “My name is Logic, and I represent one thing and one thing only. Do y’all know what that is?” The question was rhetorical—it was met with overwhelming affirmation and elated screams of “peace, love, and positivity!”

Thursday night (Aug 10), Logic was home. His Everybody’s Tour had brought him back to Maryland for the first time in a year —just 45 miles from his childhood residence in Gaithersburg, Md. Now, in the same city where he’d once performed at a Joe’s Crab Shack for a crowd of roughly 30, Logic commanded a lively mob of 4,000. Between songs, he reminisced about the times in his youth he’d spent standing in the reflection of his television screen, microphone (TV remote) in hand, pretending to perform for throngs of thousands. For the biracial boy from Gaithersburg, that fantasy had become reality.

Photo taken by Jacob Trask

Scattered among the masses were members of Logic’s immediate family, including his sister Amber and his father Robert. His godmother Mary Jo, who took him in at age 13 and helped raise him when his parents were unstable, stood at the front of section 103.

Logic has always been candid about his troubled upbringing—his brothers sold drugs, his father lost decades to addiction, and his mother cast misguided racism towards her seven biracial children. Logic was alienated from his family and his community, which, due to his light complexion, prejudged him as a sheltered white boy incapable of understanding or falling victim to his own surroundings. These experiences instilled a crisis of identity in him at a young age—a crisis he’s worked to overcome through music. Everybody—the tour’s namesake album and Logic’s first No. 1 project—is a manifestation of his double-edged perspective and the struggles he faced because of it.

“I remember running around these same streets, unsure of myself… looking for acceptance,” he admitted. It wasn’t until he learned to accept himself, he said, that he began to find his true voice.

For such an acute rags to riches story, Logic lacks the shiny braggadocio of artists like Jay-Z or A$AP Rocky. He’s confident and comfortable, but never arrogant. His style is a little safer, a little more accessible, and the youth of the Baltimore crowd reflected that. Logic’s appeal isn’t rooted in wealth or gaudiness, but his nerdy “regular guy-ness.” The separation a listener might feel from a modern rap star disappears because of it. Where most rappers might spend hours popping D’usse in the club’s VIP lounge, Logic would rather write or play Street Fighter—things far more relatable for the rest of us.

To that point, Everybody is not made exclusively for those who grew up in section eight housing, or conversely for those cruising Biscayne Bay in convertible V8 roadsters. It’s made for, well, everybody. Its creator is a human being with human problems that he wants to work through over wax. Instead of violence and scantily clad women, he’s discussing his struggle with nicotine addiction. Cuts like “Anziety” and “1-800-273-8255” are made as pop tracks for the masses, tackling anxiety, depression, and despair—subjects that are often behind the creation of rap music (ie: Lil Uzi’s “XO Tour Llif3,” Future’s “Sorry”) but rarely discussed as the focal points of the songs themselves. Logic maintains that, though these mental afflictions will persist, it’s healthy to vocalize your insecurities and sufferings—in fact it’s necessary. No individual is immune or exempt; everybody is born equal and every life is valuable.

It’s this message of equality and acceptance that is the driving force of Everybody—a broad message delivered so emphatically over 13 tracks that it becomes watered down at times, at least when listening through the album cover-to-cover.

But where the album is an amicable discussion of race, vulnerability, and identity, Everybody’s Tour is all about fun. There were no long-winded rants about the current state of the union or wordy diatribes about artistic integrity, just repeated confirmations that those in attendance are having a damn good time.

 

Photo Taken by Jacob Trask

And a damn good time it was. Logic was loose and smiling all night, breaking periodically to interact with the crowd and to rally self-loving chants like “I’m special.” He called attention to a man in a Super Mario body suit as well as a fan that had worn a space helmet (in the vein of The Incredible True Story) to the show. A man named Christopher, celebrating his 30th birthday, received the loudest rendition of “Happy Birthday” he’ll ever hear.

Talented keyboardist Will Wells was put on the spot when Logic prompted him to display funky dance moves to MC Hammer’s “U Can’t Touch This,” as well as Playboy Carti’s “Magnolia,” much to the audience’s delight. Wells’s dance performance was arguably one-upped by Logic’s assistant Juan, who crushed a silent tribute to Michael Jackson—moonwalk, crotch thrusts, and all.

Logic even incorporated an intermission for a round of Mario Kart with a competitive crew member named Schwi. For Schwi, the contest ended in heartbreak. Logic’s on-tour undefeated streak remains intact—even Lil Yachty couldn’t take him down in Minnesota.

Ultimately, Logic isn’t trying to be anything he’s not. The Young Sinatra spitter has found his message and he’s visibly excited to share it with the world. He’s personal and personable—never pompous or cooler-than-thou in the face of his success. It’s easy to see why his fan base is so loyal.

Not to mention the MC can rap circles around almost anyone in the game. Between songs, Logic flexed his chops as a verbal contortionist, wowing the crowd with insane breath control. In terms of technical rapping ability, you’d be hard pressed to find a more talented orator than Logic. That talent isn’t lost on stage—his tongue-twisting flows aren’t the product of any studio magic. His rapid-fire delivery was tested, though, during the show’s encore.

After the second verse of booming Under Pressure favorite “Gang Related,” Logic noticed a young man in the front row actually keeping up with his intricate rhymes and invited him to the stage (an act Logic has repeated multiple times throughout Everybody’s Tour). TJ, just 16, was challenged to keep up with Logic through the verse. When he succeeded, Logic accelerated the tempo. Again, TJ matched his flow. When it was clear Logic had met his match, TJ was presented with a signed (and worn) hat—a symbol of his victory.

 

 

Andrew Foerch

Images taken by Jacob Trask