(Photo credit: Sasha Huckoby)
“From the ground up, pound up, it’s Taylor Gang.”

Last sunday night, Wiz Khalifa and a few of his Taylor Gang artists on his Taylor Gang record label cruised through Santa Barbara to close our city’s busiest week of the year. Fiesta, a week-long culturally enriched celebration of the Old Spanish Days. Technically speaking, he did not come to Santa Barbara for that reason. But, if the shoe fits and gives us one more excuse to keep the party going, then celebrate, we shall.

First up, a little lady named Raven Felix hit the stage for a quick set to hype the crowd. A talented, baby-faced up and coming rapper. While Felix may only be 20 years young, she’s already collaborated with some of musics best, like Snoop Dogg and Too $hort. With such a stage commanding presence, she kept the people entertained. I see you, girl.

Following Felix, Taylor Gang’s Chevy Woods jumped on and somewhat set the tone of the evening. The Pittsburgh rapper released his newest mixtape this month titled The 48 Hunnid Project, a beat driven party to your ears. I’d suggest listening to him while you and your friends are prefunking, partying, or anytime, really. Can I have one of your chains, Mr. Woods? Definitely give him a listen if you’re a hip hop head!

Wiz, we’re going to let you and the Taylor Gang give the people what they paid for, but DJ Drama showed up and showed out. Believe me when I tell you that the entire Santa Barbara Bowl did not stop dancing for his entire set. Drama, also a Philadelphia native, is one of the biggest DJ’s in the mixtape world. A powerhouse in his own right, Drama’s worked with a long list of the best of the best, including T. I., Pharrell and OutKast. It was really cool to see such a vast crowd participation. Come back soon, Drama – maybe for like, my birthday next month? Idk.

And just as night falls, a smoke-filled sea of bucket hats (no lie) and elated faces (mine included) prepare for our favorite 4-20 friendly Pittsburgh baby. Okay, i’m not even going to lie though, who knew Wiz was only 27, turning 28 next month? Only one year older than me? Like, what have I done with my life? Whatever. We’re both just out here like, Young, Wild & Free. Bravo, fellow Virgo, bravo.

Wiz played all the hits and gave us all the moves. He-did-not-stop-moving. Like, so much energy. When it’s more complicated than usual to focus your camera on the artist, you know you’re about to witness a pretty epic show.

Closing the show with his newest single, “See You Again,” which is the film, Furious 7’s anthem resonated pretty close to home. This song was written based on Santa Barbara’s own, Paul Walker, who tragically passed away in the making of this movie. I’m not sure if Wiz is aware that this was Walker’s home, but for as many times as I saw Paul rocking out at the bowl, i’ll bet he would have loved it. Streamers, confetti, and Wiz crowd surfing all at once ended our night, and everyone slowly, yet merrily, made their way out.

Wiz, (I really enjoy saying his name) i’m glad you have a line that reads, “when you live like this you’re supposed to party,” because that pretty much sums up all things Santa Barbara. Thanks for bringing us some summertime hip hop. ’Twas fun, let’s do it again.

As always, many thanks to the Santa Barbara Bowl and Jessica Puchli for taking care of us.

xxxo, Sasha

(P.S. Don’t forget to follow Sasha on Instagram, it’s visually pleasing and who knows what gems you’ll stumble upon.)