Armando Christian Perez, 34, who grew up poor coming from a family of Cuban immigrants, couldn’t have been prouder Feb. 21, Saturday night at Target Center in Minneapolis, MN. Perhaps better known for by his stage name, Pitbull a name he chose because it describes everything that he is. Pitbull shares in his biography “Pitbull: Mr. Worldwide” “(Pitbulls) bite to lock,” the book quotes him as saying. “The dog is too stupid to lose. And they’re outlawed in Dade County (Florida). They’re basically everything that I am. It’s been a constant fight.” He continues “I like the hunt; I like when people say you can’t, you won’t, you never will, those kind of things turn me on.”
Pitbull and Enrique Iglesias, 39, would celebrate long into the night as Minneapolis would be the final tour stop for the Miami natives. The two have been on the road together since the first leg of the US tour last year and now tonight would be the final night. Also on the bill was Latin music sensation J Balvin, who is perhaps better known in his native Columbia.
Whatever magic the two brought with them to Minneapolis clearly worked. The 16,000 sell-out show was the perfect way to end the tour. The night brought in a variety of ethnic backgrounds represented as you could see by the groups and crowds of people. It was refreshing to see the draw Pitbull and Enrique could attract to their shows. Both young and old were in attendance with a little more of the latter; but that would be expected with the young performers. Opening up the show was J Balvin who unless you have already followed his music previous to the tour, might be a little lost in translation, no pun intended. He had some catchy songs, but clearly this crowd was here to see Pitbull and Iglesias, as the arena was a bit spotty with empty seats here and there during his set.
Pitbull’s uncle would DJ prior to his nephew’s arrival to the stage. (His has a shaved head too.) Pitbull’s dancers would be featured on the stage prior to the Miami rapper popping up on a platform just under the stage. The crowd went wild, once they caught sight of him. For the next 80 or so minutes, Pitbull would own the stage, with non-stop dancing, handshaking and fan interaction, as well a little sexy sultry action with his scantily clad dancers. The singer even mentioned about how cold it was in Minnesota, using a few expletives to describe, the temperature outside the Target Center at that time was hovering around 10 degrees with a predicted low of -7, a far cry from typical Miami heat indexes well into the upper 80’s and 90’s.
Pitbull is not your typical rapper in fact there isn’t a song that he puts out there that speaks of negativity and promoting violence and drugs. Most of his songs are well written compositions with major artists with ever so catchy hooks that talk about the issues of life keeping the party going, and never, ever, letting the party stop. Nothing wrong with that one bit. Pitbull remains true and has used his platform to do some real positive things for the neighborhood kids in Miami of where he grew up called Little Havana. He helped build a new charter school for middle and high school students called Sports Leadership and Management (SLAM).
When it came time for Mr. Worldwide to depart the stage it almost seemed premature, as if he could perform all night if it was up to him. Pitbull soared through his hits, including I Know You Want Me” (Calle Ocho) which he thanked the crowd for as it was the single that started this road for him. “Give Me Everything” with Ne-Yo and “Timber” with Kesha. ‘International Love” with Chris Brown, “Fireball” “Feel This Moment” with Christina Aguilera, “Back in Time” and many more.
Enrique Iglesias would wrap things up and something seemed to be missing, the crowd didn’t have the same energy that they had for Pitbull earlier. Might have been Iglesias’ songs are little slower and less dance club infused. That’s not to say he doesn’t have the beats as “Tonight I’m Loving You” has just that. At one point during Iglesias’ set he appeared on a makeshift stage in the back of the arena, to which he gushed if he ever had the opportunity to play to the people in the back of the room he would, and he did several songs, including calling for a little help from the massive crowd that had gathered around the stage, pulling a local man named “Ruben” on the stage to share and drink with him. Iglesias may have wanted a break from the female attention as he chose a male instead of all the melting women that surrounded the stage. He would then sing “Stand by Me’ telling Ruben he would need to switch with him, (Ruben had the Tequila bottle and Iglesias had the mic) It’s a good thing he didn’t let him sing too long, as Ruben had no singing voice.
The arena was filled with cellphone lights during “Hero” that looked like a tossing sea of boat lights. The final encore Iglesias would bring Pitbull and J Balvin to join him on “I Like It.”
Overall the night was perfect with a great mix of music, a little bit of sensual dancing and non-stop partying (Pitbull) and suave ballads and jumping around and taking selfies for fans, from Iglesias. The crowd seemed pleased with the night of music and probably appreciated how hot it really got in the room as outside was the exact opposite, but maybe, just maybe the two did something and stirred something in them to help keep them warm a little while longer on the road home.