The McDonald's Corporate Restaurant parking lot was filled with screaming young fans which compromised mostly of young ladies. As you walk through the parking lot you can smell the world famous McDonald's French fries in the air. A fitting aroma for this free sponsored event by McDonalds, MTV and Yahoo Music called McDonald's Live. Stated in the press release, "McDonald's Live is a Free ten city concert tour featuring the latest music releases and emerging recording artists." Late last week, a little bit of controversy made headlines on the performer who was slotted to host the Chicago date. Originally cast was Twista, but after controversy related to his lyrics, McDonald's dropped the fast talking Twista and gave the microphone over the young reggae/rap singing Sean Kingston. McDonald's launched the tour on July 26, 2007 in Venice Beach , California and continuing through the United States ending on September 25, 2007 in Austin , Texas.
The late afternoon festivities kicked off sound check and a press opportunity during a visit by Sean Kingston and his crew to the McDonald's in Oakbrook , IL . Other Chicago land area media outlets were on the scene including local radio B96 hosting a meet and greet with the artist and lucky fans. Sean Kingston is only one of the young artists that will perform across 10 cities through September for the McDonald's Live.
To warm up the packed McDonald's parking lot were local Chicago land pop group The White Tie Affair, giving the fans some pop rock and ballads. Shortly after completing their set on the McDonald's Live stage, the crowd began to cheer "Sean, Sean, Sean." The build up grew louder and louder till Sean Kingston hit the stage and the fans went wild with frenzy. The young 17 year old from Miami , has a unique style of blending hip-hop, reggae, pop and doo-wop. Kingston keeps his lyrics clean and for all ages to enjoy appealing to the McDonald's family image. There were some slow down times and hip hop with a twist of reggae, but when Sean kicked into Beautiful Girls everyone sang along and threw their hands in the air. Everyone was dancing and jumping, a truly fantastic scene to view people enjoying the rhythmic music playing. Kingston worked his magic back and forth on the stage. This was as much as a large production and also an intimate affair to see this young artist as he propels on the charts. I am sure everyone wanted to ask Sean, "why did you have to go?", after the concert was over.
Kingston connected with the people who came down to see him. Making his way down the stage and out to the screaming fans who came to see him perform live. Kingston strolled down the right side of the stage, taking photos with cameras and cell phones, he gave out hugs, signed autographs on t-shirts, papers, his CD or anything a fan could scramble. At one moment he took the time to talk to someone on a cell phone. Now that was quite a surprise to the person on the other end. Sean Kingston showed a side that fans respect and love. Many people walked away with a photo, or a hug or just saying, "Sean I love you."
To learn more about McDonald's Live Free concert, go to the official web site at http://www.mcdlive.com. When you are on the site, you will be able to purchase concert t-shirts (I'm sure other merchandise) and vote for your favorite performer. The artist with the most votes will be featuring in a McDonald's advertising campaign, soon to a TV near you.