MTV’s 2022 Video Music Awards is a monumental night for music entertainers and lovers worldwide. Last night’s ceremony included performances from Lizzo, Jack Harlow, Khalid, and Nicki Minaj, who is this year’s Michael Jackson Video Vanguard recipient.
Each artist brought their flair and individuality to their performances throughout the night. However, Snoop Dogg and Eminem’s groundbreaking performance of “From the D 2 the LBC” stood out among others.
This legendary collaboration delivered an extravagant rendition of the song, tying in the Metaverse and NFTs to last night’s VMA audience.
Both Snoop Dogg and Eminem are major investors of NFTs and the crypto world, so the incorporation of those elements during their performance makes complete sense.
NFTs have increasingly grown in popularity in the hip-hop world over the past few years, with rappers like Future, Gunna, and Jim Jones getting skin in the game. For many artists — old and new — NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are a way to retain autonomy, independence and profit off their work.
The performance began with Eminem and Snoop appearing IRL seated on a black sofa engaging in casual conversation during a fake smoke session (with Snoop pretend-smoking the world’s fattest joint).
During the “smoke” session, the duo was transported into the Metaverse with Eminem and Snoop appearing as digitized versions of themselves and as their Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT avatars, a nod to the song’s music video and their personal involvement in NFTs.
We embark on a journey through the trippy and vibrant virtual world as their digital characters performed a rendition of their song while smoking more marijuana (obviously).
Viewers immediately become immersed in their colorfully warped stoner’s reality, complete with trips to outer space and other dimensions, a life-size pinball game, car rides featuring a Californian-esque view, and a glimpse of a new-age virtual concert full of other Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT characters.
Just as the song reached its pinnacle, the pair woke up from their psychedelic stoner nap, finishing the rest of their performance live and in-person.
The switch back to reality after their reality-bending Metaverse excursion was jarring, leaving many viewers unsure about how they felt about the performance. At the same time, others enjoyed the fresh approach the rappers took. These mixed sentiments showcase the apparent divide between the growing integration of NFTs and the Metaverse in the mainstream.
Adding the Metaverse and NFTs to this year’s VMA is a transformative point for the future of music entertainment and live performances. Whether people enjoyed or were confused by the inclusion of NFTs and the Metaverse in a live show, it was one you most certainly won’t forget.
Their performance signifies a pioneering time in live music entertainment. Could NFTs, the Metaverse, and virtual reality be the next step in performances for music entertainment? Does virtual reality take away from the enjoyment of in-person performances? Let us know what you think of their VMA performance below!