Hip-hop artist Sage the Gemini took the stage at San Diego’s House of Blues on Friday, Jan. 27, the night reminiscent of an exhilarating college party with the combination of the nonstop energy and Sage’s young fans.
Positivity is an important aspect of Sage’s music, and he describes his concerts as being sexy, fun and crazy.
Sage’s passionate fans were evident from the get-go, as he stepped off the stage into the crowd almost immediately and was greeted by a cluster of eager, outstretched arms.
Sage said he wants his fans to feel a sexual connection and attraction to him when they attend his shows.
“(I want my fans) to feel like they’re in love,” he said. “I want them to feel like how they feel when they see Chris Brown. I want them to feel like, ‘This is my boyfriend, but he doesn’t know it.’ I want them to go home with my face on their walls and the backgrounds of their Twitters and Tumblrs.”
Sage also started the concert off by bringing friend and frequent collaborator Show Banga onstage for a number of songs, including Show Banga’s “How We Rock.”
Sage then went into “Swerve,” a track off his 2013 “Gas Pedal” EP, which encouraged the audience to sing along to the hook, “My name they speak on, say swerve / They mad ‘cause we on, say swerve.”
“S-A-G-E,” Sage spelled to the crowd, to which they shouted in reply, “You already know me!”
His 2015 single “Good Thing,” which features Nick Jonas, followed, with the increasingly excited crowd fervently singing along to Jonas’s parts.
In addition to his own material, Sage also included his most well-known guest verses in his set, including his features from Iamsu’s “Only that Real,” Adrian Marcel’s “2AM” and Flo Rida’s “G.D.F.R.”
The diverse set reflected the variety of artists Sage has worked with, which is an important way for him to explore new genres.
“I’m doing all types of music that everyone can listen to,” he said. “You can’t limit yourself. You want to be a worldwide artist, not a citywide artist.”
Sage said he wants to keep who he is currently working with a secret, and is unsure of when his next album will come out.
The stage lights turned off and he asked the audience to turn on their iPhone flashlights, but added, “If you don’t got an iPhone we don’t judge,” and said to those holding up lighters, “You the MVP.”
Sage’s latest release, “Now and Later,” was met with instant recognition from the audience, who may have initially heard it used in a Snapchat filter accompanied by sunglasses.
“(Snapchat) helped (“Now and Later”) a lot,” Sage said. “Two great companies came together, my management and Snapchat came together and just decided to be behind me 100 percent because they saw my talent and they felt like it was a guarantee that it would be a success.”
He described “Now and Later” as diving into the different layers of a relationship.
“’Now and Later’ is me talking about everything with me dating a female,” Sage said. “It’s like, ‘Don’t make this hard on me, when I get you I’m going to show you what it’s really about not even just sexually, but emotionally.’”
Relationships are the bulk of his music’s subject matter, usually in a positive light.
“(My goal when writing a song is) to paint a mental picture,” Sage said. “Put the whole story in your mind as far as what it would be like in the perfect relationship.”
He said his fans often react positively to new material added to his set list.
“They respond to (new) songs like it has been their favorite song for years,” Sage said.
He followed “Now and Later” with his two biggest hits, “Red Nose” and “Gas Pedal,” back to back, with the response from the audience proving they were fan favorites.
“Sage the Gemini’s music is just fun dance music, I always hear it at parties,” music sophomore Jesse Aaron said. “His music is just a good time.”
Sage recognizes the impact his fans have had on his life and often communicates his gratitude through social media.
“Without my fans there would be no me,” he said. “I’m not sitting there buying my music a million times every time it comes out.”
Sage also is aware that the majority of his fan base is women, and caters his shows to them and feeds off their excitement.
“Loyalty is everything,” he said. “The woman is the most powerful creature on Earth. I love all my fans and I love beautiful women. That’s what makes the world go round and that’s what makes the show go on because it’s not just me performing, it’s the ladies performing as well. If they’re screaming then they’re enjoying the show and that makes me happy, that gives me more energy to finish the show.”
To end the night, Sage brought out his entire crew from offstage to dance with him to O.T. Genasis’s “CoCo,” before walking offstage to meet his adoring, loyal fans.