Strip superstars: Migos breaks the Vegas headliner mold

Migos returns to Drai’s on March 8.
Photo: Woody Hugh of Tony Tran Photography / Courtesy

Drake is posting up at XS this year. Cardi B and G-Eazy are performing at the Palms’ coming-soon club, KAOS. These big Vegas gigs are being reported as residencies, essentially placing the Cardi at KAOS show in the same category as Celine Dion at the Colosseum. (It should be noted, however, that Wynn Nightlife is characterizing its relationship with Drake as a partnership, with executive vice president and managing partner Alex Cordova telling Rolling Stone, “We’re looking at all possible environments within the hotel and working with Drake and Drake’s team to see exactly how he can lend assistance in curating these experiences.”)

Whether or not these club concerts should be labeled as residencies is inconsequential. What matters most is there are even more stars from different genres aligning for Las Vegas. And if this type of live performance continues to expand across the Strip’s clubscape, Drai’s will get credit as the trendsetter.

The Cromwell club with the hip-hop and R&B vibes currently offers 2 Chainz, 50 Cent, Big Sean, Fabolous, Fat Joe, French Montana, Future, Jeremih, Lil Wayne, Meek Mill, Rae Sremmurd, Snoop Dogg, Ty Dolla $ign and Wiz Khalifa among its recurring artists, and one of the biggest-drawing acts is back on the Drai’s Live stage this weekend.

Migos remains a cultural phenomenon but has more recently evolved into a true rap supergroup. After exploding out of Atlanta in the mainstream with “Bad and Boujee” and platinum album Culture—and following it up with the dominant Culture II last year and a record-breaking tour with Drake—the trio decided to divide and continue to conquer. Quavo released Quavo Huncho in October, Takeoff dropped The Last Rocket in November and Offset’s solo effort Father of 4 came out last month. The individual releases allowed each member to dig deeper into his own style; craft some interesting collaborations such as Quavo’s “Champagne Rosé” with Cardi and Madonna; display some possibly overlooked skills as Takeoff does with “Last Memory”; and experiment with a different approach as Offset does with his personal, introspective album. And if their solo stuff doesn’t generate the same kind of excitement you’d expect from a Migos release, that’s clearly part of the strategy, as Culture III is in the works for later this year.

Just this week Migos was named one of the headlining acts for Pharrell Williams’ new Something in the Water festival in Virginia Beach in April, performing alongside Travis Scott, Missy Elliott, J Balvin, Janelle Monae and more. The chance to see a superstar act—the kind that typically sells out arenas and gets top billing at festivals—in an intimate and dynamic environment is pretty much the definition of the modern Las Vegas residency, just another reason why Migos at Drai’s remains such a special experience.

MIGOS March 8, 10:30 p.m., $40-$60. Drai's, 702-777-3800.

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Brock is an award-winning writer and reporter who has been documenting life in Las Vegas for 20 years. He currently ...

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