The irony of ‘Best Day Ever’, one of the leading singles off Mac Miller’s fifth mixtape, being the last song played during his benefit concert, perfectly encapsulates the night’s good intentioned celebratory vibes falling wayside to reveal the heart-wrenching pain of losing a loved one. Born Malcolm McCormick, Mac Miller’s accidental drug overdose last September left many, including myself, truly grief-stricken. It seemed like the sentiment was that, though no one is ever really gone too soon, Malcolm is gone too soon. To curb such a universal cloud of sadness, the McCormick family bravely announced the Mac Miller: A Celebration of Life benefit concert. Held at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles last Wednesday, on a night where we dress up as something we’re not, many gathered at the theatre or tuned in live on various social media platforms to celebrate exactly who Malcolm McCormick was.
He was a son and brother, to his publicly grieving family who took the time to create a fund and a night that truly embodied what Malcolm was put on this earth to create; music. He was a friend, to all the artists who performed or sent video clips expressing their individual love and appreciation of Malcolm. The concert was definitely as much of a benefit for his friends as it was for the concert goers, as many seemed to need that space to publicly release any emotions about the passing of the late and great Malcolm. There was no shortage of star power that night, including seasoned vets, like John Mayer and Juicy J, his inner circle, like Thundercat, Vince Staples, and ScHoolboy Q, artists he aided, like Chance the Rapper and SZA, and past collaborators, like Action Bronson, Domo Genesis, Ty Dolla Sign, and Earl Sweatshirt.
Lastly, he was a true artist to all his fans present at the theatre, streaming it live, or those who did neither as it was too painful a reminder of his passing. The real tear-jerker wasn’t even anything happening in real time, as a highlight reel was woven into the very fabric of the concert, depicting Malcolm's youth and introduction into music, his rising success as a teen straight out of the 412, and his up to date matured sound and fine-tuned artistry. Even with great live music, a festival envy lineup, and never before seen footage, October 31st, 2018 didn’t really feel like the best day ever.