St. Louis Hip-Hop icon Nelly’s music received the orchestral treatment after the artist performed with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra last night (July 14).
According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the performance featured tracks such as “Country Grammar” and “Hot in Herre” with a positive response from the crowd.
“To be honest, I’m sure there are a lot of people scratchin’ their heads, thinking Nelly? Symphony?” the rapper said. “But it all meshes so perfectly with an orchestra behind me.”
This was certainly not something the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra was used to either, as it was the group’s first foray into the Hip-Hop realm.
“This is completely new for me, and I’ve done a fair number of the pop shows,” said PSO assistant conductor Francesco Lecce-Chong.
“Honestly, I’ve been listening to his music. It’s more melodic than you would think. I think that’s kind of his trademark is that he has these kind of catchy melodies that go with his lyrics,” Lecce-Chong continued. “So I think in many ways it won’t be too different than your typical weaving the orchestra into these kinds of songs. I think it could actually be quite fantastic.”
Despite the rarity of a collaborative performance with an orchestra and an MC, Nelly is certainly not the first artist to do so as Nas has performed with the National Symphony Orchestra and Sir Mix-A-Lot has done the same with the Seattle Symphony.