Drake is perhaps the biggest global superstar in music right now, selling out arenas for fun thanks to his countless multi-platinum selling accolades. With a discography as big as Drake’s, he needs to ensure that all of his bases are covered; including tracks that please his hardcore rap fans as well as his commercial hits. This is Viberant’s take on what should be Drake’s Ultimate Setlist:
LAST NAME EVER. FIRST NAME GREATEST. Drake’s super-hit with Kanye West, Lil Wayne and Eminem seems like the perfect way to start his set, paying homage to his beginnings in the rap scene. It is an ideal crowd pleaser and will set the tone for a huge set of smash hits and catchy hooks.
The opening song from his 2015 mixtape If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late, I feel like Legend would be a brilliant sing-along moment for crowd interaction. Plus, the song is so damn good I’d feel almost rude to leave it out, the snares on the beat and Drake’s understated melodies cannot be denied.
One seamless transition later and we would have the follow up song to Legend in Energy, a track which directly follows in the setlist as well as the mixtape. With that trap-style production and Drake’s bouncy flows, it seems safe to say that this one would bring plenty of Energy to the crowd.
4. Under Ground Kings
A personal Drake favourite appears next on the list, throwing it back to his most critically acclaimed album, 2011’s Take Care. What I love most about Under Ground Kings is how braggadocios Drake is and how slick he sounds over this punchy beat, I have no doubt in my mind that this would be a nostalgia-fuelled highlight on this set.
5. God’s Plan
The first of his recent hits to appear on the setlist, God’s Plan soared to record-breaking highs upon release at the start of 2018, debuting atop the charts and going platinum almost instantly. It has all the attributes of an arena-filling smash and it could be one of the most well-received tracks of the show; just imagine that “my bed and my mama” line.
Remember what I said about Drake being braggadocios on Underground Kings? Well copy and paste that onto here with another one of his Take Care anthems Headlines. This was one of the first ever Drake songs I listened to and from the very first listen I was hooked by the slick production and the boppy pace of Drake’s vocal delivery.
7. Worst Behaviour
Easily one of Drake’s best all round rap tracks, Worst Behaviour would make the crowd lose their minds with the staggered beat drop and the wild trap drums. His second verse is right up there with the best in his career and being able to witness that, as well as the huge chant of “WORST” at the beginning, is worth the ticket price alone.
8. Free Smoke
It was only right that the first More Life hit Drake rolls out onto the live show would be the project’s opening track Free Smoke. The electronic-fused trap beat will be a great bounce for the crowd and Drake’s mean flows and repetition in the hook is certain to make this a huge moment in the set.
Why not follow one More Life banger with another? KMT has a mean beat drop and a pretty recognisable Drake flow if you’ve ever listened to Look At Me! by XXXTentacion. The song would explode into life and wrap up the first lively part of the show nicely. Depending on his plans for guest appearances for the remainder of the show, it could also give Giggs a platform to scream that line about Batman live.
10. Crew Love
Let’s slow this one down a touch. The Crew Love beat is pulsing and loud in the electro-synths, but the song itself is as R&B as it gets with Drake and The Weeknd harmonising brilliantly together. Due to the song’s structure I feel this would be another with huge potential to bring out the featured artist live, just imagine Abel hitting those high notes.
11. Hold On, We’re Going Home
It sounded amazing when it first came out, it still sounds amazing now. Hold On, We’re Going Home is one of Drake’s holy trifecta of slow jam sad boi hits alongside Marvin’s Room and Doing It Wrong but is the only one of the three that would work in a live show scenario; particularly at a show as jam-packed as Drake’s. The lyrics are memorable and the crowd would be singing along wholeheartedly throughout.
A bonafide belter of a tune, Passionfruit stood out immediately as the most radio-friendly hit from the More Life collection; but that didn’t mean it lacked in substance and quality. Drake delivers a lovely vocal performance over a glamorous slow jam beat that just makes it near impossible to stay still. Words couldn’t express how cute and enjoyable this track really is.
13. Hotline Bling
The hottest internet meme of 2016, you could be forgiven for forgetting just how much of an anthem Hotline Bling is. While we are all doing the funny dance moves and watching dubbed videos of it, it crosses your mind how catchy the song really is. I mean, there was a reason it dominated the charts throughout that year, the melody and lyrical spin on the track is just brilliant.
14. Started From the Bottom
Now that the slow jams are out of the way, let’s get back to business with Started From the Bottom. An instantly recognisable titan of the Aubrey Drake Graham discography, this one slaps very hard and will inject fresh life into a crowd who were fully in their feelings after the previous few songs.
This More Life hit with Travis Scott and Quavo would be sure to get the crowd going crazy with its catchy flute-sampled instrumental and the sudden beat drops. It also gives potential for Drake to invite one of his featured artists on stage, offering an extra crowd pop for two of the hypest performers in modern rap music.
16. Nice For What
This song is a party starter. The Lauryn Hill sample mixed with the pop-rap flavour of the beat and Drake’s personality makes it an upbeat monster of a hit. It was his second number one single of 2018 after God’s Plan and while it won’t have the typically hyped up rap style of previous songs, it will be a great feel-good moment in the set.
17. One Dance
Why not end the original part of the set with the best song of all time? When One Dance dropped in 2016 it became the ultimate sound of the summer and was the first song to hit a billion streams on Spotify. It will get people’s feet moving once more and I feel it would close the first part of this setlist perfectly, seeing as it is his most accessibly popular song.
18. The Motto
An OG Aubrey anthem to kick off the encore, everyone knows The Motto by now. The song coined for popularising the phrase ‘YOLO’ that dominated 2011/2012 teenage fandom would still be a surefire hit at live shows to this day, if nothing else than for more than a huge throwback moment to simpler times.
It had to make an appearance. Perhaps the crowning moment of Drake’s dynamite 2015, Jumpman has a phenomenal hook, sheer attitude in the vocals and some crazy sauce in that Metro Boomin beat. Needless to say it would go off live, the crowd would be animalistic to one of Drake’s biggest turn-up bangers.
20. Know Yourself
I mean, it just had to be didn’t it? Know Yourself has become the absolute classic for a Drake live performance, as he invites everyone in the arena to run through the six with their woes alongside him. Just imagining the beat drop and the stage layout for this song is enough to trigger goosebumps, I refuse to accept that Drake ends his shows on anything other.