REVIEW: Lacy has a “Bad Habit” and a big ego


Abigail Schmidt

Steve Lacy performs at the Orpheum Theater for his Give You the World tour on Oct. 24. This is Lacy’s first headlining tour.

Abigail Schmidt, Sports Editor

After blowing up on Tiktok over the summer, every indie kid’s favorite former-underground singer and producer Steve Lacy played a sold-out show at the Orpheum Theater in Downtown New Orleans. He was originally scheduled to play at the Republic, a more intimate venue. But due to high demand and an instant sellout, the show was moved to The Orpheum. He played to a crowd of 1,900 like he had been doing it his whole life, still keeping a mellow stage presence for the most part. Complete with colorful lights, mesmerizing lasers, and a bit of a hissy fit, Lacy and his opener Foushee delivered an unforgettable performance for his “Give You the World” Tour.

Steve Lacy’s sound is a combination of R&B and indie rock with heavy jazz influence. He notably began producing on the Garage band app on his iPhone, and has been nominated for Grammys with the work he has done with Kendrick Lamar and The Internet, according to He started his solo career in the early 2010s and more recently gained notoriety through social media. He released his newest album “Gemini Rights” in July, and cranked out hits that show his range across several genres. 

Lacy opened with “Buttons,” a slow, psych-grunge warm-up for the antsy audience. After making sure his crowd was good and ready, he unleashed the calvary: “Mercury.” The bass and bouncy rhythm stampeded through the crowd and trampled every chest within earshot. Matching his band, he wore a white button-down “S” shirt with a black tie, a homage to his “Bad Habit” music video. He also made sure to switch his shades to match each song’s vibe.

Then he got into what the die-hards and devotees came for, moving from the “Apollo XXI” tracks to the even deeper cuts from the early Steve Lacy mixtapes, all sandwiching around his somber and melodic “Helmet” from “Gemini Rights.” He pulled the audience out of their trance and into the song, all screaming along with every gut-punching word. He ran the bridge back twice, and played his “MTV Unplugged” version with just an acoustic guitar. The crowd eagerly helped him out with the “let me go”s a capella, building on the emotion of his meatiest breakup song to date. The words echoed through the theater as he faded into “Some,” “Infrunami,” and “Ryd.”

For “sunshine,” he brought Foushee back out for their duet. Both got to show off their natural falsetto as they seemingly had a conversation onstage to the tune of a breakup song. Again, they opened the conversation and brought the audience in for the trippy chorus and the emotional “I still love you”s in the bridge while Lacy played a gritty, rocked-out version of the guitar solo. 

This wasn’t the only interaction Lacy had with his audience. One in particular happened during the highly-anticipated “Bad Habit,” his mega-hit that sent him to the top of the charts, and the top of the TikTok algorithm. And after this encounter, he’s getting more press than ever. After pushing her way to the front, a fan threw a disposable camera onstage for him to take a photo. It is still unclear whether the camera hit him, but he was not hit in the head, despite TikTok telling folks otherwise. 

The fan got their camera back from a security guard that was nearby, but right as the chorus hit the bridge in the catchy, upbeat “Bad Habit,” all hell broke loose. Lacy stopped singing and whispered “cut it.” He asked the security guard to hand him the camera. And all in one swift motion, he windmilled his arm around to smash the camera onstage. The shrapnel flew and a flood of silence washed over the theater. “I’m out. Peace.” He stormed offstage. 

No, the fan did not get kicked out, despite the crowd’s greatest efforts to boo them out. No, Steve Lacy did not apologize, nor does he plan to, according to his Instagram. According to the fan, the camera didn’t hit him at all. They said it bounced offstage and fell, but many have said otherwise, mainly Lacy who said it hit him in the leg before he fled backstage. This was reminiscent of Kid Cudi’s Rolling Loud Miami set, when fans threw so many bottles at him he cut his show short and left. But Steve Lacy is not Kid Cudi, and he might not know that just yet. This was his first tour. Ever. 

Several different “Steve! Steve! Steve!” chants echoed through the Orpheum, along with a collective audience rendition of “Dark Red.” And it must have inflated him back up just enough. After what felt like an eternity, he emerged from his ego trip, from what one can only assume was a backstage pep talk one would give a child after they throw a fit for being told “no.” 

He never did get to the “biscuits and Gravy” of Bad Habit, but he did say the fan was “still worthy of love” before an encore of “C U Girl” and “Dark Red.” These Lacy classics reminded the crowd that sometimes it’s okay to get a big head when you’re that talented, and of how much they love him.

Illustration by Ariel Landry