Cleveland rocked out on Saturday when Mayor Justin Bibb declared August 13 “MGK Day.” On this day the City of Cleveland honored musician Colson Baker, known as Machine Gun Kelly. Bibb said that he had met MGK four years prior and realized he had finally met someone who loved Cleveland as much as he did.
Bibb presented MGK with an official certificate to commemorate the day at 27 Club Coffee shop in the Flats area of downtown Cleveland. MGK opened the local coffee shop in 2020 and regularly visits the café when he is in town so it was a fitting location for the announcement. MGK’s daughter, close friends and his whole team were on site to show support.
The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame hosted a tailgate party from 11-2 outside of the main exhibit hall with live musical performances. One of MGK’s all-pink tour outfits was put on display inside the exhibit hall as well for fans to enjoy. The sign outside had custom Machine Gun Kelly artwork for super fans to take selfies.
On the plaza outside the RockHall, an MGK tour merch tent was set up for early purchases. Fans could also get a taste of coffee and cookies from the 27 Club Coffee shop tent or get their nails painted with UN/DN LAQR nail polish designs.
The singer put in all the work leading up to this moment for the past decade. He has progressed from playing local Cleveland clubs like Peabody’s to now standing in the middle of the Cleveland Brown’s stadium surrounded by 50,000 fans who came from all over the country to see the final night of the Mainstream Sellout Tour.
MGK Takes Over First Energy Stadium
Machine Gun Kelly literally flew on stage just after 9 p.m., hanging from a prop helicopter as he belted out the lyrics to “Born with Horns.” He wore a hot pink fur coat with pink pants and a mesh chain shirt.
The songs could barely be heard over the screams of the crowd. MGK stopped to take it all in after the first song and seemed to be in awe of the scene before him simply saying “Holy Shit!”
MGK did duets with tour openers, Avril Lavigne and Willow, throughout the night. Avril Lavigne joined him on stage for their emo collaboration “Bois Lie,” bringing a huge roar from the crowd.
During a break in the set, Machine Gun Kelly ran to the back of the stadium and changed into a custom Cleveland Browns jersey with his signature XX on the front. He reappeared in front of a spotlight on the upper deck of the football stadium. Baker rapped “Alpha Omega” acapella. He then zip-lined his way above the crowd back towards the stage across the entire length of the stadium.
It was a jaw-dropping moment that took a lot of work to pull off. Days earlier, Machine Gun Kelly brainstormed show-stopping additions to the show. His first proposal was to land in a real helicopter inside the stadium. An idea that was quickly dismissed.
He then suggested the zip line idea to event organizers only to be shot down again. He reached out to Mayor Justin Bibb which somehow led to MGK raising $10 million in insurance money to make the stunt happen.
Halfway through the set, drummer Travis Barker graced the stage with MGK to play some of the most high-energy songs of the set. They performed tracks such as” Tickets to My Downfall,” including “Kiss Kiss,” “Concerts for Aliens” and “All I Know.”
Kelly posted on Instagram in the prior week that he had talked Barker into coming back out for the last few stops of the tour against doctor’s orders. Barker currently has a broken thumb and is healing from a serious bout of pancreatitis that hospitalized him last month. Barker’s new wife Kourtney Kardashian could also be seen side stage supporting her husband as he rocked out in front of the sold-out crowd.
During “Bloody Valentine,” Machine Gun Kelly brought a group of young children from the pit on stage to rage alongside him. It was a moment of pure joy.
Toward the end of the set, MGK again ran to the back of the stadium in order to be right in the center of the crowd playing with the Cleveland Youth Orchestra. In the most emotional moment of the night, the singer cried as he reflected on his journey and his father and aunt not being there to see this moment. He dedicated the song “Lonely” to his late family members.
By this time Baker was 10 minutes past the 11 PM city curfew but he had no plans of stopping and played about nine more songs. He left everything on the stage as he smashed a glass on his face and had blood dripping down his forehead and a smile on his face.
MGK promised the concert of all concerts on social media and he delivered for the fans and the city of Cleveland. The show ended close to midnight with fireworks as he played “Twin Flame” making it one for the books in Cleveland music history.
Machine Gun Kelly will kick off his European leg of the Mainstream Sellout Tour on September 17 in Cologne, Germany.