Back in 2015, Travis Scott dropped his debut album Rodeo. Although his career started way before then, since Rodeo, it has taken off. The rapper, producer and label owner has dropped a further four albums, numerous collaborations and now, a Netflix documentary. Whilst it may seem that many artists and celebrities are dropping documentaries overviewing their career or their rise to the prominent position that they have obtained, Travis Scott: Look Mom I Can Fly appears to be slightly different to the cliche.
At first, the documentary seems muddled but on re-evaluation, it’s far from that. The hour and 24 minute length documentary focuses on key moments from the years leading up to the release of his latest album, Astroworld. The documentary has an overall focus on the release of his album Astroworld that dropped last summer, the inspiration behind it and the aftermath of the release. Many people outside of America and, even more so, the state of Houston may not realise that AstroWorld (Six Flags AstroWorld officially) was actually a theme park and one in which Scott attended regularly as a child. It was brought down in the year 2005 but he wanted to pay homage to a place that brought him so much joy as a child.
Whilst we see brief clips of Travis in the studio and working on the album, particularly tracks “No Bystanders”, “Stop Tryna Be God”, “Can’t Say” and “Sicko Mode”, the documentary mainly focuses on the amount of influence he has on his fans and music fans around the world. Throughout the documentary, we see plenty of examples where Travis Scott puts on performances that, arguably, challenge some of the best performers currently and in history. From mosh pitting, fans crowd surfing, fans that have actually been chucked out, being brought back in by Travis himself, giving his shoes out to a fan and the list goes on, his performances seem to have it all.
Neither does Travis ever forget the prominent and important role he plays for the youth. Two points in the documentary highlight this more than any other. Firstly, when he receives the news that November 18th is officially AstroWorld Day in Houston. He goes on to explain that the youth need to focus on what they want to build and become for themselves. Secondly, a few days after finding out Astroworld would not be receiving a Grammy, he was understandably a more saddened figure, the Mayor of Houston motivates him by explaining that it’s not his defeat and that the chance to receive the award is still there. Explaining that he now has the power to motivate his listeners to keep striving for what they want to achieve and not give up.
Rock performers over the years from the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, The Who, Rolling Stones, James Brown and many more are ranked as some of the best performers in music. Fans would go ballistic to see these artists, breaking down barriers, chasing down cars and fainting during shows. It is rare that many musicians in the Hip-Hop world create such a wave that Travis Scott clearly has.
His attention to detail is surfaced in the documentary when he cuts a somewhat frustrated mood to his performances and stage crew to get everything right for the performance. Perfection or nothing less. A year or so ago, a Travis Scott performance in 2013 in front of around 20 people went viral as not only did it highlight how far he has come but more importantly his love for putting on a good performance. He was still screaming for “Hands up” whilst performing in front of such a small crowd.
Although artists such as Kid Cudi and Kanye West in particular pathed a way for new sounding Hip-Hop/Rap and Alternative Hip-Hop, Travis Scott clearly gained influence but still remains a forefronter and pioneer in the recent history of Alternative Rap and Trap Rap, that many rappers now adopt in their music. His performances, reaction and energy take him above many rappers and artists in the scene currently.
Watch Travis Scott: Look Mom I Can Fly on Netflix now