Insane Clown Posse played a sold out concert at the Masquerade early November 2015. Fans of ICP dressed in clown makeup and the signature Juggalo hatchet man logo. The vibe of the fans felt extremely connected, as if they had known each other for a while.
If you want to partake in some great people watching, I’d suggest you go where the Juggalos are. If you don’t know what Juggalos are, they are super fans of the horrorcore rap/rock group of ICP.
I approached a woman taking pictures for a Juggalo-based website named Cody. Asking her why everyone seemed to know each other, she told me that much of the audience has been to multiple ICP events and they are family. Not in the literal sense, of course, but they are close like family, connected by their love of clown makeup, ICP, and Psychopathic records.
If you didn’t notice from my described encounter above, family is a major theme amongst Juggalos in the form of songs and just in general. Cody drove over nine hours with her husband to shoot photos for their website. Her husband informed me that he saw ICP play at the Masquerade when he was younger and wanted to see them play their last Masquerade show before the venue is torn down.
“It’s like a full circle thing,” he told me, “You can hate the music, you can hate the fans, but come to an ICP show and try and tell me you didn’t have fun and feel included.”
Another girl who went by Giggles was there to celebrate her anniversary with her husband and their Juggalo family. It’s kind of hard to believe with stories like ICP fans are still classified as a gang according to the FBI.
The audience was first treated to an opener that we are all familiar with and love yet don’t want to admit our love for them. The band was P.O.D. and they brought the house down with their old hits and threw in some new ones. It almost seemed hilarious that a group known for their Christian values would open for the ICP, but they seemed to mesh perfectly with the vibe in the crowd.
I was told that I would have three songs to shoot pictures as I approached the stage before the Faygo tops were going to be untwisted. They were exactly right; after “Chicken Huntin,” a demonic clown man came out and sprayed 100 liters of Faygo all over the crowd. I got the hell out of there and went to the back. Not knowing any song other than “Chicken Huntin,” I still had one of the best times I’ve had at a concert.
The group stopped mid show for a Faygo break; clowns taunted Juggalos before throwing buckets, soda, and streamers into the audience. It was definitely one of the most interesting concerts I’ve ever been to and I’d suggest more people go out to see what they have to offer.
For a group that is considered a joke by the media and the music industry, I felt I saw anything but funny. I saw a dedicated following and a family oriented group performing their hits to their fans. For two high school dropouts that were dropped from a major record label, Shaggy 2 Dope and Violent J definitely aren’t failures. They have created their own style of music and it’s paying off. They make millions of dollars every year doing what they love; it’s time we stop laughing and give them a little credit.