Ever since Tyler, The Creator first showed up with Hodgy Beats on the old Fallon show more than six years ago, he’s managed to turn every late-night appearance into some kind of performance-art stunt. That’s certainly what he did last night on Stephen Colbert’s Late Show. Tyler sat for an interview with Colbert, and a whole lot of the interview revolved around the question of whether Tyler groped Colbert’s ass when he first stepped onstage. (And yes. Yes, he did.) He also called Elizabeth Taylor his jewelry hero but said that he didn’t know she’d been in movies. And he wore boxers that he’d designed. His whole vibe was much more “antsy kid in detention” than “artist plugging new project,” and it was about equal amounts interesting and obnoxious.
After that was done, Tyler got up to perform “911,” one of the early singles from his new album Flower Boy. This was an authentically great late-night performance, with Tyler doing interesting things with the stage setup. He emerged from a crowd of dancing friends to step up onto a mini-stage, and Steve Lacy, the young Kendrick Lamar producer and member of the Internet, sang Frank Ocean’s part from the song. The onstage dancers formed a Soul Train line at one point, with Odd Future member Jasper Dolphin fucking up a backflip and almost landing on his face. It’s something to watch! You can watch the interview and the performance below.
Flower Boy is out now on Columbia. Now let’s all have fun imagining what would’ve happened if David Letterman was still hosting the show when Tyler was pulling all that nonsense.