Atlanta nightclub Mansion Elan was nearly packed this past Saturday night (Feb. 18) with birthday-party people waiting to see Birdman, the Young Money & Cash Money Billionaries co-founder/talent scout. Birdman turned 43 just days prior to this “Billionaire B-Day Bash,” and he’d apparently thrown as much as $100,000 into the hands of nightclub crowds before, so young things were a bit dazzled when a club patron tossed up thin stacks of dollar bills, making it drizzle before Bird himself dropped in.
“Would he make it rain? Well, sorta.”
There was a steady stream of clubgoers that filtered inside the Mansion throughout the night, even when the nightclub started charging a minimum of $20 per person after midnight. They ordered bottles of rosé and Silver Patrón with sparklers attached, either to split or to sip on their own. Resident DJ Tephlon politely reminded the crowd every 30 minutes or so that the guest of honor Birdman was indeed on his way, just in case the dollar guy lost his luster and any antsy feelings were arousing. (Birdman cast out a few assurances on Twitter too, including, “BirdS fly in any weather so ATLANTA IT’S GOING DOWN.”)
A bit after 2am, Birdman and his dozens-deep party landed at the Mansion, cutting their way through the crowd to a raised VIP area. He stood at least ten feet behind the center railing, as club bouncers guarded each of the section’s stairways. He looked out to the buzzing crowd from behind his own aviators, then nodded and smiled as Lil Wayne’s “30 Minutes to New Orleans” blared through the speakers. A bejeweled ring bigger than his knuckle glinted under the blinking red lights. Would he make it rain? Well, sorta.
Birdman stepped back as two men dropped large cardboard boxes onto the floor, as girls screamed before they could even see the YMCMB t-shirts inside, folded and in protective plastic. One member of Birdman’s party, wearing a YMCMB hoodie himself, leaned over the railing and started passing out t-shirts to any outstretched hands he could see, before another tapped him on the shoulder and whispered something in his ear. He shouldn’t just hand these t-shirts out, but throw them into the air — make the crowd fight for their right to party with 100 percent cotton. Packaged shirts then flew like Frisbees. The crowd surged forward, chests first, desperate for whatever they could catch and see.
After three rounds of shirt giveaways, a bodyguard scanned the crowd with his pocket flashlight, pointed to a bare-legged female in heels and then motioned for her to step on up, so that she could pose for pictures with Birdman himself. As soon as the bodyguard invited one girl onto this V.I.P. section-turned-stage, another would try to follow her up the stairs, for her moment in the flash bulb spotlight. Unfazed at the attention, Birdman sipped on rosé, surrounded by no other notable Cash Money signees in sight, despite allusions throughout the week that special guests would be present.
Less than an hour after his arrival, Birdman fluttered away with two escorts and the rest of his crew trailing behind like ducklings. By then, half of the crowd had already left. After all, they went to Mansion Elan and had waited several hours to see Cash Money royalty but ended up with a YMCMB t-shirt.