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Cardi B instinctually retaliated against an audience member who threw a drink at her while performing in Las Vegas, the latest in a troubling new habit of concertgoers throwing objects at performers.
The incident appears to have occurred during Cardi B’s scheduled performance at Drai’s Beachclub on Saturday.
Video posted on social media shows that Cardi B was performing her classic hit “Bodak Yellow” when someone holding a large cup apparently flings the drink at her, dousing the Bronx rapper while she was on stage.
Cardi B first looks shocked, then retaliates by throwing her microphone at the person.
The video has more than 6 million views on TikTok.
Cardi B is just the latest artist subjected to crowds either physically assaulting them or throwing things on stage as they perform.
Bebe Rexha shared images of her bruised eye last month after a concertgoer threw a phone at her during a performance at Pier 17 in Manhattan.
Nicolas Malvagna, the man charged in the incident, allegedly told a witness he “thought it would be funny” to hit Rexha. His attorney said he was just hoping Rexha would take photos on stage and throw the phone back to him.
During a performance in Idaho about a week later, country singer Kelsea Ballerini was hit in the face by an object while she was singing her song “If You Go Down (I’m Goin’ Down Too).”
Harry Styles appeared to wince in pain after being hit with an object during his concert in Vienna earlier this month. It’s unclear what happened, but Styles was seen in fan video holding his head in his hands as he was apparently hit walking offstage.
Last year, Styles was also hit in the eye with a Skittles candy that was thrown at him while performing and Skittles responded with an advertisement in the Los Angeles Times asking people not the throw the candy.
Why do people behave so badly at concerts?
David Thomas, a professor of forensic studies at Florida Gulf Coast University, said concert venues — like social media — allow for more anonymity, which gives people the ability to act on their worst impulses.
“A large crowd offers anonymity. So the things that you might be thinking that you wouldn’t normally do, that would be against normal social values, are exactly the opposite in the crowd,” said Thomas, a former police officer with an expertise in the psychology of crowds. “You kind of feel that you could disappear in that crowd, and it’s hard to point the finger at an individual.”
The conversation around concert etiquette has ramped up as wildly popular artists like Beyoncé and Drake perform on world stages. Some concertgoers who spoke with NBC News suggested the bad behavior stems from some fans’ desire to compete with others for the best video or the closest spot in the crowd.
Better video means a better chance of going viral, and with social media in its own video-forward era, it can sometimes feel like every phone is out, which can create an obstructed view. Others said they believe the pandemic took a toll on people’s social skills and behavior.
“Going to pre-pandemic concerts, I just felt like everyone knew how to act, and concerts felt like this really safe space for people to kind of share, shared love of music with each other,” said TikToker Hannah Hawthorne, 27, who made a video about concert etiquette best practices. “When I went to a concert for the first time after the pandemic, it was such a stark difference … it was like everyone didn’t know how to act.”