'My brother, my friend' - Anderson .Paak's moving tribute to Mac Miller at Auckland show

Anderson .Paak and Mac Miller.
Anderson .Paak and Mac Miller. Photo credit: Newshub.

In his first ever solo arena show, Californian singer, rapper and drummer Anderson .Paak has paid tribute to the late Mac Miller with a heartwarming tribute. 

As an image of the pair together appeared on screen at the end of .Paak's performance of 'Dang!' on Saturday night, cheers and applause erupted inside Auckland's Spark Arena. 

The two collaborated on the 2016 song after Mac reached out to congratulate .Paak on his work with Dr Dre, with whom he landed six guest spots on his 2015 album Compton

A drum roll spurred ahead of the touching moments which saw .Paak honour Miller, calling out "my brother, my friend" as the photograph of the pair lit the stage behind the 'Bubblin' singer and his band. 

The tribute came after .Paak had performed a selection of his catalogue, mixing in Nx Worries' 'Link Up' and 'Suede' with new releases and Malibu favourites. 

David Watson / Ambient Light Anderson .Paak
Anderson .Paak. Photo credit: David Watson / Ambient Light

Matt McGuire, drummer and musical director from the Chainsmokers, told Newshub the songwriter's ability to combine the two art forms "radiates a groove and feel on an entire new level".

"He is like a walking metronome," he said. "It isn't easy to sing and play the way he does. I have endless respect for him and his craft." 

Anderson .Paak
Anderson .Paak Photo credit: David Watson / Ambient Light

Many social media users praised .Paak's performance and his acknowledgment of Mac's passing. 

"That was a crazy night man! What a performer! @anderson._paak A legendary shout-out to @macmiller at the end as well," one person wrote. 

"Thanks for the incredible night! Never thought you could be even better than last year," penned another, while one fan simply summarised: "Anderson .Paak is a pretty happy dude. Great night."

.Paak released his fourth album in November, Oxnard, which features a song dedicated to Miller titled 'Cheers'.

The track includes the line: "Wishin' I still had Mac wit' me / How do you tell a n****r slow it down when you livin' just as fast as em?"

Mac died in September 2018 of a drug overdose in his Studio City home. Mac Miller: A Celebration Of Life tribute concert was held in October, and attended by many of his friends and collaborators - including .Paak, who performed to raise money for the Mac Miller Circles Fund. 

It aims to support youth arts and community-building programs in his memory. So far the fund has raised close to $1 million.