Pokémon and Post Malone are teaming up to celebrate Pokémon Day on Saturday, Feb. 27 with a virtual concert, Billboard can exclusively announce today (Feb. 11).
Malone, who for the record still has a Game Boy Color specifically so he can play Pokémon, tells Billboard it’s sentimental for him and the franchise to be 25 at the same time. “I’ve been a fan for such a long time, kind of grew up with it,” he says. “Celebrating 25 years is a big deal, so we decided to do it together.” (The rapper turned 25 himself last July.)
In partnership with Universal Music Group, Pokémon is commemorating a quarter-century of its beloved video games, mobile apps, and more with all year long with an artist-involved series dubbed P25 Music. The Post Malone concert serves as the series’ kickoff, and more details about the celebration will be revealed at the end of the rapper’s show.
Leading up to Post Malone’s concert, The Pokémon Company International will also host a Pokémon GO Tour: Kanto event on Saturday, Feb. 20, and will distribute a special password on Feb. 25 for players to add a special Pikachu to their Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield video games. “In keeping with the music theme for the year, this Pikachu knows the move Sing, which it can’t ordinarily learn,” a release notes.
Also on Feb. 27, fans can prep for Posty’s concert later in the evening by watching a curated selection of music-themed episodes of the Pokémon animated series via Pokémon TV, either on the web or by downloading the app.
Ahead of the concert, Malone answered questions for Billboard over email about why the 25th anniversary of Pokémon means so much to him and how this livestream show is “one of the coolest things I’ve been a part of.” Check out the Q&A below.
You hosted a virtual concert last spring in honor of Nirvana. What can fans expect this time around?
They’ll just have to tune in and watch! The Pokémon team put in so much work — this is one of the coolest things I’ve been a part of. There may be some surprises, too. It’s going to be a lot of fun.
What are your thoughts on the current state of live performances? How have you adapted?
I think the livestream thing has been a great way to keep the music going, and to support some great causes, partner with cool brands and kick some ass.
Do you think livestream performances will stick around?
It’s a hard thing to predict. I’d like to hope live music gets back to where it was. I know I can’t wait to get back to playing live music.
You’re up for some major 2021 Grammy nominations, including record of the year and album of the year. How have you felt about the continued success and recognition of Hollywood’s Bleeding and its hit singles since its release in 2019?
The fans are the best — I always feel the love. Time flew by, I can’t believe it was almost two years ago. It’s time for some new music!
Anything else in the pipeline you want to share?
I’ve got some cool s–t coming this year, and some new music, of course. It’s almost time. The movie I did with Jason Statham [Wrath of Man] is coming out too, can’t wait to see that.