Ariana Grande Kicks Off ‘Sweetener’ Tour With Touching Tribute to Mac Miller

Pop star Ariana Grande kicked off her Sweetener world tour on Monday, March 18, and made sure to honor her late ex-boyfriend, Mac Miller. According to concertgoers who were lucky enough to score tickets to the highly-anticipated event in Albany, New York, the 25-year-old chose to play some of Mac’s music before taking the stage. So yeah, cue the sobs.

Ariana Grande is playing Mac Miller right before her opening song for sweetener tour rn and my heart can’t handle it SO MANY TEARS,” one Twitter user wrote. Another added, “Aaaaand they’re playing Mac Miller at the Ariana Grande concert. Not emotional no no no not at all.” A third, meanwhile, chimed in with a slew of crying faces and said, “Ariana Grande had Mac Miller’s music playing while people got into their seats for her concert.”

The “thank u, next” songstress took to Twitter herself following her performance and thanked fans for their support. “mhmm my mind is all over the place and v emotional. thank u. i don’t know what i’m posting rn tbh. at all. i’ll hit u tomorrow bc…. tonight was too much,” she tweeted. “thank you thank you thank you. i love you. and i yeah. i love this song . i love u .”

Mac, 26, tragically passed away on Sept. 7 from a drug overdose. The Los Angeles Fire Department responded to an emergency call from his Studio City, CA home at 11:42 a.m., where LAPD pronounced him dead at the scene. In a statement at the time, his loved ones said: “Malcolm McCormick, known and adored by fans as Mac Miller, has tragically passed away at the age of 26. He was a bright light in this world for his family, friends, and fans. Thank you for your prayers.”

The rapper’s toxicology report claimed that he had died from a combination of several drugs — fentanyl, cocaine and ethanol. The “Self Care” songwriter was always candid with his fans about how it wasn’t easy for him to get sober. “I had a drug problem for a long time,” Mac told Larry King in a September 2015 interview. “It wasn’t just in music, but I definitely was going through a drug problem and I think it was more my state of mind. I was just pretty depressed.”

In a 2016 short documentary byThe Fader, Mac explained how he became dependant on a codeine-based cough syrup mixed with soda. “It started by me just sitting inside all day and then it’s like, then you get bored. Then you’re like, ‘Well I could just be high, and I could have a whole adventure in this room,’” he revealed. “I’m always like, if someone’s like, ‘You wanna try this?’ I’m like, ‘Yeah sure.’ It f–ks you up when you have a bunch of money because you try a drug, you like it, then you can buy a lot of it. I went through about everything.”

Luckily, Ariana is still keeping his memory alive.

If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357). 

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