Editors' note: This updated story replaced an earlier version reporting that Lil Wayne had not appeared by 10:30 Friday night.
Any gambler would have put money on Lil Wayne not showing up Friday night for his Landmark Theater concert.
That gambler would have been hopeful for many hours, but ultimately, lose.
Though more than three hours late -- coming on stage at 11:50 p.m., to be precise -- the rapper, charged earlier in the day with several counts of drug and weapons charges in an Arizona courtroom, did make it to his sold-out Richmond show.
Promoters said Wayne's private plane had been delayed leaving Arizona and had to be re-routed on its way east.
Wayne was arrested Tuesday night when a border patrol search of his tour bus uncovered the illegal drugs and a .40-caliber pistol. On Friday, he was charged for felony possession of a narcotic drug for sale, possession of dangerous drugs, misconduct involving weapons and possession of drug paraphernalia.
But talk about testing fan loyalty.
The crowd of more than 3,500 initially seemed placated by the parade of middling rappers, radio station DJs spinning popular urban tunes and hosts Fat Kat and Honey B.
But by 10:30 p.m., the audience's restlessness became vocal as they booed anyone who walked on stage and flung their middle fingers in the air.
About 15 minutes later, a line that eventually swelled to about 100 people formed outside the Landmark's administrative office door, as fed-up fans demanded refunds.
Vanessa McCalla, 31, was especially incensed because she had driven from Virginia Beach and taken a partial vacation day from work to be at the concert.
"This is ridiculous. I'm a single parent. I work hard for my money and I'm a professional. He should be a professional, too. I'm disgusted," McCalla said.
Those who lined up before Wayne performed did receive refunds.
But when Wayne -- real name Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. -- finally sauntered on stage, scowling at the floor with his hands stuffed in his jeans, the remaining fans (about three-quarters of the venue), released a deafening roar.
Chants of "Wee-zy, Wee-zy," Wayne's nickname, filled the room as he addressed the audience for the first of many times.
"I just flew in 10 minutes ago. I just had to deal with a whole lot of [expletive] today, but I guess you know that," he said. "Some [stuff] happened today that made me look at life in a different way. I'm [ticked] off to the highest point right now and trying to get it together for y'all."
After brief spurts of "I'm a Dboy" and "Duffle Bag Boy," Wayne skulked off stage to a chorus of boos.
Ten minutes later, VCU students Tenzin Sampher, Louis Cincinelli and Garret Wegrzynowicz, figuring Wayne had finished the show after a mere 20 minutes, also left the venue.
"Virginia Commonwealth students and Richmond as a whole isn't going to forget what he did to us today. It was unacceptable," Sampher said.
But, Wayne did return, telling the rambunctious crowd, "I had to step backstage and think about everything for a second, and all I could think about was y'all."
For an hour, a revitalized Wayne charged through "Tha Block is Hot," which he injected with hoarse sneers, and "You Ain't Know."
Though pockets of fans drifted out of the venue during Wayne's set, at least one was somewhat satisfied.
"I think he took way too long to get here, but yeah, it was worth it, even though he got on stage after the show was supposed to end," said Maia Snow of Chesterfield County.
Her favorite part of the concert?
"When he finally showed up."
Contact Melissa Ruggieri at (804) 649-6129 or firstname.lastname@example.org.