I’ve been fairly vocal in complaining about shitty, boring rap shows I’ve attended in the past. While the infamous Ultramagnetic show of 2013 rates as perhaps the most soul-crushing disappointment of my adult life, picking the best one I’ve attended is a little trickier. It would have to be a toss-up between Public Enemy‘s 1989 Melbourne show – where Flavor Flav was driven onto the stage in ambulance before he leaped off a giant speaker stack while me and my friends stood with our arms crossed in the appropriate b-boy stance while the rest of the crowd danced around like rabid meerkats; Lord Finesse and the late DJ Roc Raida in 2006 – simple yet effective; or Big Daddy Kane live in Herbert Von Park in Brooklyn, New York in 2013, where he tore up the stage and even managed to bust out some synchronized steps with his dancers.
What are your best and worst live rap show experiences?
The prospect of getting a guided audio tour through Afrika Bambaataa‘s record collection by two lifelong music geeks is appealing to even the most cursory of music fans, if the jam-packed crowd that squeezed into Melbourne’s Forum Theater on Friday night is anything to go by. It certainly didn’t hurt that it was helmed by music festival darlings Shadow and Cut Chemist, which made the whole thing easier to digest for those in the audience who haven’t memorised Bam’s original Blues and Soul list of his favorite breaks. (more…)
DJ Kenny Parkerhas shared this recording of a Boogie Down Productions show at Brixton Academy, 1990. Highlights include the freestyle session where KRS kicks some rhymes that would appear on later albums. Also, it’s my birthday today so I’m off to drink some RAER whiskey and whatnot.
Every now and then it’s good to throw on a tape of rap of old school rap at it’s finest, and without a doubt two of the sharpest crews to ever do it where those led by Grandmaster Caz and Kool Moe Dee. These four snippets from Troy L. Smith‘s crates are a fine reminder of just how advanced KMD was in his prime (check for shots fired at Melle Mel) and the amusing banter of weary performers after a long night celebrating Easy-AD‘s birthday. (more…)
Following the always entertaining festivities surrounding the Carbon festival (which I’m under strict orders never to speak of publicly), heading to the A$AP Ferg show at the Corner Hotel seemed like the perfect way to cap off a week-long bender. The venue was filled with excitable kids eagerly throwing-up ‘bows to the sounds of the local androgynous “It’s a Trap” Lady known as Mafia, before the curtains were drawn to prepare for the main event. (more…)
Now that my entire vinyl collection has been reunited at the CRC HQ, I can get back to the time-honored tradition of ripping vinyl again. To set it off, here’s a live recording of the “La Di Da Di” from the Polo Grounds at some time in the 80’s. It cuts off before the big payoff but it’s worth a spin just to hear the reaction of the crowd, who proceed to loose their shit at various points.
In the interest of “music journalism” I forced myself to attend a rap show last night featuring rappers I don’t really listen to on a regular basis, but don’t really have any huge level of hate for either, which is about as good as it’s going to get until Nice & Smooth decide to tour these shores. After enjoying a few rounds of boilermakers and weed with some associates, we wandered into the venue the very moment that El-P and Killer Mike hit the stage. (more…)
If you’re in Melbourne on 14 December, swing past the laucnh party for the new issue of Acclaim mag where I’ll be stunting in a CRC polo, creeping out interns and aiming for my usual “World’s Drunkest Man” award, while checking out if these Underachievers characters qualify for New Rap That Doesn’t Suck status. RSVP here.
Some rare footage of Joe Fatal’s brief rapping career, at a showcase that also included Artifacts, YAGGFU Front, Total Pack, Hard 2 Obtain and Legion of D.U.M.E. I had to emancipate this from the original account since they deaded embedding. You can catch footage of the other performances over there.
Holy shit…Kenny Parker finally got around to ripping some of those old tapes of KRS-One rapping over breakbeats courtesy of DJ Scott La Rock and Kool DJ Red Alert , as he told us about back in 2006. While there was no sign of the one with the dog barking over Kris’ verse, there’s an incredible ‘La Di Da Di’ style track which I’ve never heard before that will make your year. Shouts out to the Frozen Files crew over at East Village Radio for making this happen.
DJ Quik and Kurupt came into town, so I wandered past to relive some 90’s LA rap action. The highlight of course was Quik beatboxing “New York, New York” for Kurupt, and his generous dispensing of booze to the front row while performing “Tonite”.
The Doppelgangaz brought some Shark Life to S.O.B.’s on Monday 24 June, 2013 as part of a showcase that included Fred The Godson show. Features a cameo from DJ Kay Slay aka DEZ and his Straight Stuntin‘ girls, as well as the ever-lovely Bambie-Rose. Songs performed include “Sun Shine”, “Like What Like Me” and “Oh Well”.
Highlights of Masta Ace, Stricklin and Marco Polo performing at the Middle East in Boston on 22 June 2013, featuring “Crooklyn”, “The Symphony”, “Lil’ Young” with Ed OG, “Nostalgia” and “Born To Roll/Jeep-Ass Niguh”.
Apparently this Elektra Records showcase was filmed by Video Music Box (which I posted some of back when it dropped in 2012), and is notable for a number of reasons, not least a live performance of Brand Nubian‘s “The Devil”, which eventually appeared on one of those limited-edition vinyl releases from One Leg-Up, and make no bones in ice cream about calling out cracker-ass crackers. Also appreciated is the “I ain’t white” chant and the general disinterest of the knuckleheads at the front of the crowd who are either working as security or just stunting too hard to actually face the performance.
Just noticed this comment from Lair dating back to February, where he points out, “I think Keith recorded a diss track just for you off of this article”, linking to a song that dropped a mere 12 days after I expressed my bitter disappointment at Ultramagnetic MC’sCritical Beatdown tour.
While the cover image bares a striking resemblance to the venue I attended, the rhymes don’t really confirm that it has anything to do with my review, unless you consider “You heard the track accurate, that’s what I’m about” to be a rationale for his lip-syncing during the show in question, and “Laugh online…LOL…they stuck!” to be a subliminal aimed at Unkut HQ.
Hold up! On closer inspection, “Caught up in the zone like people with long cords on they phone/they can’t think out the box, so they won’t stay in the box” pretty much sums up everything that the Conservative Rap Coalition is about. Did Poppa Large (pause) just ether me?
I’ve never been a huge fan of these guys, but they did help KMD get on so I’m willing to cut them some slack. This recent reunion show certainly doesn’t seem to do them any favors, basically resembling what would happen if a guy who owned the local pizza store and his accountant decided to put on a rap show.
When I heard that Kool G Rap was performing in Philadelphia last Saturday night, you know I was getting there no matter what, especially considering how often I’ve argued that he’s the greatest MC of all-time. Just so happens that this performance was also the first time that G had performed with DJ Polo in seventeen years, and I got to capture it all on camera. Here’s footage of KGR performing “The Realest”, “Take ‘Em To War”, “Road To The Riches”, “Ill Street Blues”, “Fast Life” and “The Symphony”. (more…)