Entries tagged with: Black Sheep
photo: Joyce Manor at Bowery Ballroom in 2014 (more by Mimi Hong)
You can browse our full NYC show calendar for all of tonight's shows, but here are some highlights...
Todd Terje, Free Magic @ Verboten
Having made one of last year's best albums, Norwegian analog synth aficionado Todd Terje doesn't tour much, and this show tonight is his only North American date apart from Coachella. He's performing live tonight, not DJing, and advance tickets are sold out -- but you can buy at the door.
Joyce Manor, The Weaks @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
Joyce Manor's Never Hungover Again was one of the best punk LPs of 2014, short and to the point, with no room at all for frills. Their live show rips just as hard, as tonight's RSVPed-out show will surely prove.
Dr. Dog, mewithoutYou @ Bowery Ballroom
Dr. Dog are on night 6 of their eight-night NYC run with different openers. This one's the second of two with post-hardcore art rockers mewithoutYou, who are promising a new album for this year.
Sam Smith, George Ezra @ Madison Square Garden
While Sam Smith's solo album isn't as interesting as his Disclosure collaboration, it's certainly more popular. Tonight he headlines a sold-out MSG.
Shilpa Ray, Waltz, Rosy Street @ Baby's All Right
Shilpa Ray is planning a new album for Northern Spy this year, and we'll likely get a chance to hear some of that tonight.
Pop. 1280, Bootblacks, Anasazi @ Saint Vitus
If you like your post-punk on the dark side, and with an emphasis on the "punk" suffix, every band on this bill tonight should be right up your alley.
Mantra Percussion, Ian Williams @ Winter Garden at Brookfield Place
It's the kickoff event for the 2015 Ecstatic Music Festival, a free show with Battles Ian Williams backed by Mantra Percussion in the lovely Winter Garden at Brookfield Place.
Black Sheep, Das EFX @ Brooklyn Bowl
It's a double bill of early-'90s hip hop with Native Tongues affiliates Black Sheep (best known for their hit "The Choice is Yours") and the influential duo Das EFX.
Just Blaze's House Party w/ guests Rae Sremmurd & more @ Webster Hall
You pretty much can't go to a club without hearing Rae Sremmurd's hits "No Flex Zone" and "No Type," and tonight Just Blaze's weekly club night at Webster will have the rap duo performing them in the flesh.
Dead Leaf Echo, The Judas Knife, Soft Silence @ Acheron
NYC shoegazers Dead Leaf Echo wear their influences ('80s 4AD, '90s Creation) on their sleeves but do it very well. The band are about to head into the studio to make their next record with Jorge Elbrecht (who did No Joy's last one), so tonight could be a taste of what's to come.
Emperor X, Surf Rock Is Dead, Hellbirds, Greenfield, Yabad @ Pianos
It's another night of Surf Rock Is Dead's residency at Pianos, and especially of note is headliner Emperor X, who's been mixing lo-fi electronics and folky songwriting since the late '90s.
Mark Beasley and Arto Lindsay @ The Kitchen
According to the venue's description, "for this event, Mark Beasley, curator of Performa, offers a lecture responding to a 2010 performance by artist Regina José Galindo titled Looting." No wave legend Arto Lindsay will be accompanying him with a live original soundtrack. It's free and RSVP is encouraged.
For all of tonight's shows, and tomorrow's, check out our NYC concert calendar.
For laughs, check out the NYC Comedy calendar too.
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photos by P Squared Photography
De La Soul @ Irving Plaza 7/16/2014
De La Soul are celebrating their 25 years together this year, and Wednesday (7/16), Pos, Dave and Maseo threw a party at NYC's Irving Plaza. There were a few special guests -- Q-Tip came out for their classic track together, "Buddy," with Common as well, and Dres from Black Sheep made an appearance too. Opening the night were Dillon Cooper, and Billy Ray who is on Maseo's label. Pictures from the night are in this post.
As mentioned, Common is playing a free show on Monday (7/21) at The Gramercy Theatre which celebrates his new album Nobody's Smiling. Wristbands are available at the Gramercy starting at 10 AM.
More pics from De La Soul's Irving Plaza show below...
Brooklyn punks Cerebral Ballzy and veteran Queens hip hop duo Black Sheep are teaming up for a show together on February 9 at Gramercy Theatre. Tickets for that show go on sale today at 10 AM.
Smokey Robinson is playing Beacon Theatre on June 6. Tickets for that show go on sale today at noon.
The Semi-Colons? (The Mysterians of Question Mark & The Mysterians) are playing Mercury Lounge on February 22 with The Ar-Kaics and DJs Billy Miller and Miriam Linna (of Norton Records). Tickets for that show go on sale today at noon.
Chicago and REO Speedwagon are playing PNC Bank Arts Center on August 16 and Nikon at Jones Beach Theater on August 17. Tickets for those shows go on sale today at 10 AM
I Am The Avalanche, The Swellers, Turnover and Bellwether are playing the Marlin Room at Webster Hall on March 28. Tickets for this punk show go on sale today at 10 AM.
Browse our 'Tickets On Sale' tag for more recently announced NYC shows.
by Andrew Sacher
Rakim at Rock the Bells 2010 (more by Eric Townsend)
It's the new year, and like every year, there's a ton of great hip hop shows coming up in NYC, especially a lot this month (and of course a few announced for the months after that). So while you're trying to stay warm during the coldest winter, here's some of those shows you might want to check out:
As discussed, Jay Z brings his Magna Carter World Tour to his stomping grounds of Barclays Center on Sunday (1/12) and Monday (1/13). If you can't make the Brooklyn dates, or just still need more Hov in your life, there's other nearby dates happening at Mohegan Sun (1/17), Nassau Coliseum (1/19), and Prudential Center (1/22). Tickets for those shows are still available.
A bunch of golden-age rappers are joining forces for the Masters of Ceremony show at Radio City Music Hall on January 24 with DMX, EPMD, Rakim, Naughty by Nature, Brand Nubian, Big Daddy Kane, Slick Rick, Biz Markie, and Black Sheep. Tickets for that show are on sale now.
Another long-running NYC rapper, Talib Kweli will play the second annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration at SOB's on January 19, and this one also honors the late Nelson Mandela. Tickets for that show are on sale now.
Also at SOB's on January 27, producer 9th Wonder will celebrate the release of his label Jamla Records' Jamla is the Squad compilation album. Statik Selektah hosts for the night, and the show will also feature ADD-2, Rapsody and the entire Jamla team -- Actual Proof, HaLo, GQ, Heather V and more -- with special guests. Not sure whose those guests will be, but the album features appearances from Jadakiss, Styles P, Talib Kweli, Elzhi, Phonte, and more. Stream a 9th Wonder-produced Rapsody track from the compilation, below. Tickets are on sale now.
Dom Kennedy, who's notably collaborated with Curren$y, Schoolboy Q, Casey Veggies and others, plays NYC on January 28 at Irving Plaza with Skeme. Tickets for that show are on sale now.
Another Dom Kennedy collaborator, Nipsey Hussle, plays NYC on January 24 at Highline Ballroom with Erk the Jerk and The Kid Daytona. Tickets for that show are on sale now. Nipsey recently released a new track, "6in Heels," which you can stream below.
Waka Flocka Flame plays NYC on January 27 at BB King's. Tickets for that show are on sale now.
Other upcoming hip hop shows happening a bit later in the year include Cam'ron at Stage 48 on 2/20 (tickets), Shaggy at Brooklyn Bowl on 2/25 (tickets), and Slaughterhouse at Best Buy Theater on 4/26 (tickets).
And Kanye West just announced a tour.
These are just a few of the upcoming hip hop shows in NYC. What else?
Raekwon at NXNE 2012 (more by David Andrako)
We were recently talking about hip hop shows at CMJ like Schoolboy Q, Talib Kweli, Black Moon, and more, and since then another big one was announced. Wu-Tang Clan member Raekwon will headline the AllHipHop.com 15 Year Anniversary party at SOB's on October 17. Tickets for that show are on sale now. Rae recently remixed Drake and Jay Z's "Pound Cake" from Nothing Was the Same, and you can stream that below.
SOB's is hosting some other good hip hop showcases this year too. One of those happens on October 15 with Deniro Farrar, The Doppelgangaz, Dillon Cooper, Hefna Gwap, Rod Rhaspy, Greg Grease and Sean Falyon. Tickets for that one are on sale now.
There's also one on October 17, which is especially notable because legendary NYC hip duo Black Sheep (aka Dres and Mista Lawnge) is on the lineup. But also, Sisqo is headlining, if you're into that sort of thong. I mean thing. Tickets for that show are on sale now.
Stream that Raekwon remix below...
The Jungle Brothers at SOB's last night via MuphoricSounds
As expected, The Jungle Brothers DID bring out members of the Native Tongues (and others) last night at SOB's (2/7), but that did not include many of the "invited guests". The reunion and associated guest appearances were limited to Leaders of The New School (Charlie Brown & Dinco D, but sans the crucial Busta Rhymes), Jarobi (of a Tribe Called Quest), members of the UMC's and Black Sheep, Sadat X, Force MDs and possibly some others. Bum out, but it was sort of expected.
No word on whether members of A Tribe Called Quest will be in attendance at Harlem Stage in March either, but they will be the subject of a three day event:
On the heels of a major Producers Guild Award for the documentary Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest -Harlem Stage, in conjunction with Revive Music, will celebrate the impact, importance and influence of the pioneering crew with A Tribe Called Quest: Innovation and Legacies - A Movement in Four Parts March 1-3 at Harlem Stage. This four part series features live performances, dance events and a free humanities event headlined by a panel of hip-hop scholars, journalists and artists.More details on each event below.
"A Tribe Called Quest is one of the most important groups in the history of hip-hop, with a legacy that continues to impact generations of artists, musicians and audiences." says Simone Eccleston, Harlem Stage's Assistant Director of Programming, who curated the tribute. "With their signature sound, they created timeless gems, and this series seeks to celebrate their cultural significance, their musicianship and their roles as composers and producers. It is our goal to provide audiences with a multidimensional experience that highlights ATCQ's music, the historical context, and their influence on artists that have come after them."
In the span of three years, starting in 1990, A Tribe Called Quest - made up of rappers Q-Tip, Phife Dawg and Jarobi White, and DJ/producer Ali Shaheed Muhammad - released three albums - People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm, The Low End Theory and Midnight Marauders - widely acknowledged by hip-hop fans to be some of the best recordings ever. The crew became part of a larger community of artists making redemptive, transcendent music: groups like the Black Sheep, De La Soul, Jungle Brothers, and Leaders of the New School; solo performers Monie Love and Queen Latifah; and others who formed the collective Native Tongues. They made songs together and often referred to each other in recordings.
Tickets for A Tribe Called Quest: Innovation and Legacies - A Movement in Four Parts, range from free to $25 and are available by phone at (212) 281-9240, ext 19 or 20, and online at www.harlemstage.org. Free programs require RSVP at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In other hip hop news, head on over to Public Assembly TONIGHT (2/8) for a FREE show as part of the Red Bull Academy. Kicking off with a conversation with Buckshot (of Black Moon), Dru Ha (of Duck Down), and Skyzoo, the evening will also feature live performances from Smif-N-Wessun, Buckshot and Skyzoo as well. The show kicks off at 7PM and you can RSVP at Yamez@redbullmusicacademy.com (might not be necessary).
Check out a preview of tonight's discussion, as well as a new video for "Still Standing" by Pharaohe Monch and a preview of Sean Price's Mic Tyson (both are on Duck Down), with more Harlem Stage info, below...
Is this (and more) what SOB's is in for tonight?
HipHopDX: The Native Tongues reunion show tonight is initiated by the Jungle Brothers. How did the whole show come about?In true hip hop fashion, the list of "invited guests" to tonight's Jungle Brothers reunion show at SOB's includes the entire Native Tongues crew, aka De La Soul, A Tribe Called Quest, Monie Love, Black Sheep, Leaders of The New School "and more". No word as to who will actually show though. Here's to hoping it's all of them, though unfortunately at this point only those with a ticket will get to find out in person (the show is sold out).
Mike G (of the Jungle Brothers): I'm good friends with one of the promoters, Big Jeff. They wanted to pay homage to us in a certain extent and represent one time for New York because we haven't performed in New York for such a long time. We just had wanted to hook up an official Jungle Brothers show and hopefully get some of the other guys to come and that's really what it is. Letting people know Jungle Brothers are back and then also saying, "We want this Native Tongue family to live." And now we putting out a call. We told the brothers to come through, represent.
In related news, 2/3 of De La Soul have formed First Serve, a new crew that will welcome their debut LP on Duck Down on April 2nd.
'First Serve' is many things, but at its heart it is the story of two young boys from Queens, New York with big dreams and larger rhymes. Two friends, Deen Whitter (aka Plug 2 / Dave) and Jacob 'Pop Life' Barrow (aka Plug 1/ Pos), friends from seventh grade, are by their own admission, "different, but the differences seem to complement everything we do." Their name 'First Serve' comes from their motto, "First come, First Serve, get what you deserve."Check out a new video by First Serve below.
After years of laying down demos and mixtapes on the hustle in the hip-hop game, we get the next instalment from their world in the form of the 'We Made It' skit. All the hard work has finally paid off - Jacob and Deen have hit the big time signing to Goon Time Records to become the next new thing to hit the airwaves.
photos by Brook Bobbins
Talib Kweli / EPMD
The energy and atmosphere was so Hip-Hop in every way! The crowd roared as the legends of the game hit the stage. A top memorable moment of the event was the LOX reunion. Styles P, Jadakiss, and Sheek Louch all hit the stage and performed classic material. They all did solo verses as well. The crowd went crazy when Styles P did his verse off Rick Ross' " B.M.F." Overall it was a great night for Hip-Hop. If you were there you would have felt that love, that energy and most important, you would understand that Hip-Hop is not dead. -[MsDramatv.com]
Yo MTV Raps of 1990s exploded onto the stage at Best Buy Theater on June 30th, as Hot 97 hosted a lineup of hip hop greats from the era and beyond. Headlined by Talib Kweli, the show featured appearances from EPMD, The Lox, Large Professor, M.O.P., Keith Murray, Nice n Smooth, Brand Nubian, and many many others. Pictures from the show, which include shots of DJ Premier, Pharoahe Monch, JuJu of The Beatnuts, Lil' Ceasar, and many others, continue below...
Black Sheep at Brooklyn Hip Hop Fest 2010 (more by Brook Bobbins)
When we first announced Summerstage's free hip hop show lineup, tonight's (6/28) free show at Soundview Park in the Bronx was listed as Funkmaster Flex and Special Guests. The lineup has since changed and will feature performances by three old school NYC hip hop artists; the duo Black Sheep (Dres and Mista Lawnge), Peter Gunz, who most notably recorded as a duo with Lord Tariq, and frequent Big L-collaborator and Studio 54 DJ Kid Capri. Peter says Flex will also be there.
Q-Tip, who, like Black Sheep, is part of NYC hip hop collective Native Tongues, is DJing at Brooklyn Bowl on Thursday (6/30). Questlove, who usually holds down the DJing at Brooklyn Bowl on Thursdays, returns on July 7.
Q-Tip also plays the Brooklyn Hip Hop Fest is July, part of which is taking place at Music Hall of Williamsburg this year. The July 14th MHOW event, titled "Salute the DJ", will feature Marley Marl, Grand Wizzard Theodore, Roli Rho, Twilite Tone, and Torae. Q-Tip's headlining performance goes down on the Main Stage on Saturday, July 16th. Tickets are still on sale for that (and for the Music Hall party).
Butterfly of Digable Planets, who weren't actually part of Native Tongues but take cues from similar NYC-jazz based sources, released the debut full length Black Up for his Shabazz Palaces project today (6/28) via Sub Pop. You can still stream it at NPR. Download two tracks from the album above, and check out Shabazz Palaces tour dates (though no more in NYC at the moment) below.
Ghostface Killah at Rock The Bells (more by Andrew St. Clair)
CMJ is almost here, and as usual hip hop is well represented with appearances from the greats as well as those on the upswing. Ghostdini (aka Ghostface Killah) obviously is one of the former, and he'll headline BB Kings on 10/22 with Sheek Louch (of D-Block), and Frank Dukes. Tickets are on sale, or you can get in with your CMJ badge.
Audible Treats have announced their 2010 showcase at Sullivan Hall in NYC, and once again it's chock full of interesting indie hip hop. Veterans Black Sheep will join Nottz, Diamond District, Big Pooh (ex-Little Brother), Chip Fu (of Fu-Schnickens), Rah Digga, Von Pea, Moe Green, DaVinci, and The Left (Apollo Brown, DJSoko, Journalist103). The show goes down on 10/21 and tickets are on sale.
Von Pea of Tanya Morgan will play two shows at SOBs in the coming months, with the first happening on 9/29 when he supports Pac Div along with STS and Beyond Belief (tickets). Then less than two weeks later, Von Pea will play the venue again with J-Live in tow to celebrate the release of his new record Pea's Gotta Have It. Tickets are on sale.
And while we're on the subject of former members of Little Brother, Foreign Exchange (aka ex-Little Brother member Phonte and producer Nicolay) will play a CMJ how at BB King's on 10/23 with Darien Brockington, Zo! and a live band in tow. Tickets are on sale. Darien Brockington, who also contributes to Foriegn Exchange, will also be at SOBs in the coming weeks as part of a collaborative show with R&B singer Yahzarah on 10/14. Tickets are on sale.
Duck Down will team up with Blacksmith Music (Kweli's label) for the Duck Down vs Blacksmith CMJ Showcase with appearances from Jean Grae, Pete Rock, Strong Arm Steady, Pharoahe Monch, Skyzoo & !llmind, Marco Polo with Torae & Ruste Juxx, Team Facelift and Boot Camp Clik (Sean Price, Buckshot, Smif N Wessun, Heltah Skeltah & 9th Wonder). Sounds amazing. Tickets are on sale for the 10/19 show at LPR.
The Duck Down CMJ show is part of a "15 Year Anniversary" tour for the label. All dates below.
And speaking of Pete Rock, BB King's will host a night curated by the year 1992, as Pete Rock & CL Smooth will team with Brand Nubian and Das EFX for a show at BB King's on 10/20. Tickets are on sale. Pete Rock & CL Smooth reunited at Brooklyn Hip Hop Fest earlier this year.
Joell Ortiz of recent Slaughterhouse fame will play SOBs on 11/9. Tickets are on sale.
Statik Selektah & Termanology's new collaborative LP, 1982, gets an album release party on October 25th at SOBs. Tickets are on sale for the show, which will feature support from REKS & more special guests TBA. Dig on the recent video by 1982 featuring Bun B & Masspike Miles, "You Should Go Home", below.
Some videos and tour dates below...
photos by Brook Bobbins
Okay, so everyone advertised did perform. But it sure was a nail-biter. Lauryn Hill, the eccentric erstwhile Fugee who has mostly stayed out of sight since her lone solo album, 1998's still-scintillating R&B masterpiece "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill," was clearly the lineup's chief curiosity. When it comes to her behavior over the past decade there's been no rumor too bizarre to believe. Sunday's rumor was a doozy, and it was true -- she really was three hours late to the stage because she was getting a manicure-pedicure. Suddenly, the attempt by her former band mate Wyclef Jean to become president of Haiti doesn't seem quite so self-centered.I was wondering if Snoop's afternoon appearance in Prospect Park was really a good idea. There were significantly less complaints from the Rock the Bells show that happened one day earlier on Governors Island in NYC. Lauryn was only 30 minutes late.
As her 4:30 start time approached, the elaborate stage plot was ready to go. And then . . . nothing. A 10-minute wait became a half-hour, which became a full hour. Scattered heckles became heavy boos as the stage was broken down at 5:30... Her toenails apparently dry, Lauryn Hill [finally performed later], but she probably shouldn't have bothered. The performance was a messy rush through highlights from "Miseducation," but they were hardly recognizable due to her hoarse voice, speedy delivery and clunky, overstuffed arrangements. Hill wasn't lacking for energy, just focus. The feedback on her microphone was ear-splitting; special guest Nas came out for a 45-second cameo, and his microphone wasn't working for half of it. After 20 minutes she departed to an equal mix of cheers and boos, seemingly oblivious as to why anyone might be upset.
...As headliner Snoop Dogg's stage props were assembled -- that would be a large video screen and a park bench covered in 40s in brown paper bags -- and the clock began ticking toward the venue's 11 p.m. curfew, the chatter started again. As a general rule of thumb, chatter at hip-hop shows is not a good thing. Where's Snoop? He was in New York performing at a Michael Jackson tribute show earlier in the day and at 10:45 p.m. was nowhere to be seen. Boos, again.
He did finally emerge, wearing what seemed to be your grandmother's old kitchen tablecloth and performed a truncated version of his iconic gangsta rap album "Doggystyle."... He mostly stayed true to character, never smiling -- maybe he was too focused reading his lyrics off teleprompters -- but his listless performance gave off the vibe that he'd rather be somewhere else. Like, New York. Snoop drawled over the atomic G-funk of "What's My Name?" as the house lights went on -- the venue's not-so-subtle way of saying, "It's time for you to go now." It's hard to think Snoop minded too much. -[Washington Post]
words by BBG, photos by Brook Bobbins
"Wht a fckin day! Was a 90s hipHop reunion backstge DAMN! Nice & smooth, dela soul, group home, primo, pete rck& cl smooth, large prof, craig g" -MastaAce
"Damn Pete Rock and CL Smooth rockin under the Brooklyn Bridge. It's a beautiful thing. Straighten it out! -greenspam
"I really am sorry that you're not here with me watching De La Soul kill shit live in Brooklyn" -djreadycee
De La Soul at Brooklyn Hip hop Fest in DUMBO - July 10, 2010
Though the rain did rear it's ugly head momentarily on July 10th, the crowd was nonetheless rocked at the 2010 Brooklyn Hip Hop Fest on Saturday. It was the final day of a week-long celebration, and also the biggest event of the fest. With a lineup that consisted of greats like De La Soul, Pete Rock & CL Smooth, Black Moon, Smif n Wessun, and many others, the surprise additions of Nice & Smooth, Black Sheep and Group Home gave the event an especially 90s touch. It wasn't all veterans though; relative newcomers like Curren$y, Black Milk, Diamond District, The Money Making Jam Boys, and many others brought new blood under the Brooklyn Bridge to get the block rockin'.
Tons more pics (starting with Black Milk's 3:45 set), and video are below...
DOWNLOAD: Black Milk - "Dreams" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Bisco Smith - "Vibrations" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Dres of Black Sheep - "Doin It Wrong" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Crown Royale - "Photographs" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Diamond District - "Who I Be" (Marco Polo Remix) (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Finale - "Motor Music" produced by Black Milk (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: ILL-Literacy - "Gentlemans Kool Aid" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: League510 - "Alienated" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: One Be Lo - "The Pigs" feat. Mike Posner (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: Tanya Morgan - "The Drop" (MP3)
DOWNLOAD: TRUTHLiVE - "Shoot Me Down" prod. by Tha Bizness (MP3)
Tanya Morgan is a (good) rap group. (more by Paul Birman)
Much like CMJ last year, we are proud to announce our sponsorship of the Audible Treats SXSW showcase at The Independent (501 Brushy Street) on March 20th! The Austin show will feature some of of the brightest in independent hip hop including the incredible Black Milk, bonafide hip hop legends Black Sheep and the rhyming 2/3 of Tanya Morgan! Full lineup is as follows:
Audible Treats 2010 SXSW Showcase lineupBlack Milk, who along with Buckshot and Torae, also plays Attitude Adjustment at Red 7 in Austin on 3/20, is prepping to release his new LP, Album of The Year, the follow-up to the incredible Tronic which impacted in 2008. He'll also appear at SXSW as a member of Random Axe, the supergroup which will team him with Sean Price and Guilty Simpson. Random Axe have a new LP on the way too.
Donwill & Von Pea (Tanya Morgan)
Crown Royale (Buff1 and DJ Rhettmatic)
One Be Lo (of Binary Star)
Amp Live (Zion I)
Donwill will drop his solo LP Don Cusack in High Fidelity shortly after the SXSW show.
Diamond District is the meeting of Oddisee, YU, and XO, and they released their critically acclaimed debut In The Ruff last year.
Crown Royale is the new project featuring Buff1 with legendary turntablist DJ Rhettmatic. The duo recently completed mixing their debut LP.
SXSW show fliers and some videos are below...
words & photos by Benjamin Lozovsky
The old Knitting Factory used to be a bastion for independent hip hop in New York City. The new incarnation just took a big step at continuing that legacy, as it hosted one of the most historic hip hop concerts in recent memory.
On Wednesday night (1/20), An astounding array of legends and rising stars rocked the stage to honor everyone's favorite five-footer, Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called Quest. The event, Mind Body Soul, was a benefit to raise awareness for diabetes (Phife just received a kidney transplant related to his trials with the disease). And while diabetes was often on the mind and tongues of the performers, the show was really more of a demonstration of the persisting camaraderie and mutual adoration within a genre too often beleaguered with battles and conflict.
After quick opening sets by Hook, Jasmine Solano, Scotch Davis, and Monica Rush, the venue went from a displaced chill to full on engagement as Talib Kweli lead off the roster of A-listers. Having just arrived at the venue and already sent out to perform, Kweli showed his undying humility and his utmost flexibility though microphone heroics on a short notice set. Greg Nice (of obscure but beloved group Nice and Smooth) then burst out with a virulent spirit, with the mohawked, larger-than-life OG launching himself straight into the audience to parlay with the youngsters up front.
Jeru Tha Damaja was glib and full of grimy charm; he laid down classic tracks and told stories from the tombs of Brooklyn Hip Hop lore. A soft-spoken Dres (from Black Sheep) smoothly enticed with new material to go with that little ditty about train derailment you might have heard.
Compared to the illustrious resumes of many performers preceding and following him, up-and-comer Jay Electronica might have felt a bit overwhelmed. But Jay's heartfelt thanks to his peers was the most touching moment of the night, and his outrageous performance - with help from Mos Def, Hi Tek, and Kweli (all of whom recently cancelled performances at Highline Ballroom) - resonated with the youthful segments of the crowd and proved his position as the brightest star on the hip hop horizon.
Jay might have been the showstopper if he wasn't followed by hip hop ambassador (and its greatest living performer) KRS-One. Accompanied by hype man BusyBee (of the original Zulu Nation crew), KRS got metaphysical with beyond-cerebral freestyles. But still being the most humble braggadocio around, he bumped out covers of Biggie and Tribe to continue the showing of utmost respect and brotherhood that categorized the night.
There were some awkward and antagonizing moments throughout: posse upon posse swelling to the width of the stage and getting shooed away numerous times by Heavy Sound (the presenter) organizers, strange interactions between host Michael Rapaport and house turntablist DJ D-Lyfe, not to mention an off-performance by a sheepish Mr. Cheeks (of The Lost Boyz).
But it wouldn't really be a memorable hip hop conglomeration if it wasn't just the slightest bit disorganized or sporadically contentious. Even without a single piece of original vinyl brandished throughout the laptop-swapping spree behind the DJ table, the event still felt like a storied Bronx block party or an impromptu Brooklyn corner concert or a Queens Native Tongue poetry slam.
As Consequence dragged Phife on stage, followed by Ali Shaheed Muhameed and then Q-Tip to perform the final set of the night as a united Quest, on display was a vivid demonstration of the greatest hope for the future of hip hop: its ability to nurture its own existence through such reciprocal love. It might take a village to raise a child, but on this night, it only took one Tribe to raise up hip hop.
Ghostface was on the bill, but didn't show. More pictures from the night below...
photos by Tim Griffin
Happy Holidays! I take on more than I can handle. That results in a lot of unposted content. In the name of catching up, while also taking it easy during this final week of the year, here's some of that lost material.
The xx @ Webster Hall during CMJ (more by Vincent Cornelli)
tonight in NYC
* Sharon Jones @ Starland Ballroom
* Darmstadt @ Issue Project Room
* Friendly Fires, The xx @ Webster Hall
* Gnaw, Earthen Grave, Iron Man @ Europa
* Brendan Benson, Cory Chisel @ Maxwell's
* Bowerbirds, Sharon Van Etten @ Union Pool
* Richard Buckner, Milagres @ Mercury Lounge
* Stalkers, The Beets, War Party @ Glasslands
* Golden Error & Red Mass @ Dead Herring
* Espers, Azita, Doug Paisley @ The Bell House
* Hot Tuna, Loudon Wainwright III @ Beacon Theatre
* Alicia Hall Moran, Gordon Voidwell @ The Kitchen
* Ladytron (DJ), Yes Giantess @ Tribeca Grand Hotel
* The Queers, The Leftovers, The Sights @ Maxwell's
* Ghostland Observatory, Slapping Purses @ Terminal 5
* Finding Fiction, Beehive, Picture Picture @ The Cameo
* Sam Champion, Matt Trowbridge, Electric Owls @ Union Hall
* Heloise & The Savoir Faire, Midnight Magic @ Brooklyn Bowl
* El Vez, Los Straightjackets, The Lovely Elvettes @ Bowery Ballroom
* Pants Yell!, The Surprisers, Mike Albo, Fluffy Lumbers @ Bruar Falls
* Air Waves, Talk Normal, US Girls, Total Slacker @ Secret Project Robot
* Black Sheep, Shinobi Ninja, Rad Out Crew, Nacirema @ Santos Party House
* Christina Courtin, Alaska Alaska, Alec Stephen, EJS @ Pete's Candy Store
* Zeke Virant & the Brain Rain Players, Cloud Nothings, Coasting @ Shea Stadium
* Elvis Perkins in Dearland, Himalayas, Max Silvestri @ Music Hall of Williamsburg
* Terra Nova: Sinfonia Antarctica w/ DJ Spooky & ICE @ BAM Howard Gilman Opera House
* Benefit show w/ Tony Conrad & Jutta Koether, Aki Onda, MV Carbon @ ParisLondonWestNile
* Ambergris, Boogie Boarder, Dubknowdub, Graffiti Monsters, Mark Lord, Nick Gazin, Sam Gas Can, Russian Tsarlag @ DBA
Cloud Nothings are in town. They played their first show ever last night at Market Hotel. Their second show is tonight at Shea Stadium.
MARTHA STEWART HOLIDAY CRAFT SALE
Where: Starrett-Lehigh Building, 601 W 26th St between Eleventh and Twelfth Aves, ninth floor (marthastewart.com)There's also a craft fair on Mulberry Street, and the Bust Holiday Craftacular is Sunday.
When: Saturday, December 5, noon-6pm, free
Why go: It's the domestic diva's first-ever holiday craft sale, which features home accessories, jewelry, ornaments and apparel from employees and friends of Martha Stewart Living Ominmedia, as well as crafters who've appeared on the Martha Stewart Show. In other words: by Stepford types, for Stepford types.
Don't miss: BrooklynVegan's DJ Bill Pearis spinning holiday music and indie rock, and the very Martha-esque gift-wrapping station. - Time Out
Sunday is also the day to see Beatles songs performed on ukuleles.
Q: Did Sam Champion break up?Sam Champion member Sean Bones will DJ between sets. Sam Champion's remake of Weekend at Bernie's below..
A: Kind of, yeah, I think so.
Q: Is Saturday, December 5th at Union Hall your last show?
Black Sheep play Santos tonight! Video for "Without a Doubt" below...
De La DMC @ Nokia Theatre, NYC - 8/13/09 (by Tim Griffin)
As Del La Soul told the crowd when they took the stage at Nokia Theatre in NYC last night (8/13), their show was not going to be all music from 3 Feet High & Rising. Why would anyone think it would be? Probably because the show was billed as "20 Years High and Rising" (and everyone and their mother is playing full albums these days) (including Buckshot who opened the show, but didn't play a full album at this one either). I was more than okay with them not playing the full thing, though it would have been nice to hear a few more songs from that album. Specifically, I wished they played "The Magic Number" and "Jenifa Taught Me (Derwin's Revenge)".
I loved every second of the packed show, and the 10-piece backing band was an especially nice touch. That said, I was selfishly hoping for a few more special guests, not that there weren't any. I thought for sure that Q-Tip would show up, and the Jungle Brothers and Black Sheep, and maybe even Doom, and who knows who else. Ends up they sort of kept the guests to a minimum. Bumpy Knuckles performed a short unannounced opening set. Prince Paul was brought out for a second to say hello. Dres from Black Sheep and Ali Shaheed Muhammad from A Tribe Called Quest were watching from the side of the stage and were brought forward to dance for a minute during "Buddy". And then, the big, and maybe only real special guest moment came during a cover of Run DMC's "Rock Box" which was completed with DMC himself on stage as part of the group. They covered Rakim too, but he wasn't there, maybe because he was downtown playing his own show at Highline Ballroom the same evening.
This Sunday (8/16) indie rock leaves the Williamsburg Waterfront for one week (Central Park Summerstage stole it for the day), and another big (mostly) hip hop show happens in NYC, courtesy of JellyNYC, and it's free (and/or $50). The Sunday Pool Party lineup includes Gravy Train!!!, DD/MM/YYYY, Kenan Bell (who also opened for De La Soul on Thursday), a DJ set by Prince Paul (Plug Four), and a headlining set by DEL the Funky Homosapien.
We have a full set of pictures coming from De La Soul (more tour dates HERE), and we'll have some from Sunday too. In the meantime, here's a few videos from the show...
some hip hop in the news
* Rapper's Road to Pop
* P Diddy did not change his name
* Fifty Cent and His Ex Get Court Orders
* Nas moves new album back two weeks
* Missy Elliott prepares for a summer "Block Party"
* DJ Green Lantern & Nas release The Nigger Tape
* On 'Carter III,' Lil' Wayne perfects the art of the brag
* Kanye West, Lupe & N.E.R.D. added another NYC show
* Lil Wayne's CD, fueled by leaks, poised to sell more than any album so far this year
Black Sheep are playing Knitting Factory in NYC tonight (6/11).
Also coming up: Kidz in the Hall @ S.O.B's, the 'Hip Hop Anniversary Tour' at the Paradise Theaterin the Bronx (with AFRIKAA BAMBATA, KURTIS BLOW, GRANDMASTER MELE MEL, ROB BASE, DANA DANE, GRAND WIZARD THEODORE, FORCE MD'S, AIR FORCE CREW, POSITIVE K, DJ HOLLYWOOD, LOVE BUG STARSKI, and DJ KOOL HERC), Lil Wayne in CT, and Black Sheep at Knitting Factory.