#About last night
So it was date night last night, me and the hubby were heading to the KRS One & DJ Premier NOW HEAR THIS concert at the Forum in Kentish Town. WHAT A NIGHT!!
We arrived around 9pm and it was already bumping, old skool hip hop tunes were being played by some local UK DJ’s. The crowd was slowly starting to fill up. It was a mixed crowd, people from different backgrounds. Drinks were flowing and it was calm.
Personally, I don’t enjoy concerts as I’m not a fan of rowdy crowds and I know I sound like an old woman, but they are just too loud. I have nerve damage in my teeth and therefore the loud vibrations, such as that from speakers provide a very uncomfortable experience. I digress.
As a result of the crowds and the fact that I did not intend to stand up for 6 hours, we sat upstairs on the balcony at the front, which was in fact a much better view.
So up until about 10.30 there were 2 guys, cant quite remember there names who were just singing along to the songs the DJ played, I don’t know, I think they call them hype men, that or just hosts. They started to bore me after a while. It became a little bit more interesting when some b-boys and a b-girl came on the stage demonstrating their talents and also engaging in a battle. Whilst they were good, they were somewhat mediocre, however it’s not like I could do it, so who am I to comment. I’m the audience, that’s who. Lets say I have a 5 year old cousin who’s break-dancing skills are much more aesthetic to the eye. (I’m not being rude, just honest, check her out B-Girl TERRA https://youtu.be/5HrrbkYJM2M?t=46s ).
Anywho’s they all left the stage and DJ Swift was brought on the stage, winner of DMC 1988. He demonstrated some of his scratching abilities and they were rather delightful, however it went on a bit long. He went on for about 30 minutes before they introduced DJ Premier, who’s mixing skills were maaaad!! However, it started to go on a bit to long and I was becoming frustrated and hot, so went to stand outside for about 20 minutes or so.
It was about 1.00 pm when I heard his voice and brought myself back inside, and plus I felt bad for leaving the hubby by himself.
From the beginning to the end KRS-One was FIRE!!!!!!!! He did a few classics, Whoop Whoop its the sound of the police!!! got me up and reminiscing. However, he came with some new rhymes and also engaged in some free styling. He free styled for the majority of the show and I fully enjoyed it. He even free styled in response to a minor altercation in the crowd. His frees styling abilities are just as on point as they ever were.
He spoke on current issues, police brutality, black lives matter, all lives matter, racism, Trump, pillaging, Mexican’s, Latino’s, Iraq. It was all in there. He made powerful statements. He spoke upon immigration, how the Mexicans seek to come into America, entering into the parts of America that initially began to them. How can they be immigrants, they are just returning home.
He spoke passionately about the recent incidents of police brutality. I don’t know whether its disappointing, frustrating or just plain unfortunate that his lyrics from over 30 years ago, still resonate with what’s been going on in this current climate. This is why these artists will always be the voice, teachers and revolutionists because they speak truth and that truth is still relevant today. We all watched Straight Outta Compton, we saw the frustration that led to the song ‘F*** the Police’ and I’m sure the same can be said for KRS One’s ‘Sound of the Police’ as well as many of his other releases. When he performed the song last night, the whole crowd had their middle finger salute up, high in the sky regardless of their race, gender, sexuality. KRS One was able to talk about the negative aspects of racism and the black lives matter campaign to a predominantly white crowd and the message was received with a degree of passion where for a second you felt that yes our lives do matter and you appreciate the struggle. It was a powerful evening of spoken word, floetic free styles and conscious rap over various musical styles.
He rapped over classical beats and even some trap. He would often rap in patois over reggae/dub beats clearly embracing his Jamaican background. I enjoyed those ones most as I love me some reggae.
He brought out his own b-boys out halfway through his set, who performed in the background whilst he laid down the beats. They were much better than the first set, a bit more organised. The b-boys brought out two signs which remained on stage which embodied all that was KRS One. The first one read Knowledge Reigns Supreme Over Nearly Everyone, which we all know is who he is. The second one stated ‘Rap is something we do, Hip Hop is something we live’. This was representative of his passion for real Hip Hop, I’m not talking this Hip Pop music that these current artists try to pass of as genuine, I’m talking that real nitty gritty, conscious, raw, hard hitting HIP HOP!!
As his set was coming to a close, this man decided he was going to go into the crowd. This man walked freely through the crowd and stood in the middle performing his tracks. He showed no stress with the crowds who swamped him, someone even snatched his hat. He barely flinched, he just smiled and kept on flowing. He then went onto the stairs and retrieved a bag of pre-signed tennis balls and through them all into the crowd for keepsakes. Quite a creative idea, unfortunately, I didn’t get one. Sad times LOL..
Once he got back on stage, he spoke of his gratitude to the UK fans and there appreciation of real, raw hip hop. He said many people don’t want to show love for KRSOne because he speaks truth. He informed the crowd that he was 50, stating this is what 50 looks like, and I must say it looks and sounds bloody excellent.
His set went on for just over an hour, it felt quite short considering we had been there all night. I felt cheated in a way, in the sense that it could have been less of everyone else and more of him and to be honest, I feel he could have went on for as long as needs be. He is still passionate about his music and the message.
The show was great, he was great. His passion, his stage presence, his lyrical abilities were simply amazing. His quick thinking and demonstration of knowledge, his ability to keep current all made for a BAD ASS show. Would I see him again, a thousand times yes.
So back to my initial question, is KRS One still relevant for today, the answer to that is HELL YEAH!!! and I believe that he will continue to be for many a time to come. As long as society remains the way it is, he message will continue to ring true. Even if things get better, he still remains relevant. For me, he is one of the main contributors to the foundations of HIP HOP.
The true Teacha.
Hopefully he will be coming to a town near you and if so, I suggest you go see him.
#KRS1 #teacha #hiphopislife #realhiphop #nowhearthis