Only one word can describe Common’s NYC show the of evening Sunday, October 7 at Nokia
Theater…FIYA!!! The energy packed showed only helped ignite the
already hot crowd. Fans of Hip-Hop from all ages and numerous races
were in attendance to give Common their undivided attention.
The opening rap act was 19 year veteran Percee P. However, P’s lyrics were inaudible, though he was able to keep the cowd slightly
enthused thanks to the help of his DJ.
At about 9:30, the living legend Q-Tip, one of the founding members of A Tribe Called Quest
came out in his NY Yankees fitted with blazer and vest with his back to
the crowd with one finger in the air. He came on with his newest single,
very rock induced with deep bass. Tips’ DJ for the night was the
legendary DJ Scratch of EPMD fame. Tip took it back when he rhymed
over “Paid in Full” and both he and Scratch took turns
scratching on the turntables. His entire set was a mixture of his old
tracks as well a few of his new singles, interpolated with some old school tracks. Just when the crowd was picking it up after going
low for engine #9 (Black Sheep “Choice Is Yours”, but you knew that), Dres
from Black Sheep erupts onto the stage making the crowd go crazy. Just
when we thought Tip was done and leaving the stage he hits us with
“Bonita Applebum” followed by “Electric Relaxation.” Tip’s
performance left the crowd fulfilled and eager for Common.
Common ran onto the stage to a very anxious crowd at 11:08 pm to
be exact. He dapped his band and DJ up one by one as they were playing
the intro to Finding Forever. And from there it was on. He
started out with “Go” and for a second you would have thought the floor was going to
cave in because folks were rocking so hard. Common has recently
stepped into the acting game and he showed us his newly developed
skills as he acted out the courtroom scene to “Testify”. From there he
took us on a Hip-Hop anthology and did some lyrics from Bigggie…it
was all a dream, Biz Markie…..you got what I need, Eazy E….I’m from
Compton. The entire time he was doing the various artist lyrics he
would go from one rhyme to the next saying Hip-Hop…Hip-Hop…Hip-Hop; letting us know that Hip-Hop is indeed still alive and he’s
carrying the torch. To everyone’s surprise and glee DJ Dummy, Common’s DJ,
starts spinning BDP’s “South Bronx” and BOOM….KRS-One jumps on the
stage and the crowd literally screams; girls and boys included. But there’s more, just
when you thought it can’t get any better Q-Tip comes back on and they all
take turns freestyling. KRS One gave Common a very hefty moniker during one of his
flows, calling him the “King of NY,” for that night.
Common rounded out the evening paying homage to the late great producer
J. Dilla by rhyming over some of his Slum Village beats and and ended the night with “The Light.” Claiming that’s what J. Dilla
was….a shining light in Hip-Hop who will live on Forever.
The evening’s attendees saw prolific lyricists
who breathe, eat and sleep Hip-Hop and let the masses know that the culture is more than spewing gratuitous lyrics about money, hoes
and clothes. Life, love, unity and peace have their place too, and the 2K Sports Bounce Tour helped us find forever in Hip-Hop.