Monday, November 12, 2007

REVIEW: Jay-Z’s 'American Gangster' Tour at Ram’s Head Live

Monday, November 12, 2007

An awe-inspiring, once-in-a-lifetime experience. That’s really the only way to describe Jay-Z’s performance Friday night in Baltimore at Ram’s Head Live, stop number three on his five-city “American Gangster” mini-tour. If missed this show and consider yourself a true Hov fan, do yourself a favor and get up to Philly or NYC to catch one of the last two. Treat yourself.

Other than waiting outside for over 90 minutes in 30-degree weather and waiting another hour for anything to happen once inside, there were no major disappointments. The wait outside, albeit cold, was at least entertaining. You know Bmore’s finest (note the sarcasm) were out and looked the part. One girl who was particularly entertaining (and tacky) donned a gold and black form fitting ‘Roc-A-Fella’ dress and strutted up and down that line for everyone to see. For 90 minutes, I and everyone else got a good chuckle. I should've taken pics. You would've laughed too.

The crowd outside started to get a little antsy around 8:45. The show was supposed to start at 9pm. Around 9:15, the ringleader of one group of dudes (idiots, really) claimed that he and his cohorts drove too far (from Atlanta) and paid too much money ($600 per ticket) to be waiting outside in the cold and that if the line didn’t move, they’d make it move. Still, no worries. Security quelled that nonsense real quick. Finally, the crowd was let in.

At 10 p.m Jay-Z's band took the stage and started into the introduction from American Gangster, his 10th studio album. The musicians promptly went into "Pray" when Jay-Z emerged from the smoke with his necklace and sunglasses reflecting the stage lights. The shoulder-to-shoulder crowd went crazy and rushed toward the stage.

I had honestly forgotten how extensive Jay’s catalogue is. He could’ve have played all night and well into the morning if he wanted to. He just kept coming with hit after hit after hit. He didn’t perform anything from Reasonable Doubt or In My Lifetime Vol. 1 or Vol. 2, but he let the crowd perform the entire first verse to “Big Pimpin” before leaving the stage for the first time.

You know how these performers do. They make the crowd think they're leaving, the crowd screams and begs them to come back on stage, the artist takes a sip of water or whatever he/she does behind stage, then returns to stage and the adoration of his/her fans. True to form, he brought out c-lister Memphis Bleek and the recently released Beanie Sigel, who looks like he’s expecting quadruplets (see picture above). For a second I was taken back to the late-90’s/early-2000s when hip-hop was at its prime. It was good to see that all is right with the ROC, at least for the night.

He’s supposedly coming back to do a bigger concert in the spring at a larger venue. I’ll be there with bells on.


yet another black guy said...

if you say so. i can't front, Jay-Z has managed to have hit after hit while other rappers are begging for guest spots on r&b joints. i just can't imagine him putting on an energetic show other than freestyling a bit.

then again, if one is as big of a fan as you are, the show would be dope regardless. good to see you had a great time. do you meet up with your co-worker while you were there?

Mr. Jones said...

No. He didn't call. Story of my life, right?

Post a Comment

It's no fun if you don't say anything.

Blog Widget by LinkWithin