Monday, December 24, 2012

How I Came to Enjoy Hip Hop: Part II, The Shows

I first heard of Prof through my girlfriend, Marie. Not more than 2 days after she told me to check out his music, available for a FREE download here, I had the pleasure to see him live at the Troubadour, with Grieves on the Together/Apart tour. It was Providence, as my mother would say.


I can't go into details about the show, because I simply can't remember, but I will tell you that there was a lot of jumping around, a lot of hands in the air, and pure energy. It was like watching a kid with ADHD going ape shit to the soundtrack of a steady, solid beat.

The next time I saw him play was at Soundset 2012. Marie, her roommate Tony and I were huddled amongst the masses, dripping with sweat on the 94°, humid as a mfin' rainforest, sun drenched day. Again, most likely because I was delirious from current weather conditions, I can't say much on what actually happened, but again, there was an amazing connection between the performers and the audience. There were also squirt guns, praise Jebus! Soundset was called just prior to Atmosphere taking the stage. As bummed as I was that I have still never seen Atmosphere in Minnesota, I was relieved that I was able to catch Prof again. Same great energy, another great show!


MidWest
Now, for those of you who don't know, Marie lives in Minnesota. We are always scheming, plotting and planning for the next time we can see each other. This is usually accomplished once in the winter/spring and then again in the summer/autumn. While every visit with my best friend is always enjoyable, we always have something to distract us. For example, when Marie comes out to California, she has to deal with my life as a mom. When I go back to Minnesota, she has to deal with the fact that there are at least 101 relatives who want to visit with me, too.

However, this was not the case for my dear friend's 29th birthday. After a lot of convincing and string pulling, we were able to meet in Chicago for three days. No kids of my own, no relatives to drive around and visit. Just Marie and I galavanting around Chi Town, doing whatever it is we do when we're together!

The reason for our trip: See Prof rock Chicago.

On the heels of the release of his new mix tape, Kaiser von Powderhorn III, Prof took to the road, stopping at the Abbey Pub on November 2, 2012. Marie and I were there. Front of house, stage right. He took the stage in an eerie blue/purple light, singing (no, not rapping...SINGING! This motherfuck can do it all. Rap, sing, scat, blues.) a heart-wrenching melody, so full of emotion you could almost feel the anger/pain/bull shit that must have been going on in his life when he wrote said song.

video
He continued through the show, playing every song I wanted to hear, slapping hands with the fans from on stage, jumping/running around...again displaying the same kind of behavior as one would expect to see from a little kid cracked out on too much sugar and up way past bed time. This show was, hands down, the best performance I've seen from him. He really got the crowd amped up, so much so that Marie, Yvonne (Marie's good friend from Chicago who let us crash on her couch!) and I didn't get home and into bed until 4:00 a.m. 
King Gampo

Prof & DJ Fundo


I'm thinking 'bout handing out rides for 2
Most recently, I took my LA girlfriend, Aziza, to see Prof at the El Rey Theatre on the How The Grouch Stole Christmas tour. This was an interesting show, because Prof was the opening act, and the crowd was, well...they came to see the Grouch and Eligh.

Again, Prof took the stage with the same great energy, playing song after song without much chit chat in between, as he only had 40 minutes to impress this, um, shall we say stoic, crowd. There were a few times when the music paused so that the fans could rap along with him, but it was like listening to crickets each time...so what did I do? I did what I know how to do best...I made a bunch of fucking noise and rapped as loud as I could to each and every song he played. The crowd still seemingly unimpressed.

When the show was over, the strangest thing happened...everyone in the audience FLOCKED over to the Prof merch table to get a free CD, shake hands, take photos and get autographed boobies. I hung around for a bit, partly because I wanted to thank him for an amazing show, partly because I am a borderline stalker. Everyone who approached the table had nothing but great things to say! The crowd didn't want anything to do with the other performers, who were handing out CDs as well, and continued to flock to Prof, solidifying their new found fandom. 


haha, I love this photo! Z is all cool, calm and collected and I am geeking out!
The next time I am FOR SURE going to show some Minnesota Nice at a Prof show will be in March 2013 when he hits the road with Murs on the Paid Dues tour. Can't fucking wait!





     





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