Launchpad was graced with Yung Knowledge, YAK Boy Fresh, BINGX and Stevie Stone on Sunday, Nov. 22. Yung Knowledge officially began the show. The duo were exceptionally charismatic and engaging. Easily captivating the crowd, they initiated audience participation and used that as a flawless segue between songs. YAK Boy Fresh (Y.ou A.lready K.now) was backed by a band – atypical for his work – but they all had incredible chemistry. YAK Boy Fresh’s flow was effortless, rhythmic and rousing. BINGX was extraordinarily entertaining and receptive to audience members. His high energy was relentless and unmatched.
Stevie Stone took the stage after a short film showing him escaping from a mental institution looking like Hannibal Lecter. Working with DJ Picasso, he was commanding and powerful. Stone’s passion for his music was easy to see and feel. He wanted his fans at Launchpad to know he appreciated them. He performed songs primarily from Strangeulation Vol. II; the crowd was wild and reflected Stone’s enthusiasm. With all the excitement and energy he was putting into the show, Stone took small breaks at the beginning of some songs before jumping up and dancing through his set. He invited a few groups of people from the crowd to join him, his touring crew and the other musicians on stage. All who joined him were eager to do so.
Stevie Stone is an unpretentious performer with outstanding content and flow. He subtly harmonizes with the music. He can stay in tempo but change rhythms with ease. His voice is profound and authoritative. When he’s on stage, there’s no misidentifying the drive and expertise he exudes.
After the show, Stevie Stone stayed to interact with fans. While his music is aggressive and direct, Stone was very kind and gentle with his fans. I watched him talk with and take photos with at least 20 people before I left. When I talked to him he was thoughtful and was genuinely concerned that I enjoyed myself. I talked with a few of the other musicians at the show; they were the same way. I felt welcomed and very pleased to see them all.
I loved watching the crowd and their energy which reflected the performers. Being unfamiliar with all of these musicians and their work, I looked to the crowd for guidance. The group was enthusiastic, wild, blissful, and passionate. Everyone was happy to be there, perhaps most of all Stevie Stone.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I need a chilly rub.
MC Jamalski is spending some time in New Mexico and performs at Moonlight Lounge tonight. Read Geoffrey Plant’s interview with him here.
Jamalski is an internationally known MC who helped pioneer the reggae/hip-hop crossover genre both as a member of the Boogie Down Productions crew and as a prolific solo artist with hits such as “Jump, Spread Out.” His accomplished beats cover the gamut of hip-hop and dance styles. As long as it’s an underground scene, Jamalski’s into it. After spending most of the past decade living and playing in Europe, last year Jamalski moved his headquarters back to his hometown, New York City, and has adopted Albuquerque as his secondary base of U.S. operations. The Alibi spoke with him over the phone.
In an article originally published in E: The Environmental Magazine, Christopher Weber writes about a hip-hop movement with a environmental message. Read about it here: Tuning Into Environmental Hip-Hop
My homie Kevin sent me this message after learning that Long Beach rapper Nate Dogg died on Tuesday at 41: “I can’t believe it ... or maybe I just don't want to. But the rhythm is no longer the bass, and the bass is no longer the treble.”
OMG! It’s summer. Y’know how I know? I mean, other than the short skirts all around town.
Bass baby. It’s blaring out of cars all over Central. Just now, on a quick ciggie break I got a taste of the old school. N.W.A.’s “F* Tha Police,” Onyx’s “Slam” (seriously, and that was NOT expected) and a little throwback from a few years ago, Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy.” Yay!
I love cruisin’ music, though I’m never too good at choosing my own selections. In high school my best friend and I went for a little Main Street U.S.A. drive through downtown Silver City -- where she’d just moved -- blasting Smashing Pumpkins. Naturally, we got some funny looks, but eventually she made friends anyway. (In my own defense, I at least made sure her Grateful Dead CD stayed where it belonged, in the case under the seat.)
Rarely do face paint and hardcore rap seamlessly fit together, but for Kansas City’s Tech N9ne, it’s been his steez for the past two decades. The self-proclaimed “weirdo rapper” deals in fallen angels and other dark material that places him worlds apart from other MCs. It’s not all about bling, bitches or Bentleys—he rhymes like he’s narrating a horror film. Tech’s style murders the competition by combining wicked, tricky wordplay, melodic hooks and incredibly speedy rap. But the most impressive thing about Tech N9ne isn’t his music—it’s his work ethic.
Every member of the Alibi's editorial staff receives about a hundred e-mails a day. Most of them are interoffice communications about coffee filters or a kitchen spill that needs mopping up.