When The Henny In The System: The Roots & Q-Tip for Hennessy Artistry

Saturday, Septemeber 25, 2010
Hennessy Presents: Hennessy Artistry - The Art of Blending

If you were at the Hennessy Artistry Event and weren’t drinking Hennessy before then…You are NOW! What an awesome way to promote your brand.

Free Event + Talent Artists + Free-flowing Hennessy = Success

Hennessy is hitting up major cities promoting their Art of Blending campaign by providing two of my favorite things: Music and liquor. The purpose of Hennessy Artistry is to promote the art of mixing various genres and blending the talents of the world’s top artists (At least that’s what their Facebook page says). Of course, they also focused on the art of blending Hennessy for your new favorite cocktail.

The Miami leg of the tour featured the headliners The Roots and Q-Tip. DJ D-Nice was on the 1s and 2s to start the party.

If you have never seen The Roots perform live, you MUST. It’s what Hip-Hop is supposed to be – lyrics and instruments. They were giving the crowd life for their entire performance. Q-Tip, a showman at heart, rocked the mic along side Black Thought for the better half of the show.

They came out the gate performing “J.Beez Comin’ Through” by the Jungle Brothers, and effortlessly performed some of Hip-Hop’s most heavy-hitting rhymes: N.W.A.’s “Straight out of Compton”, Eric B. and Rakim’s “Microphone Fiend” and Slick Rick’s “Mona Lisa”.

The crowd, as blended as the Hennessy drinks they were serving up, was moderately amped up, but when the strings to “Bonita Applebum” snuck through, it started getting wild.

Q-Tip quietly snuck off stage while The Roots continued with their original cuts “How I Got Over”, “Thought @ Work” and “Here I Come”. It was non-stop entertainment.

The Roots brought out Daniel Merriweather to perform his song “Change”. I wish he could have done at least two songs, but the unknown bevy of guests to follow was probably the reason why he didn’t.

Kat Deluna came out in her fire read catsuit to perform her hit single “Whine Up”. She brought out three backup dancer dudes to help her whined it up, but the crowd seemed like they had no idea who she was, and was not impressed by her performance. I thought she did well. Her voice was solid and steady through all her gyrating, and she tried her best to engage the crowd. I think her poppy sound was a little to abrubt for some of the stushy hip-hop heads. She did redeem herself with them by slipping back on stage with Q-Tip to lend vocals to Tribe’s “Verses From the Abstract”. She did a great job. She’s a cute girl, but does she remind anyone else of Christina Milian??

While Black Thought rested, Q-Tip blessed the crowd with two of my FAVORITE Tribe songs, “Hey Sucka Ni**a” and “Electric Relaxation”. If you follow me on twitter, you have probably seen me quote both of these a time or two.

The show had been going on for almost 90 minutes when The Roots came back with “You Got Me”, arguably their most commercially successful song to date. Daniel Merriweather predictably came back out to lace Erykah’s part. What WASN’T so predictable however was the illiest pitbull in a skirt herself, EVE to striding out with her verse, totally reviving the crowd that had been standing forever and were slipping into a henny haze.

This is when I felt myself starting to lose my mind. I LOVE Eve. What a treat!! She performed her three major singles “Who’s That Girl”, “What Y’all Want” “Tambourine” and “Blow Your Mind”. Secretly, I was heavily anticipating the return of Drag-On so they could perform “Let’s Talk About”. Easily my favorite song of hers. She looked spectacular and commanded the stage with her long legs and even longer weave. Her makeup was flawless and she looked happy and healthy. LOVE HER.

The band fell back into their original music with “The Seed (2.0)”, but quickly shut it down to do something NO one in that crowd expected…they brought out BOBBY mother-f-in BROWN. He busted on the stage with “Every Little Step”, and every 70’s and 80’s baby in attendance lost their henny blown mind. This was the Art of Blending…The Roots and Bobby Brown. Whodathunk!? The most amazing part…it totally worked!!

Bobby tore Ice Palace completely down. Say what you want about that man, but his voice still sounds fantastic! In true Bobby fashion, he scooted and flicked his tongue at the girls in the front, but nobody cared. It was Bobby Brown. The best part was watching Black Thought and Q-Tip stand back and watch it go down, enjoying the show like rest of us. Amazing.

These are classic nights that I love in Miami. I’m from Detroit so by nature, Hennessy runs in my veins, but now, I’m officially a fan. This was genius! Thank you Hennessy.

Check out the pics and flicks.


B.o.B. at Revolution Live

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

B.o.B with Yelawolf, ¡MAYDAY! and Playboy Tre

For the past month, my niece (in law) has been staying with us. She’s 14, too cool for school, but an all around sweet girl. I’m not old enough to have a daughter her age, so it was like having a kid sister around. Refreshing. What ¬wasn’t so refreshing, was finding stuff for her to do. Of course when I asked her if she wanted to go see B.o.B in concert, she coolly jumped at the chance.

On our way to the concert, she informed me that this was her first concert. EVER. I immediately felt an intense amount of pressure to make sure she had a good time. A virgin concert experience should be both incredibly entertaining and memorable. It can change how you feel about going to see another artist ever again.

That’s just my opinion. MJ was my first concert…go figure.

The pressure I was feeling was amplified by the fact that I’ve never seen Bobby Ray perform, so I couldn’t vouch for what she was about to experience. But I’m a go-with-the-flow kind of gal, so I just sat back and let it unfold for her.

Firstly…Revolution Live was THE perfect venue. It effortlessly hosted the hodgepodge crowd ranging from the kids my niece’s age, the early twenties hipsters to the sunny side of 30 crew like myself. I felt comfortable having her and my friend’s 12 year old daughter (The Girls) in tow.

Miami bred ¡MAYDAY! opened the show. I haven’t seen them live, but I am a fan of their music, so this was an appetizing snack before a big meal. I’m planning on going to one of their upcoming shows, so after that short set, I’m looking forward to that. The Girls enjoyed ¡MAYDAY! more than I expected. Of course, neither of them had heard of the band, but they were both eager to “google them” when they got home. Comedy.

Playboy Tre hit the stage next. I’m not a huge fan of his, but I thought he picked good songs to play for this particular crowd. I couldn’t get a feel for whether or not the majority of people knew who he was. He played his most current song “Liquor Store Mascot”, which was received well by the crowd. I will say that he is a very humble and gracious artist, which for some reason caught me by surprise. He was even nice enough to take a picture with The Girls after the show.

Yelawolf preceded B.o.B. He ensued more blank stares than Wendy Williams, but the crowd warmed up to him during his infection “F—K You” track, which he asked the audience to participate in, giving us the most awkward moment of the night for all the teens and their guardians. I do like his current single “Pop The Trunk”, so I was happy to see him perform it.

The set-up period for B.o.B was long. Not Erykah Badu long, but long enough. But I must say…from start to finish, his performance was more than worth the wait.

Although it was not what I expected, I really dig B.o.B Presents: The Adventures of Bobby Ray. The album has a lot of heart and energy, and he left both on the stage at Revolution Live. He started out with the high impact “I See Ya”, mellowed it out a touch with “Satellites” and “The Kids”, and then went in with “Haterz Everywhere” and “Bet I”.

The rest of the setlist is as follows:
• Past My Shades
• Letters From Vietnam
• Lovelier Than You
• Don’t Let Me Fall
• I’ll Be In The Sky
• Fame
• 5th Dimension
• Magic
• Nothin’ On You
• Airplanes

His entire set was a little over two hours and he remained comfortably animated the entire time. He bounced between the electric and acoustic guitar with ease, and played off the energy of the crowd like a veteran. I was SO impressed with his performance. As a lover of music, I appreciate his graceful blend of genres. Backpack Hip-Hop at his core for sure, but with the help of his spectacular band, he mixed a little rock, pop and a touch of jazz in there too.

The Girls were ENTHRALLED! Because she’s too cool for school, my niece never showed how excited she was before the show, although, because I was a 14 year old girl once, I knew what the real deal was. During his performance, they were dancing, waving their hands in the air, and screaming for Bobby Ray to throw his hat and sneakers their way. It was so cute. We all had a great time, and I’m touched that I could be a part of my niece’s first concert experience, and that for her, it was perfect.

Check the pics and flicks.


Maroon 5 @ Bayfront Park

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Third time’s a charm!

I fell in love with Maroon 5 INSTANTLY. I heard the album ONE time and I was a head-over-heels fan. It was 2004 when I finally jumped on the bandwagon.  I had just moved to Chicago, and it was my first time living by myself.  Songs About Jane helped me fight a serious case of loneliness as I belted out every word during my ultimate empty living room performance.

Of course, in true fashion, I looked for tickets to any upcoming concert they had in Chicago. They were performing soon, and I bought tickets and got stuck in another city and missed the concert! I was passed pissed. My friends gloated for months about what I missed.

The SECOND time I went to see them was in Miami. But as luck would have it, the concert was scheduled the same date I was scheduled to be out of town. Boo.

So this is my third attempt at seeing the band, and nothing was going to come between me and this concert!