Sunday, March 25, 2007

Erykah Badu at MGD Event (Review)

On March 22nd, 2007, Chicago witnessed a monumental moment within musical culture as EPMD and Erykah Badu visited the phenomenal north side establishment The Park West. It was a night of excitement, magic, and musical chemistry as local Chicago artists joined forces under the MGD Craft Program to form a sensational band built to display hometown talent and enrich a body of people willing to witness history. The crowd was rich and diverse and free spirited as MGD blessed everyone with tokens to share in the promotion of the acclaimed MGD Light Beer. The event started with local artist from the west side called Primal Fear, then the south side group infamously known as The Usual Suspects followed up with a riveting performance that set the atmosphere for non other than two legends within the hip hop canon EPMD. The crowd raved and sparked with excitement as they performed hits like “Rampage”, “So What Cha Sayin”, “Strictly Business”, and “Rap Is Outta Control” while Eric Sermon smoothed the crowd over with a few spontaneous freestyles ending with the Marvin Gay kissed classic song “Just Like Music” as the crowd swam with excitement. Erykah Badu then graced the stage with a sense of freedom with her head wrapped in a thick cloth and a space camp outfit that conventionally mimicked the ensemble created for the “Didn’t Cha Know” video. She opened up with a new track ironically entitled “Annie Don’t Wear No Panties” the crowd cheered and grooved to Erykah’s symbolic lyrics sprinkled with alliteration and sarcasm. The music paused as she stood still with a firm face to recite the line “ So Fellas if you can’t afford it, I think you need to video tape record it”. The crowd went wild and Erykah began to relax and get comfortable as she removed some of her many layers of clothing. She freestyled a groove entitled “Bigger Than Religion” which she stated is one of the elements she hopes to base her new album on due out in July of this year. On stage she rendered musical blessings on those familiar with her last album Digital Underground as she garnered a spiritual course while performing “I Want You”, “Danger”, and a verse of “On and On”. The crowd was entranced but Erykah’s passion for those that admired her work was immeasurable and she navigated through the crowd on the shoulders of her bodyguard to touch the hands of the people in the crowd that continuously chanted “Digital girl in an analog world.” Afterwards a jam session started with non other than EPMD, Erykah delivered a spellbinding performance of Bag Lady as the crowd went wild and the band showcased their individual talents. Some local artist were pulled up from the audience and joined in on this musical escapade and the audience loved it. Malik Yusef and Leon Roger hosted the event but encouraged everyone to pay attention to history in the making. MDG was thanked for creating such an event and making it possible to unite artist around the country in a similar fashion. After the show Ms. Badu rested for a few minutes and returned to the stage after the audience was cleared out. She took a seat on the piano bench with a Styrofoam container with what appeared to be Broccoli and steamed rice in her hand. She greeted the reporters with a warm smile and tried to avoid giving a look of exhaustion. She reiterated the fact that she loves to perform and she didn’t even know what type of show she was doing until she arrived at the venue. Overjoyed with the concept she felt energized to be apart of the event. She sat peacefully through numerous interviews and questions about her repeat hair do. She stated that she decided to go bald again because she felt like it and its just another hairstyle to her. A few people looked on in pure astonishment as she so elegantly sat and had an intimate moment with all that came into contact with her. She said that “she loved Chicago and she couldn’t perform and not give a shout out to her boy Common.” At the end of it all she went out to sit in the audience and talk to her band members about the show. She praised them for their hard work and began to eat. It was then that I was able to see the epitome of a successful black woman comfortable with herself as she lived out her dreams constantly. She was more than the pioneer of the Neo Soul Hip Hop Movement she was a woman that saw more to life than her fame but feed off of the art of living on a quest for happiness. MGD is known for being on of the leading competitors in the alcohol demographic but saw a chance to stem beyond that and work to unite different cultures under the umbrella of music. They succeeded and established this event, as an acclaimed happening that should never be missed. All in all it was phenomenal.

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Tiff said...

yo this was good. do you know when they are going to have another concert?

Anonymous said...


photos of erykah

Alan said...

erykah's last album was called 'worldwide underground'. digital underground is a veteran rap group from oakland.