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SPN: Funk/Rap - Public Enemy Blows 5,000 Minds In Central Park, NYC (Chuck D, Flava Flav, Proffesor Griff, w/Blitz The Ambassador, Cold Crush Brothers and DJ Kool Herc, Classic Hip Hop @ RadioIO.com
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Just Another Summer Afternoon In The Park

This summer I have been fortunate enough to see Living Colour, Bobby Brown and Public Enemy all perform in front of huge, enthusiastic outdoor crowds and to watch each one of them turn it out each time, and leave the crowd literally talking to themselves after the shows.

It also occurs to me that the timeframe of the mainstream commercial peak of each one of these three artists (1988 - 1992?) was possibly the last moment in time, that Black music was "right with itself?" Since then, Black music seems to be squarely on a path of "self destruction."

After seeing each one of these shows, I have walked away thinking that maybe it isn't too late to change that path? Maybe if more artists stop pandering to the "mainstream," and start returning to the grassroots, they will cause a tidal wave of innovation/creativity that will cause Black music to emerge from the toilet where it currently resides, before it gets flushed down that drain?

(or perhaps I am living in a fantasy world or kidding myself & Black music is doomed to completely destroy itself, a la the recent BET KOON SHOW?)


I emcourage you to scroll down, read the reviews, follow the links and learn more about just what THE REAL HIP HOP CULTURE is supposed to be about!!! (as opposed to what KNEE-GRO RADIO & KOON TV are putting out there.) And of course I invite you to listen to me as a chronicle that music & culture on the Classic Hip Hop channel @ RadioIO.com (the funkiest station in the nation!!!)

--Bob Davis
609-351-0154
earthjuice@prodigy.net

Co-Founder www.soul-patrol.com
Blues, Hip Hop and Soul Music Director www.radioio.com



Classic Hip Hop @ RadioIO.com. THE FUNKIEST STATION IN THE NATION - HOSTED BY BOB DAVIS.

Public Enemy Blows 5,000 Minds In Central Park, NYC (Chuck D, Flava Flav, Proffesor Griff, w/Blitz The Ambassador, Cold Crush Brothers & DJ Kool Herc

DJ Kool HercDISCLAIMER: My apologies to our friend Rickey Vincent once again for borrowing his format (the music, the people and the one) once again for this review. For this concert it's the ONLY useful way of describing what happened.

INTRO:

IT WAS SUPER HELLIFIED
IT WAS SUPER FUNKY
IT WAS SUPER EDUCATIONAL
IT WAS SUPER HISTORICAL

Public Enemy clearly demonstrated on multiple levels exactly why they are probably the single most important artist in the history of hip hop. And maybe why they might just be the most important artist in the future of hip hop by having a SUPER NASTY FUNK BAND, playing their classics behind them (our friends from the baNNed 9.)

The presence of the band is no small detail. For example, when Chuck D shouts out; "HEAR THE DRUMMER GET WICKED" (he turns to the drummer, who then proceeds to actually "get wicked.") When he shouts out "BASS...HOW LOW CAN YOU GO" (he turns to the bass player, who then proceeds to actually "go low.") All done in the best tradition of the James Brown Revue (which clearly is what this entire extravaganza is modeled on) Could this be the future of hip hop, something actually presented in the best tradition of Black music? (only time will tell)

Blitz the Ambassador Having the Cold Crush Brothers" (arguably the very first rap group perform) along with having DJ Kool Herc (see above) there to spin 60's & 70's Soul/Funk (using 45's no less......LOL) for the crowd prior to the show and between sets, absolutely set the tone for the proceedings. That along with the performance of African rapper/singer/drummer Blitz The Ambassador, who fronted his own STANK NASTY FUNK BAND & opened up his set by telling New York that he was gonna "take them back" and then launched into an AWESOME cover version of Manu Dibango's "Soul Makossa," that was sorta like throwing a lit match on gasoline. Then Bliz stoked the fire even more with by covering both James Brown & Eric B and Rakim, and he had the crowd in the palm of their hands. The rest of his set consisted of Blitz's very fine singing and machine gun style rapping, while fronting his excellent FUNK band. This is an artist to keep an eye out for.

Now it was time for Public Enemy to come out and kick some azz, backed by the baNNed 9 (featuring Brian Hardgroove Bass , Khari Wynn Guitar, Michael Faulkner drums) and DJ Lord on the turntables!!!


Classic Hip Hop @ RadioIO.com. THE FUNKIEST STATION IN THE NATION - HOSTED BY BOB DAVIS.

THE MUSIC:

--Brotha's Gonna Work It Out
--911 Is a Joke
--Welcome to the Terrordome
--Meet The G That Killed Me
--Burn Hollywood Burn
--Bring The Noize
--Don't Believe the Hype
--Terminator X
--Time Bomb
--By The Time I Get To Arizona
--Can't Truss It
--Fight The Power

Blitz the Ambassador I know that this set list is wrong, I've left out some songs, it's probably not in the correct order, but it was tough trying to take notes in the rain. It doesn't matter, yall get the idea. Here's the point about this, the set was exactly what you wanted to hear from Public Enemy in 2010. Starting with "Brotha's Gonna Work It Out" and ending with "Fight The Power," those two pieces of advice are still the "strategic and tactical plan," for my generation of Black males, regardless of who is sitting in the White House. Yes indeed Virginia, there is in fact a "method to the madness." The entire show flows in a manner not unlike that of a sermon in a Black church, with both Chuck & Flav in the pulpit doing a triangulated "call & response with each other and the crowd (who incidentally know all of the words.) In between songs (in addition to his complaints about his wireless microphone isn't working properly.

During the 80's/90's Public Enemy defined just what hip hop production (sampling/mixing) was supposed to sound like. Their self contained production team, "THE BOMB SQUAD" seemingly obliterated any need whatsoever for the presence of any live musicians, not only for Public Enemy, but for hip hop at large. After all, how could ANY band possibly hope to duplicate "THE BOMB SQUAD'S WALL OF SOUND?" Well the answer is that no band possibly could, however a great Funk Band in combination with a great DJ (DJ Lord) mixing live onstage, can not only duplicate that "WALL OF SOUND," but also make it sound "ORGANIC" at the same time. The net effect of this is to bring hip hop back full circle, not only to it's roots, but also to it's future.


Classic Hip Hop @ RadioIO.com. THE FUNKIEST STATION IN THE NATION - HOSTED BY BOB DAVIS.

THE PEOPLE:

Blitz the Ambassador I asked a police officer there what he thought the size of the crowd was, and he told me "around 5,000." It rained pretty fiercely at times and was overall a pretty nasty day weather-wise.

NOT
ONE
PERSON
LEFT

Now, why do you suppose that was?
Well…..If you read the mainstream press, you know that today we have a music scene where the multi-national corporations (record labels, radio networks & concert promoters) who formerly controlled that scene, have ultimately corrupted their own business. You also know that the prognosis for that business is quite poor and that all of the experts are at a loss to explain just what will happen to that business in the future. The key factor that all of the experts seem to forget that the music itself is a more powerful force than any business strategy that they could possibly devise. If those experts had attended this show, they would have realized just how powerful of a motivating factor the music itself is. When Flava Flav tell the audience, "DON'T BELIVE THE HYPE," they know EXACTLY what he's talking about. The failed leaders of those multi-national corporations (record labels, radio networks & concert promoters), who have destroyed their businesses, would do well to start paying attention!!

This was a crowd that was about 65 percent Black & 35 white. The age range was 35 to 60. This is the tail end of the "baby boomer" generation. They were there and they got to see unfold onstage a representation of the entire history of Black music. Starting off with DJ Kool Herc's spinning of the 1960's/1970's Soul/Funk that was the original source of Hip Hop. Then morphing into the African Funk./Rap/Gospel of Blitz the Ambassador, to get at the root of the whole thing. Followed up by the familiar Public Enemy's songs, led by ministers "Malcolm X" (Chuck D) and "Richard Pryor" (Flava Flav) in the pulpit, w/ Proffesor Griff & the S1W's.

That's why nobody left, despite the weather. This crowd knew what they were getting and more importantly, in 2010, it was EXACTLY WHAT THEY NEEDED.


Classic Hip Hop @ RadioIO.com. THE FUNKIEST STATION IN THE NATION - HOSTED BY BOB DAVIS.

THE ONE:

I was on my feet chanting, singing & dancing the whole show. So was everyone else who was there. This crowd was truly "on the one." (WITH EACH OTHER)

Blitz the Ambassador However, just as importantly, it seemed to me that Public Enemy was "one with each other." Chuck explained that Public Enemy was designed to be like 'lemonade." Chuck is the lemon juice, Flav is the sugar and Terminator X (now retired) was the spoon. But that VH-1 just took the sugar (Flav) and gave the nation diabetes!!!

Later in the show, Flav stopped the proceedings to thanks everyone for supporting is "second job" (the TV show) but that he was back home now. He also brought out his children & grandchildren, introduced them to the crowd, stating that there was no way that he could come home to New York & not introduce them. Flava Flav later took a turn on the drums, during "Time Bomb."

Just prior to the song "By the Time I Get to Arizona," Chuck gave the crowd a 30 second dissertation on the new Arizona immigration law, the need for comprehensive immigration reform and explaining just why Black Americans have a stake in this fight. After 'Fight The Power." Chuck explained that it was important for "anyone over the age of 25" to start speaking up about the current state of mainstream radio, the current state of hip hop and more. Their voice is powerful, even if they don't realize it.


NP: "By the time I get to Arizona"
--Public Enemy

--Bob Davis
609-351-0154
earthjuice@prodigy.net

Co-Founder www.soul-patrol.com
Blues, Hip Hop and Soul Music Director www.radioio.com



Classic Hip Hop @ RadioIO.com. THE FUNKIEST STATION IN THE NATION - HOSTED BY BOB DAVIS.






Public Enemy


If you have a news item, update, review, commentary, etc that you would like to submit to the Soul-Patrol Newsletter, please send them via email for consideration to:

earthjuice@prodigy.net


Hopefully you enjoyed this edition of the Soul-Patrol Newsletter.
We will be back soon with the next edition, with email alerts for local events, Soul-Patrol website updates/chat sessions or breaking news in between, as required.

If you have any comments, questions, etc feel free to drop me an email and let me know what's on your mind.
Bob Davis
earthjuice@prodigy.net

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