Green Room, Brown Bag Wednesdays
May 24, 2012
Better than: The
same old Wednesday night gatherings.
Posted up in the back of Green Room Wednesday with a
bottle of Patron in hand, heralded West Coast lyricist Ras Kass sat on the edge
of his seat waiting to take the stage.
"They told me the crowds here usually arrive late," Ras
told County Grind in between swigs of silver tequila straight out of the
bottle. "I'm ready to go."
Coming from California, where clubs close at an obnoxious 2 a.m., it may be hard to understand us South Floridians casually strolling in to a concert after midnight. In Los Angeles, we would be greeted with "last call," while bartender Johnny at Green Room instead greeted us with a tab-opening vodka and soda (only $4.75 -- nice).
After performances from opening acts Dynas, LMS, and Co$$, Ras finally took the stage at around 1:30 a.m. for an energetic 45-minute set. The opening acts were talented lyricists who can rap with the best of them, but our enthusiasm jumped to a new level when Ras grabbed the mic.
Starting with a few non-specific written rhymes over classic hip-hop beats like Dr. Dre's "The Next Episode," Ras seemed to gain momentum as the show went on. The highlight may have been a Nate Dogg tribute featuring the hook from "Next Episode" and a recital of "Ain't No Fun" as the crowd joined along. Many songs were cut down for a time, especially the seven-minute opus "Nature of the Threat."
"If you guys thought I was going to perform the whole seven minute song, you're crazy," Ras said.
In between pointing the high ratio of guys to girls in the crowd and boasting how he was one of the first West Coast rappers to get a DJ Premier beat, Ras wowed the crowd with a near flawless rendition of every rhyme. The DJ seemed to have messed up a few times, garnering disappointing glances back from Ras Kass, who took the errors in stride and never missed a beat. By the time Ras closed the set with "Goldyn Child," produced by DJ Premier, even those in the crowd who weren't huge fans were bobbing their heads and putting their hands up.
Personal Bias: Tired of same old "bang, bang/shoot 'em dead" hip-hop lyrics.
Random thought: Colt 45 tastes like skunk beer even when it's fresh.
Overheard in the crowd: "I'm coming here every time there is a hip-hop act on Wednesdays."
By the way: There wasn't anyone actually drinking out of a brown bag.
"Eat or Die"
"Holes in the Ozone"
Nate Dogg Tribute
"Nature of the Threat"
"Soul On Ice"
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"Three Card Molly"