Sunday, September 6, 2009

Of the Soul, De La that is

I VERY much enjoyed seeing De La Soul at Bumbershoot. Saturday night was the 20th birthday of De La Soul's huge first release 3 Feet High and Rising. Rather than simply playing the many hits from that record, De La made the kind of unexpected move that they're known for by taking the audience back in time to hear the many musical influences that went into the making of a hip hop classic. In an 90-minute long set, Plugs 1, 2 & 3 sampled or quoted everyone from Stevie Wonder to Grandmaster Flash to George Benson, and did an extended riff on James Brown's "Pass the Peas." The few of their classic songs that they showcased were updated and rearranged, often for the purpose of revisiting them with an older point of view. Plus they were hella tight, funny as hell, and shit ya'll I hope you were there.

They opened the show with an inspired cover of "This is Radio Clash," reminding us that Punk and Hip Hop were born at the same moment in the same place - Punk downtown and Hip Hop uptown - from the same rebellious explosion of creativity. Word up.

Thank you Drake Lelane for the photo!

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