Date: March 10th, 10:30pm
Venue: Blue Note Jazz Club, NYC
Ticket Price: Table $30, Bar $20
Rating: Loved It!
Talib Kweil & DJ Hi-Tek at the famous Blue Note Jazz Club, four shows, two nights. Everything about it told me that if I missed this show, I would kick myself. The venue, intimate and one of my favorites for live music and dinner. The artists, one of my all time favorite Hip Hop duos, who haven’t performed together in 9 years.
Before any concert, doesn’t matter how much I love the artist, I do my homework. I played Train of Thought on my iPod. This was the album, along with Mos Def & Talib Kweli’s Black Star, that renewed my love for Hip Hop. I made a mental note of the tracks that I wanted to hear, for the most part I played the whole album over and over. I was getting psyched up as much as I was at Rock the Bells, this past summer, when I experienced Mos Def & Talib Kweli on the same stage as Black Star.
We got to the venue ten minutes to 9. Yes! We were the first in the line. Great table was the mission. Anyone who has ever been to the Blue Note, knows that no seat is a bad seat, but seating is very tight. We waited in line during the first set. I was determined not to look in the window or stand too close to hear what they were performing, I didn’t want to kill the anticipation that was building up inside me. The line slowly formed behind me. I over heard conversations between friends, “I couldn’t miss this” “This is going to be tight”. I watched as the bouncer turned ticketless fans away due to the show being sold out. Those who where turned away called up there friends “Man, Talib Kweli and DJ Hi-Tek are performing at the Blue Note… Yeah man… wish I had known.. it’s sold out!” I was so happy I wasn’t them!
The first show let out. I checked the faces of those coming out of the show to get in idea of what I was getting in to. The crowd was mixed with reviews. Some came out pissed with how short the set was, while other came out hyped up because their “joint” was performed. What they thought about their show didn’t matter once we entered the club and was seated in front of the stage.
Through the years I’ve seen Talib Kweli live several times in concert and was moderately impressed by his shows. This show was by far the best show of his I had ever attended. Was it the interaction with the 150 fans who filled the venue? Was it the on stage chemistry between him, DJ Hi-Tek, and the 4 piece band? Whatever it was, it was the right combination to make a great show. Talib shared his personal experiences with the audience of how he partnered with DJ Hi-Teck to form Reflection Eternal. He also gave us a sneak peek of what is next for the duo. The new material was so exciting hear, but you could tell it was just as exciting for them to perform. For a brief moment those of us in the audience were witness to a hip hop jam session that almost didn’t stop. Celia Foussart, one half of the French soul sister duo Les Nubians, joined Talib and Hi-Tek for the song Love Language. Later, Philly’s Res joined them for tracks such as Too Late and The Blast, two of my favorite songs on the Train of Though album.
In addition to three new tracks, they also performed Memories Live and Africa Dream. If you missed the show, and you are a fan of Talib Kweli & DJ Hi-Tek, you should feel sick right now! You missed one amazing hip hop reunion. I’m looking forwarded to the new Reflection Eternal album, slated to drop sometime this summer. Be sure to add it to your collection, and catch Talib Kweli and DJ Hi-Tek in your area. You won’t be disappointed.
–By Dana Bingham: The Concert Junkie
For a listing of upcoming tour dates, visit TalibKweli.com