St Paul, Minnesota is often overlooked by its bigger, flashier sibling city Minneapolis, but for me, St Paul is home. Tonight we welcomed Logic's Everybody's Tour to the Xcel Energy Center and one person, in particular, stood out. Joey Bada$$ has long been one of my favorite artists to listen to. From his early work with 1999 to releasing singles like “Paper Trail$” and “Christ Conscious”, Joey has been building a catalog from day one. This evening was an homage to his latest project “All Amerikkkan Bada$$” with some classic tracks sprinkled in.
There are a lot of things to enjoy about hip hop; the beats, the dancing, the emcees, the culture, the fashion and more. One thing that completes any artist for me is their ability to perform live. Having seen everything from veterans like Redman and Tech n9ne to incredible new artists like Chance the Rapper and deM atlaS, live performance is what determines where the money will be spent. Coming off a weekend at Summer Set Music Festival it would be hard to top the light shows and atmosphere, yet watching one of your favorites bring his own flavor and flare to the stage might do it.
Coming out to a blanket of cell phone lights, Joey made his presence felt early and often. His political views no secret, he performed tracks like “For My People”, “Land of the Free”, and “Ring the Alarm”. While his politics can sometimes be in your face, he message doesn't lack passion or truth. His energy, talent, and control of the crowd make Joey Bada$$ a must-see artist and this weeks spotlight. Ending the show how he began, with the lights off and the cellphone glow illuminating, Joey played his hit single “Devastated” and ignited the crowd.