“The Teacha” Brings Hip-Hop 101 to the Observatory OC

It might have still been Winter break for most, but there was no escaping this lesson

KRS-One, brought along a little more than just a rap performance to Orange County’s hottest venue this past Wednesday. The undisputed Hip-Hop forefather once again brought fans a magnificent show to the Observatory venue in Santa Ana,CA that would have people questioning- how in the world is this show only $5!? But we ain’t complaining about the price at all- right?

Most of you reading this don’t have to be put up on game, but for the 10-15% of the rest of you I’m going to lie down 4 important pointers as to why this man here is a living legend, or better yet- Hip-Hop in it’s human form, and you are going to have to do your homework before you proceed to read any further than this.

  • 1986- Boogie Down Productions
  • Criminal Minded
  • “Rap is something you do, hip-hop is something you live.”
  • Temple of Hip Hop

The night started as so, the venue filled with enthusiastic Hip-Hop purists, varying from all age range. There was a lot of young faces amongst the crowd which is why I had to add that 10-15% side-note up above (I shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover but I’m just trying to help out if need be).

DJ InDJnous had the wheels of steel on lock all throughout the night doing what he does best on the turntables over classic Hip-Hop records. It was the perfect fitting for such a show.

Out Da House provided a handful of great opening-supporting acts, but the best among them being Supreme who brought out underground emcee Termanology, and J-Ro of the Alkoholiks.

KRS-One arrived to the venue about 15-minutes to set time with an entourage of two- his wife and son, who was his deejay for the night. Behind the black stage curtain KRS was pacing, as if prepping to step into a ring and knockout an opponent. I guess, that is the best way to describe it because as soon as he stepped out from behind the curtain onto the stage, the crowd began to roar and he began to throw punches owning the title of one of Hip-Hop’s best lyrical champs.

The Blastmaster, performed classic after classic. He began with cuts off the classic Criminal Minded, including “The Bridge Is Over” and “9mm Goes Bang”. He proceeded to hit the crowd with hit after hit- “Sound of the Police”, “Love’s Gonna Get’cha”, “My Philosophy”, “MC’s Act Like They Don’t Know”, and on and on. “Step Into a World” had the crowd lit up! It was amazing, everyone had their hands up and swinging in up-down motion, rapping along to the timeless Hip-Hop anthem.

Amidst all of this “The Teacher” declared class to be in session. He touched upon many of the things he was experiencing in that venue. With cameras all around, he encouraged people to not just capture those moments but to apply them to a career in proper form, to make a business, a brand out of such footage (of course, this spoke to those of us holding down the media privilege) , or share with others what he was speaking of. He spoke a bit to the ladies about love, and respect. He spit an incredible rhyme of the hip hop timeline. But for me, the highlight of it all was when he spoke to my ethnicity.

At one point KRS looked around the room and saw all the faces in the crowd that were of Mexican descent. His speech followed as so, “Mexicans- YOU were the first ones to bring astronomy to the earth. YOU were the first ones to build the pyramid temples- in Africa! YOU- Mexican, Inca, Mayan, Aztec, YOU! When you leave here tonight this is the homework assignment: Go online, grab a book, talk to your grandmother, and ask about YOUR culture.”

That right there was amazing. It’s inevitable to surrender full respect to this emcee. When you think “Hip-Hop” and this man does not come to mind, then you do not know the true meaning of the word.

For nearly two decades, KRS-One has been the epitome of what Hip-Hop is. He’s an emcee who’s taken on the duty to continue to embody what the term initially represented. I can’t think of any other emcee that has withstood the test of time in such a way as has the Blastmaster.

When I say this, I mean it in it’s deepest sense. At 50, this emcee still continues to rock sold-out shows and move the crowd as if he was in his prime and it was 1986. He continues to spread knowledge and philosophical views through his rhymes and on-stage “lectures”. He incorporates the culture’s elements on-stage- from the b-boy to the deejay. KRS-One is the closest to Hip-Hop’s full and pure essence as we can get today- and I stand on firm ground by this statement.

And it don’t stop!
Stace Fresh

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