Back in 2007, I did my sister a favor and went with her to the Lupe Fiasco concert in San Francisco at the Fillmore. She was a fan while I knew close to nothing about him. All I knew about the guy was that he had a couple of albums out, he’s a skater, and he’s Muslim. I wasn’t into hip hop at all and I was there without having listened to any of his music while wondering if what I was wearing was cool enough for a hip hop concert in the city (In retrospect, no. To be fair though, my outfit is rarely cool enough for any occasion).
Contrary to expectations, I really enjoyed myself at the time at the concert. There was a full band to back him up, the acoustics at the Fillmore were awesome, and it didn’t hurt that my sister and I were pretty close to the front. While Lupe* was singing “Kick, Push”, his first single off of his album Food and Liquor, I remember turning to my sister and saying “I didn’t think a song about skating could be this good!”
She gave me what could only be categorized as A Look.
I left the show an official fan of Lupe Fiasco. I thought “Hey, maybe I do like hip hop!”
No I don’t.
Turns out that I’m not too good going outside of my music comfort zone of only a few specific types of rock. I’m just not into hip hop. I know there’s a lot of good stuff out there but for the life of me, I can’t get into it. I even tried going to a hip hop concert for another famous artist and I was surprised by my apathy. I’m not cool and I’m ok with this.
But, I’ll still listen to Lupe Fiasco.
I went to his show last night at The Fox Theater in Oakland and it was seriously an awesome concert. I’m not really good at writing about concerts (I probably wouldn’t know what else to say except “the music was a-ok!”) so I’ll just direct you to this article over here. If you missed it, you missed out on something really cool.**
Besides just being an exceptional artist though, Lupe Fiasco has been really putting himself out there in terms of his politics, which is why I and a lot of other people respect him. I’m sure artists sometimes lose fans if the fans get turned off by their politics so what he says and does means that much more.
For example, he’s outspoken in what he believes in on Twitter and he even spoke to the Occupy Oakland crowd last night before the concert and had donated some items to the cause (this isn’t the first time he’s donated to a cause). Also, the Palestinian flag was being waved around on stage during the last portion of the concert. That’s a pretty huge statement to make, folks.
So in the end, I’m fine with not being into hip hop unless it’s Lupe Fiasco. I like what he says in most of his songs (in the last album, “Words I Never Said” and “All Black Everything” are probably two of my favorites) and the fact that he comes across as a pretty cool human being doesn’t hurt either.
And now for some… Bushra Concert Rules! The rules that I, Bushra, need to abide by so I can enjoy a concert. Please note this has nothing to do with the above so you can technically stop reading and not lose what this post is about.
1) I need a reserved seat. I can’t compete with the young’uns and hard core fans in general admission. I don’t care enough to have to deal with stuff like people trying to take my spot.
2) Whoever I’m with needs to understand that I’m a passive concert goer. I don’t feel the need to “WOOOOOO!!!!” or sway or do anything else except sit/stand basically motionless. The fact that I look and act like a stone doesn’t mean that I’m not enjoying myself.
3) I have to at some point in the night make fun of something, whether it be an artist, a song, or some particular lyrics. I mean no disrespect to anyone or any song. Like last night, during the song “Never Forget You” after the lyrics of “And I’ll never forget you…!” I couldn’t help but nudge my buddy, the Kimchi Ninja, and proclaim “I’ll never forget you Soerha!”
All of the above was probably why it was best my sister was in general admission with her friends and I had myself a nice, reserved spot up in the balcony.
*He and I are on a first name basis, didn’t you know??
**As much as I enjoyed the concert, I have to admit that I really didn’t care for the attire, or lack thereof, of the backup singers.