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Fillmore Miami Beach
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Better Than: Whatever you did last night, but not as much better as it should have been.
If somebody tells me to put my hands up one more time I'm gonna flip. I mean, really. Isn't that supposed to be what the sheriff says to the bad guy he's about to disarm and arrest?
But it wasn't 5-0 telling me to put my hands up last night, it was 50 Cent. And I'm pretty sure he didn't get his name from the po-po. So why the hell did he feel the need to keep insisting I hold 'em high? Do I look like a bad guy?
Yeah, I know, it's an ancient hip hop cliché. But if you're good enough to get folks to wanna raise their hands they'll generally do it without any prompting. Trust me. So there's really no need to order them around.
Unfortunately, of all the words coming out of all the MCs' mouths at the Fillmore Miami Beach last night, "put your hands up" was by far the most frequently uttered. Sure, sometimes the directive was followed by a "wave 'em in the air." There may even have been a "like you just don't care." I don't know, 'cause after the 50th time I stopped paying attention.
Listen, I dig 50 Cent. He's made his way in the game on his own terms and he's been insanely successful doing so. More, he's a gentleman, as evidenced in my interview with him earlier this week. But for him to come out with his G-Unit posse and act like the second coming of the Treacherous Three is beneath him, and beneath his audience, too.
A lot of folks who caught last night's show will undoubtedly disagree with me. They came, they saw, and they raised their hands each and every time it was asked of them. Me? I'm waiting for the day when 50 comes out and sets himself firmly apart from the pack. I wanna see him do what no one in hip-hop has ever done before, not what everyone else has done already. And until that time I'm keeping my hands down right by my side.
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Personal Bias: There's a Books division of G-Unit that 50 set up to carry on the tradition of Donald Goines and Iceberg Slim, authors whose books I once could only buy up on 125th Street or in the Port Authority bookstore. (Yes, I mean New York.)
Random Detail: 50 threw a white fedora into the crowd and two cats came up with it simultaneously. Neither one was gonna let go though, so they did what all true gentlemen do in such a circumstance -- they flipped a coin. Thus it was settled, with no muss, no fuss, and without violence. Re-fucking-freshing.
By the Way: Before the night was over 50 Cent did end up performing all of his hits, including "In Da Club," "21 Questions," and a medley of "Magic (Stick)," "Candy Shop" and "Beamer, Benz or Bentley." And, yes, hands were raised throughout.