MJB & Jay-Z Touch The Heart Of NYCMay 7th, 2008
If there’s one thing I learned last night, it’s that MJB & Jay-Z are truly masters of their art. Thinking otherwise would be highly uncivilized. Hosting their second to last show at Madison Square Garden, these two titans brought every ounce of love they had left directly to the heart of NYC.
The-Dream, who opened the set for Hov and Mary, did particularly well considering that his set was only 20 minutes…at most. Performing cuts from his debut album, The-Dream’s stage presence (as well as his bendable and flexible dancers…lol) impressed me. But considering he’s opened for them for the past 2 months, it would be absurd for him not to maneuver through his set like a pro. And though he only did three songs, “Falsetto,” “I Luv Your Girl” (minus Young Jeezy) and “Shawty Is A Ten” (minus Fabolous), the nightmare I imagined when he hit the stage was all but a bad Dream….good job Mr.Nash.
After a 15-minute intermission, MJB took to the stage in fullllll force. Now, I’ve never seen the Queen of Hip Hop Soul perform anywhere, but I can damn sure tell you, I’m glad my first experience was at Madison Square Garden. Appearing from behind a humongous curtain, both Mary and Shawn opened the set together performing their impeccable classic tune “Can’t Knock The Hustle.” But after that concluded, Mary displayed the type of showmanship only our parents remember when Tina Turner and James Brown came to town.
Forgetting the Queen had SOOOOOOOO many classics, Mary breezed through her catalog EFFORTLESSLY. And by the looks of things, her fans did too (especially the several young ladies who sat DIRECTLY behind us). Who would have thought Method Man still knew how to perform? (He tore down “All I Need”). It would be blasphemous for me to try and recap each emotion from each song so I won’t attempt it. However, when an ENTIRE stadium can recite an R&B tune off RIP, that’s when you know you possess timeless material.
It came to the point during her set that the MEN were even more excited than the women (I’m not going to name any names, you know who you are lol). At the conclusion of her performance, my man Jackpot pulled me to the side and said “She BODIED Jay, and he didn’t even perform yet.” And though Hova is my favorite, I must say that sentiment is a true one.
Opening the set with the American Gangster cut “Say Hello,” Jay slid onstage donning the bad guy persona that he was once known for back in the 80’s. Even though “Say Hello” is my track of choice from AG, I don’t think it was a strong enough tune to open up a Madison Square Garden performance. Nevertheless, Young Turbo put in work. Though I seen the Big Homey several times in the same setting, for some reason, it never gets old to me. His playful crowd commentary kept the crowd chuckling as always. “Side to side. That means you too big man, don’t f*ck this up,” he joked while performing “Excuse Me Miss.”
While Shawn isn’t known for inflicting his political views on his fans, it was during a brief 2 minute freestyle that we finally knew how Jay really felt about our Commander In Chief. “And the commander in chief just flew by, didn’t stop knowing he had a couple seats just rude/ Jet blue he is not, Jet Blue by the spot/ What if he ran out of fuel and just dropped?” Jay rapped. He continued “Push! Money over broads you got it, F*ck Bush.” 5 seconds later asking if the audience was ready for change, Obama appeared on the widescreen followed by a warm greeting from the audience.
Retreating to the DJ booth, Jay decided to play a game of “F#ck That.” Playing the first 10 seconds of a bunch of classic tunes such as “Money Aint A Thang,” “Best Of Me,” “Aint No Ni**a,” Jay clipped each song with a “F*ck That” sentiment. He even clipped the collabo of his wife’s smash hit “Crazy In Love.” “No disrespect B, but “F That one too,” he suggested. I guess B didn’t like that too much seeing how she appeared from beyond backstage and ordered him to play it again so she could strut across stage for a couple seconds (GOOD LORD THAT MAN IS LUCKY).
Overall, the show was great. And even though our original seating was on the SIDE of the stage (hey they were free so I’m not complaining), my man E somehow tricked some honey dip into holding 3 seats down in a more exceptional area so we could really enjoy the show.
Did the Heart Of The City Tour touch down in your city??? If so, speak on it. Do you think it was worth it? Could it have been better or was the duo’s performance flawless???
Okay, I’m tired and I have a LONG day tomorrow. I think we’re covering the afterparty at for the last show at Spotlight Live. Of course, I’ll have pictures and commentary as I always do. GOOD NIGHT!
Low “There is a lot of love in the Heart Of The City” Key