[For The Culture] Hip Hop Icons At Harpos Concert Theatre

Photography By Terrell Groggins Written By Terrell Groggins

A good rule of thumb for concerts: If radio personality Suga Rae is the MC, it's going to be a great event.

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Suga Rae opened the Juvenile concert last Friday Night at Harpos in Detroit. Suga Rae kept up the same energy and enthusiasm start to finish, without missing a beat. The roster from last Friday is no joke when it comes to the artists who were being featured. Each, in their own right, has built a fan following that is unparalleled in Hip-Hop, and most notably, they’ve been here for some time. They definitely aren’t your “flash in the pan” artists that seem to cycle through.

The icons JT Money, Brother Marquis, Cassidy, Yin Yang Twins, and Juvenile followed a couple hours of opening acts by TK, Bar Stars, and Detroit's Icon Seven The General.

The Poison Clan member, Jt Money opened his set with his classic material. The audience was of all ages, but the older hip hop heads were reciting JT's songs line by line. He went through popular Poison Clan records like the hit "Shake What Ya Mama Gave Ya", which was listed by XXL magazine as one of the top 250 hip-hop songs of the 1990s.

Up next was Brother Marquis from the legendary controversial hip hop group, 2 Live Crew. Marquis is one of the pioneers for explict lyrics, fighting censorship, and naked women on the stage. 2 Live Crew was in part, responsible for securing freedom of speech for artists. The 2 Live Crew archive was on full display. Marquis went through classic material including "Me So Horny." He stopped to take a moment to reflect on his partner in rhyme Fresh Kid Ice (Rest In Peace). Second 2 None Promoters VI Tran and Kenny Moore presented Marquis with the Hip Hop Royalty Award towards the end of his set.

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The lyrical juggernaut from Philly made his way down the stairs from the dressing room. Cassidy didn't need a long introduction. He hit the stage agressive rapping razor sharp bars of new material. The new material set the tone for him to go into his hit records such as Drink & My Two Step, Hotel, and I'm a Hustler. Being a controller of the crowd Cassidy had the Dj cut the music so that he could deliver lyrics accapella to close out his set.

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The wild and energetic Yin Yang Twins made their presence known. The first two songs set the tone for the rest of the night bringing with them non-stop bangers, Harpos provided the floor shaking bass. The Twins kept stage elements to a minimum and relied on their charismatic deliveries.

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Time passes in the music world and we forget about the run of hits Yin Yang Twins have to their name- "Get Low", "Salt Shaker," "Wait (The Whisper Song)," "Ms. New Booty," "Badd," and "Say I Yi Yi." The Detroit crowd turned up to each of the known songs and even lesser known songs are structured similarly such that the vibe is not killed. Throughout the Yin Yang set, Kaine calmly downed a bottle of Patrón, which likely aided in the energy that was displayed on stage throughout the night. The curated set helped the performers never lose momentum and the crowd stayed upbeat and enraptured by the Yin Yang Twins performance to the very end.

Juvenile went all out as he went through a small roster of his hits. The problem with Juvie is that he’s got so many hits and fan favorites that many left feeling bad that he didn’t hit on certain tracks. He did manage to hit on some of the best though, coming out to the huge hit track “400 Degreez.” Man, how I wanted Manny Fresh to be the one on stage warming up before Juvi started. Anyways, Juvi continued going through a list including “Ha”, “Juvenile On Fire”, “Back That Azz Up”, and “Slow Motion.” He closed his set with “Gone Ride With Me” from a chair centered in the middle of the stage.

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I really thought Second 2 None put on a great show, symbolizing the unity that exists in the music industry and Hip-Hop world. Together, everyone showed with this show that good music never dies.

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