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#FOMO Report: Lupe Fiasco Brings Back Real Hip Hop At The Belasco

IT’S FRIYAY. I swear, every single person at work today was checked out today lmao. They were on weekend mode. As was I, except mine was more what I had to look forward to in the evening: Lupe Fiasco. One of the best to do Hip Hop. If you disagree, please come see me. Read more…

Before the grand finale, I had to swing by my babygirl MJ‘s Sip & Mix mixer at D.P.L.S. on Melrose in West Hollywood. Honestly, she’s a fucking queen for this one. Tonight was a get together of like-minded individuals and go-getters to unite, connect, and build. I actually hate using the word “networking” when it comes to the industry, but this was an event that put that word to shame.

I needed these in my life. I have the biggest sweet tooth in the world. I definitely thought that they were edibles too lmao. I walk into this cute little shop to find some of my favorite people in one spot. This world is too small, but it’s always good to see everyone. Besides me eyeing these cookies all night, guests were treated to an open bar and the fanciest hors d’oeuvres. There were platters floating around of empanadas FRESH out the oven and shrimp skewer sticks. MJ, I see you girl. And let’s let not forget that lit electrolyte water (they’re going to kill me but I forgot the name lmao).

When I say the world is small, it’s fucking small. It turns out, my homie who works in fashion is the manager of the store. I was so lit to see Q (and all his swag). It just clicked that D.P.L.S. stood for Deep Lifestyles. This was the cutest fucking get together, especially for women in entertainment. Well, men were in attendance too, which I thought was great. I loved especially how MJ encouraged everybody to exchange info: social media, contacts, etc. She even got into the mic to announce it. So fucking dope, especially in LA when most people are too prideful to introduce themselves or make new friends. This broke down all barriers.

Next up, one of the best lyricists in the game. Period. Lupe Fiasco at The Belasco Theater in downtown LA. I remember seeing him perform at The Observatory in the OC, on a school night. I def sacrificed a lot to attend that one but left with 0 regrets. Lupe is phenomenal live. So much so, I was THAT excited to see him again tonight. I just remember him performing “Hip Hop Saved My Life” and how memorable it was. Me and the homie were literally just talking about that today. Huge thanks to Janette for allowing me to run a ticket giveaway. On top of giving tickets to the winners, I was in turn able to promote at the same time. I must have told all my co-workers (at both jobs). And a lot of them came out! Nothing makes me happier than seeing people able to experience their artists IRL.

I was told his set time was at 8:30pm and didn’t want to believe it. When I got the text he was coming on, I cut out of Weho real quick (0 to 100). Luckily, he didn’t come on until 9pm, so I only missed a tiny percentage of the show. I also hit the winners and notified them of the early set time. My secret (not so secret) life hack is always to show up after 10pm when the headliner usually comes on. I legit would have missed the entire thing. I walk inside to find a fully-stacked Belasco, which made me really happy. Lupe deserves to be seen and vice versa: the people deserve to see Lupe. Hearing him play “Kick Push” to start off the show (for me) was too perfect for words.

“Hip Hop Saved My Life” brings back SO much nostalgia. If you guys didn’t listen to The Cool, it’s not too late. I just know it has a soft spot in my heart, bringing me right back to my college days at UCSB. I remember Lupe was playing a free show one night, but I blacked out in the dorms and never made it. Pretty sure I was en route on my beach cruiser but somehow crashed and the rest was history. I remember waking up the next morning like, “Wait, did I see Lupe?” Smh.

Every single song he performed tonight was a hit. Every single song I knew and LOVED. I was so here for it. I was worried he would play more of his newer stuff, but it turned out to be the exact opposite. He performed “Around My Way” and it just made me appreciate Lupe SO much for rapping with substance and lyrics that are meaningful. Next, he told the crowd a beautiful story of what happened backstage earlier. There was a man outside his dressing room and he ended up spitting major bars for Lupe. Lupe proceeds to bring him on stage for “Superstar.” Man. That song is so fucking good. Such a great message. So inspiring.

Next, he proceeds to freestyle over a J. Cole beat (“False Prophets”). Amazing. Next, he shouts out Daylyt and Denzel Curry for coming out to support, before calling them on stage. I love both of these fools. “Out Of My Head” was next before one of my all-time favorites off The Cool: “Paris, Tokyo.” Everything about this song is just great. Please listen to it if you haven’t. It’s too good not to. “Sunshine” too. “Touch The Sky” featuring Kanye West had the entire crowd hyped. I literally turn to my friend and go, “What if Ye came out?” We both concluded we wouldn’t be able to handle it. So good thing he didn’t.

Wooh! LA showing ya boy love…Veggie Panini w/ The Kale Salad…🙏🏾 #TheDetox

A post shared by Lupe Fiasco (@lupefiasco) on

“I Gotcha” also was incredibly well-received by the fans. I look up to see this Caucasian (trying not to sound racist) kid reciting every single world. So fucking beautiful, I swear. I wish I could have recorded it. “Bitch Bad” was next before a super memorable “Hurt Me Soul.” You guys, every song was memorable. I give up lmao. I also loved the synergy between Lupe and his DJ. Especially during “Wild Child,” they were a great team up there. I still can’t get over how great Lupe’s stage presence is. Besides being on level 1000, he was fucking funny. His personality shone on stage so hard. My homie told me before I got there, Lupe intro-ed with how hard it was to catch a vibe in LA. He was worried the crowd was going to be weak. Surprise, Lupe! We’re here for you boo.

One of the highlights of the evening was the moment Lupe Fiasco turned a crowd fight into a song. Deadass, there was a fight that was taking place on the floor that actually stopped the show. Lupe, on the spot, decides to turn the subject matter of “a fight” into a catchy song that everybody starting singing along too. I hope that made sense. Basically, Lupe is GOAT. He turned a negative situation into a positive one with a touch of music and comedy. Effortlessly. He had everyone laughing by the end of it. I knew Justin was at the show, and literally had to text him in this moment saying “Lupe is GOAT.” He hit me back, “Easy.”

“Dumb It Down” brought me back once again and “Adoration of the Magi” reminded me I had to revisit Tetsuo & Youth. For the next joint, Lupe asks the DJ to drop the beat after he took his third step. One, two, three: “DAYDREAMING.” Another gem from Lupe Fiasco.

He then randomly starts rapping “Plain Jane” by A$AP Ferg, which I thought was brazy because I just tweeted this upon leaving work. That song is definitely a contender for top songs of 2017. Ferg is so fire. Like, out of all the songs he picked to gig to on stage to, it was this one. Great minds think alike. Speaking of, Lupe is a bonafied genius. Seriously. He would be a physicist if he wasn’t rapping. His brain IQ is probably higher than all of ours combined. I have so much respect for him, minus the fact that he said he was going to retire like 5x. Not sure what that was about lmao.

He concluded “Plain Jane” with the comment, “I just like this song,” which I thought was so funny. I think people were either expecting Ferg to come out or Lupe to start freestyling on the beat. It was neither. But we did get one of Lupe’s greatest hits to date: “Show Must Go On.” That was the absolute most perfect ending. Until fans starting chanting Lupe’s name, so he was forced to play another. “Words I Never Said” sealed the deal.

-Shirley Ju

Read more articles like this on her site: #FOMOBlog and follow her on Twitter & Instagram to stay updated!

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