There are few stars in hip-hop that can cross the line from being just a performer to an entertainer, and compared to most other music, that line is actually not very thin. Very few times have I attended a hip-hop show and walked away feeling satisfied, much less elated, than I did last Saturday after seeing Chicago’s Chance the Rapper, the highlight of Red Bull Sound Select’s Day 15 of their 30 Days in LA takeover. Following openers, producer Kamandi and Azizi Gibson, the 21-year-young prince of hip-hop was backed up by a live band — dubbed the Social Experiment — and stood alone as the sole commander of the high-octane, lights blaring ride that he took his fans on; and while he made it feel like he was doing it for himself, in actuality he’s doing it for you. Picking the best from his short, albiet well-known catalog, the rapper aimed less to get you hype (though that effect was still achieved) and more to reach a higher level of feel-good, everything-is-going-to-be-alright-if-you-believe-in-yourself type of vibe without the risk of being cliche, sappy or even corny. Chance’s performance took him across that line of performer to entertainer not just in the flair or charisma that seems to seep from the guy’s pores and movements, but even more so that as much as he elevated the crowd, he elevated himself, a by-product that can’t be faked or practiced or even imitated on a night-to-night basis. Concert-goers got something special from Chance that night (in addition to a guest appearance from Big Sean,) even if it might have been just a small dosage of what the guy is truly capable of. Good job Red Bull. Hit the jump to see more pictures from the show.
Photos by: Red Bull Sound Select