Last Sunday night, I had the pleasure of heading down to The Moon on William St (Perth, Australia) to catch a show that I didn’t even know was on. The story goes something like this: Wisdom2th and myself went to The Bird (also on William St) to have a couple of beers and check out the launch of a new music clip by The Stoops (a.k.a Stoop Fresh). The clip is below:
Well done on the clip. It’s always good when people put themselves out there and push themselves.
Anyway, after that, Wisdom2th had to drop something off to a mate at The Moon so we wandered the two blocks down to the venue.
When we rocked up we found a bunch of the top local hip hoppers pushing a show they were calling Collab. I’d heard something about it but it never really registered in my “brainium” (to quote Pharcyde). Anyway, the premise is something like this: an awesome four piece jazz/funk group (bass, sax, drums, keys) improvises some music while a bunch of emcees improvise some rhymes. People get dragged out of the crowd or invite themselves on stage. Muso’s replace other muso’s in the band. Everyone has a good time.
And, unusually, it all worked as intended.
ASAP and The Empty Cup (who is on my up and coming album – we’re recording tomorrow) played the role of hosts. They dropped a bunch of freestyles which were absolutely crazy. But the guests were many and varied with Mathas (who is always super-entertaining) providing plenty of great off-the-head moments. Wisdom2th jumped up. Coin (from The Stoops) and Mei Swan did a collab which went into some completely uncharted territory (something about a chastity belt…). Hallows (also on my album, also recording tomorrow) and ASAP killed it with the singing/freestyle combo. And there were a heap of others which lead to a chilled but never dull and at times extremely funny vibe.
Now, having been around the hip hop scene in Perth and, particularly, Melbourne for a while, I’ve seen plenty of cyphers in and out of clubs that were absolute gold. The thing that set this night apart is the fact that many of the people eating their meals at The Moon were not hip hop heads and yet none of them got up to leave, all of them laughed and clapped vigourously at appropriate times, and all of them seemed to really appreciate the talent that was on show. That, sadly, is a rarity.
Maybe the positive response to the night is a reflection of the growth in awareness that people have of hip hop culture. Maybe it’s a reflection of the growing professionalism and accessibility of the scene. Maybe it was something in the beer (I suspect alcohol, though that has been known to generate the opposite response). I really don’t know.
Either way, if you’re in Perth on the second Sunday of any month then I strongly recommend that you head down to The Moon and check out Collab. Every show will be unique and, whilst I can’t guarantee that you’ll enjoy it, I can say that the 100+ people that came and went last Sunday all did so with a big smile.