Moments after Mikkey Halsted left the stage at The Shrine, I was able to tell him personally, "It's refreshing to hear such a lyrical live show." I wasn't the only one who got a chance to show love; Mikkey ended his set, and the night altogether at The Shrine, by jumping down to the crowd and personally greeting his loyal fans, fellow artists, and family in attendance. So I'm sure I was one of many who thanked Mikkey for putting on such a great show... one that stressed the lyrics — the straight up core of rap.
Mikkey performed a mix of throwback jams with new joints off the upcoming project, Bulletproof Dreams, in a seamless, flowing succession with transitions courtesy of DJ Don Cannon. But at the drop of a dime, Mikkey would rewind — stop the track altogether, and emphasize the words and verses he just spit, often receiting them again in a passionate a capella. This engaged fans even more as everyone was at the south loop club to hear Mr. Halsted's words jump to life. And again, it wasn't merely fans, but also his family (which fueled more emotion and heartfelt appreciation from Mikkey) and Chicago artists watching from YP, Tree, the Save Money Crew (who set Halsted up nicely as openers) to Treated Crew members like Mano and Mic Terror, to Don C who was also in attendance. Amazing to see yet another example of strong, Chicago unity!
Where this show stood out compared to the many hip hop shows I've attended for Gowhere is where I started this review — Mikkey delivered a "live, lyrical show". It truly is refreshing to see such emphasis on the words in a concert experience that's often drowned out by a booming bass or entourage on stage. Last Friday, it was just Mikkey and a mic... and that's all that was needed for a great show.
GIF: Mikkey Halsted LIVE @ The Shrine: 04.26.13
(All photos by: Sgt. Tibs)
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"One must give value to their existence, by behaving as if one’s very existence were a work of art."