THE WOOK REPORTS: Hold, up Amorosi. Gimme that Webster’s-ready recap of Jay-Z‘s “Hangar Tour” again, will ya?
“Titled the Hangar Tour, the event had Jay-Z fly cross-country in his G5 jet to play 30-minute sets in airports and intimate venues beginning in Atlanta at 6:30 a.m., then Philadelphia, Washington, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Las Vegas.” [From Sunday’s Inky]
No offense, holmes, but last I checked, the Electric Factory was about as intimate as Mark Foley at a sorority mixer. Sure, Saturday’s show was in the early a.m., but just because you share morning breath with a thousand other hip-hop heads doesn’t mean squat unless you’re sweatin’ from being packed solid into the closest of confines.
All I’m asking for is a moratorium on a label designed to send fans into a “he’ll-be-so-close-I-can-feel-his-hizzy” tizzy, unless it’s affixed to a truly intimate venue, like a Khyber, a Johnny Brenda’s, an Upstairs at Sal’s. Hell, I’ll even give you the TLA or any one of the bathrooms on the Wachovia Center’s main concourse. But the Electric Factory?!?
Truth be told, I’m sure you’re simply regurgitating the press release in noting the “intimacy” inherent to Jay’s itinerary. At least you didn’t get all rapturous on the day’s events, like the AP’s Nekesa Mumbi Moody, who makes J-Hova out to be Brandon Routh as Superman, crisscrossing the continent in luxurious splendor, yet also feigns shock at the stamina of a man who’s had nothing more to do these last few years than ask Beyonce’ if she’d like SPF 15 or 30 before rubbing the Banana Boat all over her silky curvaceousness …
(EDITOR’S NOTE: Yep, it sure is hard to focus on Wook’s words with Miss Thang shakin’ her junk up in yer grill. Not that we’re complainin’. But for those who make a point of doing so, might we suggest you click on the scroll bar on the right side of your screen and hold down the left button on yer mouse and like magic, Beyonce stops squirmin’.)
Ahem . . . I digress, my peoples’ people.
But to you Shawn Carter — I’m calling you out on my shag to get really intimate next time around. Be Christopher Reeve as Superman. Ignore the cookie cutters and head for the spots where a city real folks gather to imbibe and raise a glass(es) in collective unison, at a space where space isn’t a given, but a corner perch and mic in hand would leapfrog a performance into greatness.
Cripeys . . . according to LCB records, that commercially viable yet extremely intimate nexus in Philly would be . . . Woody’s, which shelled out the 2nd most in liquor sales statewide last year, right behind, uh, the Woodlands Inn in Wilkes-Barre.
The Electric Factory? Didn’t even make the list, mainly because they water their shit down, yo.
Hey wait, Jay . . . where you running to? Don’t be scared. Hell, your new long-player’s entitled “Kingdom Come,” and oh! what a sweet, intimate, double entendre-filled convergence it would be. Jay-Z, Live at Woody’s. I can see the album cover now. Are you with me?
Well, next time, can you help get me to the front of the line at the Factory?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: If HOLLA is a coal miner’s helmet, shining a light through the darkest, stankiest confines of Philly’s hip-hop scene — and it is, stanky that is, but in a good way — then consider James Doolittle the sweaty dude wielding the pick axe. That’s Yer Wook: documentary filmmaker, music writer, kept man, reformed carnivore, and now, bringer of the phunk to the Phawk, straight up and South Philly style. Feel the wrath of his tofu, ye mortals. Forever and ever, Amen.