It’s been a few years since Jay Electronica last toured the UK.
Now in a slightly smaller venue, the world famous Jazz Café on a melancholic Saturday night in January, the sold-out venue was heaving with anticipation for one of Hip Hop’s most élite emcee’s to grace the stage.
An honourable mention to the UK’s own Kay Young, an artist we featured in Issue 6 of I am Hip-Hop Magazine, who emotionally expressed that she was hand selected by Jay Electronica (he discovered her on Instagram) to open up for him during his Sold Out four night residency at the Jazz Café. With a tight trio of musicians; Kay Young set the tone with some smooth hypnotic Jazz tinged soulful grooves with positive progressive undertones. She is certainly an artist to watch out for in the future.
Shortly after 9PM Jay Electronica took to the stage with a renewed commanding energy and some visible new ink on his neck and face.
He was focused, with a mission to deliver a flawless performance, enlighten minds and spread “FACTS”.
Now with an official album release under his belt some eager members of the front row were keen to show that they had memorised every single lyric and played sing-along with Jay, whilst others who may have been caught up in the quality of his show-stealing feature on the recent Kanye West Album DONDA were curious to see what all the hype was about.
Coming out to Kanye’s “No Child Left Behind” throwing the ROC hand gestures and officially kicking off with “Exhibit A” Jay Electronica armed only with his DJ and a cordless Microphone in hand, came out and rocked us for an hour and a half straight! Parading back and forth across the stage with no breaks and delivering spotless verse after verse intertwined with some insightful context behind some of his classics songs. For example the song “Better intune with infinite” was written in London upon hearing the death of his Grandmother and recorded in a studio in Kentish Town! My jaw hit the floor!! I’m ‘Mr Kentish Town’ to the Hip-Hop world why was I not informed? LOL.
Jay delivered a spiritually powerful and professional performance which kept his audience fully engaged from beginning to end.
His breakthrough single “Exhibit C” was performed in the crowd as tradition and as if Covid never happened, an element of live performances we had been missing over the past 2 years.
The audience was satisfied & well fed.
Jay Electronica closed the show with a highly emotional performance of “A.P.D.T.A.” where he broke down and cried during the verse he wrote about his mother’s passing before leaving the stage unexpectedly to a thunderous applause. There was no encore.
Witnessing Jay Electronica live is truly a unique Hip Hop experience and definitely owns the stage in the same vein as some of the all time greats. If you ever get an opportunity to see him live do it!
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