I was back at Chene Park on June 23 for performances by rap veteran Nas and the eccentric Erykah Badu.
After the opening act left the stage we were greeted by Nas, who started his performance with songs from the beginning of his career. If you weren’t a day one fan you may have been lost and wouldn’t have recognized his earlier flows from songs such as “N.Y. State of Mind” and “Halftime”. Gradually, Nas moved from songs that were featured on his Illmatic album and did songs from other phases in his career. He didn’t perform anything from his Life is Good album but he did give us a few tracks from his latest release Nasir.
Dressed in a green camouflage thermo and green shorts Nas performed like he was in his prime without missing a beat until the dj began the instrumentals for the track “Adam and Eve”. At that point Nas looked back at the dj and told him to cut the track and then exclaimed to the crowd “I don’t know the words to this one yet! It’s new!” After restarting the song three times he finally let it roll all the way through and rapped it effortlessly as if the first two times never happened. He closed out with “One Mic” and I can honestly say even with him stopping and restarting “Adam and Eve” overall he had a good performance.
On the other hand, Erykah Badu’s performance wasn’t as I expected it to be. It took over an hour for her to actually arrive on to the stage. The first 15 minutes of her set she was singing bits and pieces from back stage while her background singers hummed and doo-wopped to Badu’s popular “Tyrone” song. Once she came to stage dressed in all white she took us through so many twists and turns in her performance it was hard to keep up with what she was singing. It may have been impatience or the fact that it was close to midnight and her performance was barely heating up but I end up exiting the venue. A large crowd followed behind me.
Don’t get me wrong. I love me some Erykah but maybe next lifetime I’ll stay for an entire performance or one that I know she may be opening.