Magic City Radar Weekend Review – March 18-20, 2016
Posted by: Ted D. Davis
Hip Hop and Country music provided rhythm and melody for fans of both those genre’s this past week, as Birmingham played host to rap legend Slick Rick and rising country singer/songwriter Easton Corbin.
Corbin, who performed Tuesday, March 15, 2016 at Rogue Tavern (2312 Second Avenue North, Birmingham 35203) as a part of 104.7 WZZK’s country music concert series, thrilled a capacity crowd with swagger oozing of a mash up of modern day cowboy and fly, fun hipster sans the “requisite” tattoos (a hallmark of hipsters). The thirty-three year old native of Trenton, Florida signed to Mercury Records in 2009 and released a self-titled debut album in 2010 featuring the two number one hits “A Little More Country Than That” and “Roll with It”. All Over the Road, his second album, was released in September 2012, spawning the “Lovin’ You Is Fun” and “All Over the Road”. He began taking guitar lessons from session musician Pee Wee Melton at age fourteen and joined a band that performed as an opening act for country icons Janie Frick and Mel McDaniel. He has over 500,000 albums and 2 million singles sold to date.
His four man ensemble comprises himself on vocals and acoustic guitar, a bass player, an additional acoustic guitarist, and a drummer, which rallied the cowboys and serenaded the cowgirls in attendance with a set that included the aforementioned hits and others in his crystal clear, powerful, twangy tenor. All in attendance were delighted. For more information on Rogue and the WZZK country concert series, see www.roguetavern.com, or call Rogue at (205) 202-4151.
Slick Rick, AKA “Rick the Ruler”, performed on Saturday night, March 19, 2016 at the Merienda Lounge (420 Richard Arrington Jr. Blvd. South, Birmingham 35233). He “knocked them out the box” (the catchphrase which he originated some thirty years ago) with a performance of his chart topping hits from the beloved, poignant sonic masterpiece “Children’s Story” to the then ground breaking rap love song “Teenage Love” to the triumphant youth rally cry “Hey Young World” from his classic 1988 debut album The Great Adventures of Slick Rick (Def Jam) to hits from follow up albums The Rulers Back (1991), Behind Bars (1994), and The Art of Storytelling (1999).
Born Ricky Martin Lloyd Walters in London, England in 1965 to Jamaican parents, he lost his eye to broken glass as an infant, prompting his use of his trademark right eye patch. In 1976 he and his family migrated to New York, where in 1984 at the famed Fiorello H. Laguardia High School of Music & Art he met, befriended and teamed with Dougie Fresh and the Get Fresh Crew. Doug’s beat box and Rick’s incredible rhymes turned the song “La Di Da Di” into an international anthem and landed Rick a record deal that made him Def Jam Recordings third ever artist.
He is Grammy nominated, has performed with the likes of Jay Z, Missy Elliot, and OutKast, and has the distinction of being the most sampled hip hop artist in history, having been sampled and interpolated (an abrupt change of musical elements, with almost immediate resumption of the main theme or idea) over 600 hundred times by fellow artists such as TLC, Kanye West, Nas, Miley Cyrus, Black Star, The Notorious B.I.G., Snoop Dogg and Color Me Badd.
Draped in his trademark, stylish African print clothing and the brilliant diamond jewelry which he first made famous in the mid 1980’s, Rick reminded fans and attendees that he is in fact still the Ruler. For more information on Merienda, see www.meriendalounge.com or call Merienda at (205) 422-9849.
MCR is proud to have covered these historic events and to bring you a review of the fantastic artistry that was presented the city of Birmingham. We look forward to bringing you the most up to the minute information on upcoming entertainment events in and around the city of Birmingham.