This night was a long time coming, it was in the Few Good Men pipeline, due to circumstances beyond their control this night got postponed up until now, they decided to coincide it with the earth strong blessing of member Psykomantus. The Lord made him live to see another birthday, and so, he gave THANKS.
One of the key elements of the Golden Era was the groundbreaking show Yo! MTV Raps, showcasing the finest hip hop artists around, each with their C.L.A.M.P. on their career (Concept, Lyrics, Attitude, Music, Performance). It was never about first week album sales and several guest features like it is in mainstream hip hop now. Hip hop fans still have their original VHS cassette tapes where they taped each episode to this present day. Some have even converted the videos and posted them on YouTube. One thing is for sure, that these Few Good Men, along with the old school hip hop heads, knew that history was gonna be made at the Hare & Hounds. And those that made it on this historic night, gave the lord THANKS.
“Now let me take a trip down Memory Lane…” (Biz Markie, sampled for Nas-Memory Lane, Illmatic, 1994)
Even upon arrival, the ‘warm up’ set had set the message and the tone of the night, pulling no punches with Wu-Tang‘s ‘Shame On a N!**@’, Das Efx with ‘The Real Hip Hop’, and Kool G Rap with the ‘Ill Street Blues’, among other bangers that never got the visual treatment. This was the most realistic time you could get your drink at the bar, because after the ‘so called appetizer’, the Few Good Men were about to go hard as a mo-fo, and you would hardly return to the bar after that!
But not before they sang a happy birthday to fellow DJ Psykomantus, who was already feeling the vibe and the energy from the crowd. And because it was his time, the guys stepped aside and let Mantus shine and have his moment, he was relived of his duties and partied with the crowd. Roc1, Rhize and E Double D put their best vocal chords on as they sang as if they were auditioning for that crappy show called ‘The Voice UK‘ (Yeah I said it…) For that, he told the lord to santify the music as it will be beneficial to his body, as he gave THANKS.
The main feature of the night was a non stop three and a half hour visual non stop set. And it begins with an EPIC 20th Century Fox introduction, so fitting because most of the classics were in the 20th century, but here’s the twist, it was an EPIC FAIL!!!! The projector showed the videos back to front, the crowd laughed at the Few Good Men’s blunder, but it was a minor as the guys realised their error and knew it was too late to rectify it, but hey, love is love.
The former turntable champions straight assaulted the Hare & Hounds and did not relent. Lords Of The Underground – Chief Rocka, Royce Da 5’9 – Boom, Nas – The World Is Yours, KRS-One – Rappaz R In Danja and Crooklyn Dodgers, Return Of The Crooklyn Dodgers blazed the dancefloor…or should I say mosh pit….that was because Wu-Tang either told the crowd to Proteck Ya Neck, or Pharoahe Monch played the role of Simon and told the crowd to Get The F**k Up…or maybe the Pharcyde forced the Few Good Men to Drop that classic sh!t on the masses. Tune after tune after tune….eyes of the crowd were starting to water. And so, they gave THANKS.
The energy and the vibe was so great in the Hare & Hounds function were so great that even the regulars in the standard room had to join the party upstairs. They took a risk in buying pints in a hip hop block party atmosphere. DJs had turned the tunes up to fifth gear by this point. Yo! MTV Raps may have ended in 1995 but the videos played went beyond that and would have had the Yo! MTV Raps stamp of approval if the show had continued on, with the most recent track that was played on the night released in 2006, arguably the finest record ever created, J Dilla‘s Won’t Do. It was like the crowd became overjoyed while they were relishing the fountain of quality tunes. and technically, after midnight Saturday became Sunday. And so the crowd gave THANKS.
The night reluctantly ended with Keith Murray‘s Get Lifted…. Even though it is one of my favourite tunes of all time, I felt that another track could have finished this epic night. (Dead Prez, Hip Hop anyone?) But even with that, there were a lot of tracks that could have been played. Maybe the Hare & Hounds should seriously reconsider their licensing with regards to opening and closing times, ending at 2am is simply not enough for a night like this. Extending to 3am would be perfect. On the flip side, ending at 2am leaves the heads buzzing and going home with a good feeling. It matters not about the minors, the positives far outweighed those easily. This was a night that if heads missed it, they be kicking themselves so hard that even an established Thai Boxer would cringe and feel the pain that people were doing to themselves. I daresay that this night eclipsed the previous J Dilla/Baatin nights that A Few Good Men have held. I never thought that I would make that statement. Yeah I said it. This was a night that would make heads almost dismiss the classic Common track that was played – I Used To Love H.E.R. It is blatantly clear that the capacity crowd still do love H.E.R. and always will. This was a night that Doctor Dre, Ed Lover and Fab 5 Freddy would be proud of since the farewell Yo! MTV Raps episode with the epic freestyle party…A Few Good Men: Take A Bow. On behalf of true hip hop fans around the world over, this is the day that the Lord has made, and I give THANKS.