in San Francisco.
On his latest visit, KRS took on a mixed group of old and new Hip Hop heads @ Yoshi’s SF. I know, who would have thunk it, sushi, sake and Hip Hop? Works for me I tell ya!
After nearly an hour and a half of KRS-One classics and Boogie Down Productions favorites, KRS opened up the stage for an open-mic, free style cypher– a common occurrence at his shows.
Joining him on stage were 4 Bay Area emcees that are all, in their own right, poised and ready to take over the world.
First up was Jahi Torman, a Hip Hop artist, youth advocate and community activist. I’m just now being introduced to Jahi and look forward to learning more about him, but he is a Bay Area resident, by way of Cleveland, Ohio and had just come off an opening gig with Mos Def @ The Independent. Catch him @ his next gig this Friday, Sept. 16th with Soul Hop Sessions @ The Shattuck Down Low.
Next to enter the cypher was San Francisco’s revolutionary poet, Sellassie. Sellassie always takes the stage with big energy and a light in his eyes, a light that speaks of truth, social justice, ghetto realities, corporate thuggery and promise! And Sellassie is always all about sharing the love and spreading the word with his “We All We Got” series, where he showcases emerging artists in the Bay Area Hip Hop community. The next set in the series is Oct. 15th @ Club 6 in San Francisco.
At this point in the show, KRS-One had taken a few steps back and was supporting this self-induced takeover as the DJ. It was time for the ladies to take over… and take over they did! Leading the coup was Richmond/Oakland’s own Silk-E.
Now, Silk-E can sing with the prettiest of church birds but don’t get it twisted she will stomp you with righteous lyrical rage. Always holding her own in a man’s man’s world, Silk-E succeeds with passion, intent, respect and an in-your-face, sexy, stage presence that would humble even Too Short. She’s not known as “The Hit Woman for Hire” for nothing! Catch Silk-E performing with The Coup, Too Short’s “Town Bizness”, and/or catch her solo work Oct. 2nd @ Sundays in The Redwoods-Woodminster Amphitheater Oakland.
Last to challenge the cypher was Bay Area singer, songwriter and food justice activist, Jennifer Johns. Jennifer had been in the crowd catching the fever and was looking forward to taking the stage with her mentor KRS-One. So, she took it! Singing, growling, rhyming and grooving with the crowd, let’s just say, Jenn had the whole house screwing up their faces like “damn, she’s BAD!” Jennifer Johns has shared the stage with Lauryn Hill, Mos Def, Les Nubians, Gift of Gab, Black Eyed Peas and KRS. But I think KRS’ quote about her says it best: “It is not every day that an artist achieves the ability to stir the heart and soul through song and vibration. My heart has not yet stopped stirring since I have heard Jennifer Johns.” KRS-One. Jennifer is currently working on new material, please find out more about her music and her mission toward food sovereignty at www.goliveoonline.net
In closing, it’s obvious that our Bay Area talent is not only good enough to catch the attention of the legendary KRS-One but good enough to hold the stage with him. Please do your part to support Bay artists and look forward to future blogs, right here, showcasing them and their movements.
Love and Light… Sterling