Good. Lord. Almighty.
Pre-show: I had gotten a pair of tickets through a friend of mine (thanks Tyler!) so I was off, again, to Brooklyn Bowl. I’m seriously considering moving out there, since I seem to be there almost every night! Thank goodness this crazy 10 day run is almost over, I can now get on with it. Oops, no, The Allman’s are playing next week. Scratch that.
When I showed up, around 9:15, you could walk up to the security guard, place was buzzing already. By 10pm the line was down the street, almost to the corner. By 10:30 it was, “All Exits Final”. By 11pm, even the guest list people were on line. Place filled to capacity. Holy schmoley, what are we in for tonight?
Set 1: I walk in and Alan on drums, Neal on keys, and Nigel on keys already. Nigel wails Unconditional Love and goes into a Stevie Wonder cover. Nigel sounds like Stevie. He just wails. This guy is amazing. He blows me away each time I see him. Kraz joins and they do a Stevie Ray Vaughn tune. Kraz shreds it.
Setbreak: I go outside for a break, and am watching the line grow longer and longer. Spoke to a random guy on the street and asked if he had seen Rahzel before. He proceeded to tell me he was waiting for Rahzel and his son to show up, he raps with Rahzel Jr. Seriously?? Magic in the air. I love the Brooklyn Bowl.
Set 2: As I was talking to my new friend Biggz, I could hear Soulive blasting it through the walls. I was getting a first rate lowdown on the Rap scene, and Rahzel. I’m feeling rather ridiculous now, as Rahzel is the “Godfather of Noise”, old skool rapper that beatboxes something mean. Anyways – moving on. I go back inside and Soulive is just finishing up, and then The Shady Horns join them and the whole place is kicked up a notch. Ah, here we go.
Set 3: Rahzel takes the stage. Alone. Just him beatboxing. Holy schmoley. Amazing. So so amazing. There’s this great banter between him and the audience. “Where’s the ladies in the house? Where’s the fellas in the house?” This banter confirms my theory that the man to woman ratio was about 6:1. Many more fellas in the house, screaming louder than the ladies. So, so fun. Questlove comes on and plays drums till the end of set. He sent out his props to Soulive, lots of love for the band, and for us who are lucky enough to see them. I believe he had a fine time up there.
Rahzel’s Set List (thanks Russ!) <unknown first song>, Wu Tang Clan Ain’t Nothing…, If Ya Momma only Knew, and Jesus Walks
Ed note: I wanted more Rahzel.
Set 4: whole James Brown set. Holy schmoley, insane. This whole run just keeps building and building. Questlove on drums, Shady Horns, Kraz on guitar, Alan on congas and guitar (wha? really?? yes, really.) Neal blasting those keys and bass keys, Kofi saunters on stage, mid song, holding that flute of his, Nigel belting James Brown all the way home. Time check? 11:30 pm.
Setlist: Made You Look beat / Funky Drummer / Gimme Some More (pass the peas tease) Gimme Some More / Give it Up, Turn it Loose / Superbad –> Soul Power / Tighten Up / Everybody Wants To Rule The World.
Encore: Tears for Fears cover, Everybody Wants To Rule The World. This cover gets funkier and funkier. The crowd loves it, Neal on those keys just makes it so bassy, so low, busting through your body bassy. Yeah. Fun times to be sure.
Aftershow: ?uestlove spins some crazy tunes, and I can’t help but drop my coat and close my eyes and dance in a dark corner of the place. Stayed about 30 minutes, swaying and stomping, and then took off. Good golly Miss Molly…. phew.
If you need to find me – I’ll be at Brooklyn Bowl.
Here’s more great insight from the men themselves, Soulive.