Noise Pop 2018

Madlib brings Dave Chappelle and Yasiin Bey to Noise Pop appearance — does this mean there’s a tour coming?

In case you missed it:

Last Thursday, February 22nd, Madlib aka the Beat Konducta, aka Quasimoto, aka one of the most prolific producers of our generation graced the stage at 1015 SF for a special DJ set. That in and of itself, is highly buzzworthy. As if being able to see a legend lace together an amazing set, Madlib brought out two surprise guests that caused such a tremor of excitement in the room, that I don’t know if I can aptly describe it so you will understand.

Imma give it a shot though.
I won’t lie to you, I was exhausted by the time the Madlib show rolled around on Thursday. As excited as I have been about NoisePop, I felt like I had been going non-stop all week, and 1015 SF is about an hour and a half drive from Sacramento. So in the hours before the show, I was smoking a big blunt and having this conversation with a friend:

Him: What are you doing tonight?

Me: Tonight is Madlib in SF.. but I am dead ass tired from the Jay Electronica show on Tuesday, and I had to work hella late last night. Plus I have to cover the Ty Dolla $ign show on Friday at Ace of Spades.

Him: So?

Me: So… I think I am going to probably just sit this one out.

Him: Did you just hear yourself? You are whining that your talent has taken you far enough that you get to do what you wanted to do all along, AND you get to go to shows that most of us have to wait to read about. You’re spoiled as fuck. Get up and go to the show.

Of course, as with most statements that tend to hold far more of the truth than you care to admit, his ‘spoiled’ comment got to me. I sat and pouted for a bit about what an asshole he was being, I simmered on my anger towards his thought process, and then of course, it hit me.

I also hate that he was right. Not to say that I was or am spoiled — but I am definitely blessed. I do get to do these things that I constantly hear friends remind me is “so fucking cool, dude” so how much of an asshole would I be if I just decided to say fuck it? As if the universe doesn’t already speak to me enough, right after this conversation my best friend hit me:

Sean: Who is Madlib bringing as a special guest tonight?!



I took the hint and got dressed.
It was a little past 11 when the man, myth and legend himself came out on stage to lace the crowd with a well curated set list. It melded together and flowed so effortlessly, that it almost made me angry at other DJs. It is the kind of set that showcases the talent of a man who has been putting together compositions in his mind since he sampled his first song at age 11. In everything from his transitions, to hearing the commonalities between songs that others couldn’t, allowing him to mix things that don’t logically seem to go together, Madlib proved to you exactly why he is one of the greatest of our time.

After about a half an hour of an already mind blowing set, was when I had my first “OH HOLY FUCK” moments of the night. Yasiin Bey, FKA Mos Def, AKA one half of the legendary duo Black Star (who released their only album 20 years ago this August) came traipsing onto the stage with a smirk that let you know he could FEEL the entire crowd swell and shift with excitement as the eventual realization of who had emerged sunk in. Slapping hands, giving props, smiling and dancing around a little throughout, Yasiin kept the set rocking, throwing a few freestyle bars out, and rapping the first verse off the as-yet-untitled song from the new Black Star album.

(Check our Facebook for the video)

pic by tehron porter

pic by tehron porter

By this point, I was in heaven. You couldn’t have brought me down if you tried. Little did I know that Madlib and Yasiin had a surprise in store that would somehow lift me even higher. From the side stage emerged a figure that at first, when I was able to focus, I thought I might have been dreaming.

photo by tehron porter

photo by tehron porter

Well damn. What the hell am I supposed to say to that other than damn. Having just finished out a set at the SF Punchline, Chapelle stopped by and waxed poetic about his love of the Bay, about the need to build and love each other. He implored us to keep our phones out and to create a memory, as opposed to living our lives through a Snapchat filter. The entire room was electric, and I don’t know how easy it will be for me to forget that moment.
As my high ass drove home (well, someone drove me home, but still) I began to ponder. My brain was on overdrive, my synapses were firing on full thruster, and then it hit me:

Holy shit.. they’re going to go on tour together. I have no actual proof of this but hear me out:

Madlib is producing the Black Star album.
Dave Chappelle is a huge hip hop fan, and an even bigger fan/and friend to Black Star
Dave has been touring again for a little bit and just came off three successful Netflix specials.
Talib and Yasiin both were involved with Chappelle’s block party back in 2005, in filming AND in soundtrack placement
The movie honored J Dilla — and who was Dilla’s partner in crime?

So my theory is that Chappelle and Black Star are going to go on tour together. In certain cities there will be even more special guests on that tour that end up making surprise appearances. Whether it’s Badu, or Common, Dead Prez or Lauryn, who knows… but what I do believe, is that this special moment at Noise Pop 2018 is only the beginning for this group of performers.

We will see them again soon.
I hope, if nothing else, this article helps you to realize that you need to NOT SLEEP on Noise Pop — they have been at this for 25+ years and show no signs of slowing down. While most of the major shows of Noise Pop have passed, you can still check out the amazing satellite show coming up at Holy Diver featuring Caleborate and Cash Campain — both Valley Hi survivors.

Myself and my Stonerettes will be there Thursday, so if you see us roll up. *wink*

Until then, you know where to find me.



Olivia Monahan

February 26th, 2018

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