BROOKLYN, New York — Lil' Mo is just a good friend and he "ain't hittin' it," he loves hip-hop and the perks that come with being a rap star and he's so busy that he hardly has any time to watch music videos. These were the answers to the questions a group of teenagers asked Fabolous Wednesday in his hometown. (Click here for photos from the event.)
Fab was visiting the Madison Square Boys & Girls Club continuing his Street Dreams promo tour of kid-friendly facilities around the country, which began in late February (see "Fabolous Lines Up Free Tour Of Boys & Girls Clubs").
"It feels good to be back in Brooklyn, [giving] back to Brooklyn kids," Fab said, shortly after a sit-down with a little over 20 youths. Although the teens were allowed to ask the young rhyme slinger anything they wanted to, the wise-cracking prince of metaphors took time out to give words of inspiration.
"I definitely wanted to do something in Brooklyn for a long time," he added. "I really haven't had a chance to since a performance a year or two ago. A lot of people think [that] kids are not focused, but kids are definitely focused, especially [those] that go to some of these Boys & Girls clubs. They have goals and dreams too," he explained. "They just need a little inspiration or motivation. That's what the base of this tour is. The kids see me and are like, 'Fab is from the same predicament I'm in and he made it happen.' I was trying to be a ghetto inspiration or 'hood motivation. These kids have been very appreciative wherever I've been."
Later on, Fab gave new meaning to "In Da Club" as he warmed the crowd up, playing 50 Cent's dance anthem for the screaming fans at the Boys & Girls Club's gymnasium. "I can't deny it, you know I'm a rider," Fab rapped for the kids as the beat to his smash hit "Can't Deny It" kicked in. "Oh, oh, oh," the fans started screaming, bouncing their hands. The kids' hometown hero kept his momentum going with "Keepin' It Gangsta."
From there, Fabolous slowed down the pace with "Trade It All," only to bring the tempo back up again with "Young' n (Holla Back)" and "It's My Party." The kids who weren't busy partying seemed to be in shock that they were actually watching a rap star perform at their recreational haven.
Fab's protégé Mike Shorey, came out for the finale of "Can't Let You Go" before Fabolous thanked the crowd and quickly darted out because he was running late for a radio appearance on Funkmaster Flex's show.
But as hectic as Fab's evening was, the 23-year-old's morning had been equally as busy. He spent the a.m. hours in court facing gun charges stemming from an arrest in Brooklyn in January (see "Fabolous Arrested Twice In Two Days"). Those charges were dismissed without prejudice according to his lawyer, Alberto Ebanks. This means he hasn't been completey exonerated, but the district attorney has four-and-a-half months to build and bring a case in front of a grand jury. At the moment there are no further court dates pending.
"It's good," Fabolous said of the outcome. "I was innocent. This was a situation where it was just gonna take some time to prove I was innocent. It's definitely a disappointment that stuff like this has to happen, but it's definitely a big load off my back.
"Some of the Boys & Girls Clubs didn't want to get involved with [my tour] because they didn't know what the outcome [would be] or have a lot of knowledge of the situation," he added. "All they had was little articles in the newspapers that was really propaganda. Now that the situation is over, maybe [the clubs] would be interested in the future to work something out."
While Fabolous may have the attention of the kids, adult fans need not feel neglected. During his run of Boys & Girls clubs, Fab will also perform at nightclubs in several of the cities he visits.
Fab's newest album, Street Dreams, was released Tuesday.