There’s nothing like hip-hop music, but outside of the MP3s and music videos, the live show remains a key component to an MC’s appeal.
Last weekend, rap fans flocked from all over to Austin, Texas, to see their favorite rap acts take the stage during the 2013 mtvU Woodie Awards and the SXSW Music Festival. On Saturday (March 23), MTV Jams will continue the celebration with the “Jams Live Weekend,” a 48-hour marathon of live performances from Trinidad James, Travi$ Scott, Joey Bada$$ and Pusha T.
The two-day party will give fans an all-access pass to the inaugural MTV Jams stage from last weekend’s mtvU Woodies Awards and Festival from SXSW, which included performances from James, Scott, Bada$$ and Clipse’s Pusha T.
To prepare for the party, MTV News caught up with some of our favorite artists to find out which shows they’ve enjoyed most as fans. “Years back, I was a kid and I saw Busta Rhymes, and to me, he just embodies performance,” Lecrae said. “He wasn’t just moving side to side on the stage; he was performing.”
B.o.B is quite the showman himself. The Atlanta MC has built a reputation for his energetic concerts, but before Bobby Ray refined his skills, he took pointers watching a pair of rap veterans. “As a hip-hop fan, I got a chance a while back actually to watch David Banner and Talib Kweli perform for the Hip-Hop Live Tour. I watched both of them perform, and I really learned a lot,” he said.
Fabolous has taken in his fair share of rap concerts, but the most memorable for him was Jay-Z’s 1998 sold-out run, which eventually cemented Hov as a top-notch performer. “The Hard Knock Life Tour; Jay, DMX, Redman and Method Man, Ja Rule jumping out, Memphis Bleek. Beanie Sigel used to have a mean freestyle that he did during Jay’s set. I think that was my favorite show,” Loso said, jogging his own memory as he continued to speak. “Goes to show how old I am.”
Yes, The Hard Knock Life Tour took place 15 years ago, but Snoop Lion goes back in further than Fab. The Long Beach, California rap veteran remembers the iconic 1980s Fresh Fest tour when he first fell in love with hip-hop. “Fresh Fest: Run-DMC, LL Cool J, Whodini,” Snoop remembered. “To see them up there doing their thing, Run-DMC with the leather and the brims on, together and LL Cool J and Whodini, ‘Freaks Come Out At Night.’ This was inspiring to me.”
What is your favorite hip-hop concert of all time? List them in the comments!