Disclaimer: All views presented in this review are those of the reviewer and not of DJ Wade-O
On Friday, June 12th the “Summer in the City Tour” featuring Propaganda, Derek Minor, Playdough, and Sho Baraka rolled through Dallas, Texas. It was a night full of jokes, transparency, and overall great music. Aaqila Rasheed was there to capture visuals and vibe. Here’s her recap of the night.
It’s true what they say: good things come in small packages. Just hours before the doors opened, fans received a text message with a surprise. The text revealed that not only was Dallas graced with appearances from Propaganda, Sho Baraka and Playdough, but Derek Minor was performing as well.
The anticipation was proven with the line that stretched out over a block as fans awaited to enjoy this special evening’s surprise. The event started off with a V.I.P. meet and greet with the artists. They were given the opportunity to have a time of Q&A, access to merchandise and pictures with the artists before general admission.
When doors opened, fans were greeted with DJ Efechto and DJ Sean P going head to head with mashups and mixes that were previously arranged. It created a great atmosphere for the concert as fanatics waited for the opening act. There was a free merch giveaway that was conducted through text messaging. This was a fun way to increase engagement, but it was presented to the audience as only a possibility. It was not concrete if there would be an actual winner, and if so, no one was notified.
The Prophet Bar was a great spot for this concert and it was sold out. Artists expressed that The Prophet Bar loves to see “people like us” or Christians use their venue. It opens the door for non-believers who frequently come to The Prophet Bar to be exposed to some great music.
The Dallas native opened the concert with DJ Sean P.. The Macklemore sound alike showed great energy on the stage and the crowd definitely connected. This was my first live experience with Playdough and there were some questionable bars for me but overall, he did not disappoint. A high moment from his set was when Playdough invited the audience to participate, when he played the Name Game. A few fans on the front row gave their name on cue and Playdough was able to effectively generate a freestyle using their names and their appearance. Derek Minor was in the crowd and participated in this portion, increasing the already hype and interactive atmosphere.
It’s my personal opinion that Sho Baraka could pass for a comedian. Coming out to “Get Happy Intermission” from his album, Talented 10th, Sho Baraka quickly engaged the crowd with a hilarious preachy dialogue and offering appeal. He proceeded this act with a few throwbacks from Lions & Liars to assure his following that Sho Baraka has not ceased to become a Christian and jokingly added that a few curse words were to follow. After performing “Famous” and “We Can Be More,” Sho Baraka performed a track from a new project called The Introduction of Louis Portier that is set to be released on July 28th. It was refreshing to see him in this element again.
The surprise appearance certainly did not dissatisfy. Being in the crowd before his set, Derek Minor was hype. Doing popular songs, “Ready, Set, Go” “1-1-6,” “Deaf” and his verses from “Loud Music,” “Undefeated,” and “On Ten,” he definitely kept the energy flowing. Derek Minor connected to the fans on an emotional level as he reviewed the last year of his life and shared the meaning behind his latest album, Empire.
He shared his doubts and questions for God after the death of his father, aunt, and sister. He discussed the heartache he felt after seeing his wife being rolled into the hospital on a stretcher after being in a car accident. He talked about how hard it was to see friend and fellow RMG artist, Canon, after suffering from his fall. He talked about the hurt he felt after learning that someone that he trusted stole thousands of dollars from him. Through it all, he realized the only one that he could depend on was God. When his world crumbled, money or his platform could not fix it; nothing could fix it but God. He closed his set with “Who You Know” and “Party People”…we lost our minds!
Last but not least, Propaganda hit the stage coming out to the title track, “Crimson Cord” and “Don’t Listen to Me” from Excellent quickly followed. Unfortunately, his set was short and sweet. I would’ve enjoyed a few more songs. One thing that I appreciated was the time that he took during his set to address the social issues that have plagued our nation in Ferguson, Baltimore, and McKinney. Even after a profane objection from a crowd member, the son of a Black Panther continued to encourage the audience to love others and seek understanding from another person’s perspective. Following this talk, he concluded with “Three Cord Bond.”
The concert was a dope experience. This show highlighted the Gospel by showing love to all, regardless of race or social stature and embracing the unity that is found in Jesus Christ. I think it’s important for believers to take the time to seek understanding of how culture heavily influences perspectives and to not be quick to judgment and stereotypes.
All artists were available after the concert for pictures.