Common pays tribute to Eric Garner and Mike Brown at concert in Atlanta


Common’s “Nobody Smiling” tour made its way to Atlanta on Dec. 4. Held at the Tabernacle, Common took attendees on a journey through his career while also paying tribute to Eric Garner and Mike Brown.

During the middle of his set, Common performed “So Far to Go” before sharing his thoughts on what should be done to move forward.

“We have so far to go and it’s all on us,” Common said. “We’ve seen what happened with Eric Garner and Mike Brown. We can’t wait on the government to do it for us. We have to make the change happen. It’ll start with people like you and me. We have to make a way for our kids. We have to take them to the kingdom.”

Throughout the show, Common used pictures to tell the story of his life. He first showed an image of himself when he was 9 years old. Common talked about wanting to be like the greats such as Muhammad Ali and Michael Jackson. He then performed hits such as “The Corner,” “The Food,” and “Get ’em High.”

Common also showed a more sensitive side with songs that delved into love and relationships. He brought a young lady onstage and serenaded her with the song “Come Close.”

Common revealed his love for hip-hop by showing classic albums from Public Enemy, Dr. Dre, OutKast, and Eric B and Rakim. Stic.Man joined Common onstage and performed the Dead Prez hit, “Hip-Hop.” Common returned the favor by performing “I Used to Love H.E.R.”

The last image shown was a photo of the late J Dilla. Common rapped the story of how he met J Dilla and saw him fall sick on the song, “Rewind That.” It was a touching moment that served as a reminder of how a great producer left us all too soon.

Common ended his show on a high note with the song, “Celebrate.”

After more than 20 years in rap, Common proved why he has remained relevant in a music genre that often embraces the youth and shuns its past.

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