As far as the concept of Big Jams go, this one was pretty good. Chicago’s WGCI hosted their last jam of the year and the lineup consisted of many Chicago artists, a pop artist, an R&B singer and three of the hottest rap stars in the rapsphere in this moment. The five-hour show went by pretty smoothly but many of the sets felt rushed and incomplete. The show’s lineup consisted of Vic Mensa, Crucial Conflict, Do or Die, Twista, Dej Loaf, Omarion, Lil Durk, Rae Sremmurd, Monica, Meek Mill, Future and Kendrick Lamar.
The surprise of the night was when Yazz Da Greatest, aka Hakeem Lyon from “Empire,” came out to do his songs from the hit television show. He performed the surprising crossover hit “Drip Drop” much to the crowd’s delight, and then he did a song dedicated to Sandra Bland called “Bout 2 Blow” to a stadium lit by cellphones.
The majority of the audience was clearly there to see Future. The combination of Future and his DJ, Eskimo, is electric. Esko ran back and forth across the stage a few times and when Future came out the stadium went ballistic. Future has the ability to put his fans in some type of trap trance. It is pretty amazing to witness in person. His songs “Thought It Was a Drought” and “F*** Up Some Commas” drove the stadium into frenzy.
The people who left early after seeing Future missed out on seeing a stellar performance from the headliner Kendrick Lamar. I’m not sure what the logic was behind this booking considering Lamar is totally left of all the rappers who performed before him. Whatever the motivation was I’m happy it was done. Lamar did an abbreviated but impactful set. His performance of “Alright” felt like hearing a spiritual and a call to action. I believed him when he said, “We gone be all right.”
If I had to count I probably heard the “N” word over a few thousand times. It’s no exaggeration. WGCI’s Morning Takeover crew did just that. Kendra G looked stunning in every outfit. I guess changing clothes is a thing now. Comedian Leon Rogers rocked his Ghostface style robe with Destined Legend embroidered on the back while he carried a wrestling belt. Kyle kept the show moving without a hitch. WGCI also took the moment to introduce their new midday lineup consisting of Tone Kapone and Frankie Robinson. Overall I’m not sure if I’m really a fan of a Big Jam. I would rather see 2 or three artist perform their entire sets. Part of me left wanting more. Overall it was a great time and the people loved it. We gone be all right!