At this point, Schoolboy Q is pretty familiar with New York City. In February the California MC and producer headlined his first NYC show at Santos Party House on the heels of releasing his indie album, Habits and Contradictions, to rave reviews. Just this past Monday, he hopped out on stage briefly during Danny Brown’s set at XXL’s Freshman show at the Best Buy Theater—to the delight of many. Clearly, he’s built a name that’s not only hot on the left coast.
"New York, what the fuck is up?” Q asked as he hit the stage last night at S.O.B’s for yet another headlining look. As soon as he appeared, wearing a lime green bucket hat, sunglasses, jean jacket, red hoodie, and jeans, the crowd’s cheers let him know they were having a ball from jump. After shouting out a few NYC boroughs he said he wanted to talk about where he’s from, launching into "Figg Get da Money.” The cut from last year’s Setbacks breaks down the Los Angeles neighborhood where he grew up, specifically Figueroa Street.
Later he invited a diehard fan named Ricky on stage to rap along with him on "Druggys wit Hoes.” The night’s coolest, if not most awkward, moment came when Q telephoned his Black Hippy teammate Kendrick Lamar and put him on speakerphone. A major proving ground for new talents, S.O.B.’s has a way of demanding a little extra star power. Though Lamar couldn’t be present physically—he’s currently bunkered down recording his debut album—he did the next best thing. Q asked him what he should perform next. Lamar suggested “A.D.H.D,” a fan favorite.
Afterwords Q took a minute for some encouraging words, basically offering a spiel about how if he can make it out of the slums, anyone can. “I was going around wearing the same socks for a week,” he said. “Shit can change, though.” He then performed his song “Blessed.”
Overall it was a fairly brief set, which made sense. Q only has two notable indie releases. Still he turned in a solid performance. “I didn’t have a hype man,” he pointed out at the end. “I go hard in the motherfuckin’ paint.” Right on cue, the DJ played Waka Flocka Flame’s 2010 banger "Hard in da Paint." Q hopped into the audience and disappeared into the night. Though it was sort of an odd ending, nobody could argue his basic point. Q went hard—and then he went home.
Written by Brad Wete (@BradWete)