Arriving at Warehouse Live, my anticipation and excitement was at an all-time high. I didn’t know what to expect that night from the Chicago rapper. Thoughts filled my mind varying from “What songs will he play?” to “I wonder if he’s really 6’5?” and even “What am I going to eat after this?” As I was standing in line deeply wrapped into my thoughts, Mick Jenkins himself whizzed past the line of concert goers on a skateboard with a bag of chips, completely surprising us and showing me that I had no idea what was in store for tonight.
For the concert, 2 DJs and three different artists were brought out to open the show. Their sets lasted from 8:30-11:00. Honestly, it was was a pretty long opening, but it made Mick’s performance later even sweeter and the music got the crowd hyped. The first artist was an H-town native rapper by the name of James Curtis. He took the stage, pumping the crowd up with five of his original songs. At the end, he even crowd surfed. Soul of Sherif, an up-and-coming rapper, took the stage next. He had technical difficulties at the beginning, so he rapped his first song acapella. Poetry and soul seeped from his mouth to the audience, captivating everyone and grabbing people’s attention. The next few songs he rapped weren’t something you just heard, but something you also felt. For his final song, he brought out another up-and-coming rapper, Doeman. J Stock took the stage to rap a few original songs, promote their independent rap group FreeNation, and spread positivity and inspiration to the crowd. STWO then played his set for the remaining 45 minutes of the opening. Chill songs calmed the audience, playing songs that varied from Drake’s “Legend” to Goldlink’s “Sober Thoughts” to instrumentals with hard-hitting bass drops and the smoothest transitions.
At 11:00, the 6’5, deep-voiced rapper finally made the appearance that everyone had been waiting for, opening with Wave[s] “Alchemy.” The crowd went crazy and the intensity only grew as Jenkins rapped songs from The Waters and The Wave[s]. If you’re a fan of Mick Jenkins, then you know what huge emphasize he sets on water. It’s present in just about all of his songs and album themes. Throughout the concert, he even had a crowd chant going on in which he would yell “DRINK MORE” and the crowd had to chant “WATER.” As one of his songs came to an end, Mick Jenkins took that opportunity to set it straight on what water really meant to him:
“Water represents truth. When I say drink more water, that means speak more truth.”
He emphasized the importance of finding our own truth, and not just believing whatever is placed in front of us. It’s so easy to go on social media, see a news headline, and just believe it- no sources, no background data, but we just take it as the truth. Go out there, do your thing, and don’t just take whatever’s handed to you. Question things.
As his words hit the audience, many nodded and clapped in agreement and before we knew it Jenkins pumped it up and continued to bellow out raps with his infamous flow. After an hour-long set, Jenkins ended the concert with two songs. “Martyrs” is a fan favorite, but the audience had a job to do, Jenkins didn’t want to rap, but see how well his fans knew the song. Houston stepped up to the plate and I admit that at first it was a bit rocky, but we definitely showed him we were true fans.
The very last song was “Hurt Everybody” by Social Network ft. Mick Jenkins. Everyone from Free Nation and the opening acts joined the stage as Jenkins crowd surfed and started spraying water into the audience. It was a very lit ending to a very lit night. While Mick Jenkins may not be one of the most well-known rappers at the moment, I definitely see a place for him at the top. His soul and content alone can win over the ears and hearts of masses, but when you add his talented flow and hard-hitting beats, he really becomes something special. Soon he’ll be unstoppable.
- “40 below”
- “Get Up Get Down”
- “Comfortable” (feat. Noname Gypsy)
- “P’s & Q’s”
- “Perception” (feat. The Mind)
- “Jerome” (feat. Joey Bada$$)
- “Hurt Everybody” by Social Network (feat. Mick Jenkins)
By Daisha Lewis