“The Attention Deficit Tour has arrived in the motherfuckin’ capital of the world,” said Wale before kicking off his headlining set at the sold out Le Poisson Rouge in New York last night (May 7).
Taking the stage around midnight with Patron bottle in hand, Wale plowed through an hour’s worth of material with the frenetic go-go collective UCB backing him up, as he bounced between cuts from upcoming album and mixtape favorites such as “W.A.L.E.D.A.N.C.E.”
Halfway through, he brought out his first guest, Young Chris, who ripped off a few verses from Young Gunz hits “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop” and “No Better Love.” With Louie luggage in hand, KiD CuDi also took the stage to perform a go-go infused version of “Day N Nite.”
The evening also featured performances from duo Tanya Morgan, as well Canadian singer/songwriter Colin Munroe, who brought out Joell Ortiz for their collaboration on “Piano Lessons.”
J Cole, the first signing to Jay-Z’s Roc Nation, also hit the stage early on, after which he spoke to XXLMag.com about hooking up with Hov. “It’s something I couldn’t imagine back in the day. I couldn’t fathom being 14 and writing raps to being here,” said Cole.
His deal with Roc Nation represents a 360 venture, in which the artist shares touring and merchandising revenue with the label in addition to record sales. “That’s the way new artists’ deals are being done in this day and age,” said Cole. “Unless you come to the table with some bargaining power, that’s just what you’re gonna get.”
Any deal with the most successful rapper ever may seem highly promising, but Jay-Z has struggled in the past in regards to breaking talent. However, Cole remains unfazed. “The type of artist that is gonna have success under Jay is the type of artist who’s gonna break himself, so his track record to me is irrelevant,” he said. “It’s really up to me. All [Jay-Z’s] giving me is a platform and a way for me to put my music out there. I’m not relying on Jay-Z to make me or break me.” - Devin Chanda
Photos courtesy of Adrian Fernandez. Click on the image to enlarge.