The focal point of the first annual Source 360 Expo, was a highly publicized concert. Featuring Curren$y, Dom Kennedy, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, Dipset, Lil Kim, and headlined by a Reunion set by Wu-Tang, the concert had New York hip hop fans buzzing for months before the show. Despite the impressive line up, the concert left many unsatisfied. Plagued by sound and technical difficulties, the production of the event often overshadowed and impaired the performances.
Dom Kennedy and Curren$y started the night off as fans of independent and underground hip hop trickled into the less than packed Barclays Center. By the time Bone Thugs-N-Harmony came on, the crowd got older and the energy shifted to nostalgia as if time machine had been activated transporting the venue to the late 90s. Despite short set times 20-30 mins Bone Thugs made and impact. By the time Crossroads came on, Barclays had fallen into complete silence in remembrance of Biggie Smalls and Eazy-E.
During and hour long break caused by scheduling difficulties and sound issues, Harlem rapper Ron Browz came and did an improtu set, to the surprise and confusion of concert goers. Dipset emerged after the break to misfiring mics and confusion about the set time. Frustrated by the lack of organization and audio quality, the Harlem trio did a 20 min set, of which Cam’ron was on stage for 15 minutes.
Lil Kim followed, coming out to a video montage of her career, and two flag bearing ladies. Her set was elaborate and at times the veteran female rapper seemed winded, relying on the audience to finish her verses. Fellow Brooklyn rapper Maino came out during Kim’s performance, as did Mobb Deep MC, Havoc, who came out for Quiet Storm. The set ended to her remix of Hot Nigga, with a Bobby Shmurda cameo. As she walked off stage, she apologized saying that she did the performance a personal favor, and was faded.
The real highlight of the night came by way Staten island as the Wu-Tang clan closed the conert down. With the entire collective present with the exception of the deceased, Ol Dirty Bastard, it was a set to remember. Notorious for their showmanship high energy and cult fan following, the Wu rolled with all the punches and did not let failing microphones, and rushed set times affect their show. Ol’ Dirty’s son took over his father’s role in a high energy performance of Raw. As the show ended Method Man walked off the stage saying “they cut our time like a motherfucker.” Yes they did Meth, yes they did, and that pretty much summed up the whole night.