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Recap & Poll: King Of The Burgh Champions by BMW

First of all I want to reiterate what DJ Afterthought said, everybody in the contest was a winner last night, they got to rock TWICE in front of great crowds (last night & at a previous show), they got a chance to gain new fans, network with other folks in the local scene, and sell merch all while doing what I hope they love. I want to encourage any artist who performed & any artist who is reading this to contact me if you were in the building last night we have a special promo package that will ONLY be for those who were in the Rex last night. Also I’ll be reaching out to the performers to offer them some free stuff from us. As far as my thoughts on last night, there are a few, I posted on Facebook that I thought the judges wouldn’t pick the artist who I thought would win & I was wrong. Chris Allen came on first & set the bar so damn high. From what I recall he wasn’t rapping over his lyrics (Sick of hearing artists do that), he wasn’t screaming at me (sick of that too) the energy was there, the lyrics were there the crowd interaction was there. He came with a mind set to give that show his all & as they say “He left it all out there” (corny I know but it fits go with it). So salute to Chris Allen I look forward to hearing some of your music & featuring you on the site as well.

In terms of the other performances? I’m going to rank them in order based on who I thought finished where & I’ll share my opinion & some other quick thoughts I have from last night.

First the quick thoughts:

  • There was a dude there in a Dri Archer road jersey, I’ve literally never laid eyes on such a thing. It blew me away… this has to be something you pay a few bucks for at the Steelers store, I can’t imagine Dick’s, or Walmart carrying #13 jerseys.
  • Artists you know the deal at the Rex when will you learn? The sound is trash adjust to it, perform more for the venue & crowd in attendance. How? Well first of all have performance tracks, second don’t scream & yell, have your music turned down a bit.
  • Based on seeing a few of these shows I think maybe the Judges should sit elsewhere to get a better point of view, (this is actually Scrap’s suggestion & I agree 100%). Don’t think you can appreciate or even really hear the performances if you are right next to them.
  • I thought it was dope seeing FANS of the contestants line up early outside, the line was thick for a while & there was legit excitement.
  • People were ON TIME! even early waiting to get in, I love that.
  • That is not the best setting to have an in-depth convo & so many people tried lol. few words of advice “Hit me up lets talk after”

On to the rankings that are going to piss people off.

Champion Chris Allen
Runner Up TK Kavi
2nd Runner up is a close tie between, STA (Lazy Blackman), Team Epic, Joel Kellem
Everyone else

I felt Chris Allen set the bar sky high & not many were able to even come close. TK Kavi really in my eyes came close to beating Chris, he had a to of energy, (I’m big on energy when on stage) he picked the right music to perform, stuff the crowd can & would be willing to repeat back & rock with. He interacted with the crowd & that wild card to me was the beat boxing assistance. Overall I was really impressed with his set.

STA (Lazy Blackman) had a really fun set, again they had the needed energy to keep their set interesting & they selected the right songs/beats/hooks that would allow fans to get involved. I don’t feel like you could really hear them well enough to fully enjoy their set. But their overall performance was impressive but not quite good enough to win.

Team Epic, Norman Dean is really dope, no diss to Space Jam (Jay or Jeff?) but as a stand alone artist Norman Dean might be one of the best up & comers from anywhere right now. I don’t want to hear them rap over their lyrics anymore, take the next step get those performance tracks ready for the next show. Team Epic also displayed the energy I like when I take in a show. They weren’t bad at all just didn’t do enough to best TK Kavi or Chris Allen.

I can’t recall if I’ve ever caught a Joel Kellem performance before but I like his music, for someone they call the “Chill Gawd” I felt like he lived up to the name, super relaxed on stage, confident & comfortable. My phone died so I couldn’t keep taking notes I’m not 100% if he rapped over his lyrics too BUT, I think so and if so that sort of knocked his overall performance down a few points for me. I know the judges had it close between he & Chris Allen but I don’t. While he was not the worst performer I don’t think he did enough to beat out what Chris Allen or TK Kavi brought in terms of overall performance.

MiQ Check (B.O.M.D.) pissed off a great many people last night. Overall the performance wasn’t bad, they brought energy & stage presence & I’m pretty sure they had the MOST fans there & they put time & thought into their set. The one song where they were talking about dicks or whatever & humping the air? Nah I don’t need any of that keep it… THAT to me was trash, however, the had some choreographed moves in there, they weren’t falling into each other & they looked organized on stage. They rocked songs that a crowd could rock with them to. I liked the preparation, they weren’t completely polished performers because they screamed over the music the entire time but the thought they put into their set was second to none. Some folks, actually a few have hit me up about their dance moves even going as far as to call them “Boy Bandish”. I have to disagree I feel like their is nothing wrong with it, they brought something different to the table, something that set them apart from everyone else in my view. Overall there is room for improvement but the fact that those guys are already working toward being entertaining & appealing to a live audience is a step in the right direction.

P.I.R.A.T.E G.A.N.G. I’d love to hear that acronym again I didn’t quite catch it but I THINK it was dope. They were one of the only acts that I don’t recall rapping over their lyrics. They touched my heart because they had a Jolly Roger (Lets Go BUCS!). Their overall performance wasn’t bad the energy was there, some of the songs they performed were engaging. I felt like they were yelling the entire time or at least a good majority of the set. That isn’t totally their fault but if you have rocked at that venue before & all these artists have I feel like you have to adapt. By adapt I mean adjust your vocals to the sound in the room if possible, have the levels adjusted because you want the people to be able to hear you and enjoy the show. That isnt’ just for Pirate Gang that goes for everyone. Overall they weren’t bad I just don’t think they did enough to be considered one of the top performers that night.

Young Fly, Tree-O which was basically just Komplex didn’t do enough to really impress me. I’ve seen them both before and I know they can do better I want to see more from them both.

Overall I had fun, we were able to sell some merch & network with a few people & its always good to catch up with folks I haven’t seen in a while. The crowd wasn’t the biggest for a KOTB but they were for the most part showing love to most of the performers even when they clearly weren’t their to support everyone. What DJ Afterthought is doing with these events is awesome & I hope it continues to grow. I know a few random people who were walking by and didn’t know what was going on ended up coming in which is exactly what you want to happen to build the local scene. I got a chance to talk with one lady who just happened to wander in & she told me she loved the entire show. She came at about 10 so she missed some of that artists but she said from who she saw she felt like TK Kavi was the best. I’m pretty sure her name was Michelle & they girl she was with did NOT want to be there at all but she kept talking about Young Fly & Komplex’s arms lol.

Thanks to all the performers, the sponsors, Iph for holding down the music all night long, the Judges & DJ Afterthought for providing a physical platform for our city’s artists to showcase their talent. The next show is June 6th go vote for who you think will win (here)! Also hope I see everyone June 20th at the 5th Annual Mary Mele Memorial Basketball Tournament. For details on that go here.

If you don’t think the judges got it right cast your vote for who you thought won & between now & next Saturday’s show whoever has the most votes will get a prize pack from us!


One last thing if you see me out & about don’t be afraid to come up & say what up. Don’t walk by 5-6 times & stare haha lets not make this awkward we most likely know each other from the internet its cool to make the connection in person. Follow me on Twitter/IG @BMW_ImChillin & I’ll hopefully see you all next week or June 20th!

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"B.O.M.D""King Of the Burgh"Barz BlackmanBMWChris AllenDj AfterthoughtEvent RecapGeek BeatzJoel KellemKomplexlazy BlackmanLazy JpLive perforamceMiq CheckMista ScrapMusicNorman DeanPirate GangPittsburghPittsburgh Hip HopSpace Jam JSTATaylor GangTeam EpicTK KaviTreeoYoung Fly

brandonw • May 30, 2015


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