Last Night: Screwed Up Click at Warehouse Live
June 27 isn't an official holiday in Houston -- yet. But the date remains the preferred occasion for formally celebrating the life, career and influence of Robert Davis, our beloved DJ Screw. On Wednesday, the remnants of the Screwed Up Click, the rap crew he helped make famous, came together to relive classic rhymes and pay tribute to the local legend.
The love for Screw hung in the air like blunt smoke all night inside Warehouse Live's cavernous ballroom, which was legitimately filled with more than a few hip-hop heads who couldn't have been more than ten years old when the DJ released his wildly influential "June 27" tape in 1996. Pretty cool to see this music passed down.
A bevy of young artists took the stage to open the show, but the crowd mostly ignored them. This was a night to revel in the city's proudest musical past, not to think about the future. The only exception to the indifference was a stellar set turned in by Propain, the last of the openers. Highlighted by his verse from Short Dawg's "H-Town," Pain garnered the night's first big cheers from the audience.
The S.U.C. affiliates arrived on stage fast and furious after that. First up was Lil' Flip (and his braids), who immediately dropped "Sunny Day" right onto the audience's heads. Snatches of other favorites like "I Can Do Dat," "Sunshine" and "This is the Way We Ball" followed, but my personal highlight was Flip's verse from Three 6 Mafia's "Ridin' Spinners," the soundtrack to one of the all-time great YTMND pages that I'd managed to somehow forget.
Before Botany Boyz' C-Note took the stage next, one of the night's cooler moments happened. The late S.U.C. rapper Big Moe's mother was brought onstage and introduced to the crowd, who treated her to a massive roar of love and respect. "Momma Moe," wearing an oversized T-shirt with her son's unforgettable visage airbrushed on the front, appeared more than a little touched by the audience's affection.
C-Note paid tribute to another of the S.U.C.'s fallen soldiers -- Fat Pat -- with "Third Coast Born." The crowd rapped along with every word, and when C-Note broke into "Hold it Down," Momma Moe jumped out of her chair on the side of the stage and danced right along with the rest of the fans.