Saturday Night: Kendrick Lamar at Warehouse Live

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Photos by Marco Torres
Kendrick Lamar
Warehouse Live
December 29, 2012

Through maturation, adults come to accept that their survival is dependent on mundane workaday rituals of 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; punch in-punch out; all work-no play. Kids, however, and as it pertains to this story, teenagers, still indulge in the luxury of school, a "work day" interrupted by lunch, recess and a myriad of other enrichment programs. These school days are further broken apart by holidays and day-long, week-long and month-long breaks: Christmas break, spring break, summer break and, at some schools and universities, fall break.

What an unexpected surprise, then, greeted some of these privileged youngsters -- still on break for at least another week -- crammed into Warehouse Live for the first of two Kendrick Lamar shows in Houston Saturday evening, the second of which was held at House of Blues around midnight. Instead of a typical show of exhibitionism, the lyrically introspective rapper required of his attendees the passing of a series of oratorical examinations. The topic?

"I want to know who's been rockin' with me since day one?" asked Lamar, intent on testing fans' knowledge of his entire musical catalog.

Hands shot into the air. School was back in session.

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"First test," he said, choosing "Hol Up," an elevator-music-sampling track from his Section 80 mixtape, to begin.

Concert attendees enthusiastically answered by flailing their arms about and reciting the song's lyrics perfectly. Lamar seemed satisfied, pleased even, by the crowd's knowledge of his underground musical efforts, and wasted no time in starting the next exam.

"Second test."

Lamar picked "P&P," a deliciously naughty track from his Kendrick Lamar EP. This test was one that the crowd, particularly the gentlemen, passed with flying colors.

"I'm going through something in life/ But pussy and Patron will make you feel all right." The song began as a performance, but ended as an all-around male chant, ending with a you-should've-been-there freestyle that has more than likely been uploaded to someone's YouTube page by now.

Behind "P&P" came a break in testing and a performance of Lamar's sendoff verse from his feature on A$AP Rocky's hit song, "Fuckin' Problem." In hindsight, it's perfect that the rapper would juxtapose these two songs, because the former plays like a precursor to the latter; Lamar offers up in his lyrics two highly addictive substances -- pussy and Patron -- one of which eventually becomes... well, you know the rest.

Location Info


Warehouse Live

813 St. Emanuel, Houston, TX

Category: Music

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