The close quarters of Irving Plaza was packed Tuesday night (Sept. 18) as Jay Rock and his special guest, TDE’s latest acquisition, Reason, hit New York City for a stop on The Big Redemption Tour. Despite being on East Coast grounds, both Rock and Reason brought California vibes to one of New York’s most venerated venues.
Reason opened the show with a strong set, impressing the New York crowd with his thought-provoking rhymes. The newest signee to Top Dawg Entertainment warmed the audience up with a moving performance of “The Soul” before going into his standout verse on “Seasons” off Black Panther: The Album. After speaking to the crowd about his love for music, Reason proceeded to play new material, telling the crowd, “If my n—a Top would press the button, I got a new project coming ou” — looking in the direction of the label CEO, who sat in VIP. With the crowd voicing their approval of the new material, Reason closed his set with a stirring performance of “Better Dayz” and “Summer Up.”
Following a brief intermission that included TDE chants filling every corner of the venue, Jay Rock made his appearance in front of a boisterous crowd. Wasting no time, Rock performed “Knock It Off” and “The Bloodiest,” with the crowd rapping along to the choruses of both songs. Using the “For What It’s Worth” instrumental as an interlude, the Redemption rapper admit he wasn’t supposed to rap or speak over the interlude but couldn’t help himself, thanks to the fans’ energetic vibes. “This shit caught me by surprise, and I appreciate that. Y’all came out to party with me so it’s time for me to party with y’all,” Rock said before going in to his 2014 collab with YG and Schoolboy Q “I Just Wanna Party.”
The show continued with a mix of electrifying performances of Eastside Johnny’s old and new material, including “ES Tales,” “Tap Out,” “Vice City,” and “Hood Gone Love It.” Rock also took a moment to tell the crowd how euphoric it was being on that stage and seeing everyone rap along to his words. “I appreciate y’all for pulling up like this. This shit is amazing man. This is my first ever sold-out show, I love y’all man” Rock told the crowd, before starting up a fiery performance of “Troopers.”
The night hit peak levels when Jay Rock treated the audience to two surprise guests. Kendrick Lamar caused the crowd to roar in unison as he made his appearance through a FaceTime call on Jay Rock’s phone. “Where you at,” Rock asked K-Dot in front of the energetic crowd. “I’m at the headquarters,” Kendrick revealed with a sly grin on his face, which prompted the crowd the scream passionately. “You know what that means when he at the headquarters right,” Jay Rock asked, before ending the call. Then, shorty after hanging up, A$AP Ferg joined Rock on stage for a thrilling performance of the Hood Pope’s 2017 hit “Plain Jane.” “Jay Rock is a legend. One of the first artists to get signed by TDE and made all of this shit happen. I love you big bro,” Ferg said, before making his exit.
The night came to an end as Jay Rock spoke to the crowd once more about never giving up on their aspirations. “Don’t let nobody try to stop y’all from doing what y’all trying to do man. Whatever you’re trying to do, wherever you’re trying to go in life, whatever you got your mindset on, stay there. Never give up, because at the end of it all we all trying to win,” Rock said before launching into his hit single “Win.” The energy inside Irving Plaza galvanized Rock to give an encore performance of “Win” — with fans showing their approval, rapping along even louder during the encore.
— CA$HMERE THOUGHT$ (@ij_andretti) September 19, 2018