The scene is set. New York City’s Hiro Ballroom at the cushy Maritime Hotel. It’s the Myspace Music, Socialight and Digiwaxx backed release party for Ghostface Killah’s Ghostdini: Wizard of Poetry and the lines are wrapped around the block.
After an extended set from DJ dB, hostess Jasmine Solano attempted to engage the A.D.D. crowd before bringing on opening act Beatnick and K-Salaam. Their sonic serenade of otherworldly instrumentals slashed with raw from-the-gutter turntabalism, was quickly followed by Hot 97 radio personalities Cipha Sounds and Peter Rosenberg warming up the crowd with an intro that preceded the actual performance by about an hour. But the virtue of patience paid off when Ghostdini took to the stage. Launching into “Criminology” the silver and crimson-clad Wally Champ set-off round after round of poetic pugilism serving “fish” from his catalogue of classics.
Tony Starks also blasted Wu-bangers such as “4th Chamber” off of GZA’s, Liquid Swords, Ice Cream” off of Only Built 4 Cuban Linx when the performance morphed into “Ghostface & Friends” with a surprise appearance from U-God performing his verse from “Mystery of Chessboxing.” Back to back to back surprises followed as Jadakiss joined Ghostdini for a rendition of “Run,” followed by Redman and “Tonight’s Da Night.” Super-surprise when Large Professor took us on a throw-back throw down with “Looking at the Front Door.” And to top it all of Kid Cudi came on stage and traded verses of Ghostface’s “Strawberry.”
A highlight of the night was when Ghostface explained that he lost royalties on his albums, getting zero publishing for his classics due to samples. He asked for appreciation for him giving up the money in order to deliver classic albums for his fans. But just when he was about to launch into cuts from Ghostdini; Wizard of Poetry, a fight broke out… ONSTAGE!!! A disruptive individual within the entourage brought the show to a halt while they sorted out what U-God described as ‘family matters.’ The show soon resumed with Raheem DeVaughn joining Ghost for “Do Over” and closing the show with “Back Like That.” All in all, it was a great night of Ghostface satisfying his “Supreme Clientele.” And as the fans journeyed home, they were treated to the sight of that disruptive individual regaining consciousness as he was being loaded into an ambulance.
Now that’s Hip-Hop!!!