If you’ve been wanting a bit of nostalgia and classic Golden Era Hip-Hop, you definitely got it Thursday night at Patio Theater for the Chicago stop of Eric B. & Rakim’s current 30th Anniversary reunion, The Technique Tour.
The reunion tour of arguably the greatest Hip-Hop duo of all-time finding Eric B. entering the stage with a black jumpsuit and matching jacket, which had gold lettering of his name on the back, rocking a Yankees fitted cap, and of course the New York signature style classic wheat Timberland’s. Getting the crowd going before setting up behind the turntables and DJ setup.
Rakim would soon slowly follow walking up the side stage to the stage with his own black matching jumpsuit and his own Yankees fitted with a black and gold leather jacket and gold chains. The leather jacket having his name embroidered in gold in the back as well.
Rakim would quickly go into quite appropriately the group’s hit single, Don’t Sweat the Technique, which the tour is partially named after. He would then go into his own solo classic, Guess Who’s Back, before asking the crowd if they love that real golden era Hip-Hop. To which there was a resounding, “Yes!” So he said, “Alright well? Let’s get into it then”, before going back to more Eric B. & Rakim material with Paid In Full’s, I Know You Got Soul and My Melody.
Controlling the mic and crowd so effortlessly throughout the night, Rakim seemed right at home being partnered with his longtime DJ/Producer partner. It was like they were never separated and still 20 years after the last time they toured together, looked like they didn’t miss a beat. The duo went through many of their classics such as Move the Crowd, As the Rhyme Goes On, Microphone Fiend, I Ain’t No Joke, Eric B. Is President, The R, and In the Ghetto.
Rakim even playfully putting the mic up to his arm, like he was injecting it like a fiend, after performing Microphone Fiend. The duo would close out the very memorable night with Follow the Leader, Juice (Know the Ledge) and of course not only their biggest hit still till this day over 30 years later, but one of the greatest records ever recorded, Paid in Full.
The God MC showing that even at 50 years old, he still knows how to move and control the crowd, and why he’s arguably among the greatest emcees of all-time. Proving wrong the many stereotypes that an emcee can’t perform into their older ages like Rock stars are allowed to without ridicule.
This performance is yet another great one, showing how Rakim always puts on such a top-notch and memorable show. Especially being back in tow with his longtime friend and partner, Eric B., elevating Rakim’s performance that much higher. Embracing each other with a dap and hug, they show how much their love and respect for one another has grown fonder over the years.
That love being shown to their fans as well. As they exited the stage, still taking photos with fans, signing autographs and shaking hands with those still left in the crowd. Reminding us till the very end, that “M.C. means, move the crowd.”