Blues and Soul Music Magazine

Issue 1093

Welcome to B&S...

BRINGING YOU THE STORIES BEHIND MUSIC + ESSENTIAL NEWS, REVIEWS AND INTERVIEWS...

Live

Common: O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire, London 10/9/19

Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com
Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com Common: Shepherd's Bush Empire 10/9/19 @bluesandsoul.com

Few rappers have had the long-term impact that Lonnie Corant Jaman Shuka Rashid Lynn has. Originally known as Common Sense, he's a former housemate and collaborator of J Dilla and key member of the Soulquarians movement in the early 2000s.

His records "Resurrection", "Like Chocolate For Water" and "One Day It'll All Make Sense" are a holy trinity of conscious hip hop, and his output remains consistently strong to this day.

Hollywood may have come calling, but it doesn't look likely Common will ever turn his back on hip-hop.

Latest long player "Let Love" sees the 47-year-old in a reflective mood, pondering the state of the world and parenthood in a manner fitting one of the genre's elder statesmen.

Shepherd's Bush Empire was packed as the artist took the audience through his diverse career. "The Corner" and "The Food" got proceedings off to a strong start, while "I Used To Love HER" still sounds like a masterstroke two decades after its release.

A natural performer, Common begins the set bounding around the stage, before slowing things down and reciting rhymes while sitting on the arm of a chair. The crowd was transfixed throughout.

"Love Of My Life", "Testify" and "The Light" showcased his laid back, confident flow and demonstrated that good material stands the test of time.

Unsurprisingly he was summoned back to the stage after bringing his set to a close, firing through a six-track encore which included "Thelonious" and "Resurrection".

The smile on his face and sweat on his brow belied a man who's not done yet, and whose work remains relevant as hip-hop continues to evolve. It was a masterclass from one of the greats.

PHOTOS: DAVE BURKE
Words Dave Burke

From Jazz Funk & Fusion To Acid Jazz

Join the B&S Mailing List

Blues and Soul on Twitter