EVENT RECAP: Dave Chappelle and Erykah Badu Tear Down Radio City Music Hall
Whether it was an evening with your girlfriends, a date night with your significant other, or a night to hang out with co-workers, all those in attendance had one thing in common. We came to see a man that we haven’t seen on stage in years. That could still have us crying of laughter from over the top offensive jokes reminiscent of The Chappelle Show days.
Since announcing a 10 day run at Radio City Music Hall in New York City (June 27th was later added), the world has been hanging on to every review of his performance including me. Could Dave Chappelle jump back from being gone for 10 years? The answer is a resounding yes. From attending the penultimate night with performance guest Erykah Badu, Dave Chappelle commanded a standing ovation before uttering one word out of his mouth. Once we caught wind of his silhouette, the Music Hall was filled with cheers. To say I wasn’t the least bit excited to see this man would be an understatement. I genuinely didn’t know what to expect because it was my first time seeing him live. No boundaries were left untouched including himself. He addressed rumors about the $50 million dollars he walked away from 10 years ago, he joked about Asians crying over everything, later revealing his wife was Asian and his mother was half-white, while also telling us how he fought a woman that he originally mistook for a man in an LA nightclub.
What he called warming up is what I saw as him being in his element as if he never left. 60 minutes and his set was up. To have witnessed any one of his nights was to have been part of the Dave Chappelle experience. I bonded with the people next to me. I laughed with them, I shouted with them, I made side comments with them. He brought everyone together under one roof and it was well worth it.
Erykah Badu was the seamless addition to an already fulfilled night. My first time seeing Erykah in concert left me in awe craving more, wanting her to be my aunt, belting out lyrics from the top of my lungs as if I wrote them. If the quote goes “sing like no one’s listening,” then I would’ve won a Grammy award for “Next Lifetime” and “Bag Lady”.
If you’ve never seen Erykah live, you must, you must. A band that looked like an orchestra, Ms Badoula played no games in the 60 minute plus set of a treat that she gave us. Opening her set with Movement One of Three from “Out My Mind, Just in Time,” on New Amerkyah Part Two: Return of the Ankh, she reminded us that she was and still is the shit. Filling our souls with lyrics of love, empowerment, confidence, vulnerability, and all the shit in between, Erykah took us to church and my heart said amen.