Photos By Jati Lindsay
Before MURS took stage at the Rock and Roll Hotel last Friday, he spent time talking to fans and trying his best to blend in with the eclectic and already anxious crowd that waited to see him perform. Besides being an incredible lyricist, a large part of his appeal can be attributed to his ability to create music that is easy to relate to and that caters to an average dude like me. Even though he hails from a city where gang activity is as common as the DC traffic during rush hour, his music is never saturated with tired, trite tales of street life and gang violence. Instead, he takes a contrasting approach, choosing not to speak from the voice of an aggressor but instead telling stories from the perspective of the common man dealing with both the struggles and conveniences of everyday urban life. It’s this commonality that makes MURS both rare and likable. Seriously, who can’t relate to songs about bitter breakups, alcohol and white women?!
Shortly after “kissing babies and shaking hands”, MURS took stage donned in a “Legalize LA” American Apparel t-shirt, his signature locks and began to tear down his set beginning with “H-U-S-T-L-E”. The crowd, a generous mix of male and female, hipsters and hip hop heads, rapped along in unison as MURS breezed through a couple newer songs as well as some of his earlier material.
Highlights included “Dark Skinned White Girls”, “Break Up [The OJ Song]”, “L.A.” as well as watching MURS try to jump around as much as possible while still nursing a groin injury. Even after a playful tongue lashing from MURS; frequent collaborator and the man responsible for making me a serious fan of MURS, 9th Wonder, made his way on stage. The two announced that they were beginning to head back into the studio to put together yet another collaboration. As well as this collab, MURS also announced that the third installment of his collab with Slug will be titled “A Tribute to Rosie Perez”.
Overall, DC was treated to a great performance from an veteran performer and seasoned lyricist. Next time MURS is in town, I suggest you check him out.