What do you say about a performer like Sage Francis? He plays with words? He slays them? He engages his audience using a medium that rarely witnesses such a truly spectacular mastery of the vernacular? His repertoire of rhetoric is frenetic, authentic, and polemic while being transcendent, resplendent, and a true harbinger of the independent? You could say all of those things, of course, but he'd do it better. Sage Francis is a hip-hop poet laureate, and when you listen and watch, it is easy to forget what you know about the genre because he envelopes his audience with genuine — maybe genius — skill and love for language. We're lucky to get him in such an intimate venue on this tour in support of his new record, Copper Gone, which is completely amazing, by the way. The Rhode Island native, who once recorded for punk rock imprint Epitaph Records, runs his own label and writes music and poetry while supporting artists he loves and respects. He's a visionary renaissance man with an industrial size vocabulary, and for one hot night in Phoenix, he is entirely ours to enjoy.
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