The Final Weekly Blunt Club in Photos
The members of The Blunt Club onstage at Yucca Tap in Tempe on Thursday.
Photos by Benjamin Leatherman
"Whoop! Whoop! That's the sound of the police!"
KRS-One had some major vocal backup on Thursday night at the Yucca Tap Room. As the bombastic boom-bap of the rap legend's 1993 single, "Sound of the Police," blares through the sound system of the Tempe rock bar, a horde of close to a hundred voices scream-sing the chorus in unison with hands in the air.
Mass sing-alongs to rap classics are a common occurance at The Blunt Club, but on Thursday night it seemed a bit louder and forceful than usual. It's not surprising, considering the crowd at the hip-hop night was significantly larger than normal and that it would be their last chance to do so at a Blunt Club, at least for the next couple weeks.
The crowd at the final weekly Blunt Club.
Clowning in the crowd.
As we previously reported, the 12-year-old event -- a weekly mingling of all four elements of hip-hop: rappers, turntablists, artists, and b-boys -- is moving to a semi-regular and almost quasi-monthly status and heading for different venues around town. Last night's session was its last at the Yucca Tap, and arguably one of its loudest.
While it was probably nowhere near as grandly chaotic and completely unhinged as the night that Public Enemy visited The Blunt Club eight years ago when it went down over at the now-closed Hollywood Alley in Mesa (or so we hear), there was definitely an enormous turnout and packed house on Thursday evening. And that includes both who was behind the turntables as those that were in front of 'em.
DJ M2 in the mix.
Fact135 lays it down.
Resident DJs past and present, as well as frequent Blunt Club cohorts, came out to close it out at the Yucca, including DJ Organic, Tricky T, Jaba One, Fact135, and local Red Bull Thr3eStyle champ (and Power 98.3 mixmaster) M2. The night's original emcee Emerg McVay was also in the house along current host Mouse Powell and local rapper Very G.
The records roll.
DJ M2 (left) and Jaba One.
A total of six record decks were setup onstage as the various DJs traded off on the ones and twos all evening. It started with a ton of energy and stayed that way throughout the night as endless cuts were dispensed, many rhymes were spat, and nonstop dancing took place in the audience for those who could find enough room to move.
It all built to a fever pitch as the clock rolled closer to 2 a.m., especially as the DJs and emcees kept announcing the time remaining until the dreaded hour, but went on for about 30 minutes past last call (sans alcohol, of course) after Yucca Tap owner Rodney Hu gave his blessing.
Pickster One (far right) talks to the crowd alongside (from left) DJ Organic, Tricky T, and Quincy Ross.
But even as The Blunt Club members and audience were raising at toast to the night and the bar that's been it host since 2009, they were also looking forward to what's ahead. Throughout the evening, co-promoters Pickster One and Adam "Dumperfoo" Dumper revealed that the event would be heading for the Crescent Ballroom on Friday, January 9, for the first edition of its new format.
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