I know that the concept of a local rapper is usually something that most people have a hard time buying into. Especially the concept of a Junction rapper. How can you have authentic “thug” content when you live in a place where people ride their horses through the Dairy Queen drive thru, right? I feel you, friends; I thought that exact same thing for years. Then I actually went to a local rap show and was completely blown away by what was happening in front of my face. Let me break it down for you. Story time:
You know that one girl at every concert? You know the one. She’s standing in the back looking like she is having absolutely no fun. And honestly…it makes you kinda mad. Why did she even come if she’s gonna sit here and do that? Is she judging my fun? Why doesn’t she just go home if she hates her life so much? Hi! That’s me. And I promise, I’m having fun. My feet just hurt, like a lot. And my friends are hungry. My phone is dying and I don’t like dancing, that’s all. But I promise you, I’m here for the music, not to poop on your party. But anyways, there I stand, being that girl. The show was taking a while to start and I had worked all day. I was standing there, fantasizing about all of the espresso drinks I would buy if it wasn’t 9 p.m. and every coffee shop in town wasn’t closed. And then, it happened. There were these three kids in the crowd who looked like they were probably my age and we had stood relatively close to them outside. I didn’t think much of them, I figured they were just looking for something to do on a Tuesday night, as was I. When they got on stage and opened their mouths, I was very impressed. They work as a group under the names Awal, Ambush, and Kid Havoc , and they exceed what you would anticipate not only from a group of young kids, but a group of relatively unknown local artists. Their beats are pretty refined, and when you combine that with meaningful content, a solid flow and the charisma of front man Joran “Awal” Wright, you’ve got a group that is definitely far above the typical opener for the opener at a local show. I’ll link them below.
To say the least, they got me out of my 9 o’clock “my back hurts and I need a McSpicy” bad attitude. In all honesty, the following acts weren’t as memorable. There was some local talent, and then there was a dude with a mohawk from Minnesota who’s name I didn’t catch. Both were what you would expect from an opening act. Some loved them, some don’t catch a word of heir set because they’re in the bathroom, you know how it goes. They come, they get you out of their seat, and then they go. But then the headliners changed the game. Antonio “Booda” Guzman, Arizona native and brother to Cryptic Wisdom, can get a crowd going. Mosh pits started, people were screaming, and I was actually dancing! Wild, right? Booda’s music has an incredible amount of heart in it. I Had never seen a rapper with such soul. He’s a perfect pairing with brother Cryptic Wisdom, who has an incredible amount of talent. Between his rock and roll vocal style and his story telling ability, I became a total fan. These guys aren’t your typical rappers, they tell the story of real life. I couldn’t believe my ears.
Long story short, even if you aren’t always sold on a show, be there. Experience it. Grand Junction has some venues that are hidden gems and house amazing, unexpected talents! On top of that, most local shows are very inexpensive. Check it out!