Joey Bada$$ Live in London!!!
That’s Joey Bada$$ playing his first London show.
Last night, at The Alibi in Dalston, the 17-year-old rapper stood at the end of a sweaty room full of people who smelt strongly of complimentary fruity cider and performed some of his songs.
Before this however, a lot of people stood outside. With varying degrees of desperation, they attempted to gain entry to the venue.
“I’m on the list.”
“No you’re not, your name’s not down.”
Someone speculated as to the possibility of his drugs being seized as he entered the venue.
A nice lady with fluffy earrings and a massive-looking guestlist paced nervously and drank Red Bull.
We ended up going to a pub to regroup. It was almost silent inside.
The only noise was the monotonous sound of the answers to the weekly quiz being revealed.
“The thing on your nose, septum.”
“No, spelling doesn’t matter.”
Fortunately, after having to drink some fizzy lager at speed, we went back round the corner and got into The Alibi. We drank some of the cider.
A man shouted. Someone looked at him.
Then we saw Joey Bada$$.
He was crammed onto a stage that could only be described as a stage if the word ‘stage’ actually meant ‘shelf’.
It was exciting. It was hot. Seeing him up close was special.
Everyone took pictures. A girl with plaited hair danced with enthusiasm. Other people pretended to know what to do with their limbs when bass-heavy hip-hop thundered around them.
You could almost see the thought balloons above their heads: “I know just what to do at this bit, raise my arm, part my fingers slightly, nod heavily and thrust. Yep, I’m doing it.”
Other people extended their fists to ‘spud’ Joey and his two mates.
People were crammed behind the DJ booth too. One of them wore sunglasses. At one point, Joey said something about being “drunk as fuck”. Then he said he’d spilt his drink on the sound equipment.
Both microphones stopped working.
Joey swapped his with someone else’s. It didn’t work either.
They carried on for a while, doing their best to make themselves heard.
Then they stopped, said “Thanks” sincerely, spudded some more people and left.
We saw Joey outside on Kingsland Road by the Rio Cinema. He was literally swaggering. He’s arguably the coolest person to stand on that street in some time.
His van was nearby. It had a table in it.