The Fox draws Sean Kingston and Flo Rida to Salinas.
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Salinas is gradually becoming the Monterey County Mecca for live hip-hop and rap acts. On Wednesday night, one of the biggest names in the game, the Miami-based Sean Kingston, hits Fox Theater.
The 19-year-old Kisean Jamal Anderson’s cheeks ache to be pinched. But don’t let his baby face fool you – Kingston’s poetic prowess has yielded collaborations with Wyclef Jean, Good Charlotte and Lil Wayne. He’s also sold more than 6 million digital singles and more than 1 million albums.
The hugely popular “Beautiful Girls,” from Kingston’s debut album, lays down a sample of Ben E. King’s “Stand By Me” over some emotional lyrics: “Damn all these beautiful girls, they only want to do you dirt./ They’ll have you suicidal, suicidal, when they say it’s over.”
Kingston’s recently released second album, Tomorrow, is a pop, reggae, R&B milkshake topped with rainbow-colored reggaeton sprinkles. Genre crossover is one of the most important elements to his music. “I’m a guy who’s open to all kinds of music. So I don’t just want to do urban,” Kingston told Blues & Soul Online. “Like if you see what’s on Sean Kingston’s iPod, there’s pop, rock, hip-hop, country, because to me, music has no boundaries and no limitations.”
Also performing is special guest Flo Rida, who featured Kingston on “Roll” in his debut album, Mail on Sunday. Flo (Tremar Dillard) pretty much came out of nowhere and took the rap world by storm two years ago when “Roll” went number one. He’s had six top 20-singles since.
This summer, Flo’s popularity continued to skyrocket after the song “Right Round” was featured in a big box office draw, The Hangover. “Right Round,” from the album R.O.O.T.S. (Route of Overcoming the Struggle) topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart for six weeks and the overall album debuted at number eight on the Billboard 200.
Like Kingston, Flo’s musical influences span many genres. He’s worked with everyone from Nelly Furtado to will.i.am, and he’s sampled the work of ’80s British New Wave band, Dead or Alive.
“Growing up in my household I had seven sisters running around and I definitely used to listen to all types of music,” Flo told hiphop.com. “[For] my second album I wanted to show people I’m well-rounded and take it to the next level.”
The New Boyz, a hipster, pop-rap duo from Hesperia, Calif., completes the lineup. “You’re a Jerk,” from their album Skinny Jeans and a Mic, became the summer song of 2009. The goofy lyrics and silky delivery recall early Slick Rick. These guys also invented a dance to accompany the song called “The Jerk.” With the dance, New Boyz have created a widespread teenage fad, evident from all the YouTube videos circulating of kids recreating the dance.
SEAN KINGSTON, FLO RIDA, THE NEW BOYZ play at 7pm Wednesday, Oct. 14, at Fox Theater, 241 South Main St., Salinas. $40. (888) 825-5484.