September 30, 2013 Naughty By Nature Rock Freestyle Explosion At Pennysaver Amphitheater Selden, NY 9-21-13
Freestyle Explosion is a music festival which celebrates the best dance, Latin freestyle, and hip hop music from it’s golden age. On an abnormally hot and humid September evening on Saturday 21st Freestyle Explosion Back To School Edition came to Pennysaver Amphitheater At Bald Hill in Farmingville, NY. A massive crowd of people of all ages filled the theater to watch Naughty By Nature, TKA, Tiffany, George Lamond, The Cover Girls, and Sweet Sensation team up for an evening of classic dance and hip hop music.
TKA achieved success in the 1980’s into the early 1990’s with a list of top 100 US pop and dance chart hits. A reunited trio of Tony, Angel, and Kayel (AKA K7) have been playing live shows together again for the past 3 years and lighting up clubs in the process. The trio sported some hip dance moves to go along with their energetic vocal performance of hits songs like “One Way Love”, “You Are The One”, “Louder Than Love”, among others.
The trio played an excellent set of their hit songs as well as mixing in some of K7’s solo hits from the Swing Batta Swing (1993) certified gold album. Each member engaged the audience and reached out to those bidding their attention beyond the barricades. The height of the excitement was when TKA broke out a fan favorite “Maria”. Whoever said freestyle music is no longer relatively obviously were not at this performance to see the large crowd and massive enthusiasm of the fans.
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Tiffany was an American teen icon during the 1980’s rising to popularity by the age of 16. In a time when the mall was a cool place to hang out, Tiffany played “The Beautiful You: Celebrating The Good Life Shopping Mall Tour ’87”. The tour resulted in the multi-platinum album Tiffany (1987). Now a grown woman, Tiffany continues to perform and record original material with her most recent album being Rose Tattoo (2011).
She hit the stage opening things up with her popular cover of The Beatles classic “I Saw Her Standing There”. Moving about the stage singing and dancing she mixed in some of her more recent material. Her energetic performance ended on a high note with her massively popular rendition of the Tommy James and the Shondells classic “I Think We’re Alone Now”.
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After a few hours of dance and pop excitement the crowd was ready for some classic old school hip hop. Naughty By Nature garnish one of the biggest names from the late 80’s and 90’s era of hip hop. With a series of multi-platinum albums, Naughty By Nature (1991) and 19 Naughty III (1993), the group achieved their most celebrated success with Grammy winning album Poverty Paradise (1996). Staying true to their artistic vision Naughty By Nature continue to write and record real hip hop music into the new millennium.
The original super group of Treach, Vin Rock, and DJ Kay Gee took the stage to a roaring ovation from the crowd. The trio was sure to let the crowd know that there would be no “new” hip hop performed on the stage and it would be strictly old school classics. With a verbal assault unmatched by man, Trench and Vin Rock exploded through the speakers. With their performance of “O.P.P.” the crowd chanted along while Treach tossed O.P.P. stickers to them. Mixing things up the guys threw in some classic hip hop tracks like “Hypnotized” by Notorious B.I.G., “La Di Da Di” by Slick Rick, and “How I Could Just Kill A Man” by Cypress Hill. Treach paid tribute to the legacy of Tupac symbolically pouring some liquor down the tattoo of him on his wrist.
When they broke out their hit “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright” you were reminded of how great hip hop once was and what it stood for. Keeping things flowing nicely, Treach and Vin busted rhymes at will with each tracks. Working up a sweat Treach shed layers of clothing as the show went on until he was bare chested. There is no doubt this dude gets his workouts in, is in prime shape, and looking exactly as he did 2 decades ago.
Balancing out the set where hip hop favorites were hits like “Feel Me Flow” and “Craziest”. There is no doubt the authentic sound which is Naughty By Nature is not complete without DJ Kay Gee behind the turntables which reunited with the group in 2008. Maintaining their energy throughout their performance, Naughty By Nature had the audience’s attention throughout. They closed the evening out with a bang rocking possibly their most recognized track “Hip Hop Hooray”. To add to the stage performance dancers, friends, and family came out on stage for the closing track to sing and dance along.
As the evening came to a close the audience exited the amphitheater feeling positive, happy, and satisfied. Music fans should be grateful authentic old school hip hop artists like Naughty By Nature are still around to light up stages and bust out killer tunes.