A hip hop pot o’gold: new Kendrick Lamar and Earl Sweatshirt, plus live appearances from Lil’ Wayne and Nas

Mr. Illmatic is coming to Tampa, but you’ll have to settle for a club date for now.


Today is a cynic’s nightmare. Everyone is wearing green, pretending to be Irish, and they’ll all be puking on their shoes by midnight. Still, if there’s a little beat and hip-hop lover buried in all that bitterness, then consider these last few days to be your pot o' gold.

Kendrick Lamar released his long-anticipated sophomore LP, To Pimp A Butterfly, a whole week early to iTunes and Spotify users, and while everyone still singing along to the Drake mixtape is scratching their heads to the 27-year-old emcee’s utilization of screwy future-sounding jazz & soul samples and strange lyrical cadences, the rest of the forward-thinking rap lovers of the world are lauding the 80-minute effort as the next great rap LP and one that won’t be completely understood until years down the road.

Not to be outdone, Odd Future compatriot Earl Sweatshirt released his own new album, I Don’t Like Shit, I Don’t Go Outside (now there’s an album title for you cynical a**hats) for pre-order on iTunes (via Billboard.com). Much like Lamar’s early release, the artist doesn’t seem pleased about the premature exposure of the album, but at least we all get to reap the benefits. Earl is coming to Orpheum in Ybor City (1915 E. 7th Ave.) on April 30. Tickets are $30, and support will be provided by Vince Staples and Remy Banks.

Speaking of live performances... if you prefer to enjoy your big name hip-hop in person, then the live circuit is being good to you, too. Lil’ Wayne is coming to Club Skye this Thursday for what promises to be an actual performance, and just last night the same club announced that Mr. Illmatic himself, aka Nasir Jones, aka Nas, would be appearing on April 23 (no confirmation on an actual performance yet as we all know club dates can be a little wishy-washy on the hip-hop front).

There are still tickets available for Weezy’s appearance though, and they’ll run you $50-$75 (the “All Access exclusive" up close & personal package is sold out, but could always hope to see him at this weekend’s Tampa Pro, too…). There is no real info on Nas’ appearance, but keep your eyes peeled to WeAreVybeNation.com for any updates.

In the meantime, here’s St. Patty’s day apropos album art from Lil’ Flip’s 2000 album The Leprechaun.


About The Author

Ray Roa

Read his 2016 intro letter and disclosures from 2022 and 2021. Ray Roa started freelancing for Creative Loafing Tampa in January 2011 and was hired as music editor in August 2016. He became Editor-In-Chief in August 2019. Past work can be seen at Suburban Apologist, Tampa Bay Times, Consequence of Sound and The...
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