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This is hardcore: Geto Boys set to perform in downtown Buffalo

The Geto Boys are back.

blog by Ben Kirst  • 

When you think of Southern hip-hop today, the artists that immediately spring to mind—Lil Wayne, 2Chainz, Outkast, Ludakris, Big K.R.I.T., and so on—definitely have a certain edge, a kind of sharpness that allows their music to cross over into the mainstream while maintaining a level of authenticity.

Houston’s Geto Boys were never mainstream. Since their move into the public consciousness in the early 1990s, the Geto Boys have always been rough. And tonight, they’re going to be in the Queen City—the Geto Boys are slated for a 7 p.m. show at Town Ballroom (681 Main St., Buffalo).

Advance tickets are $25 and are available online.

Bushwick Bill, Willie D and Scarface aren’t going to be found in a slickly packaged marketing campaign. They’re not getting invitations to coo at starlets on the red carpet at major media events.

Their two best-selling albums—1993’s Til Death Do Us Part and 1996’s The Resurrection—both hit the top of the Billboard R&B charts and peaked at 11 and six, respectively, in the Billboard 200, but it would be tough to call the Geto Boys crossover artists.

The group is responsible for some of the most influential music in hip-hop—singles like ‘Mind Playing Tricks On Me,’ ‘Six Feet Deep’ and ‘The World is a Ghetto’—but they never went the route of peers like Ice Cube or Dr. Dre, hardcore artists who, over time, sanitized their past.


The trio performed in Minneapolis on Sunday, and while the show was a little disjointed and predictably misogynistic (and started two hours late when Bill disappeared on a White Castle run—seriously), there were also moments of brilliance, according to Star-Tribune reviewer Chris Riemenschneider:

“When they were playing it straight, the Boys were straight-up electrifying, enough to make the hassle of the show well worth it. All three MCs have maintained their delivery power, with Scarface especially coming off strong in ‘Geto Boys and Girls,’ while Bill’s performance of ‘Size Ain’t Sh**’ was downright unforgettable.

They were really hitting their stride when—40 minutes in—they wheeled out ‘Damn It Feels Good to Be a Gangsta’ followed by ‘My Mind’s Playing Tricks on Me,’ clearly the 1-2 finish. Their set wasn’t even half as long as the delay beforehand. Worse, they blunted the full impact of ‘Feels Good…’ by asking the crowd to pose for their Instagram feeds at song’s end. How gangsta is that?! It did, however, serve as a reminder to keep an eye out for a White Castle photo on Bill’s account.

Hey, at least they all made the show—a reunion concert in Houston in early June was dampened when Bill was busted for smoking pot and couldn’t perform (a make-up concert has been scheduled for Independence Day, ironically enough). Like the song says, though, the Geto Boys can’t be stopped—not even by a bullet to the face, which Bill famously suffered in 1991.

You can keep up with the group on Facebook.

TAGGED: bushwick bill, downtown buffalo, geto boys, hip-hop, live performances, town ballroom

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