TIDAL washes over Brooklyn

David Goodson | 10/20/2016, 11:57 a.m.

Somewhere along the way something that we so proudly hailed had been compromised. The “Voice,” as hip-hop has been metaphorically described, ain’t what it used to be. Or so it’s been said. It still has the volume in sound amplitude and a large mass of people. It still has influence. It still can touch souls. So what’s changed? It’s the “Word.” Too few, both creatively and as consumers, have respect for it. For the most part, at least what’s popular, are incomprehensible phrasings and literal sound effects. Those are the sounds emanating from the “Voice.” Eventually the trend will subside, right? A few recent glowing indicators point in the direction of the affirmative. That performance by Big K.R.I.T at the BET Hip-Hop Awards removed any doubts about his talents as a master of ceremonies on the personal level, but as an overall piece, it upped the ante for consciousness. And it was acapella. All word!

Saturday, Oct. 15, at the Barclays Center we got more at the TIDAL X: 1015 benefit concert. Global music and entertainment platform TIDAL has at its disposal some of the crème de la crème artists in music. Acts such as Alicia Keys, Beyoncé, Nicki Minaj, Emeli Sandé and Prince Royce were some of the featured performers, and although their sets were abbreviated, they didn’t skimp on energy. The patrons who filled the arena to capacity got their value in those sets alone and another layer of gratification was added in knowing that the proceeds of the night were going to charity, with Robin Hood being the primary beneficiary.

“Supporting the community and having positive impact is a TIDAL tenet and mission,” said Dania Diaz, VP of philanthropy, Roc Nation. “We are honored to partner with Robin Hood for TIDAL X: 1015 around this year’s current theme, education. We know that education can advance communities and can be the most powerful tool for change. Robin Hood has helped transform communities in positive ways by supporting education programs that generate meaningful results.”

“All of us at Robin Hood are thrilled to partner with our friends at TIDAL to create one of the greatest concerts of all time,” said David Saltzman, executive director of Robin Hood. “The show will be even better because it will raise money for the most effective poverty-fighting tool there is: education. In the past, we have been lucky to work with TIDAL co-owners Alicia Keys, Beyoncé, Chris Martin, Madonna, Rihanna, JAY Z and Usher to raise hundreds of millions of dollars to fight poverty in New York City. There are no better partners.”

With education as the focus of the night, it was only right that these sentiments were brought to the forefront. Those moments provide the highlights of the night. TIP, aka T.I., is known for being a no-nonsense performer and has enough hits in his repertoire to someday headline a TIDAL event on his own. We also know that he has a top 10 pen in the ranks of rap music writers. Yet his wizardry on his set opener, “Warzone,” for the new EP “Us or Else,” revealed he has another level he can reach.