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On The Real – Dj Ali Shaheed Muhammad

The Hotminute team were live and on the scene at ‘On The Real’ on Friday 21st January at Plan B, Brixton. This event featured special guest DJ Ali Shaheed Muhammad, the third member of the iconic Hip Hop group ‘A Tribe Called Quest’.

This monthly event is promoted by The Doctors Orders and hosted both in London and Brighton. The man behind the promotions is no other than DJ Spin Doctor, responsible for bringing some of Hip Hop’s finest artists to the UK such as Keith Murray, DJ Jazzy Jeff, The Alchemist and QuestLove.

On The Real represents real sounds, real beats and living breathing Hip Hop. It attracts an eclectic mix of pretentious free people, those who love Hip Hop in its purest form and simply want to have a good time.

I started to write this article while at the event, Enam was nodding her head in appreciation of the sounds and I did the two-step with my Blackberry in hand. If you saw a man doing the shuffle whilst holding a large SLR, that would have been our photographer Ernest...feeling the vibe!

It was 100 percent holistic Hip Hop, not that watered down commercial stuff you might hear in the regular clubs. Up first on stage was a warm-up performance from East London rapper ‘Skillit’ who performed an entertaining ensemble of tracks displaying witty lyrical swagger with his performances of ‘Skeen’ and ‘Ready To Light’.

Next was up and coming Hip Hop artist all the way from NYC ‘Homeboy Sandman’ who left me speechless after witnessing his gritty vocal display. He annihilated a Grime beat, almost taking the genre to another level in just one song. A true under dog on the Hip Hop scene, Homeboy Sandman vacated the stage leaving food for thought to MC’s on the Grime scene and is definitely an artist to watch out for in 2011.
homeboy sandman On The Real   Dj Ali Shaheed Muhammad

Host MC Pranksta, the ‘Trini Gladiator’ kept the vibe intact alongside DJ Spin Doctor and DJ 279 on the decks. It was 100 percent holistic Hip Hop, not that watered down commercial stuff you might hear in the regular clubs. Mobb Deep, Mos Def and Gangstar to name a few had bass lines that pounded and hooks that made your head nod.

DJ Ali Shaheed Muhammad hit the decks just after 12am to an audience that had swelled to capacity. The feel good vibe was still very much alive with your usual Hip Hop scrimmage and classic tracks receiving the hands up. We were taken down memory lane with some classic Tribe tracks and sultry Soul, whilst lending a learning ear to new flavours from NYC. This event did not go without celebrity endorsement with Rodney P in the venue as well as ‘A Different World’ actor Kadeem Hardison other wise known as Dwayne Wayne (that was taking it back).

If you love Hip Hop and the real gritty sounds of the underground, On the Real is definitely an event worth checking out. To those who thought the underground scene was lost, I am happy to inform you that it is very much alive and kicking!

Love Hip Hop and Break Beats? Keep up DJ Spin Doctor's events at;

Doctors Orders Online


Words: Lesley B

Photography: Ernest Simons

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