Fifteen years ago, Blackalicious recorded "Alphabet Aerobics" and the duo, comprising Gift of Gab and Chief Xcel, cropped up among a crowded field headed by acts like Jurassic 5. They issued a few albums before its members embarked on solo projects and, since then, Gab has extended his reach in the genre by working with stalwarts like Latyrx and George Clinton on 2012's "The Next Logical Progression." But what makes this performer a reasonably unique act in today's hip-hop parade of stars—and this goes for a number of Bay Area MCs—is his ability to effortlessly ring his cerebral couplets with a bit of humor. (DJC)
Gift of Gab
Landon Wordswell with Tim Hoke, Northorn Lights, MoStafa and C-Legz
Sat., April 5
Dojo, 852 NW Brooks St.
The Harlem Gospel Choir is exactly what the name sounds like, a group of accomplished singers from New York's most "making it" neighborhood, that belt the soulful classics, "Oh, Happy Day," "Love Train," "Amazing Grace" and other spirited gospel works.
The cast's mind-blowing vocal registers and runs, amplified by a passionate fire, make for more than a show. The Harlem Gospel Choir fills the room with the fervor of deeply felt trials and tribulations and uplifting hope and faith. Performing its own sermon every Sunday during brunch at the B.B. King Blues Club and traveling the world gaining the title of America's premier gospel choir, HGC will bring a little slice of the churches of Harlem to the vaulted ceilings of the Tower Theatre. (BB)
The Harlem Gospel Choir
Sun., April 6
Tower Theatre, 835 NW Wall St.