TC Hip-Hop Awards plagued with Taser-fueled violence
What a difference 48 hours can make in the life of the Twin Cities hip-hop community. Sunday night welcomed a positive showcase of local talent headlined by I Self Devine, but Friday night's sixth annual TC Hip-Hop Awards proved to follow a now-familiar theme of violence during its event at First Avenue's Mainroom. This, of course, stirred commenters on a blog regarding the 2010 melee, and raises serious questions about how sustainable an event can be with these types of distractions.
Footage of the fisticuffs, which includes audible Taser fire, exists here:
The 2011 running of the event included a "minor scuffle," according to our reviewer Jack Spencer, but generally the focus stayed on the vibrant local scene that needs no introduction anymore. Regarding last year's event, Spencer remarked, "I do think the separation in the local rap scene is unfortunate and it's great just seeing all the people who support homemade hip-hop music in the same room. But the fractured nature of the scene seems like it made it hard for people to get into the event as a whole." And arguably a fractured scene is the only one that would allow for this type of grandstanding by some selfish audience members in the future.
After the fight was cleared from the dancefloor, Amplified Life's Larry Lucio Jr. says that they kept the night moving. "We recapped the positive things that had happened the prior several hours that had passed without incident, and moved on," he says. "We must have kept performing and kept artists onstage giving out awards for what felt like another hour." Then, he saw First Avenue staff walk past him backstage, and told TC Hip-Hop Awards founder David "DEPth" Powell that the police wanted to end the show early. The fighting had reportedly continued outside the club after the violent patrons were ejected, and that's what raised the attention of law enforcement. Things ended peacefully, but Lucio was disappointed with the amount of disrespect the crowd showed toward the venue. Hear his entire account here:
According to the Current, all TC Hip Hop Award winners from the 2012 event will be recapped this evening on KMOJ's Tite at Nite between 7 and 10 p.m., and this includes the folks who didn't get the opportunity to receive their awards on Friday.
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