NYC Electro

Rock the Bells – Show wrap-up (tons of Videos and Pics)

This past Saturday, as you already know from the post before, the 7th annual "Rock The Bells" concert happened. First things first, it was off the hook! The artists were called to do, from cover to cover, one of their classic albums. No one completelly stuck to the format, and some threw it out the window, but overall it was a very special event. These artists never really do their album hits on stage, just the most popular songs. It was quite a treat and all the hip-hop stars were there (either making a cameo on stage or just watching). had VIP passes, so click through for more pics, videos, and complete coverage of the event.

Rock The Bells VIP Pass

I have tons of videos below, some better quality than the rest, and just added, a montage video posted at the end of this article. But let me start from the top and talk about the experience. Once you finally get past security (there were multiple check points, one before the boat and another more thorough one at the island) the entrance opened up to a huge field. There were plenty of tents to catch some shade under, 2 stages, tons of venders, and abagillion Port-o-potties. But since we had VIP tickets, it was a bit different, but Ill get into that later.

The first thing you see when you come in is the second stage. It was cool, however its going to be covered on this post, but was interesting. There was a "Freestyle Session" tent, aka breakdancing battle, near the second stage. It was tough to see the battle, but the b-boys in the competition were extremely good. Check out the video:

Freestyle Session - Breakdancing Battle @ Rock The Bells 2010, NYC

Now let me just say, going VIP is the only way to go to one of these shows. You get to skip all the lines, and have your own designated area that is very close to the stage so you can see all the action and take a break at the same time. There was a big tent to cool off in with big soft couches (and AC). About 4 VIP DJs inside the tent, an artist meet and greet table (ill get into that in a second) and also 3 bars, our own private food vendors and bathrooms. My day was tiring but comfy.

So, the artist meet and greet table was basically a joke. The artists barely came out, and even if they showed up, the line was too long to wait, you would miss entire sets waiting to see the next artist. Rakim, from what I heard, never even came out and if he did, he was mad late. Slick Rick and KRS-One came out to talk to the people. After KRS, I think the table was done, i could be wrong though cause i was watching the concert. The artists were supposed to come out after their sets. When KRS came out, he was mad cool though. He knew people had been waiting in line for a long time, some over 1.5-2hrs, to see Rakim who did not show. So he was like, F-this, jumped up on the table, then down to the crowd to talk to everyone and sign autographs. You can see that in the pics below, and here is a video of KRS performing:

KRS ONE and Black Moon "Who Got The Props" - Rock The Bells 2010 NYC

The meet and greet was a disappointment, but the show was off the hook from every performer. Every artist killed it. Most artists did not all stick to the "play your classic album" format, but for the most part they tried. I, however, do not think that Lauryn Hill got the memo. Her second hald was more Fugees, so it was close and the best part of her set. Nearing the end of her set, she brought out some of the people that were watching from the side stage V-VIP seats, namely Mary J Blidge, Beyonce, Alecia Keys, Swiss Beats,Chris Rock, John Legend, Jerry Wonder and Jay-Z to name a few. That was exciting to see the biggest names in Hip-hop were at the show and enjoying it just like the rest of us in the crowd. Here is a video of that:

Lauryn Hill (The Fugees) Ooh La La La - Rock The Bells NYC

My personal highlight was A Tribe Called Quest. They did about 4 or 5 songs off of Midnight Marauders when they stopped. Q-tip said that they asked them to do one classic album, but that was kinda hard cause they have three classics, so they decided to do stuff off of the other albums too. They brought out Busta Rhymes, Jerobi, and a few others. They did all the best hits! It was incredible. Here are a couple videos:

A Tribe Called Quest (Opening) - Rock the Bells 2010 NYC

A Tribe Called Quest - Bonita Applebum + Electric Relaxation - Rock The Bells 2010 NYC

After Tribe was Wu-Tang Clan performing 36 Chambers. They started strong and eventually went into some other songs. But man they killed it. Method Man and RZA definitely had the best stage, and I would say its hard to stick out when the entire Wu-Tang Clan is up on the stage. RZA is the man! Here are a couple videos, one is before the show at the press conference and the second is them performing.

RZA and GZA on Doing 36 Chambers, Interview - Rock the Bells 2010 NYC

Wu-Tang Clan - Cream - Rock the Bells 2010 NYC

The only one that was left at the end of the night was the Big Snoop Dogg. He killed it too! I am not 100% sure on the song order, but he did EVERY song on Doggystyle. It was amazing. He even did new versions of the sketches with videos. Once the video was over on the big screen, Snopp and the Dogg Pound would come out and do their thing. It was Snoop, Kurupt, Warren G, Lady of Rage, and the rest of the original people that were on the album. Snoop also did 2 encores consisting of "Drop It Like Its Hot", and "I Wanna Rock".
During the encore, before he started, a dude in the crowd offered to buy one of the 40s of Old English that was on the stage for Snoop and The Dogg Pound. Snoop was like "So basically, I should stop and open up a liquor store?". So, he took the guys $20 and gave him the 40oz, it was great. Here are a couple videos of his performance:

Snoop Dogg "Ain't No Fun" Rock The Bells 2010 NYC

Snoop Dogg - Lodi Dodi - Rock the Bells 2010 NYC

2010 Rock The Bells Montage:

That was the show. I doubt there will be another quite like that for a long time. If you were there, cool, if not, i hope this article was able to put you there while you are at your computer. I will be on the hunt for better quality videos, but till then, enjoy these. Don't forget to click through the gallery below.

Also, thanks to Monica T for supplying some of the photos above, including the close ups on the Artists. Also, here is a link to the NY Times show Gallery (their camera must be better than my iPhone... hmm...)

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  1. If you do have a VIP ticket, does that get you closer to the stage?? Also, I read there is a “VIP bathroom”? I’m very interested in VIP because I don’t think I can stand out there for 7 hours straight. Thanks!

  2. Also, is the VIP section right in front of the stage or to the side?


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