Once in a Lifetime: Robert Glasper at Brooklyn Bowl Philly - WXPN | Vinyl At Heart

There are only a few times in your life that you can honestly say you missed out. But truly, if you were not at Brooklyn Bowl Philly Tuesday night with Robert Glasper, YOU MISSED OUT! Firstly, if you’ve never been to Brooklyn Bowl you need to go for a show. It’s an absolutely beautiful venue that has ample space but still provides an intimate atmosphere. Secondly, Glasper is the ultimate showman. He put on a performance that left you feeling exhausted in the end, because there was not a minute wasted in his hour-and-a-half set.

Robert Glasper | photo by Megan Matuzak for WXPN

Glasper, often considered a jazz pianist, is really a force of nature in music. Seamlessly blending jazz, soul, funk, gospel, and hip hop into a magical blend, he creates music that is so full of life and energy you feel it in every extremity. He can quickly go from “The Light” and bounce during a Dilla tribute to Glasper’s Badu-assisted “Afro Blue” with its supremely smooth jazz, and get a grungy “Smells Like Teen Spirit” in for kicks. The mood could so quickly go from memories of the Black Lily to church and then to a hip-hop show. Robert Glasper’s talent is practically unmatched and he filled every minute of his set with an energy everyone in the building could feel all night.

Robert Glasper | photo by Megan Matuzak for WXPN

The five-time Grammy winner, who spent a few of his early years here in Philadelphia collaborating with many of our city’s legends, brought some friends along for the night. Glasper told many stories during the night, but none more touching than about his appreciation for his most significant mentor, James Poyser. You can tell the love and respect the two had for each other as they even did dueling keys at one point. Eric Roberson’s beautiful tenor was added at a point bringing a buttery smoothness to the evening. As the night closed one of Glaspers’ earliest collaborators Bilal came out and ended the evening like only he can. There are not enough words to describe how great this show was, but the magic of a Robert Glasper show is there’s never really a repeat. So don’t miss the next one!

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