Disclaimer #1: This blog is WEEKS overdue! But… Life! Enjoy!
Disclaimer #2: Please excuse me if I “Fan-girl” all over this post because I LOVE LOVE LOVE Tobe & Fat y’all!
Disclaimer #3: I’m probably going to say “Different” hella times throughout the duration of this blog… It will all make sense in the end… KEEP READING!!!
His name is Tobe… He calls her Fat… Together, this dynamic duo are Mr & Mrs. Nwigwe!
Ok, so boom… Back story… I just learned about Tobe back at the beginning of the summer when he released “Day Ones”… Selah.
(🙅🏽♀️Don’t dare try to come for me about being late on Tobe! I’m not a big rap/hip-hop listener to begin with because in all honesty, most of it is trash and I can’t relate and/or understand it!)
Anyway, back to the story! When I heard “Day Ones”, I was hooked as soon as the beat dropped! The fact that I heard the song AND watched the video AT THE SAME TIME, on the day the song dropped blew my mind!🤯 I was in my room, head bobbin’, dancing and SCREAMING all by myself! The song, the visuals were all so… different! That song immediately became my new favorite! I put it on repeat for AT LEAST 10 cycles, it was added to my “Summertime Chi 2018” playlist so that it stayed in constant rotation, THEN I created a “Tobe” playlist and “Day Ones” was the first track added AND I shared the song with 5 friends and all of my social media! I was sure that if Tobe had this banger, there had to be more out there! I 👏🏾WAS 👏🏾NOT 👏🏾DISAPPOINTED👏🏾!!! One search for “Tobe Nwigwe” on iTunes and I had everything that was available downloaded in less than 5 mins before ever listening to any other song! After all of that, I watched every “Get Twisted Sunday” & “Tobe From the Swat” video on YouTube in addition to watching “Forever Twisted” (the proposal and wedding) TWICE because it was THAT beautiful!!!🤗😍
Whyyyy didn’t I listen to any other song before downloading Tobe’s entire catalog?! #1. I was too busy still listening to “Day Ones” on repeat at the time & #2, Something about the whole vibe I received from watching/listening, I just knew that Tobe was going to be… different! The whole vibe was… different! Different?! Different how?! I’m glad you asked!!! “Day Ones” was so simplistic, yet so complex! The beat knocked! Something you could dance with, groove to, BUT it also had a message! It was new… It was fresh AND refreshing… It was so real! No cap, I’ve never heard Tobe utter one cuss word. From “Day Ones” through the remainder of his catalog, I’ve listened and the worse I’ve heard him say was “hell”… And quite frankly, most people say way worse than hell before breakfast on a daily basis! STOP IT! 🛑 Not cursing in lyrics may not seem like a big feat to some people, but to someone that strives daily to eradicate all vulgar language from normal speech (ie. ME), IT’S EVERYTHING!!! I can finally rap a verse without slipping up on a “F-bomb” that I subconsciously didn’t remember was there! SMH… LeStruggle!😩 LeSigh!🤦🏽♀️
With Tobe, there is no excess glorification of money, cars, and “hood riches” or any demeaning lyrics with scantly clad women in his videos! Want to know what is glorified?! GOD!!! Oh yes! Tobe spits reverence to Christ in EVERY SONG! When’s the last time you heard any rapper/artist outside of the classified gospel realm do that?! Don’t worry… I’ll wait… NOBODY! Ohhhh, but that’s not all! You know who else Tobe reveres?! Who else he shouts out in EVERY song?!?! FAT!!! “Fat?!?! Who’s Fat?!?!” I was wondering the same thing when I first started listening to Tobe’s music and realized that “Fat” was being mentioned in every song. So I researched!!! Fat is Tobe’s wife y’all! Yup, his wife! Like legally married, had a ceremony, they have rings and papers on each other married! (Sidenote: Nooo she isn’t “fat”! There’s a cute story behind the name though, but you’ll have to research & watch the videos like I did to find it out! Or ask me below in the comments and I may tell you!🙄) Tobe is the example to hip-hop culture that you don’t have to die a bachelor, you don’t have to demean women to be poppin’, you don’t have to hide your wife in order to be received well! There’s honor in honoring the woman that your heart loves and even greater, there’s honor in honoring God’s covenant of marriage!
ONE TIME FOR FAT Y’ALL!!! 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾
But let’s not sleep on Fat by any means though! A true renaissance woman she definitely is! She’s wife, homie, lover AND friend! She sings on some tracks, she dances/features in EVERY video, and she even has a verse THAT SHE BODIED on “100 K”! (Sidenote: “100K is another on of my favorite songs by the way & yes, I rap Fat’s verse like we wrote it together!) Fat’s a hairdresser (at least for she and Tobe) and a dope artist! Y’all have to see the beautiful work she did of their wedding portraits! Sis is talented! To top it all off, she has one of the sweetest and humbled personalities ever! It’s impossible to not love her! How do I know this?! Glad you asked! But not yet… keep reading!
Ok, so let me take y’all back… Over the summer, Tobe started announcing their tour dates. Y’all, I was glued to his page, waiting for him to announce a city near me! I had my post notifications turned on so I wouldn’t miss it! Final tour dates were posted… The last cities were LA, ATL, DC & NY on the list… I 👏🏾WAS👏🏾 HURT👏🏾!!! I was sad-sad y’all! How you do a tour and NOT come to Chicago though?! High key, I tried going to the Houston AND Atlanta shows, but my schedule wasn’t permitting me to… But Chicago?! Home?! The Mecca?! (Sidenote: I may be biased in my strong pull for Chicago, but this is my city! Proceed…) And we were not on the list?! Salty is an understatement of how personal I was taking this! What’s a tour without Chicago on the list?!
Fast forward to 8 am, the morning of November 20, 2018… I’d just made it home from a long and tiresome night of work in the ER and I’m on the phone with my best friend (per our usual) and we’re downloading about our nights at work, meanwhile she’s scrolling on IG… This is how the next piece of our conversation goes…
Sasha: (ever so calmly)… “Oh Tobe’s coming to Chicago?!”
Me: (with my hella salty response)… “Naw, the tour over! NY was the last city bro!”
Sasha: (in her innocent confusion)… “Really?! In this video I just saw, he said Chicago on December 13th”
Y’all… She’s my best friend and I know she’d never lie to me, but in that moment, I AIN’T BELIEVE HER!!! I needed to go see and hear with my own eyes and ears what she was misinterpreting so I could correct her! Maaannn listen!!! When I got to Tobe’s page and heard that video message for myself, posted the night before, mere hours ago while I was at work, I SCREAMED FOR ABOUT 5 MINS STRAIGHT!!! I👏🏾 COULD👏🏾 NOT👏🏾 BELIEVE IT!!! Tobe said in the video “there was a strong cry” for them to come to Chicago! Hell, I WAS THE STRONG CRY! IT WAS ME! LOL!
No cap, this is how the next hour of our lives played out…
- I continued to scream in between sentences of disbelief…
- I “best friended” Sasha into agreeing to be in on this concert of a lifetime with me!
- I made sure I was off the necessary days for the concert…
- Sasha switched her shifts around so that she could be off the same days.
- Plane tickets were bought for Sasha to fly from Houston to Chicago.
- Concert tickets were purchased for me, Sasha, and my sister! Not only were tickets purchased, but they were the VIP tickets for all 3 of us!
- (Insert more screaming and sentences of disbelief between every number)
- I created a separate “Tobe Chicago Playlist” of the set he was doing and sent it to Sasha and my sister with the message to “start practicing cause I need y’all to know these lyrics and be live at this concert with me”
- All of this was accomplished within 60 minutes of watching Tobe’s video!
- Fun Fact: My sister was sleep throughout this entire ordeal, and had no idea of what was happening until all plans were finalized, but her ticket was still purchased with knowledge that she’d be down for Tobe!
Fast forward to December 13, 2018… Legit, one of the best days of my entire 2018!!! I met Tobe & Fat y’all! Those VIP tickets got us all a meet & greet and they were both so genuine, humble and welcoming! They shook hands, hugged and took pictures with EVERYBODY! They didn’t try to rush you off, they paused and listened to your short stories and well wishes, they were SO DOPE! I got one of the biggest hugs from Tobe & Fat and to top it all off, they told me my hair was AMAZING! (Sidenote: If you’re a naturalista, you know the daily struggle of not knowing if your hair is going to cooperate or not and I was fighting with mine just prior to leaving the house PLUS it was hit by rain on the way into the venue)…
OK, so boom… If anyone has been to a concert, you know they always have opening acts right?! Most of the time, its people you don’t know, and that’s most peoples time for bathroom breaks and trips to the concession stands because often times than not, the shows aren’t the best or at least not as interesting as the main act that you’re looking forward to seeing, so you’re sitting and chilling, passing time until the real show begins… MAAANNN LISTEN!!! That was NOT the case with this show bruh!!! First opening act was our boy Luke Whitney! Now Luke, I was familiar with because I started following him after he was featured on “100 K”, but the way he so comfortably BODIED that stage by himself, singing his own songs was BANANAS!!! As my people like to say, Luke, you’re invited to the Bar-B-Que! You get a seat at the domino and spades tables! You know he was dope when throughout his entire set, you hear all these black men in the crowd vibing and cheering him on with “OK LUKE!” and agreeing to subscribe to his IG page! Luke was definitely LHITNEY that night!
OK, on to the second opening act… Pop Soul Rock & Roll band, The New Respects… They were literally added the night before the show y’all! In all honesty, I’d never heard of them before then, and in my head, I’m thinking “there’s no way you can come after this storm that Luke Whitney just left on the stage, so finish your little sprinkle and move so we can get to the monsoon/tsunami that is Tobe!” (Sidenote: My silent inner mind thoughts are a bit reckless sometimes… sorry!) MAAANNN LISTEN!!! They shut me up, shut the stage DOWN and had everybody screaming and vibing all at the same time throughout their entire set! THEY WERE AMAZING Y’ALL!!! Literally, they made this the best opening act show I’ve ever witnessed!
Finally… The main course…
TOBECHUKWU DUBEM NWIGWE!!!
Honestly, I just don’t even know where to begin to describe the magnitude of the onstage presence of Tobe! The energy in the entire room was palpable! Transferable even! As if it rolled across the heads of the crowd from the back door all the way to the front of the stage. Perfectly positioned in the very front, literally touching the stage, were my sister, my best friend and I! I couldn’t imagine living in that moment with anybody else. If you weren’t in the room, you couldn’t begin to understand the witnessing of God’s purpose perfected on stage! Tobe is in a league of his own! From the beginning, I’ve heard Tobe mention “operating in the spirit”, but to see exactly what that looks like on stage during his performance, there just aren’t enough adjectives to do it justice! Most of the show I didn’t know whether he was about to cry or start a Sunday service praise break! The energy, the raw passion that you hear when listening to any number of his songs, was magnified times infinity as he ripped that stage from seam to seam! That transferable energy ping ponged back and forth, from Tobe to the crowd and back, bouncing off every wall, the ceiling and the floor, causing a continuous vibration from start to finish! Literally, the floor was vibrating y’all! I could feel my body jumping like a wave from the floor even when I wasn’t moving! Tobe, on a raised stage could even feel the vibrations of the room! MAAANNN LISTENNNNN!!! Y’all ain’t hearing me! This was an experience of a lifetime! It was like being at a throwback basement party with all your cousins! In that room, we were all family! The entire mood for the evening was just… different! Tobe performed ALL THE HITS including one of my absolute #1 favorites (that wasn’t even on the official set list) “JOCKIN”!!! Y’all think I’m playing when I say that I was that strong cry for him to come to Chicago, because I was straight POUTING that Jockin wasn’t on the set list! That’s my jam!!! When he said he was about to do that song, (per my norm), I SCREAMED Y’ALL!!! Then I rapped that song with him word for word like I was in the lab when he wrote it! My favorite moments of the show?! THE WHOLE THING IN ITS ENTIRETY!!! When Tobe did the Proposal Medley to Fat, I could see the video in my head as he performed it and it was just as beautiful! The crowd erupted again when Tobe performed “100 K” and our boy Luke was back out of stage! And of course the crowd exploded in anticipation as Fat’s verse loomed in succession! As anticipated, YUP, I rapped that verse with all my heart right along with her! She could have tossed me the mic cause I was ready! And of course, the evening finale that we were all waiting for… “DOPE”… The entire crowd sang that song with all their hearts like Auntie Erykah told us personally that we all were dope… She didn’t though… BUT TOBE DID!!! Tobe told me I was dope y’all! I mean, he said it to everybody, but still! It was just as special as Erykah Badu saying it to him! Plus Luke Whitney & David Michael Wyatt ripped that song to shreds with their voices! Y’all are blessed blessed!
Why do I feel that Tobe is the savior of hip-hop culture?! Because he has been the light that so many of us have been searching for in hopes that hip-hop/ rap was not dead… a lost cause… He’s brought meaning back to lyrics. Don’t get me wrong, I love a catchy beat and some ratchet lyrics from time to time just as much as the next person. But some of these artist and their lyrics reach to the depths of a darkness that literally upsets my spirit and I can’t tolerate listening to it. I don’t pop pills, or any other drugs, so I can’t relate to most of the music that glorifies it. Tobe makes music that you can be comfortable with your kids and your mom listening to it. He makes music that doesn’t need to be sold in a clean and explicit labeled version. He brings to the hip-hop culture proof that God is yet sitting on the throne. Tobe is the beacon of success in your desired craft without having to sell out or sell your soul for accolades! Tobe is bringing real manhood into hip-hop culture, the example of black love, marriage, a family unit, respecting and uplifting the black woman! Tobe said it best himself, he is “the plug for purpose, passion, talent, skills and everything that’s above!”
The display of a man that loves & adores his wife! Tobe & Fat!!!
December 13, 2018 was by far one of the most memorable nights of my 2018! So in finale, I’d like to shout out my city… My home… The Crib… CHICAGO!!! Often times we get a bad rep in the media and from those that don’t know us, aren’t from here, yet have so much to say about our city. In all honesty, often times we are a bit reckless in our actions, but on that night, for those that were there for Tobe’s event, we all came together, vibed together, partied together, sang and danced together as if we all were family! That night, in that atmosphere, we all were family! I thank y’all for making Tobe’s event as magnificent as it was! As he kept telling us all night, “CHICAGO IS DIFFERENT!!!” Our city is special! I couldn’t have imagined that night being any more dope than it already was and I’m honored to have set the bar for livest crowd with my very own home team! And to those that started blowing the marijuana at the end of the show, thank you for waiting until the end of the show so we didn’t get shut down, or receive contact high for those of us that don’t partake in smoking! I’m 1000% sure that’s not what Tobe meant by “I’m Dope”!
In closing, Tobe kicked off my year on a high note as well when he announced on January 1, 2019 Tobe From the Swat Tour: The Extension! Hear me when I say that ya girl WILL BE IN ATTENDANCE (if the Lord says the same!) High key I’m trying to go to the Houston show, so I can be in his hometown and cut up like it’s my hometown IN ADDITION TO being at the Chicago show again! We have to do a repeat of the last Chicago show! It’s a must! My only wish for the Extension Tour is that Nell is back from maternity leave with our baby cousin “Cornell” Elijah! She’s the only thing missing from the show! COME ON NELL!!!
My bestie Sasha & My Sister Jasmine with Tobe & Fat!
The BEFORE & AFTER of my “AMAZING” hair! The struggle of me detangling and braiding this up after the show was sooo worth it though!
Song(s) of the Week:
Stay Loyal, Stay Royal!
A WELCOME, HELLO, HEY-GIRL-HEYYYY FROM THE QUEEN!
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