New York, NY –
Lupe Fiasco’s Listening Experience for his latest album, Food and Liquor II: The Great American Rap Album Part 1, was about his general vision—about the American story, and it’s many untold vantage points. Ushers led the audience down a bare white brick hall to a simple studio with two screens. They served water and simple hors d’oeuvres; humble fare for an album Lupe called his “humble, humble, very very humble, perspective on American history, culture and experience.” Between tracks Lupe paused the music to talk about his goals, his vision and his hopes for the album, and crack jokes about his last project, the rather unsuccessful L.A.S.E.R.S. He explained that the first track was based off the imagery of Billie Holiday’s Strange Fruit, and that the concepts of the album are based, in large part, off of Lupe’s experience with Howard Zinn’s People’s History of the United States. During the songs, images depicting American diversity, American struggle and American loss flooded the screens. One recurring image was of Barack Obama, Mitt Romney and a burning flag, layered together. Another was a high speed car crash from a video camera inside the car. The Listening Experience was made to give listeners a distinct feel, on first listen, of what Lupe strived to do with Food and Liquor II. Namely, to give voice to silenced America.