Concert Review: No Deal. No Label. Just Durham. – Tobe Nwigwe Sold Out Bull City On Back-to-Back Nights

Tobe from the SWAT Tour (The Extension) – 4.3.19 (Bull City)

Location: Durham, NC
Venue: MOTORCO Music Hall
Label: Independent
Performers: Tobe Nwigwe (with Fat + Lanell “Nell” Grant) (featuring David Michael Wyatt, Luke Whitney, JJ and DJ Big Reeks [Waxaholics])

After putting on an energetic show in Atlanta back in November of 2018, I had the opportunity to catch the Tobe From The Swat Tour ’19 in my home state at Motorco Music Hall in Durham, North Carolina. Forty-three days before the show began, the Houstonian emcee announced that Bull City had sold out via Public Service Announcement on his Instagram page:

Tickets sold out so quickly that people were panicking and looking for resale options to see the performance. Luckily, since the venue  holds approximately 450 people, for his birthday gift to the fans, Tobe decided to host a second show in Bull City, in turn, making Durham the only city on the tour with two shows.

JJ and DJ Big Reeks Kick Things Off

The show opened up with host/comedian JJ and DJ Big Reeks getting the crowd excited for the night’s performance. Big Reeks and JJ played various songs from Outkast to Jay-Z and honored the recently slain rapper Nipsey Hussle. The pair did a great job at keeping the energy in the room before Tobe came out.

Women Produce

After missing out on the 2018 tour due to giving birth to her son, the woman behind the beats, Lanell “Nell” Grant made her return to the stage and she showed out.  Part of Tobe’s set included a mix of  ‘Chill’ from The Original EP with Outkast’s 2003 hit ‘Caroline’ and it needs a proper MP3 release:

Nell also provided backed up vocals and performed her verse on ‘Caged Birds’ which is the first song from The Originals series that she has actually rapped on with Tobe.

Nell’s talent doesn’t stop at just rapping and producing, but she also does the backup vocals when Tobe performs ‘Reality’. Nell is a Jack-of-All Trades and that’s a crucial ingredient when it comes to performing a successful show.

Nell wasn’t the only woman to hold it down on Wednesday night. Tobe’s wife, Fat, who ironically is pregnant, came out to perform her verse on ‘100K’. Just like at the Atlanta show last year, when Fat came out, the crowd erupted.

These two ladies are just as an important part to Tobe’s vision as he is and that’s what makes this whole movement something that everyone wants to be apart of. When they talk about it being a family, it’s not hyperbole, they are really about that life and it shows in the radiance of their music.

A Proposal

That positive vibe was rampant throughout the show, but I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the couple that got engaged during Tobe’s set. As someone who’s been to hundreds of shows, this was the first time I had ever seen a proposal onstage and congratulations to that couple.

Young Tob Why You Rappin’ So Hard

“Look, holy flow, every bar, fresh up out the tabernacle,” is the opening line to ‘Tabernacle’ and before Tobe could finish the line the whole crowd was saying it with him. The cool thing about this show is that the instruments were a lot livier than the show I went to in the fall of 2018. This was also the second show of a back-to-back but the venue was filled with energy from the stage to rear exit door.

The good vibes continued out throughout the night.  Tobe brought the ‘Heat Rock’ with him too:

David Michael Wyatt and Tobe performed “Hydration”, an unreleased sequel to the 2018’s “Wavy.” Tobe even joked that naming the track ‘Wavy 2’ would’ve been wack. The song has a nice medley and it allows Wyatt to show off his vocals as well:

The show closed with “I’m Dope” which is a track Tobe and Co. made in tribute to Erykah Badu and Dave Chappelle after they said he was dope. The song is an accumulation of the rapper’s career so far and a lesson about life in general, keep doing what you’re doing and someone out there will think you’re dope at something.


You can get your tickets for the Tobe From The SWAT Tour (The Extension) here


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