The other day I was looking through a friends pictures on Flickr when I came across a Kirby Dominant show flyer from 1999.
Where I grew up we didn't get a lot of hip hop shows, usually around 4-5 a year, all put on by the same crew, usually featuring a solid west coast underground act and a bunch of local artists to fill up the roster. The venue was usually the old I.O.O.F hall downtown, which could safely hold about 150 people... for a hip hop show there would be 300+ packed in. On this night Fourth World Occupants killed it, Moka was Moka, his set was good but I had seen him so many times that they all seemed the same. There were 2 Dj's playing tracks, Dj Take5 and the homie Maki, who at that time rarely played shows. I didn't know much about Kirby Dominant before the show, I had heard some tracks on mix tapes that friends had made. When Kirby hit the stage he engaged the crowd right away, asking questions about the town, answering questions about his music and kicking tracks from his recently released Rapitalism album. About halfway through the show people were chanting "Passenger 5150" and Kirby jumped ahead in his set to kick the track, the place went nuts. Kirb ripped through a few more tracks then sat down on the edge of the "stage" and asked the crowd what else they wanted to hear, instantly another "5150" chant went out and Kirby found the track on his disc man and kicked it again for the crowd. I don't remember much else about the show, other than 1 of the Dj's playing 21st century digital boy by Bad Religion and a giant mosh pit breaking out.
Kirby gained a lot of fans that night, I know that's when I started checking for him, and still do to this day.