Monday, Oct. 24, at Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland
Schoolboy Q — born Quincy Matthew Hanley in 1986 — is poised to join the likes of West and Drake in the uppermost tier of elite rappers.
He has come a long way. Hanley was recruited into a Los Angeles street gang at an early age and recounts that nightmarish period of his life on “Hoover Street.”
“Eyes open night to morning/Had roaches in my cereal. … Every last one of us had a pistol in the room.”
Hanley’s harrowing past informs his four studio albums. While his lyrics are occasionally brutish, Hanley resembles an eloquent street poet in his thoughtful analysis of black-on-black violence and the desperation engendered by poverty. Yet his most popular songs, which include “Studio” and “Collard Greens,” are decadent party bangers.
In spite of Schoolboy Q’s forthright examinations of the most alarming aspects of urban life, Monday’s show is likely to resemble a jubilant party that celebrates his improbable success. Joey Badass, a Brooklyn rapper who draws on the classic 1990s hip-hop of groups such as the Wu-Tang Clan, opens the show.