Nas and Miss Lauryn Hill plus special guests, Live at the Jiffy Lube Live, Bristow, VA

On Friday, September 15, 2017 I had the pleasure of hearing the Jamaican musician Chronixx, for the first time ever, at the Jiffy Lube Live in Bristow, Virginia. The Reggae singer Chronixx who was born Jamar Rolando McNaughton, opened up for the Nas and Lauryn Hill show. Bandmembers Dre Island, Jah Bouks, Jah9, Protoje, Kelissa, Jesse Royal, Keznamdi and Kabaka Pyramid made this the best Reggae show I have seen since I’ve seen Bob Marley and the Wailers on video.
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Chronixx and his band the Zinc Fence Redemption, did an awesome job at preparing the crowd for the headliners. It was a fresh sound and an even more refreshing experience watching Chronixx and his band perform hits from ‘Roots and Chalice’. I first noticed Chronixx, before even realizing who he was, strolling about the pavillion with his Jamaican swagger. He had the look and stature of a Reggae artist, but I just didn’t know it at the time. He rocked his long locks, he dressed in Jamaican flag colors, and he donned a ‘Realest Out Deh’ tee shirt. For some reason, I noticed him, strolling by, like an average dude and not a huge Reggae star. I did not even have the slightest idea that I was about to witness a cool Reggae show that night. I didn’t even expect that there would be other acts besides Nas and Lauryn Hill.

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After the rocking reggae sensations of Chronixx was over, yet another surprise was added to the list. The comedy of Mister Haniball Burress. I was first introduced to this guy via Jamie Foxx’ Foxxhole comedy station on XM radio. He caught my ‘ear’ the very first time I heard him. His monotone voice and demeanor. He’s so smooth and witty. His style of comedy has been featured on Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel, David Letterman, Conan and Comedy Central, to say the least.

I bet you didn’t know that Hannibal was a writer for SNL, did you? Or that his first comedy album was released on my birthday in 2010. Which is July 27. You can learn more and follow Hannibal at his website http://www.hannibaslburess.com.

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After Hannibal left the stage, a short intermission followed by a stealth introduction by Nas himself. He came out of nowhere, without warning. Spitting fire and delivering one helluva performance. Nas came out with his verse off of Black Republicans followed by Got Yourself a Gun. Gold chains swinging, all black everything, Nas rocked the house something fierce. He went in on all the favorites from Halftime to New York State of Mind to It Aint Hard to Tell to If I Ruled the World. Which led to the opening of Miss Lauryn Hill and into Everything Is Eveything.

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Miss Lauryn Hill came out with Everything Is Eveything. She rocked favorites like Ex Factor and Lost Ones. And even had back up singers to help her out on songs like When It Hurts So Bad, Killing Me Softly, and Doo Wop. Although she was not happy with the sound of her mic, she still held fast and rocked it for us. She closed her set by bringing Nas back out to bust the ultimate duet of the night in If I Ruled the World.

A Quick List of Things to do With Your Wife While in Vegas

Las Vegas is often referred to as Sin City, and although the saying is meant for the young and the reckless, Vegas is for the mature crowd, as well. Vegas has had a strong connection with wild parties and drugs long before the movie Hangover. But it also has a calmer social scene. Heck, even if you’re just dating, it’s definitely a ‘thing to do’. If you can do it. Known for its lights and sights. Drinking and gambling. Even pseudo legal prostitution. Well, all that may very well be what Vegas is famous for, but there’s so much more. Sure. When you’re young, dumb, and full of come, you want to experience the crazy side of Vegas. I mean, ‘What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. Right?

But, there’s also the fun and games side of Vegas for the mature audience. Good times to be had by married couples, together, as one. When you want more than just to ‘get wild’. You and your wife might want to enjoy Vegas as responsible adults. Is this even possible? Sure it is. My wife and I booked a trip to Vegas. She handled the whole thing. No travel agency for us. She does it all. She plans, she researches, and she chooses the destination. Most recently, she chose Vegas. At first, I thought, ‘Vegas? With my wife?’ Then reality hit me. I have no friends, anymore. Days of the ‘guys trips’ are long gone. I go on trips all of the time. Who else would I go to Vegas with?
We’re adults, now. We can get wild, if we want to!

So. The planning begins. After a quick trip to southwest.com. A few google searches for ‘the top 10 things to do in Vegas. And some online shopping at Macys.com, my wife has the first draft itinerary for me. Even though I trust her judgment and tend to leave it all in her hands. My wife asks my opinion on what she has planned thus far. She starts with the dates. And she doesn’t just ‘start with the dates’. She gives me available dates she’s considering. She proceeds to break out a flip calendar and takes me to the dates in question.

‘Since you normally have these two days off.’ She starts. I only need you to request these days off. But first, check and see how much available time you have to use.’ As you can see, my wife is quite the planner. ‘Wait. Wait. Wait. I thought you were handling all this?’ Its always so much easier to go somewhere when all you have to do is go. Anyhow. My wife has the first leg of our trip complete. Hotel stay at the Bellagio. Listen when I tell you that this hotel is more than just a place to stay. It’s an experience in itself. Beautiful hotel rooms. Fabulous dining options. And the nightlife. ‘Bellissimo’. The photos of the Bellagio that she showed me at vegas.com were phenomenal. So, you can imagine how I was feeling about this trip by now. And just in case you can’t, allow me to break it down for you. The first image to jump out at me was the Fountains. Absolutely spectacular. I’m seeing these images of water being shot into the air at amazing rates of speed. There was a video clip that gave us a better sense of what to expect. Music played. The ‘water show’ went on and moved about the pool like a ballerina and her troupe on the season finale of ‘Dancing With the Stars’. So, if you ever get to Vegas, and you can’t go with the fellas. No worries. Be humble. Take your wife and visit the Fountaions at the Bellagio.

And while at the Bellagio, stop by the casino. Right there in the hotel. But, careful. That much convenience can lead one straight to the poor house in no time. Fortunately, I dated a leprachaun in another life, and I still have her lucky charms. We was doing it at the roulette table. Turned a forty into an eighty and an eighty into a one-sixty many times that week.

Even if the whole plan is her idea. Take part in the planning process. This is to ensure a fun time will be had by the both of you. Women plans in Vegas tend to be a tad bit different for men. Don’t get stuck at the mall or dining at cheesey restaurants. She finds dates for us to travel. Now comes my part. Request to have the dates in question taken off my schedule. Okay. No big deal. Done. ‘Now, what else do you have in mind?’ I explain to her how Vegas is near the Grand Canyon. Sort of. And we should add it to our itinerary. A must see. I’m almost sure this is within the top five of every bucket list. After another Google search. We slide on over to Papillon.com. We need a tour to take us to the Canyon. They don’t allow civilian vehicles near the place. Plus. It’s in the middle of nowhere. A two hour drive. This better be good. I thought. Even though it can be a scratch off the old bucket list. It is a bit of a hike. Shoot. The flight to get out here was long enough. Almost five hours. We left at about 8:00 PM and was in Vegas by 10:00PM. WTF? I know what you’re thinking. How is that possible, Saliek? Well. I’m glad you asked.

Don’t be afraid of the flying time. Don’t let rumors of jet lag get you down. The three hour time difference is the cause. Once we crossed that time zone. All our digital devices went into auto pilot and reconfigured themselves. The watch on my wrist still read about 1:00 AM. But because Vegas is three hours behind DC, the time is mixed up. And right about now is normally where feelings of jet lag set in.

Take it from me. The best husband to the most beautifulest wife in the world. A father of two mature, young black men. An uncle to the grandest and greatest neice ever. And proud uncle to the best nephew a guy could ever ask for. If I must say so myself, I know a thing or two about family fun.

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