The Hard Rock Café on the Strip, April 12

There probably isn’t a hip-hop group with more male groupies than Slaughterhouse. The manner in which fans screamed at the top of their lungs when Royce Da 5’9,” Joe Budden, Crooked I and Joell Ortiz emerged performing “Sound Off” was reminiscent of Justin Bieber popping up at a high school showcase. But this rabid crowd didn’t want pop tunes—they craved mind-boggling lyricism. As the supergroup of solo artists rolled through both their individual offerings and their self-titled debut, hip-hop heads mouthed each and every lyric. But just because they are hardcore lyricists doesn’t mean they didn’t know how to have fun. In between songs (and gulps of liquor), the crew entertained by cracking jokes on one another and breaking into song as Ortiz sang Michael McDonald’s “I Keep Forgettin’.” By the time they wrapped up their hour-long set with “Hammer Dance,” complete with old-school dance moves, it was safe to say that fans got their money’s worth. ★★★☆☆

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In The Paris Wife (Ballantine Books, 2011), author Paula McLain captures the allure of the Lost Generation of expatriates in Paris through her surprisingly sympathetic depiction of the marriage of Ernest Hemingway and his first wife, Hadley. When they met, she was a 28-year-old Midwestern spinster, he a charismatic 21-year-old aspiring writer, just back from his stint as an ambulance driver in World War I. Her practical steadiness and self-effacing support complemented his passionate yearning to experience and create. Yet, it came apart too soon.



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