Critics' Pick: Donald Glover/Childish Gambino

Monday, May 2, at South Side Music Hall

After getting his break playing a writer on 30 Rock, Donald Glover has gone on to become one of the most widely recognized rising young talents in comedy, thanks in part to his role as Troy Barnes on NBC's Community. So when the actor began heavily promoting his rap career under the name of Childish Gambino (a name he claims to have derived from an online Wu-Tang Clan name generator), the obvious assumption was that this was all some sort of elaborate joke, or that his rhymes would likely lean heavily in the comedic favor.

But as the rapper spits on "The Last" from his 2010 LP, Culdesac, "I rap about my life, not 'I'm On A Boat' / 'cause this joke-rap shit's gotten out of hand / Only ones who do it well's Lonely Island." The line is a battle cry that has become as much of a disclaimer as a mission statement—a sort of pleading with potential audiences to treat his stand-up and rap careers as two completely separate entities.

Not one to disappoint, however, Childish Gambino (the rapper) has tapped Donald Glover (the comedian) to co-headline his IAMDONALD tour performing standup comedy. Also worth noting is the fact that the show has been moved from The Loft to the larger South Side Music Hall space due to overwhelming ticket demand.

 
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