Hip-hop heads seem to have love or hate for Lupe Fiasco. Some question his fashion sense or the music he came up listening to (Spice 1, Eightball & MJG), and dont like his recent collaborations and hipster-like crossover appeal, which results in him being perceived as trendy. On the flip side, true music lovers appreciate Lupes style in pushing the envelope, never settling, and keeping people guessing, as hes done with his sophomore release on Atlantic, The Cool. He has the unique ability to combine the qualities of cadence, rhyme schemes, and lyricism with relevant, profound subject matter. One of the things about Lupe (real name: Wasalu Muhammad Jaco) that can be overlooked in todays world of Islamophobia is seeing a Muslim-American gain acceptance in the world of pop-stardom by just being himself. No matter how much it affects his music, or how irrelevant his faith may be to fans like Becky and Todd from the Eastside, hes the type of artist that changes peoples lives without being preachy. Showbox at the Market, 1426 First Ave., 628-3151. $22.50 adv./$25. 8 p.m. All ages.
Fri., Jan. 11, 8 p.m., 2008