New York, NY -- After over a decade of grinding and working his music throughout Toronto,
has finally caught the masses' attention stateside. It was just last year that T-Dot's own reigning king of dancehall signed with Akon's
label, giving media outlets a reason to listen up.
In New York to celebrate the release of his debut,
Not 4 Sale
, Kardinal treated fans at legendary venue SOBs to an intimate performance.
"I'm from outside the States and always here artists saying 'I'm going to bring New York back.' But they don't represent where they're from and most sound the same. If you represent New York City put two fingers up in the air", announced the emcee, before setting off crowd favorite "Go Home With You." His ability to flip from lyrical wordplay right into traditional dancehall style crooning brought the tough New York crowd's energy from nonexistent up to a level on par with any jam on any street in Kingston.
Treating the room's rap nerds and journalists to several freestyles and classic cuts, he quickly converted any skeptics in the room. Kardinal rhymed and danced his way through several more album cuts such as his current radio killer "
Closing out his set with a heartfelt speech Kardi addressed his fans, "I don't represent Toronto, I don't represent
, or anything else, but I represent God. That's what I'm saying when I tell you to put your hand up in the sky. We're putting our hands up to God because that's who I believe in and who I represent." Showcasing both his charismatic personality and flawless stage show, Kardinal Offishall gave the States' tastemakers something to write about.