"With hip-hop they think you can only rap about horrible criminality and misogyny, or else rap about how you don't rap about that, when the truth is you can rap about anything. I have always loved making songs about stuff that people haven't made songs about," offered unique hip-hop artist Homeboy Sandman. Today marks the release of his new 14 track album The Good Sun, and tonight there will be a record release party/concert at S.O.B.'s in the New York City emcee's hometown.
"I like talking about a lot of different stuff that isn't always discussed in hip-hop all the time," said Homeboy Sandman, whose new album finds the ever observant MC tackling a wide variety of topics, ranging from homelessness to an entertaining piece on people (especially rappers) who go around all day wearing a mean mug as a mask. Through clever wordplay in the song "Mean Mug" he ponders why mean muggers go around looking so mean. He wonders if they mean mug at their jobs too, and, if so, how that has affected their promotion possibilities. He suggests that mean mugging might be directly correlated to the music on their iPod or their unhealthy fast food diet. "Peace, son, seems you need hugs. Seems you need love. Why you wanna mean mug me?" raps Homeboy Sandman on the brilliant & refreshingly insightful song. Meanwhile, on the album track "The Essence," he raps, "I ain't hiring no public relations or wardrobe / I'm too busy rapping for the regular Joe's / Than for keepin' up with the Joneses or watching the Dow Jones."
Homeboy Sandman is a true hip-hop soldier and every day he lives and breathes hip-hop. If there is some cipher in a NYC park or on the street corner, odds are Homeboy Sandman will be in the midst of it. He shows up regularly on the network of NYC area hip-hop radio shows, and it seems he is always collaborating (on stage or in the studio) with some other hip-hop artist. Also he can frequently found out at hip-hop shows like at the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn on Friday night when was out to support fellow hometown hip-hoppers Junk Science, who also just dropped a new album (to be featured on an upcoming Amoeblog).
Every day for years he has been honing his craft, and consequently, The Good Sun marks his distinct growth as an emcee in the two years since his last album, Actual Factual Pterodactyl. "The new album is more personal," he says. "Now I am trying to talk about me a bit more." He also likes to talk about New York hip-hop's current healthy state. "There is so much great hip-hop coming out of New York right now," he enthused. Core Rhythm is another NYC artist Homeboy Sandman has working often with. He contributed to 3 new album tracks, including the opening track that is named after him. "Core Rhythm is one of the best producers in the whole world, in the whole galaxy. He is gifted. His production is at an amazing level." As well as having Core, the new album, while cohesive in overall sound, actually features eleven different producers, such as DJ Spinna.
Like so many recording artists these days Homeboy Sandman finds that even before he can release a new CD in stores, free giveaway digital copies of his work surfaces online. "It is challenging these days to keep your record from being everywhere for free right away," said the artist in reference to the legions of over zealous bloggers vying to be the first to post an advance of some new hip-hop release. For The Good Sun he has made a point of keeping all copies of the album guarded. "I haven't even given nobody the password [of the digital download file]...but once it comes out within a few hours the whole album will be out somewhere. My hope is that people who love music will support even though they can get it for free."
At tonight's party at SOBs, which will be shared with Spec Boogie, the impressive long list of special guests includes J-Live, AG, Tanya Morgan, Elucid, Peter Hadar, Core Rhythm, Rabbi Darkside, Che Grand, and Bazaar Royale. Click here for more on the show at SOB's. After tonight's show Homeboy Sandman will spend the next few days solidifying exact dates for his pending West Coast tour, which will include California, that begins this month and continues into July. For regularly updated information on this tour visit homeboysandman.com. The new Homeboy Sandman album The Good Sun is available at Amoeba Music.