1) Cee Lo Green The Lady Killer (Elektra Records)
2) Eligh Grey Crow (Legendary Music/ Alpha Pup)
3) Kanye West My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (Roc-A-Fella/Def Jam)
4) Andre Nickatina & Tha Jacka My Middle Name Is Crime EP (I-Khan Distribution)
5) Madlib Medicine Show #11: Low-Budget Hi-Fi Music (Stones Throw)
Special thanks to Amoeba Berkeley's DJ Inti for the latest hip-hop top five chart. You can catch Inti's DJ sets at Radio at 435 13th St near Broadway in Oakland every Thursday! This week he notes how the popular Medicine Show series from super-talented LA producer Madlib is back after taking a short two month break, not quite delivering the 12 releases promised in the twelve months of 2010. Not a problem, though, since the series is back with a bang with the guest-heavy Medicine Show #11: Low-Budget Hi-Fi Music on Stones Throw. This full-length hip-hop release makes up for the delay with amazing production plus guest spots from such talents as Guilty Simpson, MED, Oh No, AG, Strong Arm Steady, and Karriem Riggins. Premiering on this 28 track release is a Jaylib-era track taken from Madlib and J-Dilla's never-realized second album. The final part in the Medicine Show series is expected to drop within the next month.
Another talented LA native on this week's chart is Eligh with his ever-popular Grey Crow album on Legendary Music/Alpha Pup. Eligh, who rose to fame via the Living Legends crew, shows a definite maturity on this latest (and long overdue) release -- the first solo album from the recovering addict (he's been sober for five years now) since 2003’s Poltergeist. It follows up such collaborations as the acclaimed Say G & E! with fellow Living Legends member The Grouch and On Sacred Ground: Mother & Son with his mother, Jo Wilkinson. The emcee & producer, who even spent some time living on the streets of LA due to his addiction, sounds so positive about having successfully turned his life back on course throughout Grey Crow. He even produced all but two of its 17 tracks.
As reported on countless news outlets and blogs, including the SF Weekly yesterday, frustrations were voiced but little was accomplished. Instead, it was reiterated that the matter is now in the FCC's hands. However the FCC (Federal Communication Commission), which oversees licensing of radio stations, without getting involved in fights of this nature (regardless of how unfair they might be), will likely do nothing to halt the transfer of 90.3FM's signal to its current new format.
"The greatest hits of classical music being piped in from Southern California," is how Irwin Swirnoff, the recently ousted music director from KUSF (aka DJ Irwin of the "Sleeves on Hearts" Friday show) disgustedly described the unwanted new format during an interview on KALX last night during the Soapbox Derby talk show. Irwin called USF management's actions, which involved them turning off the transmitter in the middle of a Vangelis record being played on Tuesday morning and locking out the KUSF staff, "shady and premeditated," noting how "everyone involved [in the behind doors deal] signed a non-disclosure contract so that no one would know what was going on" until the last minute.
He also noted "they took us off the air one week before students and faculty got back to school" -- two groups who would have shown support for KUSF had they been present. The KUSF DJ said that he is amazed at the amount of community support for KUSF in the couple of days since the shutdown but says, "It's going to take all of us, the station and the community, to fight together. All of us are really dedicated to fighting this," he said firmly. "What we're trying to say to the FCC is that this move is bad for the community." Irwin advises people to show support by going to the Save KUSF Facebook page and/or emailing email@example.com.
Tonight popular & ever-prolific Bay Area rapper The Jacka headlines a show in San Francisco hosted by Fillmore emcee Sellassie at Club 6. Also on the packed bill are: Da Baylienz, Wyze Guyz, Sillymob, Swag Addict, Major D, Dirty Bird, Take Two, Cash Campain, and 2EZ. Tickets & other info here and here. Meanwhile, across the Bay in Oakland, Zion I is back at the New Parish tonight in a headliner show with Foreign Legion and Do D.A.T. on the bill. Expect Zion I's MC Zumbi and Amp Live to deliver most of the songs off their reggae tinged current album Atomic Clock on Gold Dust Media. Also expect Marc Stretch and Prozack of Foreign Legion to do new songs off their soon to drop next album. Tix/info here.
And finally, I leave you with the just completed new video for the killer Bay track "Rap Starz" by Oakland hip-hop soldier Dub Esquire and featuring Dirt Nasty and Del The Funky Homosapien. Tonight is the record release party for the new Dub Esquire release at Airliner in the Lincoln Heights district of LA. More info here.