Amoeblog

Snoop Dogg: The Rapper We Love, Despite His Occasional Career Deviations

Posted by Billyjam, April 17, 2014 01:00pm | Post a Comment

  Sergio's Music Intervention: Snoop Dogg Please Be Gangsta Again (2010)

In honor of tonight's San Francisco concert by Snoop Dogg (aka Snoop Lion), in which he'll be "performing his classic smash hits," via music videos this Amoelbog celebrates the career highs (pun intended) of the artist formerly known as Snoop Doggy Dogg while briefly  referencing some of the career lows of the artist born Calvin Broadus via the above video. I think it can be said that most of us hold an unconditional love for Snoop Dogg. Hence why the rapper who has sold over 30 million albums to date is still popular and headlining big venues like the Regency Ballroom in SF tonight and can charge $72 for a ticket to get in, and why we as longtime fans can somehow forgive him for his numerous questionable rap career deviations.  These numerous career sidesteps by the notorious weed smoking gangsta rapper from the LBC are entertainingly addressed in the above hilarious video clip by Sergio Cilli in one of his famed Music Intervention rants on the now defunct Current TV. The piece originally aired back in 2010 around the time Snoop teamed up with Katy Perry for her mega pop hit "California Gurls" but is still funny because it is so true!

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New York State of Mind Amoeblog #77: Snow in April, Earth Day, Record Store Day, Holly Golightly, Patti Smith & Other NYC Concerts +

Posted by Billyjam, April 16, 2014 12:06pm | Post a Comment

Odyssey "Native New Yorker" (1977)


The above video for Odyssey's timeless 1977 hit "Native New Yorker"  - written by Sandy Linzer and Denny Randell and also recorded by Frankie Valli, Esther Phillips, and Black Box - incorporates alongside the performance footage some cool shots of New York City's skyline and streets from back in the mid seventies. 

Meanwhile today in NYC climate change is on peoples' minds. Yes, with Earth Day NYC 2014 coming up Tuesday, April 22nd, the topic of climate change will be unavoidable since starting late last night (April 15th) and continuing this morning there was an unexpected snowfall - in mid April!  Sure it was just a light dusting of snow overnight but considering this is Spring when typically high temps are in the 70's and sunscreen, not snow gear, is what New Yorkers are packing before leaving the house this is highly unusual and another reminder that climate change is very real and very serious.

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Hip-Hop History Tuesdays: Hip-Hop Power Duo EPMD's 1988 Debut Album "Strictly Business"

Posted by Billyjam, April 15, 2014 12:34pm | Post a Comment
In hip-hop history 1988 was a pretty darn incredible year for landmark releases. Like 1987 it was another landmark time in the development of the genre - an era when hip-hop had shifted from its old-school second phase and had arrived into its new so-called "golden era" that would last through to 1992/1993.  A hip-hop group and album that personified this perfectly was and the power duo of EPMD and their flawless debut album Strictly Business.

Released in August of 1988 on Sleeping Bag Records Strictly Business (not to be confused with the 1991 movie of the same name with an LL Cool J song of the same name on its soundtrack) was the debut album from infamous New York hip-hop duo EPMD whose name stands for  "Erick and Parrish Making Dollars" and who are comprised of the emcee/production power pair of Erick Sermon and Parish Smith (aka PMD).  The album was reissued last year as Strictly Business 25th Year Anniversary Edition CD with five bonus tracks.

Although only ten songs in length the hip-hop styles displayed on Strictly Business - cool laid back rhymes over smooth funky beats that sampled an infectious blend of funk, soul, and rock - remain influential to this day and personify the creme de la creme of hip-hop's much celebrated "golden age" - something that EPMD kept going on their second album, Unfinished Business, the following year as well as on later releases (all in the "Business" titled series). Unlike albums of today, which tend to be smothered in guest emcees and producers, with the exception of DJ K La Boss (who added his turntablist skills to album track that bore his name), Strictly Business was purely the talents of Erick and Parish who both rapped in a similarly almost lazy-sounding, rolling, lyrical flow.

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Earth Day San Francisco 2014 Significant Following New Climate Change Report

Posted by Billyjam, April 14, 2014 09:47am | Post a Comment

Fourth annual Earth Day San Francisco happens at Civic Center/UN Plaza on 4/19/2014

 
With the unsettling (but not surprising) results of the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) mitigation report, this year's Earth Day (April 19th, same day as Record Store Day) takes on a more profound meaning.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry called the UN report, which stresses how only a few decades remain to halt global warming from falling into catastrophic effects, "a wake-up call about global economic opportunity we can seize today as we lead on climate change." Hence it is expected that this study's findings will be discussed by speakers at this weekend's Earth Day San Francisco festivities that takes place from 10am to 6pm at UN Plaza/Civic Center.

About 10,000 people are expected at this year's fourth annual Earth Day San Francisco event, which will feature three stages of speakers and entertainment from such performers as New Monsoon & The Earth Day All Stars, Trevor Green, lots of great DJs incuding J Boogie and Jocelyn featuring Kid Crunk. In addition to multicultural music and performance pieces, there will be such renowned environmental speakers as Bill McKibben, Leila Salazar-Lopez, Kevin Danaher, and Dr. Margaret Lowman. There will also be interactive D.I.Y. workshops, green-economy data, plus such things as green jobs opportunies, an "Eco-Fashion" show and an "Eco Artist Grove," as well as organic food cooking demonstrations and tips on how to build a solar oven.  In total there will be about 80 eco-exhibitors showcasing all types of earth-friendly products. For children there will be a giant size green kids zone and eco-carnival.

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Bad Meaning Really Bad is Theme of "Bad Movie Night" At The Dark Room, SF

Posted by Billyjam, April 12, 2014 08:14am | Post a Comment

Conspiracy Theory screens this week (April 13) at Bad Movie Night as part of the Mel Gibson series


I recently had online access to view any new movie released in the past year. From that experience what struck me most, besides the sheer volume of movies released that I had never even heard of or that made it to your local cineplex, was just how really bad the majority of movies being made these days are. Most are awful lackluster affairs with bad acting and poor unbelievable story-lines that are simply unwatchable. To sit through these bad movies would be pure torture unless you somehow turned these lemons into lemonade by poking fun at them and having a laugh at their expense. Such is the idea behind the Bad Movie Night Sunday night series at San Francisco's The Dark Room on Mission Street this April the theme is bad movies starring Mel Gibson and next month it will be "Legendary Flops" bad movie month, while June will be bad George Lucas films.

"It's pretty simple: we show movies. The hosts talk back to the screen. So do you. And we all laugh," state the organizers of Bad Movie Night who have been "desecrating art since 2005" and whose irreveratant approach to movie screening is done in the tradition of MST3 (Mystery Science Theater 3000) whereby intently watching the film on screen and seriously following its storyline is out the window in favor of purely poking fun at this projected waste of money. "Will this movie suck?" ask Bad Movie Night presenters. "Yes it will. But we blow back," they assure audience members who make it to their weekly screenings. Held each Sunday eve at 8pm, April 13th's bad movie will be Mel Gibson's Conspiracy Theory, next week's will be Lethal Weapon 4, and the following week is Hamlet (1990). And bad as these are, there are even worse movies such as their scheduled June 1st Bad Movie Night screening of George Lucas' Howard The Duck (1986) that on Rotten Tomatoes got only a 15% Tomatometer critics rating. But the worse the movie the better the talk back to the screen promises to be.
 

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