Amoeblog

New York State of Mind Amoeblog #71: New Yorkers Unnerved, Subway Ridership Up, Woody Guthrie Inspires Installation, + more

Posted by Billyjam, March 12, 2014 10:20am | Post a Comment

As I prepare this week's report in midtown Manhattan an uneasiness still lingers in the air as news spreads of a big explosion at approx 9:30am (EST) this morning further uptown in East Harlem on 116th St and Park Ave. with details slowly trickling in: the latest being that two women are dead, seventeen injured, and 20 missing, with the cause of the explosion of the two residential buildings been a gas leak. But before that news was released people here were feeling most uneasy. Even thirteen years later, ever-anxious New Yorkers automatically slip into that nervous 9/11 mental mode when anything vaguely resembling the WTC attacks occur - especially an out of the blue explosion with heavy smoke billowing high into the Manhattan skyline and viewable even two miles away. As one witness, Samuel Paul, told CBS News in a report little earlier this morning,  "The smoke started to rise. It looked like something fell because it wasn't like a fire. It just looked like debris smoke, similar to 9/11." As of publishing this Amoeblog all the latest news reports indicate that the blast was the result of a gas leak.  Thoughts/prayers go out to those victims of this explosion that no doubt you will learn more about care of national news reports continue throughout the day.

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"Forever-Land" Animated Film Premiere and Kounterclockwise & Jim Lujan Interview by Leroy Moore

Posted by Billyjam, March 11, 2014 09:00am | Post a Comment
        

Premiering today on YouTube and here on the Amoeblog (above) is Forever-Land: the Jim Lujan made full-length, animated film starring Kounterclockwise that has the distinction of being the first single hand drawn, animated, Sci-Fi film based on location in Cleveland, Ohio. The 56 minute movie is also the first one to feature a disabled hip-hop "inter-galactic animated hero" in a wheelchair.  Billed as "a hidden dimension where strange characters, creatures, and lands exist under the iron harsh rule of Infinitus…destroyer of all things funky" Forever-Land is an inspirational tale by the animation filmmaker Lujan with a lot of input from Kounterclockwise whose two members co-wrote the script with the filmmaker. The movie's 17 track soundtrack was co-produced by Lujan wtih Kounterclockwise's Deacon Burns.

Featured here on the Amoeblog back in late 2011, when they released their album Daylight Savings Time, the group that identifies as both "Krip-Hop" and "alternative punk hop" Kounterclockwise is the Cleveland Heights based duo comprised of Deacon Burns and Kaya "Rouge" Carine Gabriel (read their Amoeblog interview/profile here). Meanwhile underground animation filmmaker Jim Lujan's resume includes such works as Freakdaddy, Spike and Mike, Sanjourno Must Die (popular on YouTube animation channel RugBurn). He is currently working on the feature film Revengeance alongside renowned independent animator Bill Plympton, and with music by Kounterclockwise. Uploaded two days ago as a private invite only YouTube stream Forever-Land is as of today (March 11th) available to the general public to view on Lujan's YouTube site with links from such select sites as here. For more background on the film frequent Amoeblog contributor and founder of Krip-Hop Nation, Berkeley CA based author/activist Leroy Moore caught up with filmmaker Jim Lujan and Kaya and Deacon of Kounterclockwise to interview them for the Amoeblog. His insightful conversation with these three talented individuals follows immediately below the Jim Lujan produced Kounterclockwise "Whip" video.

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Check Out Wide Variety of Digital Downloads from Amoeba.Com Including Hot New Hip-Hop Releases - All At 20% Discount This Month

Posted by Billyjam, March 10, 2014 11:30am | Post a Comment
If you are a diehard vinyl or CD music collector and have never bought music via download format before now (or even if you already have) this is the time to do so since Amoeba's online store this month of March is offering all music downloads at a 20% discount [just enter the promo code DLSALEH at checkout] and there is a lot of great stuff to chose from at Ameoba.com. When you compare the cost of getting an album in download digital format versus on vinyl or even CD it works out cheaper to purchase this way - sometimes less than eight bucks for an album. Of further interest to music fans is the fact that you will also find a lot of rare, no longer in print on vinyl or CD, tracks available on the Amoeba site.

Additionally the music downloads for sale from Amoeba are available not only in MP3 format, but also in higher quality formats as M4A (ALAC - Apple Lossless) and WAV files. This way you can choose the sound quality and file size that works best for you and your personal needs depending on how you listen back to your music. And on the download pages of the Amoeba.com store you can preview album track samples and, without even re-hitting the red play button, if you leave it the player will automatically track through an album for you.

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Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week End 03.07.14: Talib Kweli, ScHoolboy Q, Verbal Kent, Smif-N-Wessun, J-Dilla, DC Comets + more

Posted by Billyjam, March 7, 2014 12:44pm | Post a Comment
ScHoolBoy Q "What They Want (Explicit) (feat. 2 Chainz)" (2014)


Amoeba Music Hollywood Hip-Hop Top Five: Week Ending 03:07:14


1) ScHoolboy Q Oxymoron (Interscope)

2) J-Dilla Donuts [8 x 7" Box Set] (Stones Throw)
 
3) Childish Gambino Because the Internet (Glassnote)

4) Talib Kweli  Gravitas  (Javotti Media/Fat Beats)

5) Kendrick Lamar good kid, m.A.A.d city (Aftermath)

In the number slot with a bullet at Amoeba Music this week is the brand new ScHoolboy Q album Oxymoron care of Interscope Records who will be unleashing a vinyl version of the album in a few weeks (pre-order Oxymoron LP version here). This phenomenally successful new major label debut album from ScHoolboy Q, that also bowed at number one nationally on the Billboard 200 charts this week, follows up two extremely well received indie albums from the talented young hip-hop artist: 2011's Setbacks and 2012's Habits & Contradictions - in addition to his 2012 collaboration project with The Alchemist and Danny Brown, Flight Confirmation.  Q is down with Kendrick Lamar and along with the the good kid, m.A.A.d city artist (the 2012 release that is still charting at Amoeba) he is also signed to Top Dawg Entertainment who made a joint-venture deal with Interscope Records to release this first No. 1 for Top Dawg. The lead single “Collard Greens” that dropped mid 2013 features Kendrick Lamar while 2 Chainz cameos on “What They Want" (see new video above), and Tyler, the Creator guests on “The Purge.” In the review of this album Amoeba.com praises  ScHoolboy Q for being, "commercial and weird at the same time, but ScHoolboy Q makes it work with flying colors."

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Hip-Hop DJ Heaven In Hollywood Today with RockWalk DJ Inductions +Hollywood GC DJ Concert

Posted by Billyjam, March 6, 2014 08:53am | Post a Comment
It's gonna be hip-hop DJ heaven in Hollywood today over by the Guitar Center on Sunset Blvd. (not too far from Amoeba Hollywood) where both the big RockWalk induction ceremony at 3pm will take place followed at 5pm by the Hollywood GC DJ event with a list of great DJs appearing and performing. The free two-part event begins at 3pm (but get there earlier to both get parking a secure a good spot) with an induction ceremony of the first ever hip-hop DJ artists to the RockWalk:  Grand Wizzard Theodore, GrandMixer DXT and Grandmaster Flash. Then at 5pm another turntablism legend DJ Jazzy Jeff will both perform and host a killer DJ concert featuring sets by such other greats as D-Styles, DJ Nu-Mark, DJ Rhettmatic, Mr Choc, P-Trix, Shortee, The Gaslamp Killer, Mike Relm, and Dynamix. The event ends at 11pm.
Unveiled in 1985, the RockWalk, which is located in front of the Sunset Blvd Guitar Center in Hollywood, is a musical alternative to the nearby movie themed Hollywood Walk of Fame and the Chinese Theater. With its mission statement, that is literally written in stone (see pic right), of being for "individuals who have made significant contributions to The Music Business" the RockWalk celebrate rock, jazz, blues, and (few) hip-hop artists are all honored in handprints and autographs in cement. Additionally in the window of Guitar Center they've  guitars and other memorabilia once owned by musicians honored on the RockWalk. The long list of those honored to date includes Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Les Paul, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, B.B. King, and Stevie Ray Vaughan.
Todays three inductees Flash, DXT, and Theodore, who will be introduced by DJ Qbert, have each long believed in and envisioned the turntable as an instrument. Even back four decades ago when no one in the mainstream took hip-hop DJ'ing (long before the word turntablism had been coined to define the sub genre - by DJ Babu in 1995), or even hip-hop itself, seriously these three artists had the foresight to project ahead and imagine what the turntable as instrument would become what it is today and that the practitioner of that instrument be given the same respect as any musician would.

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