Amoeblog

AMOEBLOGAY MUSIC LISTS, PART I: PANSY DIVISION #1

Posted by Billyjam, November 11, 2008 08:45am | Post a Comment
pansy division
As typically seems to be the case with any published "best of" music list, not everyone agreed with the recent Top 100 Gayest Albums of All Time compiled by Out Magazine, which was Amoeblogged about here on September 6th. After reading over this list many disagreed with numerous entries, suggesting certain additions and/or deletions. Most did agree however that Out Magazine's Top 100 list, based on a survey by the respected gay publication of 100 gay music authorities, was a pretty darn good list, albeit not perfect.

"There are a lot of omissions including The Cure, Nina Hagen, a ton more disco artists -- and of more recent artists Basement Jaxx and Miss Kittin" was an Amoeblog comment posted by A.D.Depp.  "It seemed to be a little hipster heavy. It seemed like it missed many gay iconic artists," critiqued Amoeblogger Gomez Comes Alive. Meanwhile Larry Bob of the SFQueer.com website, who updates the exhaustive dally Queer things to do in the San Francisco Bay Area list,  posted this comment to the Amoeblog, "No Pansy Division? Ridiculous. At least they managed to get Team Dresch and Fifth Column to rep the queercore. Also no Tribe 8."

The SFQueer.com webmaster is absolutely right, especially about Pansy Division (pictured above and whom FYI are the number one most popular act, by a landslide, in this Amoeblogay music survey series, which runs over the next few days).  In fact, besides lacking in the queercore department the Out Magazine Top 100 albums list also displayed a glaring lack of any so-called homo-hop from artists such as the Bay Area's Deep Dickollectivelike  (DDC), whose song "Straighttrippin' (feat. Doug E)" from their album BourgieBohoPostPomoAfroHomo was featured on the Independent Sounds: Amoeba Music Compilation Vol. III -- another omission that the ever astute Larry Bob also noted.

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SINGER MIRIAM MAKEBA DIES AFTER COLLAPSING ON STAGE

Posted by Billyjam, November 10, 2008 10:01am | Post a Comment
miriam makeba
Legendary South African singer Miriam Makeba, who was banned from her own country for more than 30 years under apartheid, died after collapsing on stage during a concert in Italy last night (Sunday Nov 9th) according to a report from AP. She was rushed to the Pineta Grande clinic in Castel Volturno, near the southern city of Naples, where she died of a heart attack earlier this morning (Monday 11/10). She was 73 years of age. 

Reportedly the singer had just finished performing "Pata Pata," one of her best known hits (once famously banned in her homeland), when she collapsed. Known as "Mama Africa," Makeba's sudden death has sent shockwaves through South Africa, which is in mourning today. "One of the greatest songstresses of our time has ceased to sing," said the country's Foreign Affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma in a statement today. "Throughout her life, Mama Makeba communicated a positive message to the world about the struggle of the people of South Africa and the certainty of victory over the dark forces of apartheid and colonialism through the art of song."

Over her long, prolific career she had performed with such artists as Dizzy Gillespie, Nina Simone, and Paul Simon. She was the first African woman to win a Grammy award in 1966 together with Harry Belafonte for the album An Evening With Belafonte/Makeba, which dealt with the political plight of black South Africansmiriam makeba pata pata under apartheid. Her rise to international awareness began when she starred in the 1959 anti-apartheid documentary Come Back, Africa. A year later when she tried to fly home for her mother's funeral, she discovered her passport had been revoked. It would be thirty years before she was allowed to return again to her homeland.

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AMOEBA MUSIC WEEKLY HIP-HOP ROUND UP 11:07:08

Posted by Billyjam, November 7, 2008 09:09am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Berkeley Hip-Hop Top Five: 11:07:08

paris acid reflex
1) Paris Acid Reflex (Guerrilla Funk/Fontana)

2) Mighty Underdogs Droppin' Science
    Fiction
(Definitive Jux)

3) Murs Murs for President (Warner)

4) T.I. Paper Trail (Grand Hustle/Atlantic)

5) Black Milk Tronic (Fat Beats)

Thanks to Tunde at the Berkeley Amoeba Music for this week's Hip-Hop Top Five sales-based chart, which finds the Bay Area's own Paris in the number one slot and his thought-provoking, lyrically charged, recommended new album Acid Reflex on Guerrilla Funk/Fontana. If you missed the interview with the controversial artist when it was published last week, click here to read the Amoeblog Paris interivew.

Reactions to Barack Obama's victory on Tuesday were upbeat (to put it mildly) in hip-hop circles. Longtime Fillmore, San Francisco rapper San Quinn told Amoeblog the next day, "Hopefully with him winning it will give little black kids in America a new sense of hope to know that instead of drug dealers and rappers and basketball players and football players and many other stereotypical but true things that we choose to be, including killing off each other, san quinnthat now we have a chance if we keep our slate clean to be the president of the United States." 

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Interview With Kevvy Kev, Host of World's Longest Running Hip-Hop Radio Show, The Drum On KZSU Stanford

Posted by Billyjam, November 6, 2008 04:00am | Post a Comment

Born and raised in Queens, New York, longtime KZSU DJ Kevin "Kevvy Kev" Montague first moved to (and never left) the Bay Area back in the early eighties to attend Stanford University. It was there that, along with his (Members Only) hip-hop crew, Montague began broadcasting what would become the world's longest running hip-hop radio show, The Drum, which airs every Sunday on KZSU from 6PM to 9PM. Several years ago, in celebration of this unique radio program, Kevvy Kev began throwing the annual Bang The Drum hip-hop festival. The festival's eager participants have included Big Daddy Kane, CL Smooth, Smif & Wessun, Das EFX  (who performed at the most recent Bang The Drum in August), Canibus, Ras Kass, Saafir, Money B, Special Ed, Camp Lo, J-Live, Blackalicious, Mr. Lif, Rasco, Planet Asia, Hieroglyphics, Peanutbutter Wolf, The Lifesavas, and Kutmasta Kurt

Kutmasta Kurt was once a member of The Drum radio show crew. Others have included Mike Nice. The current weekly lineup includes DJ Felix the Friendly Traveler, Raymundo, and Jimbrowski with rotating DJs including Amp Live and D-Sharp. The very original lineup was born out of the 1980's Bay Area Members Only crew which, in addition to Kevvy Kev, was Jonathan Brown, Richard "Rich D" Dwyer, Louis "Easy Lou" Carr, Todd "Todd T" Hosein, Mark "Rockmaster Markski" Hosein and human beatbox Bruce "Casual B" Richardson. This 1980's hip-hop crew built a name for the hip-hop parties they threw. The Members Only crew also put out a record, the twelve-inch single "You're Not Down."

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WELCOME TO GENERATION BARACK HIP-HOP

Posted by Billyjam, November 5, 2008 07:00am | Post a Comment
barack obama hope
Like the majority of people in America last night experiencing that combined feeling of joy and relief as the final results in the presidential election became clear, I was really moved when Barack Obama finally got to give his acceptance speech. Not only was it an incredibly inspiring and intelligent speech, but it was also just pitch perfect, like a great symphony or the best pop song. The rhythm of his oration style, especially as he built up to the finale, systematically interspersing in his talk those three words (Yes We Can) right on rhythm, was purely musical in its delivery.

Watching and listening to Barack in Chicago last night all I could think of (besides "Thank God the Republicans are finally out") was, Wow! This speech is not just historic but it is so made for matching over beats that we are going to be hearing this particular Obama speech replayed and sampled over hip-hop instrumentals for a long long time to come. Like JFK and MLK before him, Obama's equally great oratory style is made for playing back over beats.  Already he has been sampled to death in hip-hop songs, but now that he is finally elected to the top position this first hip-hop generation president will be an integral part of the genre for quite sometime to come.

While relatively young for such a high ranking job, 47 year old Barack Obama is not actually the youngest elected president of the United States of America (both Ulysses Grant & Bill Clinton were a year younger, while JFK was just 43 years old and Theodore Roosevelt was only 42 when elected to presidency), but he is the first bona fide elected US president of the hip-hop generation. In fact, he is even younger than many contemporary hip-hop figures, including Grandmaster Flash who, at age 50, is three years Barack's senior.

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