Amoeblog

Easter Weekend In Ireland Is Synonymous With Hip-Hop's Four Elements: Amoeblog Report On The 2010 Community Skratch Games & The 3rd Annual All City Tivoli Jam

Posted by Billyjam, April 6, 2010 04:16pm | Post a Comment
All City Tivoli Jam 2010

For the third consecutive year, two excellent, true skool hip-hop festivals took place over the long Easter weekend in Ireland-- the DJ themed Community Skratch Games in Galway in the West of Ireland and the graffiti & b-boy themed 3rd Annual All City Tivoli Jam on the opposite coast in the country's capital, Dublin. Both were highly successful and relatively intimate-scale events, drawing a few hundred die-hard hip-hop heads between the two bi-coastal gatherings. Of course, having two similarly themed events taking place in a country as small as Ireland, where hip-hop happenings like this don't occur often, presents a dilemma for fans who are forced to choose one over the other since they happen at the exact same time on opposite coasts of Ireland. Hence, to properly cover this past weekend's two events for the Amoeblog, I hopped on a bus and headed cross country to Galway to attend the Community Skratch Games while my man, and frequent Amoeblog Irish reporter, Tall Paul Lowe, stayed in Dublin for the All City Tivoli Jam.  Community Skratch Games 2010

Now in its fourth year, the aptly named Community Skratch Games (CSG), which features several DJ based showcases and a scratch DJ battle over the long weekend, is truly all about community with a genuine emphasis on fun & camaraderie rather than on competition & seriousness. In fact, the prize for the winner of the CSG's annual DJ battle is not a trophy (a la the famed DMC or ITF battles) but a big bag of Irish breakfast meats (rashers, sausages, black pudding etc., all supplied by the local butcher) that the winning DJ traditionally shares with the other participants in a big breakfast cookout on "Skratch Monday" after all events are over. At this year's DJ battle on Saturday night (dubbed the "Community Skratch Open Freestyle Battle Royale"), ten turntablists went head to head, scratching for 16 bars each. To help mark the end of each 16 bars, drummer Tony Higgins dramatically crashed two cymbals together to the obvious entertainment of the packed crowd.

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Interview with Frosty - Director of Crate Digging/Recycling Documentary Secondhand Sureshots (now on DVD)

Posted by Billyjam, April 5, 2010 05:05am | Post a Comment

The short, engaging documentary Secondhand Sureshots, which every DJ / record collector must see, proves that there is indeed gold to be found in the dollar bins, and that a crate digger with a good eye and a good ear can simultaneously recycle and create from those cheap vinyl finds. Filmed four years ago as a production of dublab, this crate digging in the dollar bin documentary was very recently released on DVD by the Stones Throw label with bonus material. The film, which screened over the weekend at the Downtown Independent, was directed by Frosty, who aptly and eloquently described it as "an experiment in creative sound recycling." The film takes place in Los Angeles, where it follows J-Rocc, Daedelus, Nobody, and Ras G on a crate digging excursion (a "secret mission" is the film's official description) at the local thrift store's (Out Of The Closet Thrift Store) dollar bins to see what musical magic they can conjure up out of what most people would immediately discard as crappy records (and some are really crappy). 

As any modern crate digging beat maker will tell you, it is not about what the original record you have in your hands has to offer, but what you can cull from it to transform it (via chopping up and reworking sounds) into something new and wonderful, and this is where the skills of these four gifted producers come into play. The film comes as a DVD + CD set containing the original 30 minute documentary with additional films featuring more music and art creation plus extra beats and mixes from all four producers, and some other niceness. Recently I caught up with Secondhand Sureshots' director Frosty to ask him about his love letter to dusty old vinyl.

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E40's Revenue Retrievin', Ice Cube's Raiders Movie, DonWill's Don Cusack in High Fidelity, Irish Hip-Hop Fests, Free Downloads and More: Amoeba Music Weekly Hip-Hop Round Up: 04:02:10

Posted by Billyjam, April 2, 2010 07:25am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music San Francisco Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 04:02:10


1) E40 Revenue Retrievin'- Day Shift (Heavy on the Grind Ent.)

2) E40 Revenue Retrievin'- Night Shift (Heavy on the Grind Ent.)

3) Madlib Medicine Show 3-Beat Konducta in Africa (Stones Throw)

4) Meth, Ghost & Rae Wu Massacre (Def Jam)

5) DonWill Don Cusack in High Fidelity (Interdependent Media)

In both the number 1 and 2 chart positions this week on the San Francisco Amoeba Music Hip-Hop Chart is longtime Bay Area rap artist E-40 with the his simultaneously released pair of CDs titled Revenue Retrievin' Day Shift  and Revenue Retrievin' Night Shift. Released this past Tuesday, both the Day Shift and Night Shift parts shot to the top of the chart partly in response to the well received lead off single/video "The Weed Man (feat. Stressmatic)" (see video below). Other guests who join the pioneering, "slanguage" making Vallejo wordsmith on the new two part CD series include such known names as Snoop Dogg, Too Short,  Mistah F.A.B., Ya Boy, Laroo, Dru Down, The DBz, Turf Talk, The Jacka, E40 MVPGucci Mane, B-Legit, Mike Marshall, Suga T, J. Valentine, Droop-E, Mac Shawn and Clyde Carson & Husalah of Mob Figaz, who appear together on the song ""Lightweight Jammin'" which is on the Day Shift volume of the two CDs. As usual, Forty Water keeps it true to the Bay with all of those local artists joining him throughout the two CDs, which total up 38 new tracks --19 on each CD.

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Interview with Paul Edwards About His New Book How To Rap: The Art And Science Of The Hip-Hop MC

Posted by Billyjam, April 1, 2010 09:21am | Post a Comment
How To Rap Paul Edwards
Chicago Review Press
' recently published How To Rap: The Art And Science Of The Hip-Hop MC is author Paul Edwards' exhaustively in-depth study of what exactly goes into the writing and execution of hip-hop rhymes or raps. For this comprehensive guide to rap making, the hip-hop fanatic author, who holds a master's degree in postmodernism, literature, and contemporary culture from the University of London, went directly to the source, to the experts themselves. Edwards interviewed over a hundred different well known emcees, posing questions on literally every angle of what goes into crafting their lyrical art. E40, Chuck D, Masta Ace, Immortal Technique, Schoolly D, Big Daddy Kane, and Kool G Rap (who also penned the 340 page book's foreward) are among those who fully respond to questions on topics ranging from lyrical content and flow to writing style & structure, rap delivery (including breath control), collaborating, and ghost-writing.

Edwards also set up a corresponding website with related information to the book, such as a breakdown of songs referenced in its pages. How to Rap, which should appeal to the die hard rap fan as much as to the aspiring rapper, is laid out in an easily digestible form and offers some good insights. Even someone who thought they knew everything about hip-hop and its creation will learn something new, no doubt. The "science" part of the book's approach includes illustrated 'flow diagrams' for rappers. This week I caught up with the author, who currently resides in Dubai, to ask him about his new book and the art of MC'ing.

Amoeblog:  What gave you the idea to write this book?

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Thom Yorke's Atoms For Peace Anticipated Nine Date US Tour Culminates At Coachella

Posted by Billyjam, March 31, 2010 10:20am | Post a Comment
"Harrowdown Hill" by Thom Yorke + (then unnamed) Atoms For Peace @ LA's Echoplex in October

When the current lineup for Radiohead front man Thom Yorke's "other band" first played last October at LA's Echoplex they didn't have an official name. People then were referring to them as "Thom Yorke and Friends" or as the "Thom Yorke and Flea side project" band. In fact, when the lineup for this year's Coachella Festival (April 16, 17, 18 in Indio CA) at which they are one of the main attractions on the Thom Yorkeclosing day, was initially announced, they were simply billed under the name ????.  Consisting of Yorke, Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea, producer Nigel Godrich on keyboards, and session percussionists Joey
Waronker
and Mauro Refosco, the group, under Yorke's orchestration, has settled on the band name Atoms For Peace. However the Coachella website currently lists the band simply as "Thom Yorke," no doubt for easier recognition & less confusion.


Thom Yorke "Atoms For Peace" (2006)


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