The Beauty of LP Cover Art, Bob Dylan's Influential Film Clip, Reid Miles' Blue Note Cover Art, The 50 Worst Album Covers + More

Posted by Billyjam, March 29, 2010 01:37pm | Post a Comment

While recently checking out the video below by the Audio Bullys (the UK duo whose third album Higher Than The Eiffel arrives in Amoeba tomorrow) for their great 2008 single-only release "Gimme That Punk" in which they display countless classic album covers (including The Clash, The Doors, The Kinks, The Sex Pistols Jamie ReidSex Pistols) it further reminded me of why I love (and miss) LPs and their glorious 12" by 12" cover art work so much. This is why I always look forward to checking out new (and always themed) LP cover art posts here by The Gone World Amoeblogger Mr Chadwick and any record or LP cover art gallery shows like the ones at very top and lower points of this blog, courtesy of Siemon Allen Records, whose current exhibit Records (South African Edition) just ended yesterday at the Johannesburg Art Fair. 

The Audio Bullys' video reminded me of another UK musical duo's video from recent years, dan le sac VS scroobius pip's 2007 video for their hit single "Thou Shalt always Kill," in which they also flip through various classic album covers as they dismiss their respective makers as being "just a band." This music video style, utilized by both this pair and the Audio Bullys, of displaying and then tossing on the ground the LP covers that are referenced in their lyrics is directly derived from the film footage of Bob Dylan's Bringing It All Back Home album track "Subterranean Homesick Blues" in which Dylan is filmed tossing large cue cards with key words from the song's lyrics.

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Amoeba Music Weekly Hip-Hop Round Up: 03:26:10 Chart, Concerts, New Music Picks +

Posted by Billyjam, March 26, 2010 07:00am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Berkeley Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 03:26:10

Black Eyed Peas
1) Black Eyed Peas The E.N.D. (Energy Never Dies) (Interscope)

2) Souls Of Mischief Montezuma's Revenge (Clear Label Records)

3) Slum Village Fan-Tas-Tic, Vol. 1 (Barak Records)

4) Ludacris Battle Of The Sexes (DTP Recordings/Def Jam)

5) Wu Tang Clan Wu-Tang Meet the Indie Culture, Vol. 2 (Enter The Dub Step)
(Ihiphop Distribution) 

Somehow the phenomenally popular Black Eyed Peas' (BEP) current singles-driven album The E.N.D. (Energy Never Dies) on Interscope continues to sell well everywhere, including at Amoeba Berkeley where it returns to the number one slot (based on sales) a full nine and a half months after its initial release date. The album's continual slew of hit singles of course helps the BEP stay on top, combined with such other factors as their successful ongoing world tour which arrives in California next week with two shows in LA at the Staples Center (March 29 & 30) and one show in San Jose at the HP Pavilion next Friday (April 2nd). On April 3rd they play San Diego's Sports Arena and on April 7th they play ARCO Arena in Sacramento, Additionally, on Tuesday of next week the group's tour movie The Black Eyed Peas: The E.N.D. World Tour arrives in movie theaters on 500 screens. No doubt this will only Mike Slottfurther fuel their popularity. For more BEP tour and event info click here.
Inti, who supplied this week's Amoeba Music Berkeley hip-hop chart, reports that a lot of older hip-hop albums never seem to go out of style with customers and that Pete Rock & CL Smooth's 1992 album Mecca And The Soul Brother is one of those classic hip-hop albums that people continue to buy as if it was a new release. As for Inti's favorite recent releases? He says he is feeling a lot of the instrumental hip-hop coming out lately including Mike Slott's Lucky 9teen that was released on the LuckyMe label three months ago.

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Tommy Guerrero, Marc Capelle & Griff Williams' San Francisco Benefit Focuses On Importance Of School Music Programs

Posted by Billyjam, March 25, 2010 09:16am | Post a Comment

The benefits of school music programs are far reaching and life spanning. Beyond simply learning how to play a piano or a violin or a guitar, etc., young students of music also gain important life lessons. School music programs directly help shape character and individual abilities, as well as offer a way to help channel ideas and ideals throughout ones life. Hence, it is disheartening when, especially in these harsh economic times, the budgets for school music programs as well as other areas of the arts are typically the first to get slashed.

It was with this in mind that the three concerned individuals behind this week's fun & eclectic Soul Food No. 2 benefit for San Francisco music programs pooled their creative resources. Skateboarder and musician Tommy Guerrero, musician Marc Capelle, and artist & Gallery 16 owner/operator Griff Williams -- all vocal supporters of music in school programs -- are throwing the second in the Soul Food series of benefit shows "that present film and music together in a gallery setting to raise funds for local charities that have an obvious, honest, effective, and immediate impact on our neighborhoods," according to Williams. Following the success of their last Soul Food benefit (for the San Francisco Food Bank) they decided this time work to help support MuST (Music In Schools Today), geared to get musical instruments into SF area schools. Longtime SF artist Tommy Guererro, himself a former SF school district student, is most passionate about the need for school music programs and for their continuation. "Music is the only language that everyone understands: the great communicator," he told me when asked what he saw as the main benefits of school music programs. "Oh, and jocks don't hang out in music class...less beatings that way," he added with a laugh.

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Hip-Hop History: 1991 Rap Radio, When Ice Cube, Main Source, LL Cool J, Gang Starr & Digital Underground Ruled Hip-Hop's Airwaves

Posted by Billyjam, March 23, 2010 10:59pm | Post a Comment

Back in early 1991, as witnessed by the various top ten hip-hop radio charts below from that period, the popular hip-hop of the day was a pretty darn diverse selection of the genre, especially in comparison to what counts for popular hip-hop today. Although the period technically fell under hip-hop's so-called "golden age," as typified by such chart entries below as Gang Starr, A Tribe Called Quest and Main Source, there were many other specific rap flavors also represented. These many different styles sharing the spotlight back then included feminist rap (Yo-Yo's "Dope Femininity" -- the B-Side of "Stompin To The 90s" -- is on the charts as well as tracks by female rappers Nasty and Monie Love), uplifting, feel good party rap (Digital Underground's "Same Song" featuring 2Pac), traditional battle rap (LL Cool J's "Mama Said Knock You Out"), weed themed rap (Cypress Hill, who had a head start on the "blunt era" of hip-hop by a good 18 months with this pre-album release version), new jack swing (Father MC), socially conscious rap that pushed for change and equality (Kool G Rap's "Erase Racism" and the Human Education Against Lies -- aka H.E.A.L. project), as well as the more intense Afro-centric or hardcore political rap (Paris, X-Clan, Intelligent Hoodlum, King Sun, Consolidated), and of course gangsta rap (NWA) and player rap (Too $hort). Meanwhile, Ice Cube's incredible December 1990 released EP Kill At Will, featuring such tracks as "Dead Homiez" and "Jackin for Beats," transcended one individual style, and instead melded political with hardcore and gangsta.

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Amoeba Music Weekly Hip-Hop Round Up: 03:19:10 - Kidz In The Hall, Grieves & Budo, Z-Man, SxSW, Nujabes (RIP), Grand Invincible, Lil Wayne, Reggie Watts, NeoGeo

Posted by Billyjam, March 19, 2010 07:47am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music San Francisco Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 03:19:10

Decon compiliation
1) U-N-I A Love Supreme 2.0 (Traffic)

2) Ludacris Battle Of The Sexes (DTP Recordings)

3) V/A Decon Presents Never Not Fresh (Decon)

4) Kidz In The Hall Land Of Make Believe (Duck Down)

5) Grieves with Budo 88 Keys & Counting (Rhymesayers Entertainment)

Super talented SoCal duo U-N-I top this week's Amoeba Music San Francisco hip-hop chart with their recommended A Love Supreme 2.0. The record was written about in last week's Hip-Hop Round Up when it was also included on the Hollywood Amoeba's top five chart along with such other releases as Ludacris' ever popular Battle Of The Sexes on DTP/Def Jam. Number two at the San Francisco store, the album is number one in the country this week according to the latest Billboard album chart, arriving at the number one spot with a bullet. Typically a compilation is always a good bet since you get a nice variety of music and the best representation from each artist, but the new Decon Records compilation Decon Presents Never Not Fresh raises the bar quite a few notches. It is an excellent 13 track (plus "Intro" and "Outro" tracks) collection of some of the best tracks from the Decon vaults, including AceyaloneRJD2 (who appear throughout, as well as together on "All For You"), Dilated Peoples ("Spit It Clearly" with The Alchemist), Jay Electronica ("Exhibit A"), Jurassic 5 ("Ducky Boy," which was first reissued a little over a year ago by Decon on the J5 Deluxe Reissue), Skillz ("Take It Back"), Del The Funky Homosapien ("I’m Gonna Make It"), Zion I ("Ride"), and more, with tracks featuring such hip-hop talents as Casual, Chali 2na, Blackalicious, Lyrics Born, Lateef, Haiku D E’tat, Evidence, 88-Keys, and Izza Kizza. Below is the trailer for the compilation.

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