Amoeblog

Hip-Hop History Tuesdays: Rare Early 90's Interview with E-40 and The Click

Posted by Billyjam, March 25, 2014 01:01am | Post a Comment

The Click "Tired of Being Stepped On"

Recently uncovered the early days interview in the careers of E-40 and The Click  - his family group that featured D-Shot, B-Legit, and Suga T - that I conducted with the legendary Vallejo family rap crew on KUSF radio in San Francisco (interview below)  around the time of the release of The Click's group album Down & Dirty that featured the above track "Tired of Being Stepped On," and the E-40 solo album Federal on the crew's label Sick Wid It. This was before they signed with Jive Records and when D-Shot would still go by the name Mac D Shot.and B-Legit would still be sometimes referred to as Legitimate B.

For this 22 year old radio interview the group were joined in the studio by their producer Studio Ton and it was an exciting time for them as they were regionally popular - both in the Bay Area and down south and in the mid west where they built up a grassroots following from tirelessly trekking out to these other parts of the US to sell their tapes. In the interview they talk about their first (pre Click) group MVP who, in 1988, released a 4 song 12" EP featuring such tracks as "Thought I Could Trust A Girl." Note that with their later record label Sick Wid It they had a habit of printing the following year's date on their releases (IE if an EP or LP dropped in 1990 it would read 1991 on the label) hence there's often confusion about the exact years of the early era Sick Wid It releases like Federal and Down & Dirty that are often listed as 1993 instead of 1992.

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Harmonizing Siblings The Belle Brigade Play Amoeba SF and Hollywood This Week

Posted by Billyjam, March 24, 2014 11:30am | Post a Comment

The Belle Brigade - Belt of Orion (Live at Amoeba Hollywood, 2011)


Over the past several decades in popular music there's been frequent reminders that bands featuring siblings usually offer a special musical synchronicity, a flawless fusion of two signing voices - perfectly in sync with one another on a musical level. Examples of brothers, or sisters, or brothers and sisters together in bands over the years include The Kinks, Tegan and Sara, The Everly Brothers, The Bee Gees, and The Belle Brigade who play two Amoeba in-stores this week (tomorrow Tuesday at Amoeba San Francisco, and Thursday at Amoeba Hollywood) in support of their brand new album Just Because (also available on LP format). It will not be the first time that the LA brother-sister duo, comprised of Barbara Gruska and Ethan Gruska, graced Amoeba with their irresistible melodic rock and pitch perfect harmonies. Check the video above from Amoeba Hollywood from a few years ago, around the time of the release their critically acclaimed self-titled debut The Belle Brigade featuring such sunny and satisfying slices of pop rock as "Belt of Orion" above (see the full May 18th, 2011 Amoeba Hollywood in-store here).

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Kylie Minogue's New "Sexercise" Video Goes Viral

Posted by Billyjam, March 19, 2014 05:25pm | Post a Comment

Kylie Minogue "Sexercise" from the Australian artist's brand new album Kiss Me Once (2014)


Kylie Minogue's brand new video for "Sexercise" has gone viral, having racked up over half a million views since the video was published to YouTube earlier today. The Will Davidson directed music video above is presented as "the sexiest workout ever" (note, with parental warning) and features Minogue getting her sexercise on in stilettos and leotard.
The song is culled from the Australian pop sensation's brand new 11 song album Kiss Me Once that arrived in Amoeba yesterday and features such other tracks as "Sexy Love," "Million Miles," "I Was Gonna Cancel," and "Into The Blue."  The Into The Blue Remix EP featuring four different non-album versions of the song preceded this release by a few weeks. Meanwhile Kiss Me Once is Minogue's first official new studio album since 2010's Aphrodite but her first full length release since 2012's The Abbey Road Sessions.
 

New York State of Mind Amoeblog #72: The Beatles Exhibit, Billy Joel @ MSG, Macaron Day NYC, SWV, G&E, Warpaint + more

Posted by Billyjam, March 19, 2014 08:21am | Post a Comment

Billy Joel "New York State of Mind (Live @ Tokyo Dome)" (2006)

After much publicity Billy Joel finally kicks off his new monthly residency at the cavernous Madison Square Garden (MSG) this Friday (March 21st) and once a month thereafter up until tickets stop selling for the "Piano Man." So far the first seven months of this Las Vegas type series of  Billy Joel shows are officially sold-out or near sold out. Hence there are some tickets still available for this week's show when seats range from $64.50 to $124.50 per ticket. Each show promises to be a Billy Joel Greatest Hits styled showcase (Joel sure has an arsenal of hits to draw from!) with the Bronx NY born artist making his "New York State of Mind" a highlight: maybe the finale song of each show. Above is Joel performing that song in Japan eight years ago. The next scheduled monthly Billy Joel at MSG concert will be April 18th. Tickets and more info.

SWV, the popular nineties soul/r'n'b female singing trio whose name stands for Sisters With Voices are back keeping busy, and performing this weekend in New York. The group, who released the return album I Missed Us and star in the surprise hit reality TV show SWV Reunited, play B.B. Kings on 42nd Street on Friday night. 21+ Tix $35 to $40. 8pm show. More info

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Hip-Hop History Tuesdays: With Help from World's Famous Supreme Team & Others, Malcolm McLaren Created A Hip-Hop Classic

Posted by Billyjam, March 18, 2014 08:00am | Post a Comment

    


A true sign of any album qualifying as a classic in its respective genre is when, even 31 years after its initial malcolm mclarenrelease, it still packs the same punch it did upon first listen. Such is most definitely the case with Malcolm McLaren's hip-hop and world music 43:36 minute classic album Duck Rock that was originally released in January 1983 on Island Records in the US and on Charisma in the UK. Presenting divergent styles of music from round the globe, most notably hip-hop and African and all interspersed with NYC hip-hop radio show snippets from the World's Famous Supreme Team radio show,  Duck Rock featured such timeless hits as "Buffalo Gals" and "Double Dutch." And while British impresario Malcolm McLaren, who was perhaps best known then and now as the former manager of the Sex Pistols, is credited as the album's creator or main artist, that was not technically the case. The maverick McLaren was really more of a hands-on executive producer with a knack for unearthing new trends long before they broke and repackaging them for public consumption. And for this intuitive gift McLaren, who died four years ago, has been praised for discovering new artists/genres while alternately been criticized for exploitation. McLaren has also (rightfully) been accused of routinely giving himself more much credit than he may have deserved. In the case of Duck Rock he is listed as the artist on the record while there are numerous artists on there - with McLaren, who sings and kind of raps throughout Duck Rock (like when he does the talkover in "Double Dutch"), being just one contributing artist. McLaren is also credited as "producer" along with (post Buggles / pre The Art of Noise) Trevor Horn who actually did the majority of the music production; perfectly melding together divergent styles and sounds that included South American, Caribbean, and down home Americana roots. Thomas Dolby was also a musical contributor.

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