Hip-Hop History Tuesdays: The Native Tongues

Posted by Billyjam, April 28, 2015 11:45am | Post a Comment
Upon digging in the golden era hip-hop LP crates recently I uncovered an amazing album that I had not listened to in full in some time - the Jungle Brothers' 1988 debut album Straight Out The Jungle on Idlers/Warlock - that reminded me of how, upon its release, that was the record that introduced hip-hop fans like myself to the Native Tongues - as well as to Q-Tip who guested on the album tracks "Black Is Black" and "The Promo."

Centered in New York City and with direct ties to the Universal Zulu Nation, the Native Tongues were not a crew but rather a collective of different crews and acts that came together as a loose knit movement bonded by Afrocentric rooted hip-hop with uplifting lyrics focus on positivity and with a musical / production focus on jazzy grooves and eclectic samples (along with jazz, funk, and soul samples, the aforementioned Jungle Brothers album title track sampled Cameroon, Central Africa artist Manu Dibango). In addition to its leading act The Jungle Brothers (aka the JBs), the Native Tongues also included De La Soul and A Tribe Called Quest (its core members), as well as such artists as Queen Latifah, Black Sheep, and Monie Love as among its many members. Other Native Tongue members - albeit to a much lesser and/or later degree of involvement - have said to have included Chi-Ali, Fu-Schnickens, The Beatnuts, Brand Nubian, Leaders of the New School, Common, and Da Bush Babees. However while these hip-hop acts continued for many years - some up until the present - the actual Native Tongues collective slowly disintegrated and became no more by the early nineties - many correctly correlating the demise of Afrocentric hip-hop with that of the Native Tongues movement. 

Continue reading...

Gift Ideas for Hip Hop Heads

Posted by Amoebite, December 2, 2014 02:01pm | Post a Comment

gift ideas for hip hop heads

Here is our list of gift ideas culled from recent Hip Hop releases (with a few classics thrown in), plus 10 Hip Hop vinyl reissues from 2014 every fan should have.


Diabolic - Fightin' Words

Fightin' Words is a long delayed release from East Coast rapper Diabolic which has been in the works for four years. Originally intended to come out on Viper Records, the album instead got released via the recently founded WarHorse Records. Mic collaborators include such hard hitters as Vinnie Paz, Apathy, and R.A. the Rugged Man, while production is handled in most part by DJ Premier.

Buy CD | LP.

Freddie Gibbs & Madlib Pinata 

Brian Coleman's Bay Area Book Tour In Support of "Check The Technique Volume 2"

Posted by Billyjam, November 13, 2014 01:22pm | Post a Comment
Respected longtime music journalist/hip-hop fanatic Brian Coleman will be in the Bay Area this week to promote his brand new book Check the Technique Volume 2 (Wax Facts) that picks up where the 2007 published first volume and its 2005 predecessor left off with "more liner notes for hip-hop junkies" as the engaging, information packed 526 page new book accurately promises on its cover.

Spanning 25 chapters with over 80 interviews and tons of accompanying images Coleman has meticulously presented the back story of 25 albums and 325 hip-hop songs (some eighties but mostly nineties) with the artists, producers, plus some label execs associated with them weighing in on these recordings. The end result is a page turner packed with  insights and answers to questions you might have had, or had not thought you wondered about until reading this enlightening book.

The chapters include The Coup Steal This Album, Diamond and the Psychotic Neurotics Stunts, Blunts & Hip Hop, Dr. Octagon Dr. Octagonecologyst, Ice Cube AmeriKKKa's Most Wanted & Kill At Will, Masta Ace Incorporated SlaughtaHouse, Kool G Rap & DJ Polo Wanted: Dead Or Alive, ED O.G & Da Bulldogs Life Of A Kid In The Ghetto, Jeru The Damaja The Sun Rises In The East, Mos Def & Talib Kweli Are Black Star, and KMD Black Bastards. Meanwhile the accompanying artist interviews include ones with such hip-hop acts as DJ Jazzy Jeff, Ice Cube, Mos Def & Talib Kweli, Mantronix, MF Doom, and Company Flow.

Continue reading...

Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week End 01.31.14: Childish Gambino, DJ Platurn, DJ Mek, Step Brothers, Bobby Capri, Eclectic Method + more

Posted by Billyjam, January 31, 2014 12:30pm | Post a Comment

Childish Gambino "3005" (from 
Because the Internet - his number one album at Amoeba)

Amoeba Music Hollywood Hip-Hop Top Five for Week Ending January 31 2014

1) Childish Gambino Because the Internet (Glassnote)

2) Dam-Funk & Snoopzilla 7 Days of Funk (Stones Throw)

Eminem The Marshall Mathers LP2 (Interscope)

4) Dom Kennedy Get Home Safely (The Other Peoples Money Co.)

5) Earl Sweatshirt Doris (Columbia)

Shout out to Ervin at Amoeba Hollywood for this week's hip-hop chart that reflects the best sellers at the SoCal store and pretty much repeats last week's chart from the store. Meanwhile a brand new release not on this chart but selling well and likely to be on next week's chart is the
The Step Brothers' Lord Steppington on Rhymesayers  Entertainment (CD & 2 LP vinyl) that is really an amazing album. I have listened to it repeatedly over the past week and each listen hear some new part due to its intricately layered production - thanks to the endlessly talented duo of The Alchemist and Evidence who make up the Step Brothers and are joined by a excellently chosen group of guest emcees throughout the 14 tracks including Oh No ("Draw Something") and Styles P ("No Hesitation").

Continue reading...

Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week End 06.28.13: Wale, Dessa, Quasimoto, Evidence, E-Lit, Skrip, De La Soul, Blunt Club Oakland + more

Posted by Billyjam, June 28, 2013 11:19am | Post a Comment
E-Lit @ Amoeba Berkeley with new Hip-Hop for week ending June 28, 2013

Amoeba Music Berkeley Hip-Hop Top Five: Week Ending 06:28:13

1) Kanye West Yeezus (Def Jam)

2) Dessa The Parts of Speech (Doomtree)

3) Wale The Gifted (Atlantic)

4) The White Mandingos The Ghetto Is Tryna Kill Me (Ingrooves/Fat Beats)

5) Quasimoto Yessir, Whatever (Stones Throw)

 Thanks again this week go out to my man E-Lit at Amoeba Berkeley for both providing the new Top Five Hip-Hop chart for Amoeba Berkeley and the video breakdown (also above) of the latest hip-hop releases (CD and vinyl) to arrive into Amoeba over the past week. Scroll down to see accompanying/corresponding videos for many of these new chart entries and new releases referenced by E-Lit including Dessa ("Call Off Your Ghost" from The Parts of Speech on Doomtree), Quasimoto ("Youngblood" off of  Yessir, Whatever on Stones Throw), Wale's "Bad" featuring Tiara Thomas from The Gifted on Atlantic), and The White Mandingos' "Mandingo Rally" off The Ghetto Is Tryna Kill Me on Ingrooves/Fat Beats. Also below is brand new video from Skrip for the new song "Stop It" of which the artist said, “Music was made for more than perpetuating negativity, and if you’ve got the gift you don’t need to try to copy anyone else; give people a breath of fresh air," adding that, "Music with a meaning is what lacks in popular Hip Hop, and “Stop It” is bound to step on some toes-deservedly.” Yes indeedy! Scroll down to see this and the other new music videos - plus the EPK (electronic press kit) for the classic from De La Soul taken off their (recently reissued on double vinyl) Prince Paul produced golden era hip-hop album 3 Feet High & Rising. (also re-reissued on CD)

In Oakland tonight there's a lot of shows and parties happening including the premiere East Bay presentation of (Arizona founded) Blunt Club Oakland at hot new Oakland spot The Legionnaire Saloon (Telegraph near 22nd) with DJs Saurus, Max Kane, Platurn, Teeko, Pickster plus Pep Love (Hieros) and Foreign Legion both performing (FL's Prozack Turner is one of the new club owners). There will also be art on display by Dump La Rock and Griffin and the new East Bay monthly party will be hosted by The Night Clubber Lang. 21+ more info here. Meanwhile about 18 blocks down towards Oakland's Jack London Square on Broadway near 3rd/4th Streets at The Night Light will be Aztlan Nation alum DJ Delgado spinning party music with friends from early evening late into the night. Starting at 5pm and going non-stop until 2am there is no cover for this night of an eclectic mix of hip-hop, various schools of reggae, funk, breaks and beats - all billed as the Fresh Jamz Friday party. 21+ More info here.

Continue reading...
<<  1  2  3  4  >>  NEXT