Amoeblog

Brooklyn DJ Esquire Took US Title In Heated, High Caliber 2013 US DMC Finals DJ Battle

Posted by Billyjam, August 5, 2013 11:06pm | Post a Comment

DJ Esquire took the 2013 US DMC Finals title over the weekend in New York at a packed Stage 48  nightclub with DJs Spare Change and Ease taking second and third places respectively in an entertaining evening that featured inspired six minute sets by each of the 13 US contestants, event host Kool DJ Red Alert providing funny banter, great sets by the special guest performer DJs Rockin Rob, Johnny Juice, and DJ Izoh, plus a surprise moment of true turntablist romance when New Mexico contestant OHM proposed to his girlfriend.

New York City DJ Esquire became a hometown hero Saturday night at the Hells Kitchen district club when garnered the most votes to take the new title at the 2013 US DMC Finals following a heated, high caliber DJ battle featuring 13 turntable talents from all across the country,. This achievement, that he earned despite his needle breaking toward the end of his intense six minute routine, means that the Brooklyn DJ will travel to London, England to represent the US in the DMC World DJ Championship 2013 finals on October 5th. Saturday night's talent-packed battle presented somewhat of a dilemma for all the judges, myself included, since the talent was so great that it was incredibly tough in making that final decision of narrowing it down to just three DJs. Truth is that each of the other ten DJ contestants also delivered incredibly impressive sets and, it could be argued, that any one of them deserved to have ranked in the final three. I was not alone in this summation since, after the battle, talking to such fellow judges as Roli Rho, DJ Cheese, DJ Shiftee, and Snayk Eyez - all of whom had chosen different top threes - the consensus was that it was too challenging task to narrow it down to a top three. Snayk Eyez summed the battle and the content of the competitors up best when he noted how each competitor was 100% on their game with their skills down to perfection meaning that then, "It all came down to delivery, presentation, showmanship," said the visiting Bay Area DJ/judge. 

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DJ Quest: May 2013 Amoeblog Interview

Posted by Billyjam, May 9, 2013 02:38pm | Post a Comment
Usually DJ Quest goes to Amoeba but last week it was the other way around when the Amoeblog visited the Mission District home studios of the legendary San Francisco turntablist (video below) who has done several performances at Amoeba Music over the years including a record release set for his 2008 album Questulous and another with the DJ youth group the The DJ Project, that featured youth DJs from Horizons Unlimited and the Quest School of DJ Arts, where he mentors at-risk youth to gain arts education as well as the employment and entrepreneurial skills to help get them music-related careers. Throughout his two-decade plus career DJ Quest has always been as much of an inspiration and educator to aspiring DJs as he has been an artist/performer - using the turntable as a tool and sort of text book to educate and inspire. Last summer accompanied by talented young DJs he went down to Monterey County, CA where, as part of the Monterey County Free Libraries' (MCFL) Summer Reading 2012 program at several branches across the county he hosted several well-received scratch/hip-hop DJ turntable performances and Q+A seminars.

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"A Community Event" - DJ Cue on Sunday's 2013 San Francisco DMC Regional DJ Battle

Posted by Billyjam, April 25, 2013 11:45am | Post a Comment
The renaissance in the turntable arts and all it entails, including skratch music and hip-hop DJ battles, that began in the past couple of years - following a bit of a lull for close to a decade - continues its resurgence in San Francisco this weekend when, for the second year in a row after a noticeable six year absence, the prestigious DMC (now celebrating 30 years) DJ battle returns for a Bay Area regional battle. And considering that the Bay Area has long been viewed as one of the main epicenters of turntable culture and battle-DJing this is a most welcome return.

"We're excited for this one," said veteran San Francisco DJ/producer DJ Cue who as well as working behind the scenes will also be a special performer at the event. The 2013 DMC San Francisco Regional Battle takes place on Sunday afternoon/evening (April 28th) at Neck Of The Woods on Clement Street in The City. For his anticipated performance DJ Cue will be joined onstage by his longtime turntable crew partner DJ Quest who two decades ago, along with Eddie Def, formed the legendary San Francisco turntablist crew the Bullet Proof Scratch Hamsters (BPSH). At that time the BPSH crew made history by releasing the first DJ battle record, Hamster Breaks, something no doubt that will be on DJ Cue's mind on Sunday.
"I would say that this year marks a good twenty one years now that the Bay DJ's have been really solidly in the battle scene. Hamster Breaks came out twenty years ago. Invisbl Skratch Piklz won DMC twenty one years ago. And the DJ's from here have been strong ever since. Our history is strong here and we are together supporting the event and forward movement of the battle scene and to wherever it goes," said the Bay Area proud DJ Cue who is also one of the organizers of this weekend's event which he describes as a true group/community effort.

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The Future Is In Our Hands: NAMM 2013 Report by Shing02, Exclusive to The Amoeblog

Posted by Billyjam, January 29, 2013 05:46am | Post a Comment

Shing02's Amoeblog Video Report from NAMM 2013

Once again my man Hip Hop Slam correspondent Shing02 graces the Amoeblog with another in his ever informative digests in the ongoing exclusive Amoeblog reports (video above, text and pics below) from NAMM (National Association of Music Merchants) - the annual DJ/producer/music-tech trade show that happens each January at the Anaheim Convention Center. This year's was held over the past week/weekend: from January 24th to 27th, 2013. Thanks to Shing02 and all of the folks he talked to for their contributions to this piece including DJ Q-bert, OP-1, Yoga Frog, DJ Platurn, DJ Quest, Mista B, DJ P-Trix, DJ A-1, Vestax Spin2, PDJ, Numark Orbit, Apogee Quartet McDSP, Stylophone, Elektron AnalogFour, Gittler Guitar, Chord Dice, Wheel Harp, and Koichi Sanchez aka Nightshift.





Shing02's Amoeblog Report on NAMM 2013

The NAMM Convention in Anaheim, CA proved to be on par with previous years as it featured hundreds of exhibitors showcasing digital and analog instruments,    complete with colorful participants who packed the convention floor. Despite the cloudiness for most of the days, the feverishly festive mood is an annual destination for music industry heads worldwide.

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Sunshine Prevailed and Hip-Hop/DJ Culture Was Celebrated At Cue's Records Reunion BBQ in Daly City

Posted by Billyjam, October 15, 2012 12:25pm | Post a Comment
As anyone who has spent even a small amount of time in Daly City will confirm odds are that, regardless of whatever season of the year it might be, that the weather in this suburb south of San Francisco will  undoubtedly be foggy or overcast. But to everyone's pleasant surprise on Saturday, October 13th, seemingly in honor of the legacy of Cue's Records  the Weather Gods graciously lifted back every trace of fog and bestowed nothing but blue skies and glorious sunshine all day long!

That lucky weather break from the norm provided the perfect backdrop to the hip-hop reunion at Gellert Park in honor of Cue's Records Daly City store that closed a dozen years ago.

"I haven't seen most of these guys since the store closed back in 2000," commented Joe Quixx echoing a sentiment uttered many times on Saturday. Quixx was just one of the many Bay Area hip-hop DJs in attendance on Saturday with direct ties to the much missed record store/hip-hop meeting place. He was also just one of the countless DJs to jump on one of the four DJ set ups Saturday to spin and/or cut up some classic hip-hop.

Other DJs flexing their skills included DJ Quest (who also provided the big booming sound system), Quest's teenaged son DJ Train, Mista B, Shortkut, the Midnite Cru's DJ Chill and DJ Chino, DJ Marz, Kool DJ Rize, Myke One (Almighty DJs), DnZ, DJ Deeandroid, and VinRoc to name but some of the DJs who collectively played nothing but incredible music all day long (lots of old school electro and a sick ass Bay Area 90's set by Myke One). Add to all that great music, good food, special T-shirts for the reunion, live art by BIZR68, REBUKER, and HERMS (who did the cover art work for DJ Quest's last two albums),  and nothing but good vibes and conversation and you had one memorable Bay Area hip-hop reunion. One of the many highlights of the day was when DJ Shortkut, who later that night was DJing at Somar in Oakland to celebrate his birthday, stopped by with his young daughter in tow. Soon after arriving the Beat Junkies/Invisibl Skratch Piklz DJ proceeded to do a killer impromptu scratch routine all the while with his daughter happily sitting on his shoulders swaying back and forth to the beat. (see pic right)

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