Amoeblog

The Best Albums of 2016

Posted by Amoebite, December 19, 2016 03:01pm | Post a Comment

Best of 2016

With the holiday season fast approaching and 2016 drawing to an end, we decided to take a look back at some of our favorite releases for the year. Staff from all three of our stores --  in Hollywood, San Francisco, and Berkeley -- shared their picks for the year's best music and movies and told us a little about what made them so awesome. So hop in the Amoeba sleigh with us, won't you, as we go on a magical holiday journey through the early months of 2016 till now, adventuring from world music to rock 'n' roll and everything in between, savoring the most memorable works from some of our most beloved artists. (It might even give you a few swell ideas for record-shaped stocking stuffers.) 

Best of 2016 - rock

Anohni Hopelessness

ANOHNI - Hopelessness

I have been a fan of Anohni (formerly known as Antony & the Johnsons) for a long time now. She has another one of those distinctive voices that there is no confusing for someone else. Another great album produced by the amazing ANOHNI. The words in the songs are so full of emotion and power it is almost too much to handle sometimes. This album somehow feels like it is in the future. The songs are very set in the present. But the music really takes me to the future. Or at least makes me feel like we will be OK as long as we have ANOHNI to help guide us through the uncertain future. - Brad, Hollywood

Best of 2016 Hip-Hop Lists: Top 7 Lists of Albums, Female MCs, DJ Releases, Reissues, Monalisa's Top 7 Album Picks + more

Posted by Billyjam, December 14, 2016 01:42pm | Post a Comment
Top 7 Hip-Hop Albums of 2016 by Billy Jam


1:  A Tribe Called Quest We Got It From Here,... Thank You 4 Your Service (Epic)

2: De La Soul and the Anonymous Nobody (A.O.I. LLC) (also on 2 LP vinyl)

3: Homeboy Sandman Kindness for Weakness (also on LP) (Stones Throw)

4: E-40 The D-Boy Diary Book 1 + The D-Boy Diary Book 2,
           (Heavy On The Grind)

5: Mr. Lif Don't Look Down (also on LP) (Mello Music Group)


6: ElZhi  Lead Poison (also on LP) (Glow 365) 

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The Ten Most Noteworthy Collaborations on E-40’s The D-Boy Diary: Book 1 & Book 2

Posted by The Bay Area Crew, November 30, 2016 07:55pm | Post a Comment

E-40, D-Boy Diary: Book 1-- By doubleay

Vallejo’s E-40 is a man of many titles. 40 Fonzarelli, 40 Water, and "the tycoon known as Charlie Hustle" are only a few of his dozen or so monikers, but the truest of his titles undoubtedly has to be "The Ambassador of the Bay."

The prolific MC is a forefather of West Coast hip-hop, and his extensive discography and boundless accolades have essentially deemed him the epitome of Bay Area rap. 40 brought Bay Area’s unique sound and style to the rest of the world and if any artist wanted to get a piece of the Bay Area scene, they’d have to go through 40 Belafonte to get it. While many other hip-hop legends have comfortably taken their seat among the ranks of rap’s hall of fame, E-40 has never slowed down nor declined in relevance. Many rap veterans may feel threatened by break-through up-and-comers, but in 40’s case it is quite the opposite. In fact, one of the most admirable things about E-40 is the interest he takes in young artists. While continually progressing his own career, 40 has always put on and supported rising talent new to the industry. E-40’s incomparable stature and experience, met with his kindhearted tendency to promote up-and-comers, truly warrants the title "Ambassador of the Bay."

E-40, D-Boy Diary: Book 2After 27 solo albums, E-40 is back with a new double LP that totally embodies The Ambassador’s ability to cater to his people, both young and old. The D-Boy Diary: Book 1 & Book 2 are each 22 tracks in total, featuring a star-studded track list of stand out OG’s to young bucks. The project has over 40 features, including everything from legends both native and foreign to the Bay Area to fresh up-and-comers with little to no fame or coverage. Few albums have ever had a unique and substantial list of collaborators successfully cater to a wide audience such as this. In an effort to bring some clarity to the depth of this all-ages showcase of a project, I took it upon myself to highlight the most notable features on the double LP.

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Hip-Hop Rap Up: Top 5 Charts, Music Videos, A Tribe Called Quest, KRS-One, 2Pac, Dinco D, DuBBle-OO, Baby Bash, Lex The Hex Master

Posted by Billyjam, November 15, 2016 07:23pm | Post a Comment
Top 5 New Hip-Hop Albums (New CDs + Vinyl Reissues)


1: Baby Bash  Don't Panic It's Organic (Bashtown Records)

2: Lex The Hex Master Contact (Majik Ninja)

3: DuBBle-OO Next Level (Space Age Entertainment)  

4: 2Pac 2Pacalypse Now 2LP (Interscope Records)

5: The Roots Illadelph Halflife 2LP (Geffen)

 
                [NOTE: Amoeba SHIPS FREE anywhere  in USA]



Top Five Upcoming Nov 18th Hip-Hop [Pre-Order] Releases


1: A Tribe Called Quest We Got It From Here, Thank You for Your Service (Epic Records)

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1994 Hip-Hop Flashback: Rap/Hip-Hop Charts from Billboard, Leopold Records, Music People, Gavin Report, KMEL, KUSF

Posted by Billyjam, November 2, 2016 08:01pm | Post a Comment
For this hip-hop flashback to 1994, we take a look at a variety of rap/hip-hop charts spanning various times throughout that wonderfully rich twelve months in hip-hop history twenty two years ago. Including singles, extended plays and album releases, these charts or lists are comprised of both national and regional (with a focus on Bay Area), and based on either sales figures or radio airplay.  Since the charts listed are not for all of 1994 and tallying year end figures, but rather sample charts from various weeks or months throughout that year, they tends to give a better overall (or at least alternative) view of hip-hop in the Nine Fo' compared to the usual "best of '94 hip-hop" lists of releases you find online. Interspersed with some corresponding music videos, the 1994 charts culled from several different sources. Among the 1994 charts below is one from longtime leading music industry magazine  Billboard.  Based on retail sales from the week ending September 17th, 1994, it is their Top 40 "Hot Rap" singles chart. That the music industry publication referred to the genre as "rap" and not "hip-hop" demonstrated how the music was still generally referred, even in '94.  Another Billboard chart (albeit not strictly rap) below is their "Regional Heatseekers #1's" chart that highlighted buzz-worthy, hot selling, number one charting releases from various regions round the country. Rappin' 4-Tay was number one in the Pacific region Also below is the first top 20 of a top 40 Gavin Rap chart from now defunct, San Francisco based, radio trade industry magazine Gavin Report. and compiled by rap editor Thembisa Mshaka.There's three charts from the long gone Oakland one-stop distributor Music People (who owned In-A-Minute Records) whose former employee (later DogDay Records co-founder) Jo Treggiari prepared the three charts below: "Down In Our Hood" which was all local Bay Area (including a lot of carry over from '93 releases). "MINI'S" which was singles and cassingles (cassettes as it was still middle of the 90's), and "MAXI'S" which were EPs or more typically extended single versions with formats including cassette, CD, and vinyl.
The other charts included are from the (long gone but still missed) Leopold Records on Durant Ave. in Berkeley near the UC campus and Amoeba Berkeley (in fact many former Amoebites worked there). Leopold's was legendary for hip-hop fans. People would travel from all over the East Bay and beyond to shop at the amazingly well stocked store for their in-depth, exhaustive choices of both local indie and national releases. Consequently what homegrown music was popular with Bay hip-hop fans is reflected in their "Local Legends" full-length albums top 30 list from June of '94. The mid 1994 published list included a lot of 1993 carry over releases as well as the 1994 album via Sic Wid It/Jive from Celly Cel: Heat 4 Yo Azz which was their hot-pick "Bump of the Month." Note that most Bay Area albums listed on that chart were on CD and cassette only with not that many vinyl formatted. At this stage Bay Area was less vinyl oriented than hip-hop coming out back East. Other '94 charts below include the Top Ten KMEL radio airplay based one from the first week in September that note includes some R&B as well as rap/hip-hop. Another radio chart is one from my old KUSF San Francisco radio show charts from February 1994. You will notice how many names show up repeatedly on different charts. These include artists such as Fillmore, San Francisco's Rappin' 4 Tay, Queensbridge legend Nas, and San Francisco's Herm Lewis. Activist/artist Lewis curated the Tryin To Survive In The Ghetto: San Francisco Compilation which, although released in '93 was a sleeper that blew up into '94 on a local and national level. And his Bay rap compilation was not alone since,  it being '94 when the West Coast era of rap (with lots of G-Funk and more) was well underway, there's numerous more Left Coast artists included in these charts such as Eazy-E, Warren G, Ice Cube, South Central Cartel, Above The Law, and Coolio.  Further being it was the tail end of the genre's so-called "golden era," it consequently included such records as Gang Starr's "Dwyck."  It was also the year in which Bad Boy was beginning its chart reign with former secular rapper Craig Mack's "Flava In Ya Ear" via Puff Daddy's then one year old Bad Boy Entertainment record label leading the charge as the label's first single. That video is immediately below and followed by the chart from Billboard with it as its number entry.