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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Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week End 01.10.14: E-40, Childish Gambino, Iamsu!, Flavor Flav, Midnite Cru, Jazzy Jeff & Shortkut, Sensational doc +

Posted by Billyjam, January 10, 2014 12:05pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Hollywood Hip-Hop Top 5 Week Ending 01:10:14


1) Childish Gambino Because the Internet (Glassnote)

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

3)
Eminem The Marshall Mathers LP2 (Interscope)

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

5) Earl Sweatshirt Doris (Columbia)

Childish Gambino, aka the rap alter ego of actor/comedian Donald Glover, is once again the number one, top selling hip-hop artist at Amoeba Hollywood for the third week in a row. Not bad for a guy who at first was not really considered a serious hip-hop artist but mostly recognized for his acting/writing/stand up comedy careers. But so successful is Glover's Childish Gambino rap career that he made the (what must have been tough) decision to quit the cast of the popular NBC sitcom Community (last night's "Bum Crack Bandit" episode was most entertaining) mid way through its current, recently returned, fifth season so as to be able to focus 100% on his rap career and do shows to support Because the Internet (Glassnote).

Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week End 12.20.13: Childish Gambino, Dam-Funk & Snoopzilla, E-40, Madlib, DJ Toure, + more

Posted by Billyjam, December 20, 2013 08:08am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Berkeley Hip-Hop Top 5 Chart Week Ending 12:20:13

1) Childish Gambino Because the Internet (Glassnote)

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

3. DJ Platurn So This Is De La Heaven 2 (Oakland Faders)

4) Madlib Rock Konducta Vol. 1 (Stones Throw)

5. E-40 Block Brochure Vol. 4, (Heavy On The Grind)
    E-40 Block Brochure Vol. 5
(Heavy On The Grind)
    E-40 Block Brochure Vol. 6  (Heavy On The Grind)

He may be known to most as an actor and comedian, but Donald Glover, under his hip-hop alter ego Childish Gambino,  is also an accomplished skilled rapper and not a novelty rapper who proves with the success of his latest Childish Gambino release (Because the Internet is this week's top hip-hop chart entry) that he indeed has a lot to offer the hip-hop world. Of that number one at Amoeba Berkeley this week the Amoeba.com reviewers write,  "He’ll likely always have to content with haters knocking him for starting as a comedian, but now Glover can point to Because the Internet as proof positive that his multifaceted professional title can firmly include rapper, as well." Indeed! Meanwhile another artist, who started as hip-hop but has drifted off into other areas of pop culture and watered down his rap street by cavorting with the likes of Martha Stewart and Katy Perry in the kitchen and studio respectively, Snoop Dogg returns supreme with his latest project: Dam-Funk & Snoopzilla 7 Days of Funk on Stones Throw on which the artist known as Snoop Lion for a minute returns to his (G) funk roots with the best practitioner of said genre, power producer/multi-instrumentalist Dam-Funk who presents the Long Beach, CA artist born Calvin Broadus with the perfect smokey funky musical backdrop. Amoeba.com reviewers accurately herald this EP release as, "a revelatory event for for fans of and freaks for The Funk, and should be particularly pleasing for those whose funk du jour is syrup-thick mid-tempo boogie-funk seasoned heavy with synthesizers a la Yarborough & Peoples or Zapp. ......Easily transcending the side-project ghetto, 7 Days of Funk is two major voices in contemporary music, subsuming their individual identities into something new and simply huge. A match made in funk heaven." Indeed!

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Hip-Hop History Tuesdays: The Roots of Oakland Rap and The Birth of Bay Area Hip-Hop in the 1980s

Posted by Billyjam, November 26, 2013 06:15pm | Post a Comment

Motorcycle Mike
Today's richly vibrant, prolific, and diverse Bay Area hip-hop  scene, with thousands of artists currently making a broad range of styles, humbly began in Oakland 32 years ago back in 1981. It was early in that year when the very first Oakland rap release (also the very first known Bay Area rap release) dropped: Motorcycle Mike's single "Super Rat." The record arrived in a time when hip-hop or rap music was still considered an East Coast/New York artform that, for some odd (elitist?) reason, could not hail from the West Coast. This belief was challenged with releases like releases like Motorcyle Mike's debut 12" rap single. That record by the artist, who was also known as Motorcycle Mike Dappa, was entitled "Super Rat" and was produced by Gerald Robinson and released on the tiny indie Hodisk Records -- the label run by Nicky Moore that also relToo $hort Don't Stop Rappineased the Numonics.  Born Phil Lewis and influenced by Bootsy Collins as much as the Sugarhill Gang,  Motorcycle Mike was, not surprisingly, a motorbike fanatic. Pro-Black in its message, "Super Rat" featured the early Oakland rapper drawing an analogy between the then much talked about Norwegian "super rats," who could not be killed by poison but instead got stronger, and the underdog black man in Oakland and other American urban areas who could not be kept down. Motorcycle Mike's original Oakland rap record was followed up later that same year from the East Bay city by the 12" single “Tally Ho!” on Walker Star Records from Steve Walker - an artist who would re-emerged some years later to record under the name Biscuit.

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Hieroglyphics Producer DJ Toure Talks to the Amoeblog About His Long Awaited Solo Debut "Toure's Theory: Session One"

Posted by Billyjam, February 25, 2013 04:45pm | Post a Comment

DJ Toure documentary (electronic press kit 2013)

Last Tuesday DJ Toure, DJ/producer and member of Oakland's longtime Hieroglyphics crew, released his long-awaited solo album, Toure's Theory: Session One, which initially was expected to drop last year but due to his busy schedule got bumped back until now. The prolific artist, who in addition to working with the Hieros crew including member Casual  has, over the years, produced tracks for the likes Too $hort, Freeway, Devin The Dude, Phonte, Father Dom, Beeda Weeda, The Grouch & Eligh, Goapele, E-40, and Forty Wata's rapper son Droop-E, has been down with the Hieros since day - initially joining the crew as the DJ for his (elementary school mate) Casual .

The above Dylan Freitas-D'Louhy directed electronic press kit video gives some insight into DJ Toure's rich history (coming up in Oakland upbringing with fellow Hieros (Casual, Tajai, Opio, and A-Plus) as well as some background on the new album that includes many of the aforementioned artists he's worked with including members of the Hieros - Opio, Pep Love, Del The Funky Homosapien, and Casual; plus such Bay Area artists as Too $hort (see new video below for the album track "Mind Yo Business" that also features Jacoria Marzett.), E-40, Mistah FAB, Clyde Carson, B-Legit, J. Stalin, Nio Tha Gift, and The Jacka, as well as such other guests as Philly rap star Freeway.

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