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Hip-Hop Rap-Up: Hip Hop In The Park, Souls of Mischief in NYC, Top 5, E-Lit's New Releases, Amoeba Converse Exhibit + more

Posted by Billyjam, May 1, 2015 09:05am | Post a Comment

This weekend marks the nineteenth year of Hip Hop In The Park - Berkeley's annual free, all ages, all elements inclusive, hip-hop event in Peoples Park, located behind Amoeba Berkeley. Since 1997, the Students For Hop Hop @ Cal have been presenting this always fun afternoon celebration of hip-hop culture. This year's headliner is Fashawn who has been winning over a whole wave of fans since connecting with Nas and the Queensbridge rapper's new label,  Mass Appeal, on which he released the critically acclaimed The Ecology two months ago. Just in the past week, the Fresno rapper unleashed the album's second single and accompanying video, "Higher."

The Souls of Mischief along with their childhood friend and director of the engaging documentary on the Hiero crew, 'Til Infinity, Shomari Smith are all in New York City right now for the screening of the film tonight at the Helen Mills Theater on West 26th Street as part of the New York City International Film Festival (NYCIFF 2015). So far, the veteran Oakland hip-hop crew have included doing an interview with Birthplace magazine, and stopping by an old friend's radio show. 

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Hip-Hop Rap-Up: BadBadNotGood & Ghostface Killah, Big Sean, THEESatisfaction, Fashawn, Churchward Pub DJ Battle + more

Posted by Billyjam, February 26, 2015 07:00pm | Post a Comment
Amoeba Berkeley Hip-Hop Top 5 Week ending 02:27:15


1) BadBadNotGood & Ghostface Killah Sour Soul (Lex)

2) Fashawn The Ecology (Mass Appeal) [also avail as LP and DL]

3) THEESatisfaction EarthEE (Sub Pop)

4) Big Sean Dark Sky Paradise (Def Jam) [
also a deluxe CD]

5) L'Orange After the Flowers (Mello Music)

The brand new number one hip-hop chart entry at Amoeba Music Berkeley this week (thank-you to E-Lit for providing the above top five chart) is the collaborative effort of Wu-Tang member Ghostface Killah and Canadian jazz trio BadBadNotGood for their one-off, full-length, joint project Sour Soul on Lex Records - available for now in CD format only with a soon be released vinyl format to follow. While not billed as such, this new album could be considered the third part of a live collaborative trilogy by Ghostface since like his last two releases - last year's 36 Seasons and 2013's Twelve Reason To Die - Sour Soul is another production that finds the WU emcee rhyming with a live band. This time out it's BadBadNotGood who, as well as their own work as a trio, have previously collaborated with the likes of Danny Brown (who coincidentally appears here) and Earl Sweatshirt - although only on individual tracks, not a full length project as here with Ghostface Killah. The end result is a strong album whose standout tracks include "Mind Playing Tricks," "Tone's Rap," "Gunshowers (feat elZhi)," and “Ray Gun (feat. DOOM)” (see music video below).

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Weekly Hip-Hop Rap-Up: Joey Bada$$, Zion I, 88 Ultra, Freez & Mike Fry, Doomtree, E-Lit

Posted by Billyjam, February 13, 2015 10:01am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Berkeley Hip-Hop Top Five Week Ending Feb 13 2015


1) Joey Bada$$ B4.DA.$$ LP (Cinematic Music)

2) Wiley Life Is A Game of Snakes & Ladders (Big Dada)

3) 88 Ultra Sirens (Ultra Glacial Recordings)

4) Freez & Mike Fry Freez's Frozen French Freys (Soul Tools)

5) Doomtree All Hands (Doomtree)

Thanks to E-Lit at the Berkeley Amoeba Music store for the latest Top Five Hip-Hop chart above. Below is the accompanying video clip shot this week at the East Bay store with E-Lit running down all these and other new/recent (and reissue) hip-hop releases in both LP and CD formats that are featured at Amoeba Berkeley right when you come in the front door of the Telegraph Ave store on your right hand side. Also down below is the brand new music video from Zion I ("Juggernaut") that was filmed mostly right outside Amoeba Berkeley as well as across the street and round the back (Peoples Park) from Amoeba among some other quick shot locations.

The Bed-Stuy Brooklyn NYC artist born Jo-Vaughn Virginie Scott but widely known as main man of Pro Era, Joey Bada$$, as well as Malia Obama's favorite rapper, continues to sell well at Amoeba with the vinyl version of his official debut (commercial release) new album B4.DA.$$ (Cinematic Music) outselling the CD version of B4.DA.$$. And this week the artist released a new music video for "Like Me" featuring BJ the Chicago Kid that (with the refrain "fuck the police") addresses police brutality and the Black Lives Matter movement (see the music video clip down below). Other new chart entries this week include UK hip-hop/grime artist Wiley's Life Is A Game of Snakes & Ladders (that is also available in LP/vinyl format as well as digital download - all care of Big Dada. The others include Doomtree's December 2014 release All Hands (Doomtree) that is also available in vinyl format, 88 Ultra Sirens (Ultra Glacial Recordings), and Freez & Mike Fry's Freez's Frozen French Freys (Soul Tools). For more background on these two releases peep the E-Lit video shot at Amoeba Music this week in which he gives some background on these acts/releases.

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Weekly Hip-Hop Rap-Up: Joey Bada$$, A$AP Yams, J-Dilla, Lupe Fiasco, Sadat X, Boosie Badass, Drew Dave, Too $hort, Rae Sremmurd

Posted by Billyjam, January 23, 2015 08:30am | Post a Comment

Lots of videos in this week's hip-hop rap up including KALX DJ/Amoeba Music employee at the Berkeley store E-Lit doing a nice overview of the new and recent CD and LP hip-hop (and related) releases to arrive in store lately and make up the two new top five hip-hop charts below - divided into CD and vinyl sections since there is so much more vinyl coming out these days - new and reissues like the 180 Gram reissue of Too $hort's 1980's classic Born To Mack. But first we send out our condolences to the family of A$AP Yams (pictured above and left with the A$AP crew) who died over this past weekend.

One of the founding members of New York City's very successful A$AP Mob collective it was first widely rumored via social media on Sunday that he had passed away as the result of a drug overdose. However associates of his in the collective insisted that those rumors were untrue and totally unfounded. As of now no official cause of death is known but what is known is that Yams' roommate in Brooklyn called 911 after finding laying down unconscious.



Amoeba Berkeley Hip-Hop Top Five CD Albums Week end Jan 23 2015


1) Joey Bada$$ B4.DA.$$ (Cinematic)
   (also avail in vinyl - see other chart below)

Hip-Hop Rap-Up, Week End 07.04.14: G-Eazy, Riff Raff, Open Mike Eagle, Sapient, Sadistik, Apollo Brown, Nu-Mark & Slimkid 3, + more

Posted by Billyjam, July 4, 2014 07:30am | Post a Comment

G-Eazy "These Things Happen" (2014)


Amoeba Berkeley Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: Week Ending 06:20:14

1) G-Eazy  These Things Happen (BPG)

2) Riff Raff Neon Icon (Mad Decent)

3) Sapient Eaters vol. 2: Light Tiger (Sapient Kills)

4) Open Mike Eagle Dark Comedy (Mello Music Group)

5) Sadistik "Ultraviolet" (Fake Four Inc)

This week's number one album at the East Bay Amoeba Music store is from Oakland raised rapper G-Eazy, who relentlessly paved the way to success via relentless uploading of tracks online plus tireless concerts and touring (including Warped Tour and opening for Lil Wayne, and Drake), with his third album/first major label release
These Things Happen via SONY. Although he's been making music for many years G-Eazy's real break came 3 years ago with the release of his mixtape The Endless Summer that included a reworking of Dion's "Runaround Sue" that featured collaborations with Greg Banks, Erika Flowers, and Devon Baldwin and became a viral video sensation - paving the way for his current success or impending success. Devon Baldwin returns on this new album on the popular pre-album single/video released track "Let's Get Lost" (see video below). Elsewhere throughout his new major label debut, which is selling extremely well across the country, G-Eazy addresses his impeding major success on songs such as the title track, “Almost Famous,” and “Opportunity Cost.”

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