Historic Event For A City That Once Banned Rap, Oakland's Hiero Day 2016 Elevated It To Best Damn Hip-Hop Festival Ever

Posted by Billyjam, September 7, 2016 07:07am | Post a Comment

Oakland's annual all day hip-hop festival, Hiero Day 2016 that took place two days ago, was both amazing and historic. Only in its fifth year, the Hieroglyphics collective curated event has not only already established itself as the best annual music and cultural festival in The Town (Oakland). But this annual Labor Day's sold-out, talent-packed, festival comprised of three different concert stages, each offering top notch and totally diverse hip-hop acts, elevated Hiero Day into the best damn hip-hop festival anywhere! Attended by respectful hip-hop fans of all generations and races, but each sharing an appreciation for all styles of hip-hop, Hiero Day 2016 exuded the most positive, peaceful, uplifting vibe of any hip-hop event of its scale that I have ever witnessed anywhere. And that prevailing positive vibe that permeated the air on Monday all seemed to fuel  the energy of the acts on stage and their tight sets. Monday's diverse list of over 50 performers included Too $hort, Paris, the Invisibl Skratch Piklz, Dilated Peoples, Murs, Mr. Lif, Just Blaze, Young L, and the Hieros themselves.. 

Continue reading...

Hiero Day 2016 Video Preview

Posted by Billyjam, September 5, 2016 01:04pm | Post a Comment

Already underway with things started, there's still time for Bay Area hip-hop fans to head on over to the fifth, latest, and best ever Hiero Day 2016 in Oakland. Previous years have been really good but this one, with all the wonderful diver acts on the bill, looks like it beats all previous years. It's an all ages event and is great for kids too since it has such an incredibly peaceful and positive vibe. Most things run close to their schedules but sometimes, like last year, things can run a bit late, especially later in the day. So be patient realistic and don't take the above schedule literally but rather as good guideline to the running order of acts and their set running lengths. In honor of this unique and wonderful cultural event that the hometown Hieroglyphics hip-hop crew (who headline) produce and present, below are a series of corresponding music videos for several of the acts to hit the three concert stages (Full Circle, Third Eye, and Infinity) later today including Dilated Peoples, Murs, Too $hort, The Beat Junkies, The Grouch, Nef The Pharaoh, Juvenile, Lyrics Born, Invisibl Skratch Piklz and Young L. Note that pre-sale tix are no longer available but you can buy tix at the gate. More info on Hiero Day 2016

Continue reading...

DJs Platurn, Cutso, Teeko, Apollo, GoldenChyld & Umani Join Forces In Homage To Bay Area Music's Rich History with B.A.R.T.

Posted by Billyjam, July 29, 2016 07:58pm | Post a Comment

Not to be confused with the public transit system in the Bay, the party entitled B.A.R.T. happening tonight at the Uptown in Oakland is a heartfelt homage to the rich music history of the Bay Area. Presented by a killer lineup of homegrown DJs who were raised on the music of the Bay, tonight's party entitled B.A.R.T. stands for Bay Area Rockin’ Together. It is presented by DJ Platurn Productions and DJ Cutso who, along with fellow longtime Bay Area DJs Goldenchyld, Teeko, Umami and DJ Apollo, will be throwing down a night of strictly Bay Area music spanning decades and "from hip-hop to rock to funk/soul and all things in between." Which begs the question, what songs or what artists?  DJ Cutso, whose set begins at 1am, told the Amoeblog that "I'd say we're doing it all from Too Short to Sly Stone to Metallica."

Former Amoeba Berkeley hip-hop staffer DJ Platurn, when asked by the Amoeblog what records might get spun tonight, sent over the collage (above) of 12" singles record covers that includes records by Ray Luv, Digital Underground, Casual, Capital Tax, and Souls of Mischief. Among the Bay Area artists that Teeko said he will be playing tonight are Little Bruce, Ruckazoid, and Mr Carmack GoldenChyld said that among his tracks to play tonight are Spice 1 "Strap on the Side, " Brotha Lynch Hung "Locc To the Brain," and RBL Posse's "Bounce to This."  Meanwhile a glance over the poster for tonight, with artist names worked into its artwork, provides even more clues on what artists' music will be played tonight. These include Con Funk Shun, E-40, En Vogue, The Coup, 2Pac, Mac Dre, Sheila E, The Doobie Brothers, and N2Deep. You have to love the depth and diversity of music from the Bay Area. In tribute to, and in anticipation of the tracks by these Bay Area artists mentioned by Cutso, Platurn, Teeko, and GoldenChyld and on their show flyer, below are a series of Bay Area music videos for tracks that might be played tonight at B.A.R.T. at Uptown. More club/show info.

Continue reading...

29 Years Later, Too $hort's "Born To Mack" Remains Oakland Rap Pioneer's Rawest But Best And Most Definitive Album

Posted by Billyjam, July 20, 2016 11:41pm | Post a Comment

With this week marking the 29th anniversary of Too $hort's album Born to Mack on Dangerous Music, I went back to re-listen in full to the July 20th, 1987 release by "the Godfather of Oakland rap." The album remains Too $hort's best: the one that laid the blueprint for the rest of his long career up to the present day. And although the LP is often presented as Short's "debut studio album," it was actually preceded in the mid 80's by a series of earlier albums by the young artist released on the local Oakland 75 Girls record label. But it would be this release on Dangerous Music (him and manager Randy Austin's breakaway label) album that would be the one to blow up Too $hort on a national level. The album led to the artist born Todd Shaw signing with Jive/RCA who would re-release the album the following year. Then the year after that, in 1989, the NYC based label would release Life is Too $hort followed by a string of many more Too $hort albums that would build upon the Born to Mack blueprint.  On each album the artist would further fine-tune the created persona of Playboy Short that he first presented on this definitive album. Re-released last year in 180 gram vinyl version by Plain Recordings, Born to Mack is a must have and worth it for just the two Too $hort classics "Freaky Tales" and "Dope Fiend Beat." 

Continue reading...

Famous Bay Area Rap Battles: Too $hort vs. KMEL

Posted by Billyjam, March 31, 2016 05:57pm | Post a Comment
Along with such legendary rap battles as Saafir vs. Casual, another one of Bay Area hip-hop history's most notorious public feuds was the mid-1990's battle in which radio station KMEL foolishly went head to head with the "Godfather of Bay Area Rap" Too $hort by banning his music on their airwaves, and stating that he hadn't had a hit in years and was at his career's end. Last Saturday at Oakland's Fox Theater the veteran Bay Area rap artist celebrated 30 years in the rap game. His show featured many surprise guests plus a smoldering hot live funk band backing him, along with opening acts Zion I, The Grouch & Eligh and DJ Fresh. Always a fan of funk and funk played live, the artist born Todd Shaw's live band included Kev Choice on keyboards while his many mic guests of the evening included Freddy B, E-40, Richie Rich, Silk-E, Mistah F.A.B., Lil Eazy E, and Raphael Saadiq who joined him on such songs as “The Ghetto” with Saadiq supplying the chorus part that was done by Gerald Levert on the original 1990 Too $hort version of the Donny Hathaway inspired hit single. Note that tonight's (March 31) added second show was cancelled at the last minute. Refunds at point of purchase.

Continue reading...
<<  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  >>  NEXT