The short history of Asian-American television

Posted by Eric Brightwell, May 27, 2012 05:30pm | Post a Comment
Since its earliest days, American television screens have never looked much like American reality. Network executives have apparently never been comfortable with too many Asians being on the small screen at one time. Asian sidekicks are cool, Asian guest stars too, maybe an Asian love interest (provided the character is female) There have been only a handful of television shows starring Asians and even fewer with primarily Asian casts. 

Hawaiian Eye

Meanwhile, the internet has become the great democratizer, allowing Asian-Americans (and Canadians) like 
Christine GambitoMichelle Phan, Freddie W, Fung BrosJessica LizamaKev JumbaKevin WuNikki LimoPeter Chao, Ryan Higa, Timothy Traphik DeLaGhettoWong Fu Productions and others to garner millions of followers each and in the process become internet celebrities, if not terrestrial television ones. Nowadays there are far more Asian-American (and Anglo-Asian diaspora) web series than network shows and while television slowly adapts, at this rate it may cease to exist before it even begins to resemble its audience. 

In one corner, consider the web series, which include Alfie the Office DogAway We HappenedAwesome Asian Bad GuysBaby MentalistBFFs, Boystown, Car Discussion with Sung KangChop Socky Boom, Flat3, The FoodThe Ho’s on 7th AvenueHome Is Where The Hans AreI Am Asian, How Are You?, Katana, K-TownKtown CowboysLumina, Manivore, Millions, Mixed Blooms, Model Minority, Mother Lover, Mythomania, Nice Girls Crew, Normal Gays, One Warm Night, On the Clock, Prison Dancer, Riley RewindSilent Terror, Slanted Show, SuperTwins!, The Switch, Trembling Void, That's What She SaidUrban Wolf, Video Game High SchoolWhen it Counts, and others. 

In the other corner, television, which though having existed for many more decades than web series, is rather more anemic. Consider this short timeline of Asian-American television, drawn from network, cable, and syndicated series:

Amoeba's Youtube Playlist of the Best Music of 2011

Posted by Amoebite, December 26, 2011 06:41pm | Post a Comment
Youtube asked us to create a playlist of our favorite music of 2011. That's a pretty big task given how much music we all loved this year. We tried to keep it as close to 20 videos as we could (but we ended up with the random number of 22 faves). Check out our little intro video and then dive into our playlist...

Zola Jesus
Zola Jesus
Sacred Bones

 continued Zola Jesus' evolution to full-fledged goth pop star, with dance beats and hooks underpinning her freaky awesome voice.

Anti- / Epitaph

Malian Touareg band Tinariwen are joined by Kyp and Tunde from TV on the Radio on this beautiful single.

Girls Father Son Holy Ghost

Father Son Holy Ghost
True Panther Sounds

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Refreshingly Unique Production by Berkeley's Raremink Puts Oakland Rapper D.Willz' "Watermelon" Video On The National Rap Map

Posted by Billyjam, September 7, 2011 09:14am | Post a Comment

D.Willz "Watermelon" (2011)

As any contemporary hip-hop artist will attest, having a great song in an already packed marketplace just isn't enough anymore. Even giving away free digital copies of your new album or mixtape isn't guaranteed to grab the short attention span of today's jaded, ever fickle hip-hop fan. Sometimes that great new song needs an equally great, eye-catching video to stand out & get noticed. Such is the case with the refreshingly unique Raremink directed video for Oakland rapper D. Willz' infectious rap song "Watermelon" - the latest, but most successful, in a string of catchy rap songs that the East Bay artist has released over the past several years.  And as you can tell from watching the "Watermelon" clip above, the video breaks damn near every rule in the what-is-expected of a rap music video; especially one from an Oakland rapper. But in so doing it magically manages to transcend all genres and styles by making a fun, instantly appealing clip that, not surprisingly, went viral: registering close to half a million YouTube views. It also clocked up views on various other online video channels as well as on TV: at first on In Demand and later on music video channels such as mtvU where the creative video also won  mtvU's Freshman 5 contest, based on popularity with viewers, and on MTV regular where it got into rotation on MTV Jams and AMTV.  Radio airplay actually came last in a sequence switcheroo that is a true sign of the times since traditionally radio airplay came first, not online play. Not these days.

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Kreayshawn Gets Parodied In New "Fishy Fishy" Video

Posted by Billyjam, August 25, 2011 06:06pm | Post a Comment
Kreayfish "Fishy Fishy (Gucci Gucci Parody)" (August 2011)

You know you've arrived (or perhaps about to pass your peak) once you start getting parodied. Such is the case with white female rapper Kreayshawn and her extended Oakland crew, The White Girl Mob, whose recent viral meteoric rise to fame c/o her YouTube hit "Gucci Gucci" has been made fun of in the new video "Fishy Fishy (Gucci Gucci Parody)" by the artist "Kreayfish." The video, which was uploaded to YouTube by the LA-based LoudVillage just yesterday may only have a little over 300 views so far, but odds are that this number will snowball over the coming days as word trickles out on the funny parody.

Meanwhile, the original "Gucci Gucci" video (see below) is up to almost 13 million YouTube views in a little over 3 months. The artist, who was virtually unheard of back in early May, now boasts a $1 million deal with SONY/Columbia Records plus a nomination for an MTV Video Music Award for Best New Artist. The MTV VMAs are in LA this Sunday evening. Kreayshawn will be in the house and also outside on the red carpet where she'll host the network's Red Carpet Report for

New Video by Strange Talk First to Feature Interactive Rewards

Posted by Amoebite, August 19, 2011 01:15pm | Post a Comment
Strange Talk EPAustralian electro-pop band Strange Talk only just released their debut self-titled EP (on Neon Gold Records) in May, but they're making a name for themselves with their innovative, interactive, and product-tied music video for the single, "Climbing Walls."

Cheer detergent sponsored the Strange Talk video as part of their "We Dig Color" campaign, creating a “Dig It, Get It” interactive music video that lets you click out of YouTube and into Facebook in order to win various prizes. This is the first time someone has created a video using Google Annotations technology to create embedded "clickable hotspots" in a YouTube video.

So what does that mean exactly? Click on something colorful in the video (Get the connection? Cheer keeps your clothes colorful) and you are taken to the Cheer Facebook page where you can register to win prizes ranging from flip flops to guitars to iPods. The prizes are apparently going fast (as of this posting they were gone for the day already). 

Facebook - Cheer Page

I first heard Strange Talk when we got their Free Download for "Climbing Walls" back in June. It's dancey, poppy, electro summer fun, satisfying my Cut Copy (another Aussie electro-pop band) meets Friendly Fires meets Phoenix cravings. (If you knew me, you'd know those cravings were pretty strong.)

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