Posted by Billyjam, August 29, 2008 04:57pm | Post a Comment
ice cube
1) Ice Cube Raw Footage (Lench Mob)

2) GZA Pro Tools (Babygrande Records)

3) Lil Wayne Tha Carter III (Cash Money/Universal)

4) MF Doom Volumes 1 & 2 Nastradoomus (HHS)

5) Arabian Prince Innovative Life: The Anthology    
    1984 - 1989
(Stones Throw)

Thanks to  Marques for supplying this week's top five  chart for the Los Angeles Amoeba store. Hometown rap veteran Ice Cube occupies the number one slot with his latest album, Raw Footage, which hit Amoeba shelves August 19th. The album simultaneously debuted at No. 1 on both the Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart and Top Rap Albums Chart, and at No. 5 on the Billboard 200 pop album chart.

"Thank God the Gangsta's back... and we ain't got to put up with this brainless rap," spits Cube on the catchy new album track "Thank God" -- just one of many strong cuts on this eighth solo album from the 39 year old artist. Others include "Jack N The Box," "Here We Come" (feat. Doughboy), and the singles "Do Your Thang" and "Gangsta Rap Made Me Do It." And speaking of gangsta rap: listening to some of these new Cube tracks remind me of old Ice Cube and also of how the original gangsta rappers (NWA, Geto Boys, etc.), while demonized at the time for being so lyrically violent and offensive, were actually quite political and socially aware, comparatively more so than the most  prominent current crop of gangsta rappers.
MF Doom
Other entries on the current chart include GZA, Lil Wayne, and the just released Stones Throw retrospective of the Arabian Prince's 1980's electro years. Last week the pioneering LA hip-hop artist and original NWA member did an instore at Amoeba Hollywood, which, according to Marques, included the artist playing a lot of electro and electronica. 

The new chart entry from MF Doom is entitled Volumes 1 & 2 Nastradoomus with Nastradoomus = Nas + MF Doom or Doom remixing Nas' best work, songs like "If I Ruled The World," "Hate Me Now," "Street Dreams," and "Shoot Em Up" over the two CD set. Note that while most hip-hop fans have nothing but love for MF Doom and his artistry, some are still mad at him for reportedly having been a no-show at some gigs in the recent past.
Dr. Dre
Condolences go out to Dr. Dre, who this past weekend, according to the LA Times, lost his son Andre R. Young Jr. The 20 year old son of the famous longtime LA hip-hop producer was reportedly found dead by his mother and ,as of the time of posting this blog, no cause of death had been determined. 

The tragedy brings to mind a similar scenario from last year when another longtime hip-hop artist, KRS-One, learned of the death of his son. In that case, the artist's 23 year old stepson Randy Hubbard Parker (a longtime sufferer of severe depression) was found dead, an apparent suicide, according to his mother Simone Parker, KRS-One's wife.

Politicians, protesters, and news media members weren't the only ones who made their way to Denver -- home of the Democratic National Convention -- this week. According to a couple of published reports, among the many actors and musicians also in the Colorado city this week is RZA of the Wu-Tang Clan who reportedly was promoting his soon to be released film Gospel Hill that also stars Danny Glover.

And speaking of politics, presidential hopefuls, and hip-hop aritsts: last week in San Francisco Z-Trip threw down a very politically charged set at the upscale downtown club Vessel at Campton Place near Union Square. Last Thursday, August 21st, following a tight set by Vessel resident DJ and former Amoebite Doc Fu, Z-Trip delivered a set that simultaneously moved bodies and minds, as he sporadically layered in Barack Obama speech samples over the funky beats and breaks he was playing

An avid supporter of Obama, the Arizona born, LA based DJ, who has long considered the Bay his second home, will be performing at a "Party For Change" Barack Obama themed night at Milk (directly across street from Amoeba San Francisco) on September 13th on an art and music night that will also feature (former Amoebite) DJ Platurn, and the artist Shepard Fairy plus other "special guests." Similar to the show that Shepard Fairy and Z-Trip did together in LA at Echoplex earlier this month, the SF show will also offer the first hundred folks to show up at the Milk a signed copy of Shepard Fairy's Obama "Hope" poster. The show is 21 +, costs $20 and will be a mobbed affair, so show up early or get tix in advance. Info here.

Longtime San Francisco DJ/producer J-Boogie is busier than ever these days, with two recent OM releases to his credit, including the J-Boogie mixed "OM: Hip Hop Soul Sessions" and J-Boogie's Dubtronic Science's Soul Vibrations. The OM: Hip Hop Soul Sessions is a tight mix that effortlessly melds 25 tracks (some remixed by the DJ) from such artists as Zion I & the Grouch, Raashan Amhad, Black Spade, and Bassnectar -- all artists that the longtime club and radio (KUSF) DJ has collaborated in some capacity with in the past.
Meantime, his new Dubtronic Science album Soul Vibrations is a mostly smoothed out, laid back, jazzy groove hip-hop affair featuring guest artists on all but two of its fifteen tracks, including Lunar Heights, Crown City Rockers & Jrod Indigo, Rich Medina, Tony Moses, Tim'm West (of pioneering homo-hop crew Deep Dickollective fame, featured on Independent Sounds: Amoeba Music Compilation Vol. III ), Deuce Eclipse, and Lyrics Born & The Mamaz.  The new album also features up-and-coming Bay Area soulful vocalist Jennifer Johns just like J-Boogie's first album featured another (then relatively unknown) Bay Area female vocal powerhouse, Goapele.

Speaking of Bay Area hip-hop radio show hosts, Kevvy Kev, who is name checked on the new J-Boogie album is host of the consistently longest running hip-hop radio show worldwide, The Drum,  which has been jumping off every Sunday for the past 24 years out of the studios at Stanford's         KZSU 90.1 FM and this Sunday original host/DJ Kevvy Kev and his crew will celebrate the 24th anniversary with a free show at Peacock Meadow in Golden Gate Park (1-5PM) that will appropriately feature 24 emcees and 24 DJs. At that night starting at 10PM there will be an after-party at the DNA Lounge.

The impressive lineup includes  Das EFX, Canibus, East Flatbush Project, Zion I, the Oakland Faders, Dan the Automator, Peanut Butter Wolf, the Rec League, Mr. Sayre, Pam the Funkstress, Flossafee,  Ryan Greene, 4OneFunk, Delinquent Monastery, D-Sharp, LCJ, Radioactive, Motion Man, Bash Brothers, Jern Eye, Franco & the Dirty Rats, the Secluded Journalists, Mavrik, and Boac & Dnae Beats.

More!!!New hip-hop supergroup eMC, who have just released The Show on M3 Records, is collectively Masta Ace, Stricklin, and Punchline & Wordsworth who, after all touring together some years back, decided to one day collaborate on a group project. The Show is that project and is a pretty tight hip-hop collection with guest shots from Little Brother, Sean Price, Lady Mecca of Digable Planets fame, and Money Harm (Product G&B).

And finally some "Some Superfly Shit" -- the latest video from Oakland emcee Opio along with The Architect and taken from the Hiero member's current release Vulture's Wisdom Vol. 1:

Relevant Tags

Z-trip (10), Shepard Fairy (1), Mf Doom (14), Barack Obama (23), Ice Cube (26)