Posted by Billyjam, October 9, 2009 07:07am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music Berkeley Hip-Hop Weekly Top Five: 10:09:09
ghostalini ghostface killah
1) Ghostface Killah Ghostdini: The Wizard of Poetry in Emerald City (Def Jam)

2) Crown CIty Rockers The Day After Forever (Gold Dust Media)

3) Jay-Z The Blueprint 3 (Roc Nation/Atlantic)

4) Raekwon Only Built 4 Cuban Links Pt II (ICEAL)

5) Brother Ali Us (Rhymesayers)

Thanks for this week's Amoeba Music Hip-Hop Top Five chart go out to Tom at the Berkeley store where, in addition to updating the Amoeblog on the top selling new hip-hop albums, he reports that, as of yesterday,  the Telegraph Ave. store has, "got all the Halloween decorations up and it looks mighty spooky." What's spooky to me is how quickly the summer just flew by and the fact that it's almost Halloween again. Dang! Time really does fly. Case in point is Ghostface Killah -- it seems like it's only been a few years since the Wu-Tang Clan rapper dropped his first solo release, Ironman, but actually that release came out thirteen long hip-hop years Ghostface Killahago, in 1996! His latest album, Ghostdini: The Wizard of Poetry in Emerald City on Def Jam, which is this week's number hip-hop release at Amoeba, is actually the eighth solo release from the Wu rapper, who took his name from the 1979 kung fu film Mystery of Chessboxing.

Unlike such past Ghostface albums as 2000's Supreme Clientele or 2004's The Pretty Toney Album, Ghostdini: The Wizard of Poetry in Emerald City is less abrasive in its sonic makeup, with an overall smoothed out R&B production style on the whole project, revisiting the vibe he previously laid down when he collaborated with the likes of such R&B acts as Jodeci and Ne-Yo (who returns here).

While some diehard Wu-Tang fans might not immediately embrace the new album, it undoubtedly will garner more airplay (and hence sales) than some of the artist's other recent recordings. The album's first single, the Auto-Tune assisted, soulful, sultry slowjam "Baby," features Raheem "Radio" DeVaughn. Other album guests include John Legend ("Let's Stop Playin'), Fabolous & Shareefa ("Guest House"), Kanye West & Ne-Yo ("Back Like That" (Remix)), and Adrienne Bailon ("I'll Be That").
Crown City Rockers
Ghostface Killah is defintiely the artist of the week. Not only is his new album number one at Amoeba this week, but he also appears on a total of eight tracks on the latest from fellow Wu-Tang member Raekwon's new album Only Built 4 Cuban Links Pt II on ICEAL. Other new hip-hop releases selling well at the East Bay Amoeba Music store this past week include Jay-Z's The Blueprint 3 on Roc Nation/Atlantic; Brother Ali's latest Rhymesayers outing, Us; and homegrown live hip-hop band Crown CIty Rockers, featuring the super-talented, distinctive voiced emcee Raashan Ahmad, and their highly recommended brand new album The Day After Forever on Gold Dust Media.

Below is a short video clip from the band's release party at the Independent in SF last weekend. Also below is the head-nodding video featuring Brother Ali as he joins Evidence (now with Rhymesayers), Toki Wright, and BK-One as The Freshest Kids. Really good stuff!

Crown City Rockers @ the Independent in SF last weekend (2009)

The Freshest Kids f. Brother Ali, Evidence, Toki Wright & BK-One (2009)

As usual there's no shortage of hip-hop related events in the Bay Area this weekend, including the Pecha Kucha Night Oakland: Don't Sweat The Technique -- Graffiti For Social Change event this evening at the Eastside Arts Alliance in East Oakland and The 3rd Annual Estria Invitational Graffiti Battle (EIGB) tomorrow in West Oakland, as outlined in yesterday's Amoeblog: Heaven for Bay Area Graffiti Fans The GenieThis Weekend. Happening at the same time as tomorrow's EIGB, in West Oakland's DeFremery Park, is part of the week-long & Bay Area wide Living Word Festival and its presentation, Life is Living, which is a free, all-day outdoor celebration with performances from Pharoahe Monch and Kev Choice plus other (non hip-hop) acts, including Linda Tillery and the Cultural Heritage Choir.

Meanwhile good F.O.A. (friend of Amoeba) The Genie is doing a truly underground party in Emeryville tonight, his last local performance before the "scratch guitar" pioneer heads out to NYC for a month. As he wrote in his invite, "There's not really an address but it's on the corner of Lowell and Grace in Emeryville. You'll hear the music and see the fenced yard with a huge cactus, definitely won't miss it." The Genie will be performing with some "surprise guests" as well as David Satori and friends, plus DJ sets by DJ Inexplicable, EyeVan, and Taso. $5, Roc Raida9pm-3am, all ages. And if you get lost trying to find the party, The Genie advises you to call him on his cell, 415 374 0640. Now that's underground!

On a more somber note, there are several benefits/tributes to the recently deceased DJ Roc Raida happening across the country this weekend, including in San Francisco, where tomorrow (Saturday) night at Milk Bar (opposite Amoeba SF) is the Forever We Roc party with an impressive lineup of turntablists including DJs Shortkut, Apollo, Rhettmatic, Goldenchyld, Sake One, Teeko, Swiftrock, Mr. E, and Vin Roc all confirmed.

The event, which runs from 10pm to 2am, is 21 and over with 100% of the proceeds from the $10 admission to be donated to the Roc Raida family. Milk is located at 1840 Haight St., San Francisco. And for more info on future Roc Raida related events and news click here.

Relevant Tags

Roc Raida (8), Crown City Rockers (7), Wu-tang Clan (25), Ghostface Killah (12), The Genie (7)