Hip-Hop Rap-Up: RIP Dot-A-Rock & The Jacka, Flip with Phat Kat & Elzhi, DJ Rob A with Masta Ace + more

Posted by Billyjam, February 6, 2015 11:34am | Post a Comment
Tragic news for Bay Area rap fans this week when they learned that popular longtime Bay Area rapper Dominic "The Jacka" Newton was shot and killed in East Oakland on Monday night (Feb 2nd) - the result of a bullet wound to the head. 

According to reports the 37 year old, Oakland based, Pittsburg, CA born hip-hop artist died doing what he loved most: rapping and freestyling with a group of seven hip-hop friends of his sitting in a van - The Jacka was standing outside beside the van when the shooting took  place. A very prolific artist, who has released numerous solo projects and collaborative projects (he's worked with everyone), The Jacka was a constant best-seller at the two Bay Area Amoeba Music stores including such releases as his 2009 Freeway collaboration Highway Robbery and his 2009 album Tear Gas which remains his best selling album to date (the video for the Traxamillion produced album track "Glamorous Lifestyle" appears below).

Andre Nickatina (featured in the above "Glamorous Lifestyle") was just one of countless fellow Bay Area artists that The Jacka collaborated with over the years. Others  include Berner, E-40, Guce, Keak da Sneak, and Friscasso The Jeweler (recently profiled on the Amoeblog) while on a national level he's worked with such artists as NYC emcee Cormega, Southern rapper Paul Wall, and Philly rapper Freeway. (Highway Robbery cover right). Ever since the news broke on Tuesday of The Jacka's shooting murder many online commenters have cynically suggested that being a gangsta rapper that he had he had it coming to him (IE: live by the sword die by the sword). However the truth is that while he rapped about the street "lifestyle" and all that went with it - he did so in a non glamorizing way - but in a real observant way.  Those who knew him all describe him a good person and an artist first and foremost. And what a prolific one too!

Equally disturbing of the shooting murder of the hip-hop artist is that it's a reminder of what the reality of life in Oakland California can be to many people. We have only begun the second month of the year and The Jacka's shooting death was counts as the 11th murder in the City of Oakland (population 400,000)  for 2015 already!  Also tragic is the fact that The Jacks is the latest in a long, ever growing roll call of talented Bay Area rappers who have been senselessly shot and killed at a young age. Rest in peace The Jacka.

Another artist who died, as reported by HipHopGods, in the past week was Dot-A-Rock - an important influential part of hip-hop's roots as part of the pioneering hip-hop crew the Fantastic Five. A true Bronx hip-hop pioneer of what would blossom into a global cultural force, the artist born Darryl Mason was a a part of such defining hip-hop groups as The Mighty Force Crew, The Cold Crush Brothers, and of course the Fantastic Five (aka Fantastic Freaks aka Fantastic Romantic 5 MCs with Grandwizard Theodore). Immediately below is audio of 1982 12" single by Grand Wizard Theodore & the Fantastic 5's "Can I Get A Soul Clap."

Grand Wizard Theodore & the Fantastic 5 "Can I Get A Soul Clap" (1982)

The Jacka "Glamorous Lifestyle (feat. Andre Nickatina)" (2009)

Jameoblog Top 5 Hip-Hop Tracks 02:06:15

1) Flip "Without Warning (feat. Elzhi & Phat Kat)" (Ill Adrenaline Records)

2) DJ Rob A "Put To Paper" (feat. Masta Ace)" (Rugged Soul Records)

3) ChillxWill "Pickin' Pockets (feat. P. Blackk)" (Ill Adrenaline)

4) A-1 "Good People"

5) Sidewalk Chalk  "Luggage (feat.Sam Trump)" (Ropeadope Records)

The above chart is my personal fave top five new hip-hop tracks (based on airplay on my WFMU radio show) and includes in the number one slot the incredible brand new Elzhi and Phat Kat featured track "Without Warning" that finds the two Detroit emcee talents in top form. Austrian producer Flip (not to be confused with the similarly named Irish DJ / producer DJ Flip) is responsible for this track - culled from his soon to drop guest- heavy album 'Reflections' which will also feature such mic-wreckers as  Guilty Simpson, Kev Brown, EDO. G, Killah Priest, and LMNO. It will arrive in Amoeba care of Ill Adrenaline in all formats including cassette. The song's video, along with such other chart entries as Bay Area artist A-1's "Good People" and ChillxWill's straight up 90's sounding "Pickin' Pockets (feat. P. Blackk)," all appear below.

Shows in the Bay Area this weekend include Berkeley hometown hero G-Eazy, whose 2014 major label album These Things Happen was a hot seller at Amoeba, who headlines San Francisco's The Warfield tonight with fellow East Bay artist Kehlani opening. Tix and more info here. Back in the East Bay dancehall reggae legend Sister Carol headlines the New Parish on Sunday (Feb 8th) - a joint production of DeeCee SoulShakedown and King of Kings - with guest DJ Juan G and residents of the weekly club Smoky & Young Fyah alongside Selekta Kurious. More info in flyer right or by clicking here. Or email to save some money and get on the $5 guest list.

At the Legionnaire Saloon on Telegraph in Oakland this evening (Friday Feb 6th) in celebration of First Friday (albeit with the rain storm hitting Oakland and the Bay today, may not be as well attended as usual) will be DJ Toure (Hieros), Marc Stretch (Foreign Legion), and G Koop and O-Man. No cover. 21+ More info

Flip feat Elzhi and Phat Kat "Without Warning" (2015)

A-1 "Good People" (2015)

DJ Rob A "Put To Paper (feat Masta Ace)" lyrics only version

ChillxWill "Pickin' Pockets (feat. P. Blackk)" (audio only)

Relevant Tags

Phat Kat (1), The Jacka (16), Dj Rob A (1), Masta Ace (7), Flip (3), Elzhi (10)