Hip-Hop Rap-Up: Hip Hop In The Park, Souls of Mischief in NYC, Top 5, E-Lit's New Releases, Amoeba Converse Exhibit + more

Posted by Billyjam, May 1, 2015 09:05am | Post a Comment

This weekend marks the nineteenth year of Hip Hop In The Park - Berkeley's annual free, all ages, all elements inclusive, hip-hop event in Peoples Park, located behind Amoeba Berkeley. Since 1997, the Students For Hop Hop @ Cal have been presenting this always fun afternoon celebration of hip-hop culture. This year's headliner is Fashawn who has been winning over a whole wave of fans since connecting with Nas and the Queensbridge rapper's new label,  Mass Appeal, on which he released the critically acclaimed The Ecology two months ago. Just in the past week, the Fresno rapper unleashed the album's second single and accompanying video, "Higher."

The Souls of Mischief along with their childhood friend and director of the engaging documentary on the Hiero crew, 'Til Infinity, Shomari Smith are all in New York City right now for the screening of the film tonight at the Helen Mills Theater on West 26th Street as part of the New York City International Film Festival (NYCIFF 2015). So far, the veteran Oakland hip-hop crew have included doing an interview with Birthplace magazine, and stopping by an old friend's radio show. 

"We were fortunate to pay a visit to the Sway in the Morning show to promote the film and spread the word about the New York screening," Shomari told the Amoeblog last night from New York, noting, "Sway has been a huge supporter of the film since day one and he has a large amount of knowledge and respect regarding the journey of the Souls of Mischief and the Hieroglyphics crew." Shomari called tonight's NYCIFF screening in the birthplace of hip-hop, "an opportunity to invite out the large amount of supporters in the industry that participated or helped out in creating 'Til Infinity such as Sophia Chang, Bobbito Garcia, DJ Stretch Armstrong, Dante Ross, Rob Reef Telow, Thembisa Mshaka, Amber & CC Sabathia, Sway, Kenny Parker, DJ Elcipse, Martha Diaz, and many others."  Tonight's screening is at 8pm following a 6pm meet and greet at the same West 26th Street location. More info. Below is the Amoeblog interview from two years ago with Shomari Smith on his film, which had just screened for first time at the New Parkway in Oakland.

Back in the West Coast in LA last night was the opening of Made By You - a collaborative arts event in which Amoeba Music has teamed up with Converse for a "unique celebration of musical self-expression." A variety of Chuck Taylor All Stars will be on display for the next week from the Amoeba Music and Converse community. As noted here on the Amoeblog, the result is "an exhibition that celebrates self-expression from a truly unexpected perspective" with shoes "made by  you" on display (lots of them) such as the customized ones pictured right by Amoeba’s own Marc Weinstein. The exhibit runs through May 6th at the Project Gallery at 1553 N Cahuenga Blvd in Hollywood. More info and here.

Shomari Smith on "Til Infinity"

Fashawn "Higher" (2015)

E-Lit @ Amoeba Berkeley with new releases overview

Amoeba Music Berkeley Top Five Chart 05:01:15

1) Tyler, the Creator Cherry Bomb (Odd Future)

2) Drake If You're Reading This It's Too Late (Cash Money)

3) Lord Finesse The SP1200 Project: a Re-Awakening (Slice of Spice)

4) L'Orange & Jeremiah Jae The Night Took Us In Like Family (Mello Music Group) (also avail as LP)

5) B-Legit What We Been Doin (Block Movement)

Thanks to E-Lit at the Amoeba Berkeley store for both the latest top five chart and the overview of new releases on video. This week Odd Future's Tyler, the Creator locks down the number one chart position with his new solo joint Cherry Bomb. In the new releases overview video, E-Lit notes the minimalist cover art of this week's number two chart entry, Drake's If You're Reading This It's Too Late. reviewed the artist's fourth full-length to date, calling it "another piece of near-perfection from the Toronto rapper," noting that, while it may not have a crossover track along the lines of his “Hold On, We’re Going Home,” it is none the less a strong album with highlights including “Used To (feat Lil Wayne),” “Now & Forever," and "6PM in New York." Also in the video below, shot this week at the Berkeley Amoeba store, E-Lit runs down a slew of all the latest new releases in both CD and vinyl formats (many on the top five chart up above) including Wu-Tang's Raekwon, Detroit's Clear Soul Forces, Miami's DJ EFN, NYC's Billy Woods, Lord Finesse, Ceschi, and Uncommon Nasa, as well as reissues from Young Zee and Mac Mall. The chart entry album I am feeling the most this week is The Night Took Us In Like Family (also avail as LP) - the latest collaborative outing from producer L'Orange (profiled this time last year here on the Amoeblog) who for his latest project (again on Mello Music who put out last year’s Orchid Days that featured a variety of emcees as guests) teams up with Brainfeeder rapper Jeremiah Jae. "Noirish soul and warped jazz samples deliver the smoky atmosphere for Jae’s outsider tales," is how Mello Music accurately present this album that takes repeated listens to fully savor and appreciate. Below is the music video for the album track "Ice Obsidian."

L'Orange & Jeremiah Jae "Ice Obsidian" (2015)

Relevant Tags

E-lit (45), Souls Of Mischief (23), E-lit (45), Converse (8), Marc Weinstein (16), Hip-hop In The Park (2)