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Hip-Hop Rap Up 08:13:10: Bun B, Exile, Trek Life, Messy Marv, Jay Z, PE, Doug E Fresh, Rappin 4-Tay, 2Pac, Boots Riley + More

Posted by Billyjam, August 13, 2010 08:08am | Post a Comment
Amoeba Music San Francisco Weekly Hip-Hop Top Five Chart: 08:13:10

Exile
1) Exile Am/Fm (Traffic)

2) Bun B Trill O.G. (Rap A Lot)

3) Slum Village Villa Manifesto (E1 Entertainment)

4) Trek Life Everything Changed Nothing (Mello Music)

5) Messy Marv Thizz City (SMC)

In continuing the theme of his wonderful solo release from last year, Radio, Exile delivers this week's number one album at Amoeba, the brand new AM/FM, which is actually culled from that 2009 release. By reworking and remixing elements of Radio the talented Los Angeles producer born Aleksander Manfredi, who many came to know as one half of the emcee/producer duo of Blu & Exile, has crafted a whole new twenty one track album. In fact some of the tracks on AM/FM sound completely new with nary a trace of the earlier album's sound to them. And while Radio was more of an instrumental album (with the occasional vocal sample off the radio) showcasing Exile's studio chops with little other distraction, AM/FM shines more light on the mic wreckers. These include many of his compadres such as Blu (check out a track featuring Blu, "Love Line," below), Alchemist, The Grouch & Eligh, Evidence, and Aloe Blacc (with whom he formed his first group, Emanon). Standout tracks include the the Shafiq Husayn remix of "It's Coming Down," "Mega Mix" featuring Fashawn, Big Tone, and ADaD, and the DJ Day remix of "In Love." In addition to AM/FM, I would recommend tracking down both Radio and Exile's 2006 album Dirty Science.  

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AZ's Regressive SB 1070 Triggers Return To Politicized Rap of Public Enemy's "By The Time I Get To Arizona"

Posted by Billyjam, May 17, 2010 11:44am | Post a Comment
Arizona Hip-Hop Artists "Back To Arizona" (2010)

The regressive Senate Bill 1070, or, SB 1070, as it is widely referred to, is the new law in Arizona that makes the failure to carry immigration documents a crime, and it has spurred similar proposals in other states. Public EnemyOn the other side of things, the bill has not only triggered nationwide outrage and protests, but it has also sparked a solidarity among many hip-hop artists, and kick-started a renaissance of sorts of the type of politicized militant hip-hop that was prevalent back in the early nineties when Public Enemy (PE) released their commentary on Arizona at that time in the song "By The Time I Get To Arizona."

At the forefront of the anti SB 1070 protest rap movement are the thirteen different Arizona hip-hop artists who recently found cause to join forces and record the powerful song (and video above) "Back To Arizona" that lyrically decries the bill (rightfully seen as legalized
racial profiling) that was signed last month by their state's Gov. Jan Brewer. The mostly unknown but talented Arizona artists that contributed to this posse cut include Queen YoNasDa, DJ John Blaze, Tajji Sharp, Yung Face, Mr. Miranda, Ocean, Da'aron Anthony, Atllas, Chino D, Nyhtee, Pennywise, Rich Rico, and Da Beast

HIP-HOP AND BLACK HISTORY MONTH

Posted by Billyjam, February 22, 2010 04:06pm | Post a Comment

The Last Poets
From its early days, hip-hop has been closely interrelated with black history and culture. Hip-hop is really a continuum of many previous black art forms. Rapping or MC'ing, for example, is merely carrying on a tradition of various oratorical forms in black history that include West African griots, talking blues, the sharp verbal flow of 1950's & 1960's hipster-jive talking radio DJs, the spoken word of artists like The Last Poets and Gil Scott Heron, and of course, the toasting style in reggae. Additionally, hip-hop music, through both its lyrical content and its endless sampling, is responsible for teaching black history in a non traditional way.

Thanks to hip-hop's ubiquitous sampling of such historical black figures as Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. (especially in the 80's and 90's), many young people first learned about the philosophies of these black leaders and black history in general. One of the earliest popular hip-hop songs to sample Malcolm X was Keith La Blanc's "Malcolm X - No Sell Out" 1983 single on Tommy Boy that utilized absolutely no rapping, just samples of the black leader speaking. In later years most hip-hop artists sampled bits of Malcolm X to Malcolm Xcompliment the emcee's message. In 1988 Public Enemy's politically charged album It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back opened with a powerful Malcolm X sample.

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DO THE RIGHT THING, 20 SUMMERS LATER

Posted by Billyjam, August 17, 2009 05:37pm | Post a Comment
Spike Lee's Do The Right Thing ("Race Rant" scene) (1989)

I invite you to rewind two full decades, back twenty summers ago to the summer of 1989 when the hottest movie with the hottest soundtrack was Spike Lee's film Do The Right Thing featuring Public Enemy's "Fight The Power." It debuted in theaters that summer and caused some controversy at the time for its do the right thingno- holds-barred portrayal of ethnic and racial tensions in the multi-ethnic (Black, Puerto Rican, Italian, Korean, white) New York borough in which the film was set.

Do The Right Thing (Lee's fourth movie) was written, produced, and directed by the ATL born, Brooklyn raised filmmaker who also acts in the film (he plays Mookie). The highly recommended film, available on DVD at Amoeba Music, is set on the hottest day of the year (kind of like the weather in NYC this week, with humid highs in the mid 90's) on a street in the Bedford-Stuyvesant (aka Bed-Stuy) section of Brooklyn. That day, the flames of everyone's emotions and prejudices are fanned and fanned until they finally explode into violence. The film makes the strong point that violence -- no matter how tempting to those being oppressed -- really doesn't offer any long term solutions to the problems at hand.

With a solid story line and a strong cast that includes Danny Aiello, Ossie Davis, Ruby Dee, Richard Edson, Giancarlo Esposito, Bill Nunn, John Turturro, Samuel L Jackson (he plays the DJ at end of the "race rant" scene in clip above), Robin Harris, Martin Lawrence, and Rosie Perez (the latter two making their big screen debuts), the film struck a nerve with both critics and film-goers. It was a box office success and remains one of Lee's best movies to date. Ten years ago the United States Library of Congress deemed the film to be "culturally significant" and selected it for preservation in the National Film Registry.

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Coachella 2009 30/30 Initiative: N.A.S.A.

Posted by Amoebite, March 27, 2009 08:19pm | Post a Comment
127 Bands, 5 Stages, 3 Days and 1 Mean Sunburn.

"Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival - April 17-19th, 2009 or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Find 30 Reasons To Love a Weekend in the Desert."

- By Scott Butterworth


 

Day #11 - Artist #11 - N.A.S.A.:

Have you ever sat around with friends and posed the question, "If you could hypothetically pick any musical artists, from any time period or genre of music to create a band or musical collaboration, who would you choose?" Before my friends and I were old enough to drive and we were too broke to actually get out of the house and do something, we would gather in a friend's bedroom on a Saturday night listening to our favorite CDs and posing this timeless question to each other. I remember us being fifteen years old debating this topic vehemently, each of us thinking we were the ultimate authority on music. But the only "dream collaboration" input I can remember from the discussions of that age is being adamant about Dave Grohl on drums and Maynard James Keenan (Tool) on vocals. 

Anyone have any other ideas? How about:
David Byrne (Talking Heads), Chuck D (Public Enemy) and Z-Trip
or
Tom Waits and Kool Keith
or
Rza (Wu-Tang Clan) and John Frusciante (Red Hot Chili Peppers)
or
Karen O (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) and Ol' Dirty Bastard (Wu-Tang Clan)

Ladies and gentlemen, N.A.S.A. has done it! They've made our dreams come true. These hypothetical collaborations are now an actuality. N.A.S.A., which stands for North America South America, the creation between producers Squeek E. Clean (Los Angeles) and DJ Zegon (Brazil), accomplished these collaborations on their five-year-in-the-making debut album The Spirit of Apollo, released February 17, 2009.

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