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AMOEBA MUSIC WEEKLY HIP-HOP ROUND UP: 09:11:09

Posted by Billyjam, September 11, 2009 11:18am | Post a Comment
jay-z blueprint 3
Amoeba Music San Francisco Hip-Hop Top Five: 09:11:09

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

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

3) Large Professor The LP (Red Line)

4) D. Black Ali'Yah (MYX)

5) Dr Dre The Chronic Re-Lit & From The Vaults (Wideawake/Death Row)

Amoeba SF Soul Pick of Week 
Mayer Hawerthorne A Strange Arrangement (Stones Throw)

Not too surprisingly, the anticipated, brand new, star-studded Jay-Z album The Blueprint 3, (aka TB3), which originally was scheduled to come out last year, is this week's number one release on the new hip-hop chart at Amoeba Music. The album features a slew of guest collaborators, including Young Jeezy, Kanye West (in producer mode mainly), Rihanna, Drake, Kid Cudi, Mr Hudson, Swizz Beatz, Pharrell and Alicia Keys, and is the final release in the Blueprint trilogy that began exactly eight years ago on September 11th, 2001 -- the day the Twin Towers were attacked. In fact, that was why initially Jay-Z had scheduled the release of TB3  for today (Friday, September 11th), but then he changed his mind at the last minute, reverting to the typical Tuesday date release. The fifteen track TB3 is the artist's 11th studio album and his first on his own new label Roc Nation.raekwon only built 4 cuban linx pt ii

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Novelty rap and the harsh realities of adolescence -- Freddy Rap and other strange happenings of 1987

Posted by Eric Brightwell, August 10, 2009 10:44am | Post a Comment
Back in 1987 and '88, before Chucky and the Leprechaun came along and divided the loyalties of urban cineastes along racial lines, Freddy and the hip-hop community were hand in metal-clawed glove. It was the year Nightmare on Elm Street 3 was released. Why did Freddy rap occur then and not sooner? There had been a building sense of unease for several years, as evinced in Rockwell's 1984 hit "Somebody's Watching Me" and Dana Dane's 1985 hit "Nightmares." It was the climax of the Cold War, after all. Nightmare on Elm Street 3 was widely viewed as the best entry in the series and was the most successful until FVJ in 2003. It may've just been me, but I also think 1987 was just a weird, wonderful year.


For me, it was full of confusion and mystery. I'd grown somewhat comfortable with my classmates over the seven years of elementary school, but in 1987, I was off to junior high. The air on the school bus was a gaseous psychotropic cocktail of aquanet and Jheri Curl. When the smoke cleared, I found myself at Jefferson Jr High, in the middle of town. The formerly all-white school, my black Social Studies teacher informed us, had been the domain of the devil and his wife (a witch) when he was growing up during segregation. I later figured out her reasons for creating that myth, but it might as well have been true to me at the time. Junior High, in contrast to the relative peace of elementary school, was a trial by fire where violence could and frequently did break out as the pecking order got sorted out. I quickly learned to never use the restrooms. There was tremendous pressure to adopt a sort of uniform with classmates scrutinizing and passing judgment on hair, jackets, shirts, pants, shoes, musical tastes, &c. Brands and styles of (generally tightrolled) jeans (something I'd honestly never thought about) were cyphers that revealed more about their wearer's personality and background than their cracking voices ever could.


Beyond Jeff's hallowed halls, the larger world also seemed to be full of of violence and mystery, both solved and unsolved. The Unabomber was doing his thing, In Chuvashia, Vladimir Nikolayev was caught by authorities in the act of cooking one of his neighbors, the Moor Murderers helped the cops find the body of someone they'd killed 24 years earlier, Korean Air flight 858 was shot down and, perhaps most disturbingly, the airwaves were briefly highjacked in an incident that became known as the Max Headroom Broadcast Signal Intrusion Incident.

At home, my mother rented Blue Velvet, a film that captured the time. She also turned me onto U2, an Irish group who dressed like they were waiting for Edward Curtis to snap their portrait. However, the band that may've most eloquently captured the bizarre tone of the times was The Justified Ancients of Mu Mu, who cut bluntly to the chase with their single, "1987 (What the Fuck is Going On?)" It's a strange world isn't it? Do you know the Chicken Walk?

Anyway, I present you with the cream of the Freddy Rap revolution of '87/'88:



MC A.D.E. - "Nightmare on ADE Street"





Stevie B - "Nightmare on Freddy Krugger Street"





MC Chill - "Nightmare on Chill Street"





Krushin' MCs - "Nightmare on Rhyme Street"



 Gregory D & DJ Mannie Fresh - "Freddie's Back"


Fat Boys - "Are You Ready for Freddy?"




 DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince - "A Nightmare on My Street"


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Cash Money Records - The Independent Years (1991-1998)

Posted by Eric Brightwell, July 31, 2009 11:25pm | Post a Comment

Check out our selection of Cash Money Records titles on Amoeba.com!

By now, anyone that reads this blog and is a fan of the many, great New Orleans labels that sprouted in the fertile hip-hop delta back in the '90s may've wondered why no Cash Money thusfar. Well, I've been working on it but the greatest of labels required a lot of work.
Hope you enjoy... wodie.

Back in the 1980s, the New Orleans Rap scene began to take root with early rappers like Tim Smooth, Warren Mayes, Ninja Crew and New York Incorporated all making noise. The latter act featured Mia X, Denny D, DJ Wop and Mannie Fresh and was probably the first rap group in the city. After their dissolution, Fresh hooked up with former Ninja Crew member Gregory D and they released a handful of influential, if not very widely promoted records.

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WHEN RAP GETS EVEN SCARIER: YOUNG CONSERVATIVES WITH MICS

Posted by Billyjam, June 14, 2009 02:51pm | Post a Comment

The above video, which, note, is serious, not ironic, has been making the rounds since it first surfaced on YouTube a couple of weeks ago and after the pair of young conservative "rappers," Serious C and Stiltz (aka The Young Cons), recently got airtime on -- big surprise -- FOX News. On the network, they expounded upon their political rap, which includes lyrics such as "Terrorists were imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay, now they’re in our neighborhoods, planning out doomsday" (for more of their distorted logic, see full song lyics below). 

The pair appeal to the legions of disgruntled, Obama-hating, anti-abortion, anti-socialist, right wing conservatives (many not rap fans but who are drawn in by the Cons' politics). There appear to be many of these types of people, judging by the majority of the almost 6000 YouTube comments the pair has received to date.

Admittedly, I do not agree with their political views, but that's not why I dislike the Young Cons. It's because their mic skills totally suck. Please peep the video above and/or read the lyrics below and post your opinion in the "comments" box below. And for more background info on the duo, visit the Young Cons' MySpace.

"Young Con Anthem" lyrics:

Yo this one's for all the young conservatives.
I rep the Northeast and I’m still a young con,
Let your voice release, you don’t have to be Obamatrons.
I debate any poser who don’t shoot straight,
Government spending needs to deflate,
Your ideas are lightweight,
Ya careers in checkmate
I frustrate. I increase the pulse rate
I hate when,
government dictatin, makin statements, bout how to be a merchant,
How to run a restaurant, how to lay the pavement
Bailout a business, but can’t protect an infant
Deficiencies are blatant, young con treatment
I stand one man, outnumbered at my college
Thank you Miss Cali for reminding us of marriage
Can’t support abortion, and call yourself a Christian
I support life, you’re a puzzled politician
Terrorists were imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay,
Now they’re in our neighborhoods, planning out doomsday
No such thing as utopia,
no government can control ya, baby ya,
Reap the benefits hard work, self reliant
Listen to Stiltz, my dude’s a lyrical giant

UH UH UH STICK 'EM: THE FAT BOYS REMEMBERED

Posted by Billyjam, May 6, 2009 12:22pm | Post a Comment
fat boys
Compared to the all too prevalent mean mugging, tough scowling stance of today's typical hip-hop star, the popular 1980's rap group The Fat Boys (Prince Markie Dee, Kool Rock-Ski, Buff Love) were polar opposites with their smiling, all-ages friendly personas (not to mention lyrics) and cuddly, good humored personalities. From right when the NYC trio burst onto the still burgeoning hip-hop scene in 1984, they embodied a wholesome, non-threatening image to accompany their instantly engaging beatbox driven rap style. In fact, the late Buff Love, aka The Human Beatbox, was a hip-hop pioneer in beatboxing along Doug E. Fresh, who simultaneously helped popularize the mouth percussion style unique to the genre.

But barely below the surface there was also a somewhat sinister aspect to the Fat Boys-- they were exploited (or allowed themselves to be) by labels and marketing men who went overboard, playing up their obesity and downplaying the seriousness of not eating healthily. Obesity tragically led to the 1995 heart attack death of Buff Love/The Human Beatbox at age 28, by then reportedly weighing 450 lbs. Below are a selection of videos from the 80's that in a way tell the Fat Boys story, displaying the marketing of the group. Included are the videos "Jailhouse Rap" and "Stick Em" from their 1984 self-titled debut on Sutra Records, an album whose cover picture (above) showed them stuffing down pizza and ice cream. This food-gorging image was only further enforced in such videos as "All You Can Eat" from the 1987 film Krush Groove and their appearance on Square One TV eating too many burgers. Also below is the group's cameo in Miami Vice when they were not eating, but instead were portrayed as beatboxing drug dealers.

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