Shout out to John Robinson for the info..
The homie Busta Rhymes called me the other day following up on an idea I gave him months and months ago. So long ago that I actually forgot about it. He called me with four very specific words: “Check your inbox, son!” When I opened it, I found song after song of unreleased craziness from Busta and the late, legendary J Dilla. So after a week of figuring out our strategy, it’s done. Mick Boogie + Busta + Dilla = Dillagence. The album of the year…and it’s not even an album!
Get it this Tuesday at the above link!
By Davey D
powered by ODEO
The other night after he simply killed it at San Francisco’s Mezzanine Night club, we sat down and spoke with the man who many consider to be the greatest emcee of all-times. We’re talking about Rakim aka the 18th Letter. No we didn’t get into the over-played conversation about why he and Dr. Dre never completed that highly anticipated album. Instead we got his take on the current state of Hip Hop and how he feels about today’s crop of emcees. He talked about the love he has for artist like Lupe Fiasco. Contrary to what many Hip Hop purists would like to hear him say, ‘the R’ talked about how it was important to hear people embrace and reflect their unique regional backgrounds. In other words its not productive to hear everyone trying to sound like a cat from New York and he wasn’t about to start classifying people as rap vs Hip Hop etc. He agreed with the assessment that much of this labeling comes from journalists who like to act like papparazzi. He talked about the ways in which Hip Hop has evolved overseas.
We talked to Rakim about his upcoming album which will be released on his own independent label. He noted that he put on his CEO cap and brought forth some great surprises that Hip Hop is in dire need for. He wouldn’t offer up too many details, but he promised that folks will be absolutely pleased.
he also touched upon the mindset he has when it comes to writing rhymes. He’s an avid jazz fan and for those who don’t know, Rakim is a trained saxaphone player. He said that he composes songs much like jazz musician and that each word uttered has to fit nicely within the notes of a song. His smoothness is attributed to him rapping the way he feels sax player would blow notes. He also talked about the importance of taking time to write songs and bring forth inspiring and meaningful lyrics.
We also touched upon the topic of gangsterism and gangsta rap. For those who aren’t familiar, when Rakim came up he was around some of New York’s most notorious gangstas. The back cover of his Paid in Full album, show folks like the Original 50 Cent. He explained that he never felt a need to talk about other people’s gang tales because he didn’t want to exploit their situations. Nor did he want to bring unnecessary heat on folks. He said he was well aware of the madness that went on around him but it was important to keep street stuff on the streets and not broadcast it on wax. In other words real bad boys don’t tell no tales.
We concluded with Rakim talking about politics and conscious raising music. he said he wasn’t the type of cat to look at an event and write about it. he said his consciousness was more organic and heartfelt his day to day living.
We felt blessed and enlightened and so should you after you peep this incredible interview that was done by myself and collegue Sam Chennault of SF Weekly and Rhapsody Music.
From DAVEY D for The Mercury News:
Several years ago, Jay-Z bragged that, if he were to start rapping about drinking water, rather than Cristal champagne or some other alcoholic beverage, H2O would become the drink of choice. At the time, it sounded arrogant, but in retrospect it wasn't far fetched, considering Jay-Z's track record as a trend-setter.
For example, the rapper is credited with almost single-handedly changing the tastes of the hip-hop audience from gold to platinum jewelry.
He is said to be one of the main influences in getting New Yorkers to embrace Southern rap, through his 1998 collaboration with Juvenile on the song "Ha" and another one a few years later with Southern rap icon Bun B of UGK on the hit "Big Pimpin'."
Jay-Z changed the landscape once again when he teamed with the then-emerging producers known as the Neptunes, which included Pharrell Williams. Their 2000 hit "Just Wanna Love You" helped accustom listeners to the falsetto harmonies that have become a staple in hip-hop.
A year later, Jay-Z changed things yet again when he tapped the emerging Kanye West to lace his "The Blueprint" album with soulful beats, instead of the hard-edged, gritty stuff that was popular at the time.
His influence even reached Maryland Republican Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, for whom a lavish party was held at Jay-Z's New York restaurant, the 40/40 club. At the time, I asked Steele why he chose 40/40, and he said the location would send a strong message that the GOP was changing its image and diversifying its constituency.
All the while Jay-Z was setting trends, he was enthusiastically publicizing his taste for Cristal champagne, which sells for about $300 a bottle. So it came as quite a shock last summer when Frédéric Rouzaud, managing director of Cristal maker Champagne Louis Roederer, suggested that he didn't appreciate rap stars hyping his beverage.
In response, Jay-Z removed Cristal from the wine cellar at his nightclub and scratched the references he had made to it in his songs.
Rouzaud tried to repair the damage by sending a letter of apology, but it was too little too late. Today, Cristal isn't just passe; it's all but dead among the hip-hop crowd.
Two weeks ago, Jay-Z attracted wide attention again, when his video for the song "Blue Magic" made its debut on BET. He was the first rapper to buck the trend of flashing wads of greenbacks at the camera by flashing euros instead.
The move inspired a fierce commentary by CNBC's Jim Cramer, who criticized Jay-Z for further undermining an already weak dollar.
The euro incident also was noted in the financial sections of papers around the world. A week later, a much-read Bloomberg item focused on Jay-Z's video and Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bundchen's public request not to be paid in U.S. dollars. In some places, both were praised for grasping that the dollar was out, and the euro was in.
It seems a bit naive to suggest that an artist such as Jay-Z could make an impact on the world economy. But there can be no question that he sparked a timely dialogue about international monetary policy on a number of popular hip-hop shows, including Chuck D's "On the Reel." On the Nov. 18 show, Chuck cited the recent move by OPEC to reject U.S. dollars.
In a popular Oakland nightclub last weekend, I heard a spirited debate involving 10 or 12 young men about the value of the dollar, and whether they should start getting paid in euros.
And I'll admit it: I'd much rather hear that kind of conversation than a debate about who's the best rapper.
Davey D's hip-hop column appears biweekly in Eye. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
After releasing two stellar CDs in 2006, Ghostface returns on the scene a week before his WU clan drops. On December 4th get ready for the BIG DOE REHAB. Ghost is one of my all time favorites and I have already pre-ordered the CD. Ghostface is one of the most consistent artists in hip hop period. Check his DEF JAM page HERE
In other Tony Starks news, in an interview with MTV, Ghostface speaks on a cameo role that was filmed for Marvel Studios 2008 IRON MAN film:
"I jumped in there for maybe 12 or 16 bars, nothing too major," Ghost downplayed before describing his scene with the film's star. "It was a good look for the kid because Robert Downey Jr. recognized me as soon as I seen him. He was like, 'Yo, Tony!' ... For him to recognize me, I was kinda surprised by that. I didn't know he even knew about the kid. ... We called each other Tony onscreen. I'm like, 'Tony Stark, I got your jet, I didn't mess it up.' He was like, 'I got the Bentley for you, I laced it up.' I had two girls with me, I was like, 'That's you [pointing toward the girls].' I sent two birds at him. It was a wrap for that scene. He's a cool dude and funny. Big up to Robert Downey Jr."
Thursday, November 29, NYC's Hammerstein Ballroom hosts the inaugural J.A.M. Awards in an effort to commemorate the life and legacy of legendary Run-DMC spin doctor Jam Master Jay and the Jam Master Jay Foundation for Music. The awards show, whose name is an acronym for justice, arts and music, will feature a who's who list of hip-hop personalities including Snoop Dogg, Marley Marl, Mobb Deep, De La Soul, Papoose, Raekwon, Q-Tip, DMC, Kid Capri, EPMD, Lord Finesse, Bumpy Knuckles, DJ Kay Slay and Jim Jones, among others. The J.A.M. Awards were set up in memory of Run DMC's Jam Master Jay, to support music and arts education among urban schools, and will honor those displaying outstanding efforts in the areas of social justice, arts and music. Chuck D, Dr. Cornell West and Will Smith are the nominees in the Justice Award category, while Spike Lee, Robert L. Johnson and Lee Quinones are up for the Arts Award. Meanwhile Nelly, Wyclef Jean and Kanye West will compete for the third award of the night, the Music Award. Check out www.jammasterjay.org for more info..
This in from ZDENNIS Music News:
Following the success of his partner, M1's solo project "Confidential" is the highly anticipated solo release MANHOOD by Stic.Man of Dead Prez. Officially releasing for stores November 30, eager fans are able to pre-purchase the album online at Dead Prez’s own WWW.BOSSUPBU.COM, the official one-stop, online shop into the world of Dead Prez for new music, videos, exclusive merchandise, .AMMO Magazine, books and news. Alongside rappers Khujo Goodie, Dead Prez' M1, Young Noble, and vocalist Crystal Johnson and others, MANHOOD blends rapping, soulful singing, diverse hard core beats, live instrumentation, style and substance. MANHOOD delivers a mature and refreshing vibe and inspiring voice to what some may consider a "lost generation". The album contains 16 substantial tracks and includes production from Hi-Tek (Snoop Dogg, The Game, G-Unit, Mos Def), Sol Messiah (Chamillionaire, David Banner, Scarface) and Jwells (Snoop Dogg, Dogg Pound, Alkoholiks) and Stic.Man.
The CD takes listeners through an array of aspects of what manhood means to the diverse rapper. MANHOOD shows Stic.Man's compassionate, soulful side with cuts like "Whatever Daddy Wants" and "Black Girl Shine" then finds complete balance by grinding into the gritty side of the streets on cuts like "Do It Big" with Khujo Goodie & "Year of the Tiger" with Young Noble. "Anything that we do, is inspired by life, and being able to make songs to inspire others is truly a labor of love," says rapper, entrepreneur, and activist, Stic.Man.
01. Year Of The Tiger feat. Young Noble 02:33
02. Do It Big feat. Khujo Goodie 04:03
03. Hold Up (Skit) 00:08
04. Get Yo Hustle Up 02:21
05. Black Girl Shine 03:20
06. That's What Men Do 03:32
07. Ball Or Fall feat. M1 03:47
08. Traffic Jam feat. Crystal Johnson 04:58
09. It's Nice Outside 02:06
10. Reparations feat. Taj 04:33
11. Coming Home 05:15
12. Whatever Daddy Wants feat. Maimouna 03:55
13. So Focused 04:58
14. Independent Hustler feat. Mykel 03:11
15. Boss Up feat. Mr. Sonshyne 01:34
16. Traffic Jam feat. Crystal Johnson (Radio Mix) 04:29
17. 68. Silence
18. Faithful Lover feat. Maimouna (Bonus) 04:00