Wednesday, May 10, 2006

The Dumb Are Mostly Intrigued By The Drum

Vibe application questions cont'd..

5. What’s your biggest gripe about hip-hop today?

In the words of the Wu-Tang lyricist Masta Killa, “The dumb are mostly intrigued by the drum.” A good chunk of the music being streamed over the radio lack the quality lyrical content Rap was once known for. While Rap veterans such as NaS and Common and new entrants to the game Kanye West and Papoose continue to uphold the original values of Hip Hop being skill, delivery and content, radio waves still remain heavily polluted by overly sexed, gimmick filled tracks. You know Hip Hop has gone astray when BET turns away videos by legendaries A Tribe Called Quest and the up coming Little Brother because their music is “too intelligent.” From the ground breaking flow of Rakim to the whispers, whistles and snaps of today’s chart hits Hip Hop has been steadily spirally downward bringing disappointment to true Hip Hop heads and eventual boredom to radio junkies.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Just Like Music

so to apply to be a Vibe Campus Reporter They ask 'What's On your Playlist?"..seeing as how I have a million different playlists per mood and genre I made a more "well rounded" 20 song one...and all the songs, if not already, will be on the playlist which takes a sec to load so be patient.

1. Ressurection - Common
I list ressurection under classics. You can tell when the song was made not only by the style of the beat but of Common's flow. Its very on tempo, hyped and b-boyish. Like I could so see Common in his bboy stance like 'ain't scared of no n****!' Plus I love the line.."you at got my back and we don't get no thicker"..I don't know why..just do.

2. Due Process Ft. Talib Kweli, Rubix - Lone Catalysts
Love this song! The beat alone puts you in this serene mode and the flows are hard enough that you don't get too caught up in the track yet soft enough that they don't butcher the feel of the beat. And you know you loved kweli's verses..."I go on like ectera." I can't say I'm a big fan of Lone Catalysts becasue I don't really have anything on my ipod by them but I'm gonna try to look into em....Am I the only one who thinks Rubix lightweight resembles Mos Def?

3. Ain't Too Proud To Beg - The Temptations
The Temptations are too too classic but you know that after seeing the big white kid in Remember the Titans belt that song out in that one scene made it universal. Its a shame you can't find music with as much passion on the radio today.

4. La Negre Tiene Tumbao - Celia Cruz
Celia is the QUEEN of salsa I swear she just makes hit after hit. I especially like this song becasue shes talking about a Black girl with a booty and I thought it was too funny for that because English speakers have no idea, as with Spanish class graduates.

5. Inner City Blues (Make Me Wanna Holler) - Marvin Gaye
I have the anthology vinyls from my father so I would always listen to this song but I never really gave a good listen until I read Makes Me Wanna Holler-Nathan McCall and the author makes many references to it, including the title. When you listen to the lyrics you can't help but wonder why 99% of what he's saying still holds true today.

6. Untitled (How Does It Feel) - D'Angelo
Now I know I wasn't the only one who ran up to the tv during this video tryna see if I could somehow look down. Boi was buck naked singin his heart out and everybody loved it. He made a gap and a high pitched voice sexy, please believe! D'Angelo has unmatched talent by r&b newbies yet where is he now? Last I heard he got with Angie Stone and later got into a drug incident.-sigh-

7. The Big Payback - James Brown
Love the bass and the guitar in this song. My father would put this on and start dancin like James while singing..if you could call it that, the lyrics all off beat and off key and I still loved it. And the cracks
you'd get on the record player from the vinyl being aged since the 70s gave it that "instant vintage" feel.

8. Electric Relaxation - A Tribe Called Quest
9. Danger - Erykah Badu
10. Is This Love - Bob Marley & The Wailers
11. N.Y. State of Mind, Pt. 2 - NaS
12. Legal - Clifford Sylvain
13. Days Of Our Lives Ft. Common - De La Soul
14. Thieves In The Night - Black Star
15. At Last - Etta James
16. Meet The Parents - Jay-Z
17. Real Black Girl (Revolutionary Love) - Dead Prez
18. Do You Remember - Jill Scott
19. Triumph - Wu-Tang Clan
20. A Pimp's Dream - Dwele

Friday, April 28, 2006

That's Why They Gave Ricky Ross All The Crack

nearly half of America's largest cities is one-quarter black
That's why they gave Ricky Ross all the crack
Sixteen ounces to a pound, twenty more to a ki
A five minute sentence hearing and you no longer free
-Mos Def

"What I've attempted to demonstrate in my book was how the collapse of a brutal, pro-American dictatorship in Latin America, combined with a decision by corrupt CIA agents to raise money for a resistance movement by any means necessary, led to he formation of the nation's first major crack market in South Central Los Angeles, which led to the arming and the empowerment of LA's street gangs, which led to the spread of crack to black neighborhoods across the country, and to the passage of racially discriminatory sentencing laws that are locking up thousands of young black men today behind bars for most of their lives."-Gary Webb

Years ago an article had been released concerning the CIA's involvement with the crack epidemic and their alleged use of Ricky Ross, Los Angeles drug dealer, as a scapegoat for spread of crack cocaine and gang violence in CA. In fear of being called a terrorist and being ransacked from my home I am not going to state whether or not I believe this is true because I am so not a terrorist! Damn "defense" laws.However, if this were fucked up would that be. I mean that's bigger than forget us after Katrina, stop us on the highway, police brutality shit. Honestly its comparable to slavery big. I really would like to know who came up with it. Like who sat in their basement with some coke thinking why don't I just cook this up with some baking soda and see what happens..2 days later..crack is born..I mean it's liek when someone asks how did they come up with the idea for the internet or recorded music. We look at it as if we always had it but someone had to invent it.

So according to Gary Webb, among others, during the Cold War, and for the non ended in the 1980s so its pretty reccent..America was all anti-communist and was willing to support any country that shared their beliefs, in fear that the USSR might take over and spread communism to that country if the US didn't take them on their team first. So to fund the anticommunist crew in Latin America they sold crack to Americans in Los Angeles..or so they Ricky Ross who then distributed it across LA gangs which later spread to other cities and states..and hence the birth of the crack epidemic and gang violence across the nation. Now Webb make sit clear that the CIA did not distribute the crack but instead practiced "gross negligence" and a blind eye to the anticommunist groups transporting it here in the states. It has even been reported that there were kilos of coke on US army planes...or so they say. Now I can't say that the CIA did allow them to start this whole drug war whateva whateva but I can say this...the crack epidemic is still in full effect and the coke gotta be coming from somewhere and it obviously it ain't all made in the states is it crossing over to American soil unnoticed? We are constantly penalizing small time drug offenders while molesters and rapists run loose on the streets because thats our "thing"..'War on Drugs'..but wouldn't it make more sense to sanction the main distributors overseas if you were trying to end the drug phenomenon? Well thats if..emphasizing IF one wanted to end the if the US wants to end the spread...why do they let drugs in?...are they trying and the drug dealers are just that good?