Archive for January, 2009

Lil ‘ Wayne is wack

Posted: January 28, 2009 in Uncategorized

Everywhere I look, there he is. Magazines, award shoes, and the internet. I have no problem admitting when I’m wrong, and I never hate just to hate. But when it comes to Lil’ Wayne aka Lil’ sneezy, Lil’ cheesy, fuck that. There’s no reason this guy should even be mentioned “best rapper alive.” Yes, I read is reviews for spin, rolling stone, XXL, and the rest of them and I listened to his “best album.” Its was ok. Album of the year, hell no. Half the time, I can’t understand him. Lil ‘Wayne, are you smoking 2 packs of Newports a day? Try a damn throat lozenge. Now,  I know I’m not the only one that feels this way. Several people I’ve talked to have shared the same opinions. I feel Lil’Wayne is about as nice as a Rick Ross or a Young Jeezy. They make pop music which happens to be associated with rap which then gets thrown into hip hop. But to say he’s up with Nas, Jay-Z, or Biggie(shame on you), you most be smokin some leak or Wayne is payin you to say that(see spin and rolling stone). Anyways, thats my rant for the day. I’m hungry. peace.

re-kon

that aint gangsta

that ain't gangsta

check out bekay. his song” year in review” inspired my rant.

http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewProfile&friendID=4789873

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Political Rap

Posted: January 22, 2009 in hip hop, Uncategorized

]I’ve got to say this country is certainly in some turmoil. But to every cloud, there is a silver lining. It has definitely inspired the hip hop world and its artists. Some more militant about change, some more passive aggressive, inspiring conscious thinking. Political Rap is nothing new to the hip hop game, Artists like Public Enemy, X-Clan, Brand Nubian and Paris have always had a political message in their songs. From Black Pride to living a healthier life style, its been all about change and moving forward into a positive change, and leaving negative stereo types behind. Fast forward to 2009. A new breed of rappers have stepped forward such as East Coast Avengers, Immortal Technique, and veterans Agallah and Dead Prez. East Coast Avengers have been feature on news t.v. shows for their controversial song “Kill Bill O’Reilly.” It features a look a like Bill O’Reilly, being kidnapped  and than executed. The title speaks for its self. Now Immortal Technique has gone as far as appearing on Al Jazeera t.v., known for broadcasting Osama Bin Laden statements. One of the few putting in work to get his message across. I’ve added some videos to watch. Ask yourself if they are over the top? Controversial?  What is the message, violent or non violent? What is the solution to this mess? Can Obama really save us form this mess? Maybe Immortal Technique does have a point?[youtube=http://

This is actually kind of funny

T.R.A.C.- Free dowloand

Posted: January 21, 2009 in hip hop, Uncategorized
BK's finest

BK's finest

Here’s a most download from my man T.R.A.C. A veteran in the game from my favorite borough, Brooklyn. I stumbled across this guy’s  myspace profile back in 2004. we clicked instantly. We shared the same love for hip hop and our views of hip hop and the future were almost identical. T.R.A.C. represents everything that I love about hip hop, dope lyrics, beats, contents, the message, and the muthafucker has a good time doing it. Like most “indie” or “underground” artists, he struggle to use hip hop as a means of supporting himself. And as you listen and get into Mr. Nicohlas’ mind, you might ask yourself “Why ain’t this dude getting any love?” Politics people! All the talent in the world doesn’t mean shit. But this hasn’t detoured T.R.A.C. from plugging away. Yes, I might be a little bias when it comes to his music. Yes, he is a dear friend of mine, but on the real, Mr.Nickz is nice on the M-I-C. After years of harassing him, T.R.A.C has been kind enough to bless me and my wunderground readers some throw back joints of his. My favorite is Burgundy, with season veteran Dj/producer I-Cue. Just a feel good catchy joint.  Now this is just a little tastes of what is to come. He’s up in Toronto right now, hittin the studio hard and grinding away on the “Nixtape.” I heard a few tracks on it already, and I’d be “delusional” to say that this won’t be a classic. So download away and enjoy. You can check TRAC out and some of his other joints at http://www.myspace.com/trac

Download here:

http://rapidshare.com/files/187280511/The_Snip_Snap_Sampler_EP.zip

Write To Ras Kass

Posted: January 21, 2009 in hip hop, Uncategorized
free ras kass

free ras kass

I was on allhiphop.com earlier today, when I saw that Ill Seed posted Ras Kass’ address in prison. After doing some research, he’s currently serving 3 years in jail for probation violation, I had to meet him a few years back and he seemed like a genuine dude. So, fuck it, I’ll write him a letter. I’m sure he’d like to hear from his fans. Plus it helps past the time. So thanks to ill seed for the address.

John Austin

CSATF/STATE PRISON @ CORCORAN

PO BOX 5244

Corcoran, CA 93212

Austin # T.99907

Housing G.I.C. 271v

Destroy and Rebuild

Posted: January 20, 2009 in Uncategorized
hope

hope

Thank you George W. Bush. Yes I said thank you. Why you ask? Because it took a person like George W. Bush and his administration to run a country as good as America into the ground.  It only took him 8 years to do it too. That’s amazing considering how long it took Rome to fall. But its a time like this,  a time of no hope, a time of disparity, a time of economic fail to have a leader like Barack Obama rise above it all.  Obama has inspired an entire generation to get out and take action. There are people in other countries dancing in the streets as we speak. Obama has given hope when all else has seemed to fail us. President Obama has the power to change the entire world. The power to change the image of America. I know there are some great expectations out there, but for me I realize everything will not be fixed over night. They might not even be fixed in the next four years. But what Obama does represent, for all you disbelievers and “haters”, is  the light at the end of a 8 year long tunnel. This is all kind of surreal for me.

I’m not one for politics, but as I sit here a listen to our new President, I can’t help but feel a little more positive about this country I love and its future. America, by no means is perfect. But for me I couldn’t picture myself living anywhere else. Barack Obama got millions of others to get off their asses and vote, even yours truly. That says a lot right there. I’m guessing this is what people felt when John F. Kennedy was elected president. But on a side note, what if the Bush administration was a success? Would this all be as big of a deal as it is? Would Bush, on this day, would he just be passing the torch of a republican regime?  America’s first black president is a big deal, I just have some questions in my head.

So again,  thank you George W. Bush for destroying the America of the past, and god damn it, thank you Barack Obama, for the kick start of a new and stronger America of the future. 09 is off to a great start.

re-kon

shout out to Omid Malekan for the video.

Your Favorite Rapper Is Gay

Posted: January 14, 2009 in hip hop, Uncategorized

Thanks to JoeBuddentv.com for posting my last Blog on there forum. I’m getting a lot of positive feedback from it. Thanks to all that read this.

Recently Kanye West said he’d like to pose nude.  Uh Oh! He most be gay, right? Cause that’s what gays do right? Hip Hop is definitely guilty of gay bashing. I too am guilty of using slender like, “that shit is gay” , “stop being a fag, dude”, and so on. Prison rape is what keeps me out of jail. Its gotten to the point where I’ve seen a gay awareness commercial with Wanda Sikes. Deep down I don’t hate homosexuals. I have no problem with their life style. Shit, let gays get married. They’re entitledto the same right as everyone else. Is the word “faggot” any different than the word “nigger” , “cracker”, or “spic?” All promote the use of hate, close mindedness, and bigotry . I know for myself, I could never turn my back on anyone just because of their sexual preference. Though if they chose to disregard my space and cross a line, thats another thing.

Hip Hop is a dominated “Alpha Male” genre of music, even more so then Hardcore music.  A lot of battle rhyme disses are geared towards sexual preference. Most rappers don’t want to be called gay and might take serious disrespect towards it. Maybe all those girl in their videos are just signs of over compensation? I’m not gay. I’m comfortable with my sexuality. I never tried nor will I ever. I love woman too much. But I can say that a guy is good looking without feeling uncomfortable.

You have to look at the probability of it, there has to be atleast 2 top selling artists in Hip Hop that still haven’t come out of the closet yet, that goes for RnB too. If Nas was gay, would his street cred be reuined? If  Dipset was really talking about sex with man when they did push it. Or Clipse with “Grindin.?”  would these guys have lose fan base? Most certainly. Their record sales would be affected too. I’m sure a lot of Yankee fans did not like A-Rod because they thought he was gay. On the other hand if a rapper was talking about having sex with this and that girl, I could see how a fan might feel lied too.

“Its in the Bible” ” homosexuality is wrong”, “The Koran says it too.” Personally, I hate religon. Its started some of the biggest wars ever, but thats another topic. Anyways, I’m not here to preach about how “open minded” I am and how perfect my shit is. Honestly, I really don’t have a point to this story. I’m just trying to bring a different thought pattern to hip hop, maybe make aware of something you never thought about. I try to work on myself everyday.

Its so much easier to label some one,  than to get to know them.

check the forum for some more insite

http://joebuddentv.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1027

This is an article I pulled of of the late J-dilla’s Blog on myspace.com. Please read. You’ll truly understand how fucked up the music industry is. And its times like this who you see truly have your back.

The Battle for J Dilla’s Legacy (Vibe Mag.)

Vibe Magazine, February 2009
http://www.vibe.com

THREE YEARS AFTER HIS UNTIMELY DEATH, J DILLA’S BEATS AND REPUTATION LOOM EVER LARGER OVER HIP HOP. BUT FOR HIS MOTHER – WHO NURSED THE VISIONARY PRODUCER THROUGH A CHRONIC ILLNESS AND HAS WATCHED HIS ESTATE LANGUISH IN LIMBO – THE STRUGGLE CONTINUES. BY KELLEY LOUISE CARTER

There’s nothing Maureen Yancey wouldn’t do for her children. But as she sits in the basement studio of her only surviving son’s Los Angeles home, she struggles with the one thing she hasn’t done since her firstborn, James Dewitt Yancey known in hip hop circles as Jay Dee or J Dilla – three years ago of complications from lupus. She just can’t. She didn’t do it when the ambulance arrived at the nearby house Dilla shared with. Common, and she didn’t when they failed to revive him from cardiac arrest. She couldn’t even bring herself to do it when she picked out which baseball cap she’d place by his coffin.

“When he left, I had an awful void,” she says calmly. “I didn’t grieve like you always think you’d grieve. I always had a joy and the strength to help others to get through it. But…” her voice trails off, hands smoothing down her jeans. “I haven’t cried yet.”

Still, the memories came flooding back when she flew from Detroit to visit the city where her son was buried at age 32. “I rejoiced in the fact that he wasn’t sick anymore,” she says, “and that he’d done what he came here to do. I do believe that. His purpose on earth was to come here and give us the music that he had in his heart and soul.”

The equipment that surrounds her is Dilla’s, the same gear he used to create the deceptively simple, unspeakably beautiful music that solidified his reputation as one of hip hop’s greatest. As Busta Rhymes put it in 2007, “He wasn’t just a producer, he was the best producer.”

Many of her son’s friends – Common, Busta, Erykah Badu – still call regularly, and keep her son’s music in rotation. Q-Tip’s latest single, “Move” (Universal Motown, 2008), was built around a Dilla beat, and her other son John Yancey, a rapper known as Illa J has released the powerful new album, Yancey Boys (Delicious Vinyl, 2008), which was produced by his big brother.

Meanwhile the 60-year-old woman everybody calls Ma Dukes faces health problems of her own, and financial challenges as well. Although numerous memorials and “benefits” were held in his name, the proceeds didn’t change his family’s life. Dilla left two daughters – Ja’Mya, 7, and Paige, 9 – to provide for, a sizeable IRS bill, and unresolved legal issues surrounding the use of his beats. Ma Dukes says she has never received money from her son’s estate and that her plans to establish a foundation in his name were quashed by the executor of his estate. Somehow, she was not reduced to tears even after Dilla’s attorney informed her that she had no legal right to use her own son’s name or likeness for commercial purposes. Not even to support his family.

IN HIS NATIVE DETROIT, DILLA WAS THE MAN. The soft-spoken beatmaker was a pioneer of the Motor City hip hop landscape that struggled to gain national recognition before Slim Shady put the D on the map in 1999. Though he remains anonymous to the masses, Dilla is considered a demigod by his hardcore fans. His distinctive drum sounds and grimy, organic sound palette revolutionized hip hop production, and echoes of his innovative use of samples can be heard in the work of Just Blaze and Kanye West. “He can do a Primo beat better than Premier. He can do a Dre beat better than Dre, and he can out-rock Pete Rock,” says fellow Detroit producer House Shoes. “But none of them could duplicate a Dilla beat. Much respect to those three. They were pioneers. But that’s the fucking truth.”

Dilla grew up in the Conant Gardens section of Detroit’s Eastside surrounded by music. His dad, Beverly Yancey, played piano and upright bass. “My mom and dad had a jazz a cappella group, and they’d sing in the living room for hours and hours,” says Illa J, 22. “It was really laid-back and nonchalant. While that was happening, my brother would be downstairs in the basement doing his thing.”

By the mid-1990s, Dilla was getting calls from some of the hottest stars of the day. He produced tracks for The Pharcyde, De La Soul, Busta Rhymes, A Tribe Called Quest, and Q-Tip, with whom he founded the production collective The Ummah. Yet despite these high-profile projects, Dilla shunned the limelight. His love of music eclipsed any concern for dealing with industry politics. “He wasn’t antisocial,” says Illa J. “He was just quiet. That comes from our dad. A lot of his personality rubbed off on my brother. It was all about the craft for him. He didn’t care about all that other stuff.”

When Tribe’s Beats, Rhymes, and Life (Jive, 1996) was nominated for a Grammy, Tip invited Dilla to the award ceremony. “I was like, ‘Yo, this is a good opportunity for you, you should just go.’ He was like, ‘Hell no, I ain’t going. Fuck that!”‘ recalls Q-Tip, laughing at the memory. “I said, ‘You got nominated for a fucking Grammy. You are going to go.’ He said, ‘I ain’t got nothing to wear!’ But he went. He was so mad and disgruntled and angry about that. He was much happier doing it his way. That’s who he was. He didn’t really want to fuck with none of that. And I don’t blame him.”

DILLA REALIZED SOMETHING WAS WRONG WITH HIS HEALTH IN JANUARY OF 2002. He’d just returned from Europe and thought he had a bad flu. Sick to his stomach and complaining of chills, Ma Dukes took him to the emergency room at Bon Secours hospital in suburban Grosse Pointe, Michigan. His blood platelet count should have been above 150, but it was below 10. Doctors told his mother they were surprised he was still walking around.

He tested positive for lupus, an autoimmune disease that can be fatal. To make matters worse, Detroit doctors diagnosed him with thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura, aka TTP, a rare disorder that causes blood clots to form in the body’s blood vessels.

Despite his degenerating health, Dilla packed up his stuff and moved out to Los Angeles, where he lived with his friend and frequent collaborator Common. He set up a studio and got to work. But very few knew how bad life was for the soft-spoken prodigy. He poured himself into his work, doing his best to forget his health problems. Ma Dukes says there were several close calls. When she left him alone once, Dilla fell down and bumped his head. Because she refused to leave Dilla’s side during his last days, she and her husband lost their house. She tried to file for bankruptcy to save the family home but didn’t get back to Detroit in time to sign the necessary paperwork. “I wasn’t leaving my son,” she says.”We lost the house. But I wasn’t concerned. It didn’t bother me at all.”

At summer’s end, 2005, Dilla found himself in a hospital bed at Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles, the same hospital where The Notorious B.I.G. and Eazy-E died. He’d lost the ability to walk and could barely talk. His own body was killing him, and there was little to be done about it.

Sensing that death was coming, he told his mother he needed his equipment in the hospital with him. Ma Dukes asked his friends from the L.A.-based label Stones Throw Records to lug his turntables, mixer, crates of records, MPC, and computer into his room. When his hands were too swollen, Ma Dukes would massage his stiffened fingers so Dilla could work on the tracks, letting his doctors listen to the beats through his headphones.

Sometimes he’d wake Ma Dukes up in the middle of the night, asking her to help move him from his bed to a reclining chair so he could work a bit more comfortably. His only focus was finishing the album. Donuts was released on Stones Throw on February 7, 2006, his 32nd birthday. Dilla died three days later.

“It was crazy to hear all that soul,” Illa J says of one haunting track called “Don’t Cry.” “I got to be in the right mode to listen to it. It’s emotional for me. I can feel my brother talking to me through the music.”

THREE DAYS AFTER DILLA DIED, HIS ELDEST DAUGHTER, PAIGE, TURNED 6. “That was a low blow,” says her mother, Monica Whitlow. “To have to tell my baby that before her birthday was the worst. We didn’t get to say goodbye.” The 29-year-old, who knew Dilla before his career took off, still lives in Detroit. She emphasizes that their relationship was never about money. “To have him back here, breathing and living, that’s worth more than money any day,” she says. “But it pisses me off, everything that’s going on with this estate. It’s ridiculous ’cause it’s been three years, and my baby has not seen anything from this estate. Nobody has granted James his final wish.”

Although Dilla’s will stipulates that all assets be divided among his mother, his two daughters, and his brother, the executor of the estate is his accountant Arty Erk, and as back-up, there’s his attorney, Micheline Levine and then his mother. Ma Dukes says she grew so frustrated that communications broke down between her and the executor. Erk explains that payments from the estate were delayed because Dilla has an outstanding tax debt in the “healthy six figures.” He says he is negotiating a payment plan with the IRS and that a petition has been filed with the probate court in order to get family allowances paid to Dilla’s children.

The other major issue facing the estate is that so many people are using Dilla’s beats without permission. Dilla would often create beat CDs and hand them out to friends.

“It’s been difficult to police,” Erk admits, adding that he’s at the tail end of litigation with Busta Rhymes. “An album was released by Busta on the Internet called Dillagence without authorization,” Levine explains. “And, of course, we’re now unable to use those tracks and exploit those downloads. Everybody downloaded it for free.” Attempts to reach out to Busta were not returned.

Ma Dukes counters that Busta paid Dilla for those tracks years ago. “He got a raw deal,” she says. “Busta didn’t take anything from anybody.” Ma Dukes says she feels bad that her son’s friend had to go through such rough treatment by his estate.

The same scenario has played out several times since Dilla’s death. The estate has settled “four or five” similar cases, negotiating what they believe is fair market value for the beats. “A lot of people are coming out of the woodwork with things that he did for them,” says Erk, who took out an ad in Billboard magazine in April 2008, notifying people to stop using Dilla’s material. The estate also sent out cease-and-desist letters to various entertainers as well as people throwing events in Dilla’s name-including his own mother, she says. “Her dream was to open a camp where kids with lupus could have normal lives,” says Joy Yoon, an L.A. journalist who interviewed Ma Dukes shortly after her son’s death and later offered to help her raise funds for what was to be called the J Dilla Foundation. “But then she said she was put on hold by the lawyers.”

Ma Dukes insists she will go on with her plans for the foundation, establishing it in her own name. “It’s been over two years, and they’re talking the same crap,” she says. “I don’t have a Ph.D., but I know how to use a phone and talk to somebody and make arrangements. It’s just not an excuse. They have no respect for the fact that I had anything to do with bringing him into this world.”

Meanwhile, she has voiced concerns about Dilla’s will itself, which he signed on September 8, 2005, nearly six months before his death. “I don’t even know if he really knew what he was signing,” she says. “I don’t think he would have signed anything if he’d known it would be like this now.” She has hired an attorney who is also representing her son and Paige’s mother, Monica Whitlow, who says that legal action is “in the works.”

“His estate is fucked up,” Q-Tip says. “I know the lawyers are saying that he had certain tax issues and all that stuff. But you were getting paid to represent him when he was alive, so it shouldn’t be any of that. Ma Dukes ain’t getting nothing, and the kids ain’t getting nothing. It’s a horrible thing.”

During the last year of her son’s life, Maureen Yancey tested positive for lupus. She says she’s not worried about dying and has accepted the fact that she and her husband must now live in a rental property in a neighborhood she describes as “a war-torn zone.” What keeps her up at night is her grand children. “I just want the girls to be taken care of,” she says. “That’s all.”

In response to a petition filed by her mother, Joyleete Hunter, Dilla’s youngest daughter, Ja’Mya, has begun receiving money from the estate, and Erk says Paige should start receiving payouts sometime in early 2009. “Oh really?” says Whitlow. “That’s new information for me.” She has had few conversations with Erk and says that when she informed him she was working with Ma Dukes’ lawyer, he warned her, “This is going to get ugly.” But she remains undeterred. “I gotta speak up for my baby ’cause I been quiet too long,” she says.”He hasn’t seen ugly. I can show him ugly.”

In the meantime, Ma Dukes says please don’t cry for her. “It’s really rough for everybody out there. But prayers help,” she says with a sigh.”Pray for my strength.” vibe-mrsyancey

Don’t know how to act?

Posted: January 13, 2009 in hip hop, Uncategorized

As I continue this Blog, I like to search the world wide web for inspiration. Checking out different hip hop sites, forums, and myspace pages. I recently became a member at JoeBuddenTV.com(shout outs to Adam and Adam). Its specifically designed for Joe Budden fans, haters and curious on lookers like myself. The thing that caught me, is there are some serious and active users on there which is great.  So I check out some of the forum posts and stumbled upon a post about “wiggers.” I also wondered what the hip hop community thought of this term. what does this term really mean? Within the post a couple of users posted videos of white youths doing  “black things” like freestyling in front of their web came and dressing up in all red throwing gangs signs with dipset in the background, that was actually kind of funny.

It brought me to this thought. What does the hip hop community feel about Ill Bill and Vinnie Paz. Both being prominent figures in the Indie Hip Hop world and moving serious units. I posted that question on JoeBuddentv.com and here are some of the reactions.

User Steve_O

“If a black kid grows up in a suburban neighborhood and speaks “white” does that make him an uncle tom? Some people are so insecure with themselves that they feel the need to hate another person and place labels on them just for the sake of riding out for the stereotypes they were raised to believe. It’s 09 people!”

User your h1ghn3ss

nahhh. well 2 me, they just come off as thug-ass white people.

User Sincere

im sure people will think so, they say eminem is too, i on the other hand dont see any white person as a wigger, ever

So, for the most part, the hip hop community has embraced these guys. But what about the rest of America? For me, being white, I found the most scrutiny for listening to hip hop music or any other “black” music from white people. I been called “black”, “you’re the blackest person I know”, and by my own mother that I was born the wrong race all because I listen to certain genre of music. So that black kid from Bed-Stuy wearing skinny jeans and mo hawk, is he acting white. Where do you go to get your seal of approval from? I’m still scratching my head about this. For me it just comes down to what people identify with and what they enjoy. Be who the fuck you want to be as long as you stay true to yourself. Embrace all the imperfections of someone and just think for a minute before you judge, is my house in order?  I’ll never give up my baggy jeans, I’m just a bigger dude. I love my woman with a little extra ass and curves and I’ll drink the shit out of grape soda all day. I’ll take Mobb Deep over The Strokes any day and Al Green over Neil Diamond. So if that makes me a “wigger”, so be it.

peace, love and dope beats.

Re-kon

check the ill bill video

Upper Playground Thank You Sale

Posted: January 12, 2009 in Uncategorized

By no means am I any kind of fasion guy, or up to date on it. But I do love this San. Fran. based clothing company. Most of their stuff is cheaper than most indie designers and get this, they’re doing a 50% off sale. That means $25 dollar shirts are now at $12. which is more than reasonable for some really fresh designs. so check’em out. Happy shopping.  Hurry its only from Jan.12th-15th

http://www.upperplayground.com