Friday, August 31, 2007

Audio Visuals

I'm always gonna bring back the good 'ol days. 1991 - 1996 is what I, and many others, consider to be Hip-Hop's Age of Enlightenment. This period produced some of the greatest Hip-Hop albums ever recorded and I don't foresee anything happening in the music industry in the future to match the amount of quality output of this amazing era - sigh...

The following videos lack in overall quality but these videos were once on regular rotation on BET's Rap City (before the dumbing down).

O.G.C.: "Hurricane Starang"

The D&D Allstars: "1,2 Pass It (DJ Premier Remix)"

Channel Live feat. KRS-One: "Mad Izm"

Black Moon: "How Many MC's"

Nas: "The World Is Yours (Q-Tip Remix)"

Wu-Tang Clan: "Can It Be All So Simple"

Friday, August 17, 2007


Despite my general disdain for Will.I.Am productions I'm diggin' this contribution to Talib Kweli's Ear Drum. It helps that the video is more original than any I've seen in a while. I know it plays on the HP ads, but still.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Movies 'N' Me

I was just giving this some thought on my way home from work this evening. These are the most memorable musical moments in cinema. Well, the kind of cinema I enjoy anyway...
I'm a huge fan of Wes Anderson films and Rushmore is the most endearing of his work. Faces' "Ooh La La" comes at the films conclusion and all I can say is that it fits perfectly in every way imaginable.

Faces: "Ooh La La"

I've seen every Quentin Tarrantino flick. He knows how to use music in his films and he chose the perfect artist to score Kill Bill Vol. 1. The RZA plucks an angelic Nancy Sinatra tune for the film's intro and it simply draws you in and doesn't let go.

Nancy Sinatra: "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)"

You're sitting in movie theatre and someone cues up "Shimmy Shimmy Ya". Right as the introductory piano dabs started to fill the theatre it just occurred to me how perfect the song was for this movie. An ODB track about unprotected sex as the backdrop to the opening credits for this particular movie? Genius.

Ol' Dirty Bastard: "Shimmy Shimmy Ya" (I'm not wasting time in providing a download - I know you already own this. And if you don't, "shame on a NUH!")

Monday, August 06, 2007

The "Proceed" Drumma

?uestlove is an oasis of musical knowledge. Apart from his musicianship and overall contribution to The Roots ongoing catalog, ?uesto also pens some insightful observations on a variety of subjects. He's a busy guy but has time to document his groups progress via his Myspace page. From their relentless road schedule to whatever he or The Roots are running with at the moment, he somehow gets it up there. His posts are amusing reads. His sense of humor is sharp and he's got some fantastic stories about the business he's engulfed in. If he's feeling really generous, he'll even post some never-heard-before gems. He's got four tracks that didn't make Common's Electric Circus up right now!

This is a cool list I extracted from his page. Only a geeked out music nerd would take interest in idle information like this but it's what I do.

Songs In The Key Of Life (Childhood-Adulthood)

Song You Believe Your Parents Conceived You To: Stay In My Corner by The Dells

Song That Best Makes The Soundtrack of Your Childhood Neighborhood Theme: Lovely Day by Bill Withers

Theme Song To Your Closest Sibling: Reminiscing by Little River Band

The First Album You Ever Purchased: Looking Through The Windows by The Jackson 5ive

The First Single You Ever Purchased: "Dance Wit Me" Rufus And Chaka Khan 45

Album Cover That Scared You In Your Childhood: Why Can't We Be Friends by War/Shame On The World by The Main Ingredient

Song That Scared You In Your Childhood: "If There's Hell Below....We're All Gonna Go (Don't Worry)" by Curtis Mayfield

The TV Theme of Your Childhood: Soul Train 74

Favorite Song From Sesame Street: "Take A Bweath.....Take A Bweath....Smell A Smell Sniff A Sniff Take A Bweath"

Favorite Song From Mister Rodgers Neighborhood: "You Are My Friend You Are Special"

Favorite Song From The Electric Company: "My Name Is Fred....They Call Me Fred...."

What Were You Banned From Listening To In Your Childhood: Anything by Prince

Rock Song That Rocked Ghetto/Ghetto Song That Rocked The Suburbs (as a kid): "Let Em In" Paul McCartney and Wings

Song You First Slow Dragged To: "Good Morning Sunshine" by Brick

First Cassette You Got For Your First Walkman: The Fat Boys

Best Cosby Show Theme: Bobby Mcferrin Theme

Favorite Soundtrack Of Youth: Purple Rain was more a reveloution than "soundtrack"---so imma go with Saturday Night Fever

Song That Played When You Got In Trouble And Grounded At Home: Worst ass beating as a kid ironic for me had Michael W. Smith's "More Power To You" on christian radio

Song That Played When You Thought You Was About To Get Some: "Let's Wait Awhile" video was playing when i thought i was gonna seal the deal. DOH!

Song That Played When You Got Some: "Is It A Crime" Sade

The Theme To Your First Break Up In High School: "Sweet Love" by Anita Baker (last and ONLY time a chick will EVER dump me)---this song was playing and i will forever remember this as the theme from HELL

The First Compact Disc You Ever Brought (not Album/Cassette): Vivid by Living Color/Anthology by Sly And The Family Stone

Album That You Stole From A Friend: The World Is A Ghetto by War (every hip hop producer has a story of a girl's father's record collection they pillaged. you MUST hear Chuck D's story of how he got "The Grunt"

Your Favorite Album You Think Your Friend Stole: Fantastic Vol 1--tariq won't admit it but i KNOW he stole that shit.

If Ever In Car Accident....What Song Was Playing?: "Ironic" Alanis Morrisette (SHUTUP MICHELLE!)

5 Songs You'd Put On A Mixtape For A Potential Love One: 1) "Fall" Miles Davis, 2) "Circle Of Amour" Prince, 3)"Before The Dawn" Patrice Rushen, 4)"We Work The Black Seam" Sting, 5)"Easy Goin Evening (My Mama's Call) Stevie Wonder

Song To Best Describe Your Best Relationship: "6.4=Makeout" by Gary Wilson

Song To Best Describe Your Worst Breakup: "Just To Keep You Satisfied" Marvin Gaye

First Concert You Ever Went To: Besides My Dad? The Jacksons

Magical Concert You Ever Went To: Prince Calling Me From The Audience To Play Drums.

Worst Concert You Ever Went To: Masta Ace at the Troc in 92. His shit was dope. it was the fights that sucked.

Coolest Celeb Ever Met: 3 way tie: Annabella Sciorra is more Bgirl than anyone i know, Flea is the coolest ever, Cyndi Lauper is incredible

Assholish Celeb You Ever Met: Chuck Berry. "I Ain't Signing No Gotdamn Autograph

Godlike Celeb You Ever Met: Prince

The US Weekly "Oh They Just Like Me!" Celeb You Ever Met: Samual L Jackson

Song So Hype You'd Run Your Moms Over With A Trash Truck Going 100 mph: "Welcome To The Terrordome" by Public Enemy

Song That Has The Ability To Make You Cry: "Trying People" by De La Soul

The One Song That Has The Ability To Make You A Kid Again: "Sentimental Lady" by Bob Welch

Song You Are Ashamed To Admit You Love: "I Wish" by Skee Lo

Song/Album That You Have To Gunpoint Others To: Anything by Mars Volta

If You Were To Marry Now What Song Would Be Your Wedding Song?: "Cleo's Apartment" by Marvin Gaye

What Song Best Describes Your Children/Future Children?: "Dat Dere" by Oscar Brown Jr.

Who Killed Music?: Clive Davis

Who Keeps Music Alive For You?: James "J Dilla" Yancey

Song Playing Right Now: "Cool" by The Time

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Gotta Work

Amerie's Because I Love It has already been released overseas. Official U.S. release date is scheduled for August 21. Meanwhile, her second single is fantastic.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Tumbling Down Ms. Hill

Seeing this really pains me. Don't get me wrong, the interview is very informative and I've wondered off and on what kind of progress she's been making, musically. At one point I was convinced that she was going to be the Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald or Billy Holiday of my generation. She's got that much talent and potential, not that I even know what "talent" and "potential" is. What I do know is that she's got something very unique. But during these past few years of self-imposed reclusivity and sporadic re-emergences, Lauryn Hill has been slowly disintegrating and becoming marginalized and irrelevant, all through her own doing (or undoing).

I don't care about a Fugees reunion. She doesn't need a reunion. No one even gives a fuck whether or not Wyclef or Pras are even on an album with her. Everyone wants to hear Lauryn. The Fugees didn't sell millions because of Wyclef & Pras. They were really just oversized, ornamental hype-men for the group. The success of The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was not a fluke. Wyclef's Carnival was good but wasn't nearly as successful, and that was not fluke either. Ask anyone why they bought The Score and I doubt you'll get any response other than Lauryn Hill.

My advice: Just ease your clamp on the Bible and simply start to "make meaningful music".

The video interview should have never been allowed. Homey The Clown, not a good look.

Listen to these and tell me she's not the whole package (Erase the visual from the above interview from your consciousness).

"All My Time feat. Paid & Live"


"The Sweetest Thing" (It's my favorite of anything she's ever done. The sweetest thing, indeed.)

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Hidden Roots

The thing I missed about The Roots' last album Game Theory was that hidden or bonus track. Phrenology and The Tipping Point, if you let the CD ride, had one superb track nestled in a few minutes past the albums conclusions. I liked Game Theory a lot but out of all The Roots albums it's my least favorite. The band is constantly evolving and ?uesto is not one to rehash the same musical ideas and sounds with each new album, and I respect that. But I wish they would record more bangers like these:

"Rhymes & Ammo" feat. Talib Kweli - from Phrenology
"The Mic" feat. Dave Chappelle, Skills & Truck North - from The Tipping Point

Blood On The Tracks Sessions (1974)

(A McCrank's Juke collabo.)

Many people think Bob Dylan's "Blood On The Tracks" album is one of his best, right up there with Freewheelin' and Blonde On Blonde. Well this could be true, but after listening to the recording sessions for the album (recorded in NYC in 1974) on a very rare bootleg I have to agree that it may be his best to date. The original test pressing for the songs on "Blood" were never relased and eventually re-cut after some feedback by Dylan's brother. The originals are featured here in their original form. This is simply an amazing recording featuring some of Dylan's classics re-worked and raw. Learn more about it here.