Random Songs…

May 3, 2008

From a couple mixtapes that came out within the past month from Rich Boy and Houston representative Killa Kyleon. The mixtape from Rich Boy is titled Bigger Than The Mayor and Killa Kyleon’s is called Killa Music. Both are decent.

From Bigger Than The Mayor:
“Wrist Out The Window” featuring Shawty Lo and Gucci Mane
If you have a system in your car, please play this because the beat on this track is seriously thumpin! Shawty Lo and Gucci Mane contribute some vocals to the track, with the latter only being featured on a sample on the chorus.

“Haters Wish”
The chorus uses a couple of lines from “Throw Some D’s On It.” The beat is really chill, which is a nice change of pace given the hyped and urgent vibe that Rich Boy often gives on his songs.

“Supafly” featuring 334 Mob
A funky sample makes the appropriately titled “Supafly” a highly enjoyable listen from start to finish.

From Killa Season
“Father Forgive Me”
A lovely, laid back soundscape and some cool rhymes from Kyleon make this song noteworthy. It’s only 1min 20secs long.

“Hand On My Grain”
A short, but sweet and banging track that has been on repeat. In fact, I think I listened to this about 20 times today on my commute from home to work and back. The subject matter is far from thought provoking (grippin wood grain, sippin drank, blowin dank), but I’ll be damned if any true Houston rap fan doesn’t get a little amped listening to this.

“Not A G Like Me” featuring Pimp C
Sadly, Pimp C doesn’t rap a verse on this track. Instead, Kyleon uses some classic soundbites from an interview C did back he was going nuts and talking recklessly about a slew of emcees and the state of hip-hop. Kyleon builds on the C’s comments and talks about phony rappers, etc. Pretty enjoyable listen, especially with Pimp C’s hilarious and occasionally insightful rantings.


Li Wei: WTF?

May 3, 2008

Via Cynical C


Link to his Bio page

Wei’s work is a curious blend of performance art and photography that creates illusions. Wei says that he primarily uses props such as mirror, metal wires, scaffolding and acrobatics to create his work. I like this stuff a lot!

Quote for the Day

May 2, 2008

From a nice piece in The Economist about the Obama/Wright situation:

“But there is also something deeper here: a generational struggle for control of black politics. Mr Wright belongs to a generation of activists—Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton are other prominent members—who thrived in part by playing to the resentments of their black supporters. Mr Obama belongs to a much more pragmatic generation, people who want to get beyond racial polarisation and enter the political mainstream. Mr Wright’s generation is not about to leave the stage quietly. So much the worse for America.”

This article is not the first to make notice this distinction. I think Shelby Steele also captured this point perhaps a bit better in another piece he wrote in Time Magazine not too long ago about “Bargainers” and “Challengers”:

“Bargainers make a deal with white Americans that gives whites the benefit of the doubt: I will not rub America’s history of racism in your face, if you will not hold my race against me. Especially in our era of political correctness, whites are inevitably grateful for this bargain that spares them the shame of America’s racist past. They respond to bargainers with gratitude, warmth, and even affection. This “gratitude factor” can bring the black bargainer great popularity. Oprah Winfrey is the most visible bargainer in America today.

Challengers never give whites the benefit of the doubt. They assume whites are racist until they prove otherwise. And whites are never taken off the hook until they (institutions more than individuals) give some form of racial preference to the challenger. Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson are today’s best known challengers. Of course, most blacks can and do go both ways, but generally we tend to lean one way or another.”

So again, Obama is a pragmatic bargainer and Wright is a rash and relentless challenger. But I don’t know to what, if any, extent this fiasco should be labeled a generational disagreement between older (Civil Rights era) and newer (post Civl Rights era) black Americans regarding race relations. After all, pragmatic bargainers have always existed to some degree throughout US History.

Hood Headlinaz!

May 1, 2008

Keeping the SMS/PRGz theme alive, here’s some songs from the upcoming Paper Route Recordz album called Still Headlinin’. For those who don’t know “Hood Headlinaz” is the title of a compilation album released by Paper Route in 2005. Some of the group’s finest work is featured on that album and I highly recommend checking it out if you like what’s been posted thus far.

“Wood Grain”
This is the song I usually use to introduce people to SMS/PRGz. Numerous message boards, blogs, and major publications have written blurbs about this song over the past year. The haunting, calm sample from Poltergeist is used brilliantly by Mali Boi and the emceeing on it is superb.

Here’s a YouTube link to the Poltergeist theme:

“Bama Gettin Money”
What does this sample? I think I’ve heard it before. Anyway, this is one of the strangest choices of samples for a rap song that I can recall. The first few seconds do not give much of a hint of the type of rapping that follows as the vibe quickly changes from Eurotrash to hood shit. POPE kills the third verse.

A Diplo remix of “Bama Gettin Money”
I don’t think this will be on Still Headlinin, rather Leaving HuntsVegas, which is an upcoming mixtape that Paper Route is releasing in collaboration with another popular DJ named Diplo. I like this a lot, more great sample flippage by Diplo.

“Soul Glo”
I remember playing this for some friends of mine and the first thing they thought of was the song from the movie Coming to America. Another weird choice of sample, but it works great.

Clip of the Soul Glo commercial from Coming To America:

“Mz Thursday”
This is a cool song about womanizing. A great verse from Mata steals the show. Here’s an excerpt:

I met her on a Tuesday, comin outta Wal-Mart/
Pickin up some groceries, I seen how she was scopin me/
She started movin close to me, as if she was approachin me/
Thinkin to myself I’ll knock that pussy out the ball park/
Started with that small talk, what’s your name, where you from/
She said Jane, I said John, she spit game, I spit some/
Then she gave her number up and said that I was one of the realest niggas she met and she respect where I be comin from…

If these songs are any indication of what’s to come, Still Headlinin’ should be among the best of 2008.

Not So Fresh Prince

May 1, 2008

One of my favorites from the Cyanide and Happiness comic series at explosm.net. Click on the picture to enlarge…

Hip-Hop Nostalgia: Lyricist Lounge Show

April 29, 2008

Lyricist Lounge Show Cast

I forgot all about this show. The freestyle I posted yesterday reminded me of it. I used to watch it frequently when it was on MTV back in the day. It fizzled out pretty quickly from what I recall and there’s hardly any clips from the show on YouTube. Damn shame.

Wordsworth v George W. Bush:

I wish the quality of this clip was a little better:

Here’s a clip with Cee-Lo:

Nelly, Murphy Lee, and Consequence on Rap City

April 28, 2008

Everyone comes correct, but Nelly steals the show.