I came across the following article this morning and I admit that the perspective of an Eminem show in Boston is kinda scary when you know how far Benzino and co would be ready to go. But let’s pray that everyone will be secure.
Month: July 2005
Alchemist speaks out after bus crash
LATEST: EMINEM’s DJ ALCHEMIST thought he was going to die when the tour bus he was travelling in was involved in a serious accident in Missouri last week (ends15JUL05).
The record-spinner and fellow ANGER MANAGEMENT touring partner STAT QUO were hospitalised after the crash on Wednesday (13JUL05) – their bus collided with two tractor trailers.
Speaking to MTV NEWS from Los Angeles, where he’s recovering from three fractured ribs and a bruised lung, Alchemist says, “Our driver did an ill-advised move. He tried to swerve around a car doing 85 and advance on the highway when he could have taken it easy.
“We started screaming when he swerved ’cause the bus went on two wheels. Then he spun the wheel the other way and the bus went back on the other two wheels. At that point the bus was out of control.
“It was two semis in front of us, and the bus clipped the back of one of the semis… We spun backward one time and we flipped.
“I tried to hold onto the table ’cause I knew we was going to flip and when that bus flipped, the couch, the table, anything I could hold onto was in the air and I was flying like a dishrag. If you saw the inside of the bus, you’d really be like, ‘How did anybody survive this?’ The inside was torn to s**t.”
Full Klipp 2005 album review
Offensive, definitely gangsta and ghetto, Full Klipp’s album introduces you in a dangerous world that could be compared to a jungle.
Who are Full Klipp?
Ask me and I will tell you: a Detroit trio composed of P.A.C.E himself aka Frankie aka Alias, Bigg Baldy and True Beyond.
The introduction sounds like a warning. YouÂ â€˜d better not fuck with Full Klipp if you wanna keep safe in the streets of Detroit.
You’d better open your eyes as track 2 featuring Imam Al Amin reminds you of it and keep being real. Face the harshness of ghetto life. Detroit- Cutthroat City- is a place where your life can be in jeopardy on no time: you’d better be astute at the Death Game. Track Nr 7, Death Game is written in a very rapid rhythm and makes you feel the heavy atmosphere of the streets of Detroit. Phonies, follow Full Klipp’s advice: you’d better stay away if you’re not Â«Â for realÂ Â»Â .
Full Klipp’s album is somber and has the well known Detroit flavor. Original in his way of expressing the streets of the D, Full Klipp handle their album very well lyrically and instrumentally. Guitars, keyboards, catchy beats, drums, interesting vocals make of Full Klipp’s work an original composition that you won’t hear anywhere else.
I would recommend you to check out Free, a track made in collaboration Animal Chief, who is the member of one of Detroit’s hottest groups, Mountain Climbaz.
My Bitch talks about streets experience with a great sense of humor.
While some tracks like Game Of Death point out a rather somber note, some tracks like Freak Hoe will offer you a lighter note of the album. Freak Hoe refers to real facts. The names have been changed, though, to protect the mad stalker’s privacy.
Rich sounds, offensive lyrics and a typical Detroit flavor will make you like the Full Klipp 2005 album. Check it out!
Full Klipp’s CD is available in Detroit at all Shantiniques music, Damons music, Tanya’s music, and Justins music, Ypsilanti atPuffer Reds, Roseville at Record Time.
Welcome to Detroit City video pics
Cypress Hill: Till Death Do Us Part album review
Rating: four stars and a half/ masterpiece
Till Death Do Us Part is Cypress Hill seventh album. It was released in 2004. The album will offer you another taste of Cypress Hill’s rich musical panel.
Since 1994, the Cypress Hill trio B Real, Sen Dog and DJ Muggs has gained a new and valuable member: Eric Bobo, son of the famous salsa musician Willie Bobo and former Beastie Boys member.
Bobo is the drummer of the band and he does a great quality job.
If you haven’t listened to the album yet, B Real will give you an idea of what the album actually is:
Â«Â We wanted to take it back to what it was in the beginning. It’s all raw hip-hop with rock touches, reggae and the Latin thing we started with. Â Â»
Instrumentally, the album is rich of many sounds. Another Body Drops is a hot track : hot beats, electric guitar and gunshots is a well done Â«Â Shoot Em Up songÂ Â».
Till Death Comes is very melodic: violins, piano, keyboard sounds, catchy beats will drop you into Cypress’ world.
Latin Thugs will introduce you into Cypress musical Latino flavor. Dance along with the famous Latin Thugs on the very dynamic track.
Ganja Bus will also make you enjoy the Latino flavor of the group.
Busted In The Hood is a well written storyâ€¦follow the sound and enjoy the funny story.
What’s Your Number is my favorite track. The video of What’s Your Number is also worth a look.
What’s Your Number introduces you into a Jamaican flavor and sounds like in invitation to party and to hang out with the Cypress
Definitely gangsta, still smoking weed, Till Death Do Us Part will allow you to fully enjoy Cypress Hill’s talent.
Often underrated, Cypress Hill get less love than they actually deserve. Check the album out, you won’t regret it, because it is a masterpiece.
Chuck D interview
Chuck D Interview
From the August 2005 Issue
I first heard Public Enemy in 1987 when a tape of the rap group’s Yo! Bum Rush the Show was making the rounds in my neighborhood. While the boldness of the music was like nothing I had heard before, it paled in comparison to the group’s next record, It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back (1988). Incendiary and groundbreaking, it now stands as a political manifesto for youthâ€”both black and whiteâ€”to quote a lyric, â€œof the same mind, unblind.â€?
Chuck D, born Carlton Douglas Ridenhour in Roosevelt, Long Island, in 1960, is Public Enemy’s visionary songwriter and rapper. He told me once that he â€œwanted to be Wilson Pickett,â€? the soul singer. With his signature baritone voice, limitless vocabulary, and revolutionary ideas, Chuck D instead went on to guide the most important rap group in music history.
A highly intelligent and talented student, Chuck D attended Adelphi University in Long Island, where he put his artistic skills to use by designing posters for the burgeoning hip-hop scene. He became a DJ at the campus radio station, and that’s how he met future collaborators Bill Stephney and Hank Shocklee. When Chuck D put his vocals over Shocklee’s â€œPublic Enemy No.1,â€? Public Enemy was born. The song impressed producer Rick Rubin of Def Jam, an upstart rap label, who quickly signed the group. Terminator X was the DJ, Flavor Flav was Chuck D’s comic foil, Professor Griff was the Minister of Information, and the innovative Bomb Squad produced the beats.
The first four albums that Public Enemy recorded transcended rap music. Each record built upon the previous one, offering the listener â€œmusic from the people, not above the people,â€? as Chuck D puts it.
Fear of a Black Planet ushered in the 1990s with the song â€œFight the Power,â€? a rallying cry for rebellion. Spike Lee used it to frame his landmark film, Do the Right Thing. Then in 1991, Public Enemy came out with Apocalypse 91 . . . the Enemy Strikes Back, its most resolute political record. It is anchored by the song â€œBy the Time I Get to Arizona,â€? the group’s response to that state’s refusal to honor Martin Luther King’s birthday.
Chuck D continues to make work that â€œmoves us forward.â€? He now divides his time between working with Public Enemy, collaborating with new artists, hosting a radio show on Air America, and speaking to audiences around the world.
In 2004, I began a collaboration with him. He contributed a preface to my book Let Fury Have the Hour: The Punk Rock Politics of Joe Strummer. We also have spoken together at public events discussing the importance of cultural activism. The following interview began in the Air America studios, moved to an airport in Alaska, and ended in Long Island. Chuck D encourages everyone to check out his dispatches on www.publicenemy.com and correspond with him at email@example.com.
Q:You have been an outspoken opponent of the Bush Administration and the war in Iraq.
Chuck D: Where do we start with these guys? The first thing I would like to say is that to be truly American and represent American ideals you need to consider yourself a citizen of the world. American policy has gone contrary to that ideal. The Bush Administration is bent on making the world submit to â€œAmericanismâ€? instead of becoming a member of the world community. This orchestration comes from the very top of the Administration and has pushed America into a corner.
So, rather than trying to humbly mix with the rest of the world, we are forcing ourselves upon it. We seem to create conflicts with everyone.
Q: How is the Bush Administration trying to coopt hip-hop for war?
Chuck D: The powers that be are trying to meld, shape, and corral the culture of hip-hop into another speaking voice for the government.
They have exploited hip-hop and some of the culture around itâ€”magazines, videos, etc.â€”to recruit people into the military. The Army says it will give out Hummers, platinum teeth, or whatever to those that actually join. Early on in the recent war, Vibe magazine was working with the Army to recruit black youth. They are willing to do this because they will take money from the highest bidder. It’s one corporation dealing with another corporation.
Q: How are corporations commodifying hip-hop?
Chuck D: If you checked out the news lately, McDonald’s offers a king’s ransom to any hip-hop artist who is able to put Big Mac into a song. MTVâ€”and more to the point, Viacomâ€”is succeeding in extending a teenage life to twenty-nine or even thirty-one years old. It is about extending this market and removing any intelligent substance in the
music. Why would twenty-six-year-old â€œteenagersâ€? care about political ramifications if their backs are not up against the wall? But if their backs are against the wall they may be plucked to fight in Iraq, and all of sudden they become politicized real quick.
Q: Do you think that hip-hop can escape the corporate grip?
Chuck D: I always remain optimistic. There are three levels of music production: the majors, indies, and what I call â€œinties,â€? music distributed via the Internet. The Internet is one area that I have used pretty effectively to break free of corporate control.
Alternative spaces, independent media, satellite, these all provide some tools by which we can work more independently and deal more directly with communities we hope to reach. Distribution is key, and finding alternative ways to do that with new media is critical.
Q: Why did you get involved with the Internet?
Chuck D: I became tired of submitting my art to a panel of corporate strategists who decide if it meets their standard of what gets into stores or not. It was quite simple for me: they act like judge and jury of my art, and that is unacceptable. I wanted to give it right to the public.
Q: How would you describe Public Enemy?
Chuck D: Public Enemy started out as a benchmark in rap music in the mid-1980s. We felt there was a need to actually progress the music and say something because we were slightly older than the demographic of rap artists at the time. It was a time of heightened rightwing politics, so the climate dictated the direction of the group. The Berlin Wall was up. Nelson Mandela was in prison. Margaret Thatcher was running the U.K. Reagan was out of control in the White House. And Bush Senior was Vice President soon to be President. You can say we were up against it.
Q: What were some of the influences on Public Enemy?
Chuck D: The Last Poets, Gil Scott-Heron, and also eight years of rappers that came before us. I grew up with Motown, Stax Records, and Atlantic. The Philadelphia International sound like the O’Jays had a profound influence on me. As a late teenager, the punk movement pushed me further. In particular, the Clash, which happened to leak through the time of disco, showed me that there was this cross-cultural sound that could cut across genres and audiences. Like punk was to disco, rap music was a rebellion against R&B, which had adopted disco and made it worse.
Q: What kind of political and cultural resistance did Public Enemy encounter?
Chuck D: We were coming out of the black community with this thing called rap music, which was basically black men yelling at the top of their lungs about what we liked and what we didn’t like. It was disturbing to the status quo. It really shook things up. And those in power didn’t know what to make of us, but they knew that we had to be silenced, stopped in any way from expressing our outrage.
Q: The media was quick to characterize Public Enemy as militant black nationalists.
Chuck D: That comes directly from how and when we grew up. We came up in the 1960s. Political and cultural groups like the Black Panthers, and the Nation of Islam were reference points. Our parents brought the work of these groups to our attention, and it was educational and inspiring. My parents were radicals politically, but more than anything they were young parents who actually understood that there was a need and a time for change. They had a respect for the civil rights movement but also understood the need to further it. As black people we were out to further our equality. I don’t pay attention to the controversial connotations put on by media and the undermining labels they place on us. We pay attention to what our community situation is and what we need.
Q:Talk about It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back.
Chuck D: It Takes a Nation was an album that happened to cross the roads at the right place at the right time. Rap music, as recorded work, was just eight years in. The music was ready to break nationally in album form as opposed to what it had been, which was a singles medium. The album was released by a small radical label called Def Jam. Def Jam was distributed by staunch old school institutions such as CBS and Columbia. We happened to find that loophole and use their distribution system to be able to get to the people in a brand new state of mind. We wanted to be a social critic, a community voice. We wanted everyone to know, truly understand, that our music was from the people, not above the people.
Q: What are some of the songs that remain vital from It Takes a Nation?
Chuck D: â€œDon’t Believe the Hype,â€? without question, still speaks volumes. To me it is Noam Chomsky-like in its theme and content. Like Chomsky does with his work, â€œDon’t Believe the Hypeâ€? addresses media disinformation and picks it apart.
Q:The album in many ways was Public Enemy’s Manufacturing Consent.
Chuck D: Definitely.
Q: Who are some current rappers that you like?
Chuck D:: Nas, Mos Def, and Talib Kweli for sure. Wu-Tang Clan delivered the goods musically and to a certain degree politically, in particular GZA/Genius. But I must point out that if you had to look in a book for the definition of a rapper you would probably see a picture of Jay-Z. He is the chosen one right now.
Q: Do you think current hip-hop artists like Jay-Z possess the same kind of timeless quality that Public Enemy has?
Chuck D: Someone like Jay-Z does have a timeless quality, but it’s much different than ours. You can look back at something like â€œAt the Hopâ€? by Danny and the Juniors or the music that was on American Bandstand in the 1950s-’60s. It was the emergence of rock in the suburbsâ€”without its teeth, let’s say. You will get the same thing out of Jay-Z with the street hustler mentality of the late 1990s. It won’t be able to resonate far beyond that, but it’s something that will go on with just a different person telling it. When it comes down to Public Enemy and the Clash or Bob Marley, who is a great example, you can play the music now and it’s like, â€œDamn, what the music is saying is just as important today as it was when they recorded it.â€? It also becomes a powerful historical document of a particular time of struggle and resistance. But this is maybe the purpose of artists like Public Enemyâ€”speaking truth to powerâ€”while artists like Jay-Z represent the escapism of that time.
Q:What are your thoughts on Eminem’s foray into politics with the anti-Bush song â€œMoshâ€??
Chuck D: These are inevitable destinations for artists like Eminem.
Where else can you go with respect to the work, lyrics, and message of the music? If you are past high school age, you can get by with saying very little the first or second time around. However, after a while you know you are going to have to say something beyond high school stuff. Eminem has talent, and his talent is the thing that influences many young people who would have never gone anywhere near rap. White kids in different parts of the world use him as a barometer and the standard to live up to. In some ways, Eminem is an artist who has ushered in a new movement.
Q: So, do you see someone like Eminem leading to more diversity in hip-hopâ€”not just white rappers but across the ethnic and cultural spectrum?
Chuck D: If you want to speak about different ethnicities and diversity, rap and hip-hop are all over the planet. Every country, from Turkey to Australia, now has tons of hip-hop artists. The music and artistry have moved way faster than the corporatization of the music. You do need organization and opportunity for these artists to express themselves, and I don’t think it has to come from a corporate co-signing.
Q: And what about the current wave of bad press for rappers like 50 Cent?
Chuck D: A lot of artists have been persuaded into doing whatever they can do to gain attention. The media, of course, will position and promote the worst of them to the front page. The sidewalk to crime becomes the marketing campaign. These artists have seen it work and sell millions and millions of records for other artists.
Rap comes from the humble beginnings of rebelling against the status quo. Now, rappers have become the status quo themselves. You can’t rebel against the Queen and then become the Queen yourself. I attribute much of the blame to testosteroneâ€”male dominance and patriarchy.
Q: Hip-hop is thirty years old and now a dominant global musical force. What has been the biggest change in hip-hop over this period?
Chuck D: The biggest thing that has happened to hip-hop in the last ten to twelve years is the clinging on to the corporation as the all-mighty hub of the music. When culture is created in boardrooms with a panel of six or seven strategists for the masses to follow, to me that is no different than an aristocracy. It’s not created from the people in the middle of the streets, so to speak. It is created from a petri dish for the sake of making money, and it is undermining the longevity of the culture.
Q:Then music for you is about building a community.
Chuck D: I don’t think that the music should be above the people.
Class doesn’t cost a dime, and you spread it around. Knowledge, wisdom, and understanding don’t come out of the microwave. You got to keep moving forward because the evil doesn’t sleep.
Q: Why do you consider yourself a citizen of the world?
Chuck D: I first consider myself a man and then a grown adult at that. Next, I know I am judged unfairly by my physical characteristics and ostracized because of that so I say, â€œYes, I’m a black man.â€? Then it goes to things I doâ€”songwriter, musician, and activist. I adhere to the philosophy, â€œI don’t care who writes the laws, let me write the songs.â€? Our expressions in the arts are something that reflect life and propel us as human beings. Culture is this thing that we can exchange among ourselves as human beings to knock aside our differences and build upon our similarities. Cultural exchange is the ultimate exchange.
Q: You do a radio show on Air America, tons of public speaking and performing. Discuss your most recent activism.
Chuck D: My work throughout my life is always representative of the time we live in. It’s all about keeping it in order and keeping it in gear. I want to always move forward with everything I am doing. So, I do the radio show, speak at universities and other social institutions all around the world, appear on TV, and continue to create music all in the hope to keep the struggle alive. Most other artists are always fighting for their fame. They have that fear, like the saying goes, â€œout of sight, out of mind.â€? They need to keep themselves out there. I have never had that fear. If I have any fear, it’s not doing enough to reach people.
Antonino D’Ambrosio, a writer and filmmaker based in New York City, is the author of â€œLet Fury Have the Hour: The Punk Rock Politics of Joe Strummer.â€? He is currently working on his next book, â€œPolitics in the Drums,â€? and his next documentary, â€œPiccolo Colli: The People of Russell Street.â€? He is the founder of La Lutta New Media Collective (www.lalutta.org).
Rufus Johnson aka Bizarre reveal mores about himself
Curious to know more about his unhealthy and sick habits and about who he is? Read about them here and find out more about him here!
In a recent interview published in The Mercury News,
Bizarre, the Weirdo in D12, revealed more details about himself and even about some of his Â«Â weird habitsÂ Â». If you already knew that Bizzy was an tire iron and shower cap collectorand about his passion for pets, you might be surprised about Bizarre’s Â« biggest handicap Â». Now joke: Bizarre chews paper for hours:
Â« I chew paper. Â»
Paper? Yes, Bizarre chews paper. But not any kind of paper: he is used to chewing toilet paper:
Â« It calms my nerves, so I chew toilet paper. It’s definitely a habit, but not consistent though. I probably do it once every two or three hours. Â»
He has no favorite brand, but he likes oversea tissues:
Â« It don’t matter. But I like overseas tissue. It’s kind of real thick. Â»
Like anybody else, Bizarre has his own tricks to get rid of stress. Chewing paper is one of them. Smoking weed is probably the second one.
Chewing paper is a bad habit that goes back to Bizzy’s childhood. His wife, Deanna, just hates it:
Â« I don’t know. I been doing that since I was 10 or 12. (Laughs.) I don’t swallow it. I just leave little specks around the house. My wife hates it. Â»
Maybe you also ask yourself about the most bizarre event that might have happened in Rufus’ life. Bizarre remembers being carjacked as he went to a store with his mom’s boyfriend:
Â« When I was 10, I went to the store with my mom’s boyfriend and this dude carjacked us. He made us drop him off at his sister’s house, cause he was gettin’ chased by a whole precinct. So we drove him to his sister’s. Â»
Bizzy admits having bad habits like chewing paper, but he doesn’t want to change them. He accepts himself the way he is. Being asked about which habit he’d probably change if he could, he replied:
Â« Hmm. None. I like me. Â»
Rufus Johnson, who is, as far as I am concerned, an amazing emcee and personality, is often misunderstood by his public. Because he is sometimes sick, weird and crazy in his artistic expression, people expect him to act the same way in real life:
Â« Yeah sometimes, people expect it from me 24 hours a day. And when they see you they ask the craziest questions. Like I had someone ask me if I wanted to smoke crack. They just really believe in what you say. When (D12) was in Philly, the police had to come get one dude cause he would not leave until I came off the bus. He was like, ‘I want to see Bizarre! I want to see Bizarre!’ Â»
Let me tell you this: Rufus Johnson is a regular person in real life. Don’t expect him to act too foolishly in front of you!
Bizarre is very modest. Guess what he would like to have written on his tombstone:
Â« Rufus Johnson. The paper eater. Â»
Bizarre is a complex D12 character, his personality seems to be split between insane weird, sick and funny. His rhymes are often underrated and he is so often assimilated with D12 as a group. Hanni Cap Circus gives the listener more insight about Rufus Johnson’s talent. Take some time to check Hanni Cap Circus and you will see that Bizzy has done a real great job.
Cypress Hill: Black Sunday album review
Rating: four stars and a half /classic
Cypress Hill: Black Sunday album review
Welcome to Cypress Hill’s unique world. Black Sunday is one of those albums you could hardly forget. Unique in its beats, instrumentation and vocals, you won’t confuse it with any average rap album. Cypress Hill can be considered as pioneers : they were the first rappers to introduce a Latin_jazz flavor in rap music. Their combination of sounds ( sirens, drums, keybords, bass sounds ) and their lyrical ability won’t probably leave the listener indifferent.
B Real’s special voice invites you to a trip into the world of marijuana. I Want To Get High is a well written and rhythmic track.
The Black Sunday album that was released in 1993, raises the interesting question of the legalization of marijuana, as track 9 Â« Legalize It Â» fully reveals it.
The best track from Black Sunday is probably Â« Insane In The Brain Â» whose Â« crazy insane weed smoking dimension Â» will make you travel into the world of gangsta rap.
The Latino thugs will please weed smokers and non weed smokers with their lyrical ability.
If you don’t smoke, just enjoy Cypress â€˜ words, from Hits From A Bong and let them introduce in their colorful world:
Â« Pick it, pack it, Fire it up, Come along, And take a hit from the bong, Put the blunt down just for a second, Don’t get me wrong it’s not a new method, Inhale, Exhale, Just got a ounce in the mail, I like a blunt or a big fat bowl, But my double barrel bong is gettin’ me stoned, I’m skill it, There’s water inside don’t spill it, It smells like shit on the carpet, Still it, goes down smooth when I get a clean hit, Of the skunky funky smelly green shit, Sing my song, puff all night long, As I take Hits from the bong. Â»
References to marijuana and weapons shouldn’t be an obstacle to listening to the album. You don’t need to be a big weed smoker nor a bad boy to listen to Black Sunday with pleasure.
Globally, the album is great work. Lyrically and instrumentally. Black Sunday is a classic that belongs to your rap library. Check the album out if you haven’t yet.
About Em leaving the rap game…
Keep your sense of humor…
It’s official: Em is NOT retiring!
50 Cent album review
50 Cent: Get Rich Or Die Trying album review
Rating **** four stars
If you should grab one of 50 Cent’s albums, it would definitely be Â« Get Rich Or Die Trying Â».
Written in a gansgta style, the album refers to 50 Cent’s life experiences.
Â« What Up Gangsta Â» introduces us in 50 Cent and G Unit’s gangsta world.
Intelligently produced by Dr Dre and Eminem, the album contains many valuable tracks.
Patiently Waiting is one of them and expresses 50 Cent’s fight to the top and also reminds us of his near death experienceâ€¦Curtis Jackson’s Â« Get Rich Or Die Trying Â» is not his first album, but not everybody had heard about him at the time Eminem decided to sign him to Shady Records. He’s actually been Â« waiting so long for a track to explode on Â».
When you live in the hood particularly in hoods like the Queens, there is a thin border between life and death and many men put a price on your head when you’re involved in some beefs or gang rivalries. When 50 Cent claims Â« Many Men wish death upon me Â» , it refers to real facts that he has been through.
Life has been far from easy for 50 Cent. His mom, who used to be involved in drug deals has been shot in front of him.
Many Men is autobiographical.
Curtis Jackson was shot nine times in 2000 in front of his grandmother’s house. He survived to the shooting .
Involved in drug traffics, 50 Cent has been stabbed several times. He has also been familiar with jail experiences. Â« 21 questions Â» questions true love. In his song , 50 Cent questions his girl and asks her some insightful questions about how she would react if he was jailed.
High All The Time gives the album a lighter note while Wanksta sends some stabs to 50 Cent’s enemy Ja Rule.
Among the well written tracks, don’t miss PIMP and Don’t Push Me featuring Eminem.
Instrumentally, the album is enriched with hot beats, keyboard sounds, violins, piano and drums.
Globally, 50 Cent has done a great job on this album. His best album so far: check it out.