Wednesday, March 31, 2010

New Visuals

These are a couple of videos for songs I like that caught my eye the past couple of days (oh, and make sure you check out Erykah Badu's video for "Window Seat" if you haven't yet). The black & white is a coincidence...I think.

The first is "Project Boy" by Joell Ortiz and Produced by DJ Premier. I guess this is going to be on Ortiz's solo album Free Agent (date??)

Next is the video for Strong Arm Steady's song with Phonte (Little Brother), "Best of Times" off of their entirely Madlib produced In Search Of Stoney Jackson which dropped last year. Make sure you listen to the album if you haven't yet - a favorite of mine from '09.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Breakin' Dawn Tour Theme Song

In the same way Brother Ali and BK-One did with Toki Wright and Evidence before kicking off the Fresh Air Tour, the two linked up with Fashawn to record this 'theme song' to their new show, The Breakin' Dawn Tour. Shit's crazy. Check it out below - "The Breakin' Dawn Boys".

Sunday, March 28, 2010

In Memoriam - Freaky Tah

I was informed that today marks the date of Lost Boyz' Hype Man/Number 2 Freaky Tah, who was killed in 1999. Personally, when I listen to Lost Boyz tracks I can really feel what Tah's presence brings to them. I don't think they would be the same without his voice and energy.

So, to mark the occasion how bout I bring back some memories for everyone with the video for the remix to "Music Makes Me High" featuring Tha Dogg Pound and Canibus.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Sobb Story

I'm doing a little reminiscing this Friday. "Sobb Story" by Leaders of the New School was one of my favorite songs/videos in 1991. I still love to hear it once in a while. I was reminded of this the other day while listening to Marco Polo and Ruste Juxx's new album, The Exxecution. They have a song with Black Moon on there called "Let's Take A Sec" that uses the same sample.

ArtOfficial - "Grand Design"

Has anyone heard of ArtOfficial? If not, they are a Hip Hop band from Miami with a lot of musical range from what I've heard. I think they're dropping a (free?) album in April, including some interesting reworks of well-known songs from other genres. Here is a reworking they did of a classic Radiohead song called "Talk Show Host". The addition of the horns alone makes the track worthwhile for me. If you're not familiar with Radiohead (seems a lot of Hip Hop heads like them), I've included a clip of them performing the song below as well.

And, speaking of the band name, what happened to De La Soul's Art Official Intelligence trilogy? They did the first two and then stopped. I wonder if they will ever go back and do the third one.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Brother Ali - 'Tight Rope' Studio Performance

"Tight Rope" is one of my favorite tracks from US. It covers three separate stories of people struggling with hardships in their lives. Ali's rhyme skills, vivid storytelling ability, and grown-up attitude about a specific issue that far too many people are childish and ignorant about, make this one of my favorite Hip Hop songs to come along in a while.

I really hope everyone has heard this song (and the album) by now, so here is a studio version that Brother Ali recorded (taken from the site It was great to see him perform this (and many other songs) live this past year in Columbus, OH.

Brother Ali "Tight Rope" from Yours Truly on Vimeo.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Life Moves Fast

A new commercial for Palm is beginning to air during the NCAA Tournament. In addition to being an all-around good ad communicating the available features being used with ease by a woman on the move, it's all being delivered to a Hip Hop backdrop. Mos Def's "Quiet Dog" plays as the soundtrack, and his album cover even pops up as the Palm owner browses past her music list.

This is not just a good example of Hip Hop's ever-expanding reach to the consuming masses. It is also an example of marketers' realization of this fact and explicit decision to utilize the music (and culture) to reach their consumers. A song is not chosen for a commercial at random. It is a well thought out decision along with every other aspect of an ad. The music is important because it feeds into the overall message and image being communicated.

The message here is that "Life Moves Fast". Use the Palm to make sure that you "Don't Miss A Thing". This message is underlined with the up-tempo Mos track which the woman is walking to the beat of; and is communicated by her physically moving while checking messages, and finding a place to buy shoes for the event to which the dress code was just told to her. The features that the Palm provides, and the ease of use ensures that Palm owners won't "miss a thing".

The image of the Palm user - underscored again by the song - is a younger, trendy, professional, and social person who desires a versatile, reliable device to help organize and coordinate life's needs. This is the modern hip hop fan. This is the target market of Palm. Is this not what you expected?

Thursday, March 18, 2010

News: Nujabes died in fatal car accident

News: Nujabes died in fatal car accident

This is very sad news. I'm not sure why it took so long to travel.

At around the same time I was starting to listen to Substantial, a friend turned me on to Nujabes - who actually produced several of his tracks. She gave me a CD that I played constantly for a few months. I then started to hear more about him, mostly from the hip hop blog I frequent to get my fix of jazzy hip hop, Musical Schizophrenia. As it turns out, Nujabes also produced for Five Deez, a group from my home town of Cincinnati, OH...small world. His sound truly added something to hip hop worth listening to. It's a shame he is gone so soon.

Click the link above for the full story and a sample of Nujabes work if you haven't heard him before.


My Internet connection is hit or miss this morning for some reason. And, I'm about to get dressed and head out to watch the first games of the NCAA Tournament.

But, before I do I wanted to throw up the song I'm listening to over and over, and will probably play a few times in my car today. This one is from producer Ski Beatz' new album 24 Hour Karate School and features Mos Def and someone named Whosane. It's called 'Taxi'. This one here has me really hyped to see what else Ski has to offer on the album, If 'Taxi' is any indication, it's gonna be classic.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Thought For The Day

It seems that whenever a decent MC drops a mixtape, some short time later another version is released - the "No DJ" version. This should tell all of you so-called DJs something. Specifically, shut the fuck up, and let us hear the music. If you need attention, do some cutting and scratching. Oh, that's right, most of you aren't ACTUAL DJs, so you don't know how. You yell stupid shit into a mic, and rewind the same four bars we just heard. When alternate versions of something are created specifically to exclude you, you should take the hint. You are useless.

And Happy St. Patrick's Day.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Art Of Storytelling

Since today is March 9th, I thought I'd put up one of my favorite songs from Biggie's small (pun intended), but amazing catalog. There's no official video for this one. But, you don't really need one. It's vivid enough with just his words. It's great because after telling us the story in his rhyme, he ends it by meeting up with his boys and recounting the whole thing for them...brilliant. I can think of very few MCs that have Biggie's kind of story telling ability.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Blu - Amnesia (Video)

I've watched this a few times, and I'm diggin' it. Interesting visuals for one of my favorite Blu tracks (and one of my most played songs for the past six months or so). I love the use of the Billie Holiday sample on here.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Gangstarr - Take It Personal

I just got a chance to listen to the half-hour long 'Guru Respect Mix' by DJ Wonder that I posted a few days ago. It's nice to hear for anyone not familiar with Gangstarr, or those who just haven't pulled their music out in a while.

This isn't the case for me. Gangstarr is not only one of my favorite groups of all time, they're actually one that I still listen to all the time despite having a constant selection of new stuff in my posession. I keep Full Clip in my iPod because it covers a lot of the best material (it may actually be the best Greatest Hits collection of any hip hop artist), and rotate the actual albums whenever I'm in the mood to hear more.

I first became aware of Gangstarr by seeing the video for "Take It Personal" from their third album Daily Operation. My brother and I used to record Hip Hop videos and watch them over and over, and this is one video that got a lot of play. Check it out below, or else I'll B.Y.S.

Erykah Badu And The Roots

"...on this porch I'm rockin' back and forth like Lightnin' Hopkins"

I'm torn. I don't find Jimmy Fallon to be funny at all, so I can't watch his show. On the other hand, he has The Legendary Roots Crew as his house band, which makes for great performances when they back up whichever musical guest is on that night. Thankfully we have this tool called the Internet, and good people that post the only part of the show worth watching the next morning. Here is Erykah Badu performing her new single 'Window Seat' on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon with The Roots.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Sean Price Live Rhymes

A little while back, I posted the flyer for Sean Price's baby shower and performance in NYC. I thought it was pretty damn funny to turn a show into a shower for your kid and charge a baby gift off your registry in place of a ticket price. Plus, the flyer had me rollin'. The event just took place and here's some footage of the performance. I'll throw some more clips up if I find em' on YouTube later.

Below that, P kicks a freestyle on DJ Enuff's radio show. And, if you like Sean's style, you love what he spits. P!!!!!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Get Well Soon GURU

Most of you have probably heard that legendary MC Guru (one of my favorites of all time) is currently in a coma after suffering a massive heart attack the other day. Let's hope he pulls through okay.

DJ Wonder put together this mix of some of his material for fans to enjoy, and for some others to educate themselves on his contributions to Hip Hop.

So, download and enjoy Get Well Soon: The Guru Respect Mix

Monday, March 1, 2010

Eminem On Howard Stern

I saw this posted on 2dopeboyz today, and got a kick out of seeing Eminem way back when. So, I figured I'd throw it up here. This interview with Howard Stern was done shortly after The Slim Shady LP dropped. Listen for when one of the callers calls Em a 'One-Hit Wonder'. Priceless.