Showing Illadeph love this week, my ears naturally gravitated to Mello Music Group MC/producer Has-Lo’s discography. Diving into his brilliant “In Case I Don’t Make It” and “Conversation B” remix follow-up, it’s been confirmed that pretty much with every project he’s involved in, “everything is” dope. Lauded for his stealthily smooth flow style, this 2007 MTVU contest finalist’s teamed up with the likes of Exile, Oddisee and Apollo Brown, with more artist collabos in the pipeline.
Due out May 6, the first leak from “Southsiders” is here…Tell us what you think…
Tracklisting (sourced by HipHopDx.com)
1. Camera Thief
2. Arthur’s Song
3. The World Might Not Live Through The Night
4. Star Shaped Heart
5. I Love You Like A Brother
8. Mrs. Interpret
10. Kanye West
11. We Ain’t Gonna Die Today
12. My Lady Got Two Men
14. January On Lake Street
15. Let Me Know That You Know What You Want Now
There are occasions when I have been very specific about which particular version by an artist is included in the list. In most cases, that is because there is a live version which surpasses the original. That is not to say the original was poor, but merely that the live performance was superior. On a couple of occasions, the single release before the band signed to a major label, is the preferred option. There is also one instance where the demo is specifically cited, in this case because the demo version had an immediacy and a passion about it which was lacking in the later studio version. That song is included among the next twenty – The Redskins’ “Kick over the Statues”.
What do dope music, sneakers, music and skateboard videos, zines and art battles have in common? The LA installment of Converse’s global CONS Project and its Saturday night exhibition brought them all together West Coast style. Holding workshops February 21-23rd, where aspiring youth created music and skateboarding videos with producers and directors, designed street art murals and constructed culture magazines, the exhibition held on Saturday wrapped it all up in a chill, black and white Chucks lace bow. The workshops served to inspire and link young artists for free with seasoned professionals who might not have met otherwise, succeeding in varied creative endeavors. That kind of opportunity is priceless.
There’s something to be said for endurance in an artist’s career.
I was impressed by the jazz album released by Wayne Shorter last year. Not a masterpiece, but it was solid. And it came out last year just before he turned 80.
it gets discouraging seeing artists go through decline. I wince when I hear various pop songs by Paul McCartney. He put out a string of mediocre songs and albums in the 1970s. It was a far cry from what he did with the Beatles. The Beatles had the right idea after all, when they split up in 1970 after seven years of releasing albums.
Their best albums were in the mid 1960s. Rubber Soul was the band’s best album. It’s hard to top “Nowhere Man.” The band still came up with a number of memorable albums.
There were good songs. But they deserve points for moving aside. In retrospect it was odd they kept going as long w they did without touring.
I saw the Beach Boys and the Kinks in concert in the 90s. Those were entertaining shows. I wouldn’t have seen the Beach Boys except they performed prior to a minor league football game.
The reality seeing those concerts is they were oldies acts. Robert Christgau wrote about this phenomenon with his list “Everything Rocks And Nothing Ever Dies.” It was part of his book Christgau’s Consumer Guide: Albums of the 90s.
This isn’t to say people should just pack it in rather than cranking out albums and touring whatever gig they can find. There’s something to be said for giving the people the chance to reminisce. And perhaps there’s joy in continuing to play.
But this doesn’t mean we’re going to listen. Judy Garland kept singing longer than Deanna Durbin. In Garland’s case more good music was made by her decision to continue after the movies stopped. In Durbin’s case, we can keep streaming and downloading from the days she was a superstar in her youth. Read more…
(left to right), Miss Lawn /Lanie Alabanza-Barcena , Jennifer Lee/TOKiMONSTA and Mina Kwon
Scoping the teaser videos for the dope new show, ‘Alpha Girls’ which premiered this week, I was intrigued. ‘Alpha Girls’ follows four powerful Asian and Asian-American women (artist Mina Kwon, DJ/producer TOKiMONSTA, Hellz Bellz designer Miss Lawn and model Soo Joo Park) as they navigate the fashion, art and music worlds, offering behind the scenes access to their career successes, struggles and personal lives. Turned off by the other female reality franchises which focus on backstabbing and talking behind each other’s backs to the camera, it’s refreshing to get glimpses into real artists’ creative processes, crazy busy schedules and obstacles encountered while living their dreams. On a rare rainy night at the premiere party in LA, I connected with two ‘Alpha Girls’ -Mina Kwon who told me her fav cartoon character was Bart Simpson as you’ll see in her art and that Pharrell, who appears in the show and is a big inspiration to her, is proud, as well as TOKiMONSTA who explained her reasons for doing the show and plans for new music in 2014.
Among the flurry of hot new albums dropped during the month of February, underground cloak-loving NY based pair The Doppelgangaz’s fourth studio album, “Peace Kehd”, made the fav list, consistently blaring from my speakers since its release. Duo Matter Ov Fact and EP’s amusing and brilliantly bizarre content’s become their trademark in their catalog with colorful titles of songs like “Suppository”, “Barbiturates”, “Sh*t Rock”, “Dumpster Diving” , covering topics like diseases, food, sailors and liars with past videos settings at the Renaissance Fair and haunted houses. Often put in the 90’s NY hip-hop box, there’s nothing typical about them.
Between his vocal contributions on “Blurred Lines” and “Get Lucky”, Pharrell Williams was heard absolutely everywhere in 2013. That music ubiquity is only going to continue with the release of his own album G I R L on March 3rd. If anyone has the makings of being the next big crossover star, it’s this multitasking hip-hop, R&B and funk dynamo. In addition to guest appearances from Miley Cyrus, Alicia Keys and Justin Timberlake, it will feature “Happy”, first heard as part of the Despicable Me 2 soundtrack. If for whatever reason this song hasn’t burrowed its way into your eardrums yet, I command you to spend some time at 24HoursofHappy.com, where you can watch 360 videos of celebrities like Steve Carell, Miranda Cosgrove, the occasional minion, as well as ordinary Los Angelenos creatively dancing along to Pharrell’s infectious toe-tapper.