Monday, June 29, 2009

Celebrities, Autopsies & Hypocrisy

What a weekend.

Without rambling on and on forever, I try to touch on all the topics from this weekend:
Michael Jackson, the BET Awards,
Joe Jackson, celebrity deaths, Bernie Madoff and USA soccer.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Throwback Thursdays: 2Pac feat. Digital Underground - I Get Around (1993)

"Hate to sound sleazy, but tease me/ I don't want it if it's that easy"

This song and video are both indicative of why I love and respect the legacy of Tupac (2Pac) Shakur. Despite me being from New York, I always say Pac was a better artist than Biggie, and people think I'm crazy. But here's my defense: Although Biggie said things in ways no one else could say them, Pac said things no one else was saying.

Obviously, "I Get Around" isn't the perfect example of Pac's deeper side, but the fact that he could go from a song like this to "Brenda's Got a Baby" to "Hit Em Up" to "Letter 2 My Unborn" shows just how versatile an artist he was. You think Biggie could have been able to switch topics like that? Of course not. I think a big part of Pac's legacy is the fact that he remains so enigmatic; there isn't really one way you can describe or categorize what he stood for, because he was such a polarizing personality.

A few noteworthy things I noticed from this video...
1.) Peep the blatant ass slapping and grabbing from the 2:05 mark to about 2:15. You gotta love how they were able to just, do that. No way in hell the video stations would allow that to fly in 2009. It's funny; we have a black President, we have all these gay rights for the first time ever, but our music videos can't show guns or booty. And people say our society is too liberal...

2.) Check out that classic old school dance that 2Pac pulls out at the 3:12 mark, which he even has the courtesy to reprise at the 3:49 mark. How fun is that? Furthermore, just try to picture Biggie doing that dance in a video. I dare you.

3.) How ridiculous is Shock G in this video? It's almost distracting, to be honest. From the outrageous afro to the cheesy shades to the weird voice, he almost stole the show. My favorite part, though, was towards the end when he really starts to get into his vocal adlibs. See: 3:38 mark.

Great song, great video. Tupac Shakur, rest in peace.

Sidebar: This will be the last Throwback Thursday for the summer, as I have some other things to attend to. Not to mention, I'll be busy banging out new freestyles every week. I may bring it back in the fall, I may not. I guess it depends on whether or not people enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy posting them. You know what to do, hit me up and let me know.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Rumors, Jumpoffs & Game

What is game? Not this guy or this show, but actual game. Is it good for a guy to have it, and if so, how much is too much?

Also, I answer the age-old question of whether or not a jumpoff can ever become a girlfriend/boyfriend (my answer might surprise you).

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Throwback Thursdays: Lauryn Hill - Doo Wop (That Thing) (1998)

I don't know how many of you realize this, but this album not only won five (5) Grammy awards, it also went diamond, selling over 19 million copies worldwide. Needless to say, this is probably one of the most classic albums of our generation.

Classic album, classic song, classic video. The whole split-screen contrast between 1967 and 1998 is genius, too. Lauryn Hill is was such a dope artist. It's really a shame that she went crazy. But no matter what you do, people, don't compare all of us Jamaicans to this guy. It's not our fault, dammit.

You know, this song is really deep when you break it down. Although Ms. Hill never explicitly explains what "that thing" is, the lyrical implication is that men and both women both use the other sex to acquire what they want out of said relationship, whether it be sex, security or something else.

Does that mean that everyone's just selfish? Of course that's what it means, you idiots. Maybe that's why she didn't need to specify. At the end of the day, we're all just a bunch of pigs looking for "that thing"... *end of rant*.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Monday, June 15, 2009

Phil Jackson, Black Mamba & Black Dante

So, the Lakers won title number 15 last night. Yeah, big surprise.

Today's blogcast discusses the implication of the NBA Finals for Kobe Bryant, Phil Jackson, Hedo Turkoglu and both franchises. Also, will this ring satisfy Kobe's hunger for winning?

In addition, I provide my listeners with my second RLGL album review, this time discussing Mos Def's new album, The Ecstatic.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Throwback Thursdays: G-Unit - Wanna Get To Know You (2003)

"Make a decision, shorty, good things don't last long/ Your girlfriend keep showing me that thong..."
Featuring Joe (not the Fat one or the Budden).

One thing about this song that I was never really sure about: When Joe sings the chorus, does he say, "I really wanna f*ck you, baby"? It really does sound like that, but then it seems so out of place for the mellow tone of the song. Someone answer that for me, please, I'd appreciate it.

This video has all your G-Unit needs: spinning chains, a cameo from The Game, and bra strap tank tops. And really, what else could you ask for? They also shamelessly plugged their G-Unit sneakers, which had just come out at the time. Of course, this is right before 50 Cent leaves a beach party to have sex with a stranger in the sand. Keep it classy.

I was a senior in high school when this album came out, and truth be told, I didn't really have any interest in G-Unit. I liked the Lloyd Banks mixtapes, but I was never much of a Cincuenta fan. The Game hadn't come out yet, and I automatically wrote off Young Buck because he was from the South (Sorry, Cashville). However, after much prompting from my friends, I finally decided to give it a listen. Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised by Beg For Mercy. Even more surprising to me was how well Young Buck performed. When I go back and listen to it today, it seems to me that he collectively had the best verses on the album. Furthermore, this is one of the best driving-around-in-my-car-with-the-system-up albums that I have. I'm still not really a G-Unit fan (Tony Yayo really, really sucks), but this album knocks.

Also, the Queens conglomerate returned the favor by being featured on a Joe song the following summer. Remember this song? This used to be my joint...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The N-Word, Hip-Hop & 2012

Obviously, the n-word is controversial. But why, really?

Today's Tonight's blogcast digs deeper into the issue, and I share my views on why it might not be that big a deal, after all. I also talk about the current state of hip-hop and why I think there might be some light at the end of the tunnel.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Throwback Thursdays: Scarface - Mary Jane (1997)

Who is the King of the South? Is it T.I.? Lil' Wayne? Andre 3000??

Of course, the answer is Scarface. If you didn't know that, shame on you.

This song was actually a topic of conversation a few weeks ago when I was riding in the whip with some of my homegirls. This song came on, and, based on the piano intro, I thought they were about to play "Mary Jane." I was pleasantly surprised that they were about to play throwback Scarface on the radio. But then both of my friends looked at me all stupid like, "Scarface?? This is obviously Ashanti. Duuuuhhhh." How dare they. What really rubbed me the wrong way was that they weren't even familiar with this song when I tried to clear up my mistake. Damn Ashanti, always trying to sample classic hip-hop and make it her own.

This song, if you didn't figure it out, is actually about weed. It's the typical "I'm-talking-about-drugs-but-making-it-sound-like-I'm-talking-about-a-girl-so-they-can-play-it-on-radio" record. For more examples, listen to this or this. One thing about this video that stands out is how much skinnier he was back then. Face Mob has def put on some pounds over the past 10 years. Also, if the chick in the video is supposed to be the embodiment of weed, does that mean the guy who exhales at the end killed her? Or slept with her?? Either way, he smoked the other guy's dro; I don't know what the physical analogy to that would be.

I caught on to Scarface kinda late, as I didn't purchase download The Fix until like 2007. But, boy, was it worth it. I knew it was critically acclaimed, and even got Five Mics in The Source. (They also gave this album Five Mics, though, so what do they know.) But it wasn't until I heard it for myself that I really understood why Scarface is such a legend. Made is pretty good, too, if you're interested. Knock this joint here for a sample.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

LeBron, Sexy Spec & Bruno

I don't care if it was pre-planned, a surprise or an accident. That's just nasty.

Today's blogcast focuses on LeBron's failure to make it to the NBA Finals, and also some discussion on the two teams that did (L.A. Lakers & Orlando Magic). I also talk about the ridiculous Spectacular YouTube debacle that transpired last week, and the internet implications the the video featured above carries.

Oh yeah, and Zac Efron's reaction was priceless.