Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Who Needs a House out in Hackensack?

This will be my final post at this site, anyone who came here on the semi-regular basis that I posted will have seen the writing on the wall. I could go on about the regular laundry list of reasons people fold blogs: apathy, laziness, I don't write about music for a living so it's hard to keep up or care, and they're all valid in my case but my issue with this blog has always run deeper.

I never saw myself as a critic, sifting through the muck of information age Hip Hop and taking fleeting shots or rewarding praise. This was a self imposed pressure but I always felt the need with this blog to post regularly. I've written a lot of things here I'm proud of but in almost every case it was rushed or half baked because I wanted regular updates to satiate my scant readership.

I started writing about Hip Hop because I'm a fan. I felt I had something to say about particular albums or artists I loved whose work was somewhat misunderstood, because writing about the music you love is fun and I think somewhere along the line I lost that. I never enjoyed this pastime more than when I was part of a collective at Oh Word, free to take a month to work on a long form piece contributing it as part of a larger work of very smart people with things to say about Rap.

The good news is I've taken my talents to Passion Of the Weiss, where as of this morning you can read a new ROD on the Diplomats. Jeff and his crew were very kind to take me in and provide a platform and I look forward to working with them. To everyone who ever enjoyed, just read or supported this blog, thank you.

Thursday, September 16, 2010


Wow. We have every indication that this Dipset reunion is going to be as great as their best material, it's like the last 3 odd years never happened. This beat is like a week old. Cam makes an extended X Clan reference, Jim Jones' shit talk is better than his verse (I love what a bad voice Jones has but how crazy would it be if Max had the freedom to get in on the act?), they randomly decide to get Dame's back and diss Kanye. The only part that gets you is there won't be a Kanye beat on the next album, because no one has more fun on Ye's shit than Cam, but he probably wouldn't have made a contribution anyways. No craft or actual criticism here just geeking out because I love the fucking Diplomats.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Hip Hop Tweets: September 7

A semi regular roundup of the best Tweets in and around the Hip Hop Community.

Tom Breihan: Someone explain the spoken-word guys in that Pac/Tyson documentary. Can't imagine a cooler idea for a doc being paired with lamer execution.

Wiz Khalifa
: one of my family members told me not to wake up with chickens or mike tysons tiger in my penthouse. Hahahhahahahahhahaha

Freddie Gibbs: Just met Lisa Bonet, she still fine

Statik Selektah
: @Grafh no doubt... we gotta link

Swizz Beatz
: @aliciakeys you shocked me today when you knew all the words to ERIC B FOR PRESIDENT wowwww

Lil B: mannnn I tell u this all these rappers is scared of Lil B I tell u that. I tell u Lil B done something no1 has - Lil B

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Hip Hop Tweets: August 31

A semi regular roundup of the best Tweets in and around the Hip Hop Community.

Talib Kweli: Ok cocaine. I get it, you're back.

Soulja Boy: @YellowBoneStar_ yu killed it baby real talk swag swag

Snoop Dogg: bacctage at the @justinbieber show in NYC with the beautiful Vita Chambers... its all gravity!

Soulja Boy
: @_LoModele swag

Joe Budden: Posta Boy- Jurassic harlem

Soulja Boy: @SouljaboysAngel swag

Maino: I irritate u huh?RT @CiaraImani: Umm everytime I see maino's corny ass on this MTV commercial for this show I get irritated.

Soulja Boy
: @BitchiamFAMOUS swag

Crooked I: Jus left court.. It's a shame to see people get time in chunks all because they can't afford a lawyer.. #EffTheSystem

Swagger Jacked

I feel like Pierre Delacroix after sitting through Blak Iz Blak: I don't want to have anything to do with anything 'Swag' for at least a week. After "Pretty Boy Swag" I thought the B and Soulja union was going to be a positive thing, Soulja could teach this kid how to edit and turn his style into a viable product. Instead Soulja Boy is suddenly a cokehead and all the great energy that had finally won me over has been replaced by this breathless near monotone play at weirdness. Is it me or is it fucked up when you need to bite someone else's weirdness? If you do, is it still technically weird? This song is a cry for a celebrity episode of Intervention.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Live From James Evans' Crib

Joell Ortiz- Funkmaster Flex Freestyle

Sorry, I physically can't care about the internet between June and August. Joell Ortiz pops into Hot 97 and does something I can't remember anyone doing in years: Tears it down with 5 minutes of crack. Joell, arguably the greatest rapper left in New York amongst a sad, slim field most notably challenged by one Juelz Santana, dropped his first and only album three years ago. As a fan of that album and its artist I feel like he should be in the midst of a promising mid-level career, the kind guys like Beanie Sigel and Jadakiss used to be able to enjoy comfortably, without having to resort to stunts like Slaughterhouse.

Have we really reached a place in Hip Hop where no flash lyricism, not to be confused with Detroit and Philly's seemingly intentionally boring old school technical proficiency, but real writing, wit, fire and lively punchlines have no place in our culture? Joell concludes his freestyle by begging all MCs listening to take it back to the pad and pen. A majority of the successful music produced over the last decade in this city seems to fall into two camps: stubborn underground old schoolism and popular parody, where guys like Mims or Maino or 50 or Jay-Z made Clear Channel Rap that could've come from everywhere. (Then there's the Diplomats, who I will address on this site any day now) Perhaps Joell has a point. That it's more than playing at grimy atmosphere, trying to recapture a sound with knock off Rza beats and weak attempts at a Buckshot sneer (See: Fat Joe). But the studied, detail rich, alternating funny and sad writing that powered New York's Golden Age could be the only way back to relevance. Start at the beginning.