Work Break 8.31.2006

About a month ago, there was a hip-hop panel entitled, "Roots of the Hyphy Movement." Moderated by Adisa Banjoko and featured Mistah FAB, Tamara Palmer, Traxamillion, and Eric Arnold, the panel attempted to break down this cultural trend/subculture in the Bay Area. Knowledge gets dropped. Listen to the audio. (Courtesy of Adisa)

It's official, 50 Cent is a elephant rider. What did I say?

Chappelle: "So glad I left"... Dude should've atleast left the show walkin' it out.

Shirt off a plane (I try)... I guess the right to free speech doesn't count for anything in America anymore.

Pinoy Pod: "San Francisco Chronicle's Podcast channel for Filipinos in the Bay Area and beyond"

And still on the podcast tip, but for NOLA, Diplo mixes it up with regional music of the Mississippi Delta. (listen to the other podcasts devoted to other regional music Mad Decent Radio)

One of the best things I've seen on YouTube since the Dallas P. and Rafi K. brought us the cinematic masterpiece that was "The Ghetto Big Mac":

Destro feat. The Baroness - "Get Money"


Its bigger than "Bebot"

I offered a brief criticism about the video for Black Eyed Pea's "Bebot," but mine was more crticial on the wackness of BEP and the forced multi-cultural portrayal of culture. But, other than posting up the open letter to "Bebot," I never really put in my own 2 cents on its problematic representation of gender and sexuality.

I whole-heartedly agree with the open letter that went around the internet a week ago and believe that this type of dialogue is necessary, especially for a community that is continuously attempting to define itself within the mainstream. For people to respond back to the letter as academics being overanalytical, one must see that it's bigger than the BEP video. The discussion regarding the representation of sexuality is one that is rooted in our culture's own and American society's own sexism, mysogeny, and homophobia, but this does not grant certain artists the ability to bypass their own social responsibility. BEP and Xylophone should be aware of this responsibilty especially when what they are trying to do is showcase and bring to the mainstream positive images of Filipino-Americans in the media.

That goes another one of my very brief responses. But here's a blog that was directed to me by the homie, Mark, that is dedicated to the dialogue on "Bebot":

About Bebot - A Collective Review

On a separate note:

An article by the San Francisco Chronicle on the nation's only Filipino-American performig arts space, Bindlestiff.

Ali Bombaye

New music from my favorite pigment-challenged Muslim rapper, Brother Ali:

Brother Ali - Original King

It's suppose to be on the upcoming 2006 Scribble Jam compilation. Also it appears as if his new album, The Undisputed Truth, won't be released this year as I hoped, but it has instead been pushed back to spring 2007.

Track courtesy of Rhymesayers Entertainment.


T-Town does something to make me proud

1 Year Later...

And all's not forgotten.

Anniversary doesn't sound right to me. A day of mourning and remembrance would be more appropriate.

This 1 year mark also puts the citizens of New Orleans in a tight situation as many reach the deadline to reside in FEMA provided trailers, though many will still be left without a home to return to.

Ex-FEMA Chief, Michael Brown, blames the administration

Though as Bush speaks on the 1 year mark, he,
Delivered his remarks at an intersection in a working-class Biloxi neighborhood against a carefully orchestrated backdrop of neatly reconstructed homes. Just a few feet out of camera range stood gutted houses with wires dangling from interior ceilings. A tattered piece of crime scene tape hung from a tree in the field where Mr. Bush spoke. A toilet seat lay on its side in the grass.

Democracy Now! takes a look back.

Links from Davey D:

Kanye vs. George Bush
The Great Katrina Land Grab
Hurricane Katrina: 1 Year Later with an interview with David Banner

XXL drops game on how certain rappers responded musically to the disaster.

takin it back to the 7th grade

Da Youngsta's - Hip Hop Ride


Black students ordered to move to the back of bus

"La. school district investigating complaints bus driver ordered black students to back of bus"

Iva Richmond, whose 14- and 15-year-old children were on the bus, told The
Associated Press that they previously had a black bus driver, but their bus
assignment changed this year.

When school started this month, the white driver told them she had
assigned them seats, with the black children at the back of the bus, Richmond
said. Richmond said she complained to a local principal, who told the driver
that if any children were assigned to seats, all would have to be.

Early last week, the driver assigned black students to two seats in the
back of the bus, an arrangement that had some of the smaller children sitting in
the laps of older children, Richmond said.

"All nine children were assigned to two seats in the back of the bus
and the older ones had to hold the smaller ones in their laps," she said.

Entire story...

What year are we in?

Must Read Meth Interview

"He mad"

Part 1
Part 2

So he's irked due to criticism he recieved due to the snorefest that was Tical 0. Okay, atleast he's taken that aggression and actually released a pretty decent new album.


Work Break 8.23.2006

Got my Starbury's on cause they are cheap sneakers
Noz offers a breakdown of the Dungeon Family dynasty.

"Its a punk rock shoe with a logo on the back"... LA Times article on the crossover appeal of Vans to the "urban" crowd, care of the "Vans" song. (courtesy of TrendyNation) Personally, I've moved on to the Starburys.

Method Man calls Rick Rock one of his favorite producers.

That KTVU segment on the hyphy movement was a little too flowery for me, but atleast there are other outlets that are more structured to get the hip-hop movements direction rolling. Too bad the Bishop has given up hope on hip-hop's social impact.

But Bill Cosby still uses hip-hop as a scapegoat. Whats new?

I know using fear in smear campaigns are the norm during election times, but this is preposterous, they might as well have had clansmen posted up complaining how coloreds are destroying our country.


What happened to the rap group?

Reese One and Basik as Bleu Collar

I find myself getting more and more engulfed by this phenomenon becoming known as hip-hop blogs. It might have something to do with my summer office job that has placed me in front of a computer for 8 hours each day, which, if you haven't guessed, is the reason why I've been updating this shit on a nearly daily basis. The tediousness of office jobs can drive someone crazy, but luckily the internet and the blogesphere [1] have allowed me to separate myself from the redundancy of sorting mail and creating filing folders for new vendors.

I have especially found the blogs at XXL Magazine to be some of the most entertaining, as it consolidates different personalities together to put them all under one umbrella blog location to check out. Its the site for numerous blog beefs and blog etherings [2].

Yesterday, Noz put up a post questioning the extinction of rap groups. "Where did the rap group go?"

One answer can lie within the Bay Area, that has for the past year given us several groups that have the promise of achieving great hieghts: The Federation, The Team, Frontline, and the Mob Figaz, to name a few [3] [4]. The Dirty South has groups, but as much as I find snap dancing entertaining, I don't really see a long standing presence in hip-hop for many of them.

Though, while I still have love for the groups from the Bay, I have to give it to Los Angeles for being the home base for one of hip-hop's best kept secret, Bleu Collar (not to be confused with Seattle's Blue Scholars, another really dope group). The duo, composed of emcees Basik and Reese One, has had their fair share of shine in the independent route, doing shows with the Living Legends (when Basik refers to Eligh as his couin, its actually literal). Basik has been around for quite some time in the underground scene releasing 2 solo joints, Apex Predator and At the Mercy of the City, and had used his relationship with the Living Legends to tour and build his own fan base. Prior to hearing about Bleu Collar, I never heard much about Reese One, and honestly I still don't know much about him, but from what I know, he got his start at the Goodlife Cafe and built with the Project Blowed.

As a duo, they released their self titled lp, which was one of my personal favorite releases of 2003. With production assistance from Grouch, Eligh, and Mums the Word in addition to their laid back LA style, impervious lyrics, and hedonistic storytelling, the album made for some of the perfect summer music. Songs like, "Making Rounds", "Bank to Bank", and "Slide to the Left" create that vibe that makes one want to just chill out and sip on a 4-0. This album was the prototype that showed me how to stay finely balanced between staying g'd up and backpackish.

If you've seen them live, then you know how well this duo can rock a show with their energy and dynamic stage presence. Its not just their stage presence that keeps their cult following growing, but its also in their added chemistry. Its evident that both individuals shine in their own light, but with the back and forth rhymes, that brings back a nostalgic feeling of the "double trouble" style rap, it shows everyone the teamwork that is missed from rap groups. (and not just two rappers who happen to make music on the same album). The relationship that Reese and Basik have is exactly how every rap duo should coexist, with each rapper feeding off the other rappers energy and rhymes.

Check out the interview they had last month at DubCNN.

Some audio (but more at their site):

Bleu Collar - Making Rounds (from self titled lp)

Bleu Collar - Bleu Collar Is Dem Boys (from their self titled mix tape)

Bleu Collar - Good with the Ladies (from Los Angeles Designer Music Vol. 1)

On a side note:

The Pack's "Vans" song premiered on 106 & Park today. Its even on their list of videos that you can vote for to be on the countdown. So whats the deal? BET and MTV are both owned by Viacom, so is it still banned on MTV? Was it all really a publicity stunt? And last but not least, why am I devoting so much time and energy to The Pack?

If you were wondering why that Lupe video isn't loading anymore, blame it on the idiocy of Atlantic records.

And an interview with Traxamillion at DubCNN.


[1] That word is humorous to me.
[2] Another humorous idea if one were to think of it, its almost as great as arguments that breaks out on message boards.
[3] Although the line-ups of some of those groups do need some work. Stressmatic needs to go and Locksmith needs to find a better partner.
[4] "What no Pack?," I can already hear it being asked... These kids still have yet to prove to me that they're hungry enough.

An Open Letter on Bebot

To Apl.de.Ap, Patricio Ginelsa/KidHeroes, and Xylophone

We, the undersigned, would like to register our deep
disappointment at the portrayal of Filipinas and other women in
the new music videos for the Black Eyed Peas song, Bebot. We want to make it clear that we appreciate your efforts to bring Filipina/o Americans into the mainstream and applaudyour support of the Little Manila of Stockton. However, as Filipina/o and Filipina/o American artists, academics, and community activists, we are utterly dismayed by the portrayal of hypersexualized Filipina hoochie-mama dancers, specifically in the Generation 2 version, the type of representation of women so unfortunately prevalent in todays hip-hop and rap music videos. The depiction of the 1930s dime dancers was also cast in an unproblematized light, as these women seem to exist solely for the sexual pleasure of the manongs.

In general, we value Apl.de.Ap's willingness to be so openly and richly Filipino, especially when there are other Filipina/o Americans in positions of visibility who do not do the same, and we appreciate the work that he has done with the folks at Xylophone Films; we like their previous video for The Apl Song, and we even like the fact that the Generation 1 version of Bebot attempts to provide a history lesson about some Filipino men in the 1930s. However, the Generation 2 version truly misses the mark on accurateFilipina/o representation, for the following reasons:

The video uses three very limited stereotypes of Filipina women: the virgin, the whore, and the shrill mother. We find a double standard in the depiction of the virgin and whore figures, both of which are highly sexualized. Amidst the crowd of midriff-baring, skinny, light-skinned, peroxided Pinays some practically falling out of their halter tops there is the little sister played by Jasmine Trias, from whom big brother Apl is constantly fending off Pinoy playas. The overprotectiveness is strange considering his idealization of the bebot or hot chick.The mother character was also particularly troublesome, but for very different reasons. She seems to play a dehumanized figure, the perpetual foreigner with her exaggerated accent, but on top of that, she is robbed of her femininity in her embarrassingly indelicate treatment of her son and his friends. She is not like a tough or strong mother, but almost like a coarse asexual mother, and it is telling that she is the only female character in the video with a full figure.

We feel that these problematic female representations might have to do with the use of the word Bebot.We are of course not advocating that Apl change the title of his song, yet we are confused about why a song that has to do with pride in his ethnic/national identity would be titled Bebot,a word that suggests male ownership of the sexualized woman the hot chick.What does Filipino pride have to do with bebots? The song seems to be about immigrant experience yet the chorus says ikaw ang aking bebot (you are my hot chick). It is actually very disturbing that ones ethnic/national identity is determined by ones ownership of women. This system not only turns women into mere symbols but it also excludes women from feeling the same kind of ethnic/national identity. It does not bring down just Filipinas; it brings down all women.

Given the unfortunate connection made in this video between Filipino pride and the sexualized female body both lyrically and visually, we cant help but conclude that the video was created strictly for a heterosexual mans pleasure. This straight, masculinist perspective is the link that we find between the Generation 1 and Generation 2 videos. The fact that the Pinoy men are surrounded by hot chicksboth then and now makes this link plain. Yet such a portrayal not only obscures the real message about the Little Manila Foundation; it also reduces Pinoy mens hopes, dreams, and motivations to a single-minded pursuit of sex.

We do understand that Filipino America faces a persistent problem of invisibility in this country. Moreover, as the song is all in Tagalog (a fact that we love, by the way), you face an uphill battle in getting the song and music video(s) into mainstream circulation. However, remedying the
invisibility of Filipina/os inthe United States should not come at the cost of the dignity and self-respect of at least half the population of Filipino America. Before deciding to write this letter, we felt an incredible amount of ambivalence about speaking out on this issue because, on the one hand, we recognized that this song and video are a milestone for Filipina/os in mainstream media and American pop culture, but on the other hand, we were deeply disturbed by the images of women the video propagates.

In the end we decided that we could not remain silent while seeing image after image of Pinays portrayed as hypersexual beings or as shrill, dehumanized, asexual mother-figures who embarrass their children with their overblown accents and coarseness. The Filipino American community is made up of women with Filipino pride as well, yet there is little room in these videos for us to share this voice and this commitment; instead, the message we get is that we are expected to stand aside and allow ourselves to be exploited for our sexuality while the men go about making their nationalist statements.

While this may sound quite harsh, we believe it is necessary to point out that such depictions make it seem as if you are selling out Filipina women for the sake of gaining mainstream popularity within the United States. Given the already horrific representations of Filipinas all over the world as willing prostitutes, exotic dancers, or domestic servants who are available for sex with their employers, the representation of Pinays in these particular videos can only feed into such stereotypes. We also find it puzzling, given your apparent commitment to preserving the history and dignity of Filipina/os in the United States, because we assume that you also consider such stereotypes offensive toFilipino men as well as women.

Again, we want to reiterate our appreciation for the positive aspects of these videos the history lesson of the 1936 version, the commitment to community, and the effort to foster a larger awareness of Filipino America in the mainstream but we ask for your honest attempt to offer more full-spectrum representations of both Filipino men and Filipina women, now and in the future. We would not be writing this letter to you if we did not believe you could make it happen.


Lucy Burns
Assistant Professor
Asian American Studies / World Arts and Cultures,

Fritzie De Mata
Independent scholar

Diana Halog
UndergraduateUC Berkeley

Veronica Montes

Gladys Nubla
Doctoral studentEnglish, UC Berkeley

Barbara Jane Reyes
Poet and author

Joanne L. Rondilla
Doctoral candidate
Ethnic Studies, UC Berkeley

Rolando B. Tolentino
Visiting Fellow, National University of Singapore
Associate Professor, University of the Philippines Film

Benito Vergara
Asian American Studies / Anthropology, San Francisco State

Taken from The Wily Filipino


The Soledad Brother

35 years ago from this date, the state of California conducted the state sanctioned killing of political prisoner and freedom fighter, George Jackson.

George Jackson: Black Revolutionary

Remembering the Real Dragon - An Interview with George Jackson May 16 and June 29, 1971.

A Tribute to the Three Slain Brothers by George Jackson
(pdf file)

Rest in Power, George Jackson.

Free Mumia Abu-Jamal. Free Leonard Peltier. Free Assata Shakur. Free the Move 9. Free Jose Maria Sison. Free all political prisoners.



Lupe Fiasco - Daydreamin feat. Jill Scott (video by way of Nah Right)

It's interesting to hear how people are really polarized in their sentiments regarding Lupe. It feels as if you either have to stress that he's either the forthcoming savior of hip-hop or you stress that he's just a highly overrated skater rapper who really isn't any good at skateboarding.

bonus mp3:
Gunter Kallman Choir - Daydream


(another) One for Dilla

As I mentioned a couple posts ago, the new Roots album, entitled Game Theory, is arguably the best work that hip-hop's most prolific band have put out since Things Fall Apart. I've been able to sit with this album for nearly a month already and can still listen to it with the same joy that I was able to conjur when listening to TFA during my sophmore year of high school. While I could do another album review this week, I'd rather not. Instead, I'll do another tribute post to J Dilla inspired by the Roots' own tribute track from Game Theory, "Cant Stop This", 'cause ain't nothing ever wrong with sharing the brilliant work of James Yancey.

The Roots - Cant Stop This

Of all the intstrumentals from Donuts, it was "Time: Donut of the Heart" that struck me automatically and had me leaving the beat on repeat, reminiscing over the soundtrack of my life that J Dilla had provided for me. The use of the Jackson 5 sample is so damn infectious. So when I first listened to Game Theory, heard Black Thought say his heartfelt piece on Dilla, and then heard the beat drop for "Can't Stop This", chills hit my spine as if I felt the presence of Jay's spirit hit the room checking to make sure his beats still made heads bob.

J Dilla - Love feat. Pharoahe Monch

J Dilla's last artist-driven record,The Shining, comes out next week, August 22 (buy that shit). Love was recently released on a limited edition picture vinyl ep that will probably be going on ebay for a good price (this dude's already trying to slang his for more than $40). Unfortunately I slept on getting my own copy and damn near every spot is sold out of the ep. This cut shows us Jay and Pharoahe Monche on top of their game. This sould music does sound good.

J Dilla - Cant You See

"Can't You See" is a track off another upcoming posthumous release titled Jay Loves Japan and illustrates the versatility of Jay's capabilities are demonstrated . Reminiscent of some classic Wu bangers, this track could have easily been placed on the Ghostface's classic album, Supreme Clientele. It is a shame to know that Ghost and Jay won't be able to provide us any new collaborations, especially given how nice their tracks on Fishscale sounded.

Oh yeah, pick up Game Theory on August 29th.

Not big on dunks, but I'd rock these


KTVU, Fox, Gets Hyphy

Following suit of KPIX, another Bay Area news station does a story on hyphy.

Looks like a busy week for square-bear, white kids (or middle-aged men) to get their spotlight on their connection to the movement.

When the Levees Broke

When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts

As the world watched in horror, Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans on August 29, 2005. Like many who watched the unfolding drama on television news, director Spike Lee was shocked not only by the scale of the disaster, but by the slow, inept and disorganized response of the emergency and recovery effort. Lee was moved to document this modern American tragedy, a morality play witnessed by people all around the world. The result is WHEN THE LEVEES BROKE: A REQUIEM IN FOUR ACTS. The film is structured in four acts, each dealing with a different aspect of the events that preceded and followed Katrina's catastrophic passage through New Orleans. Acts I and II premiere Monday, August 21 at 9pm (ET/PT), followed by Acts III and IV on Tuesday, August 22 at 9pm. All four acts will be seen Tuesday, Aug. 29 (8:00 p.m.-midnight), the first anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.

More info...


national conspiracy against hyphy...

Ghostride Authority

Yesterday Good Morning America ran a piece on ghostriding the whip. I wasn't able to catch the live broadcasting, but they have some of the footage (not sure if its the entire segment) on the website, along with an article. I'm still waiting for someone to youtube the entire segment. The piece was entitled, "New Teen Dance Craze: Ghost Riding the Whip."

What I got from the report:
-The 30 year old white dudes, from Tennessee, pictured above are the legitimate authority on ghost riding a whip.
-You can only ghost ride to "Tell Me When to Go" and anything else wouldn't be real.
-E-40 is at fault for all the ghost riding related injuries and/or deaths that have come about due to his song.
-White people are stupid like to appropriate things, create their own interpretations of it, and flip it into some of the stupidest shit.

Taken from the article:

A group of teens from Nashville, Tenn., who made a ghost-riding tape acknowledged that it probably wasn't that smart, but that they would do it again.

"Ghost ride was started not to see people succeed, but to see people fail," Jonathan Lovecchio said. "They want to see people run into trees, run over their foot."

Ghost riding appears to have taken off as a result of popular rapper E-40, who has a song where he repeatedly chants, "Ghost ride the whip."

"Whip" is slang for car. E-40's song is the backdrop for many of the ghost-riding videos on the Web.

"We would have never done this without the song that we were playing," Lovecchio said. "If you don't play that song, you are not a ghost rider."

Honestly, who wrote this shit?

Also, according the Pack's website, MTV has banned their video for "Vans". I'm not sure what the deal is with this, but from what I've seen, it looks like the Vans company hasn't really had any problems with the song. It also appeared as though the company and the group had some sort of sponsorship argeement set in place. There really isn't anything too objectionable in the video, other than the product placement, that would deem it to be too explicit for television. So might MTV's decision to ban the video be due to free advertisement for Vans? But if it does have to do with advertisement, what about "Pass the Courvosier", "Air Force 1's," or "Holiday Inn"?*

I smell an anti-Bay Area bias going on with the media.

*So here's a better run down of what really went down with the banned Pack video.


Washington's Interest in Israel's War

Seymour Hersh, best known for uncovering the My Lai Massacre during Vietnam, published a new investigative piece for the New Yorker charging the Bush administration to have ulterior motives in supporting Israel's attack on Hezbollah, most notably a pre-emption for a strike against Iran. I meant to post this story yesterday, but I believe its still important enough to put up for those that still haven't had an opportunity to read it.

"Annals of National Security" by Seymour M. Hersh

In the days after Hezbollah crossed from Lebanon into Israel, on July 12th, to kidnap two soldiers, triggering an Israeli air attack on Lebanon and a full-scale war, the Bush Administration seemed strangely passive. “It’s a moment of clarification,” President George W. Bush said at the G-8 summit, in St. Petersburg, on July 16th. “It’s now become clear why we don’t have peace in the Middle East.” He described the relationship between Hezbollah and its supporters in Iran and Syria as one of the “root causes of instability,” and subsequently said that it was up to those countries to end the crisis. Two days later, despite calls from several governments for the United States to take the lead in negotiations to end the fighting, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said that a ceasefire should be put off until “the conditions are conducive.”

The Bush Administration, however, was closely involved in the planning of Israel’s retaliatory attacks. President Bush and Vice-President Dick Cheney were convinced, current and former intelligence and diplomatic officials told me, that a successful Israeli Air Force bombing campaign against Hezbollah’s heavily fortified underground-missile and command-and-control complexes in Lebanon could ease Israel’s security concerns and also serve as a prelude to a potential American preëmptive attack to destroy Iran’s nuclear installations, some of which are also buried deep underground.

Israeli military and intelligence experts I spoke to emphasized that the country’s immediate security issues were reason enough to confront Hezbollah, regardless of what the Bush Administration wanted. Shabtai Shavit, a national-security adviser to the Knesset who headed the Mossad, Israel’s foreign-intelligence service, from 1989 to 1996, told me, “We do what we think is best for us, and if it happens to meet America’s requirements, that’s just part of a relationship between two friends. Hezbollah is armed to the teeth and trained in the most advanced technology of guerrilla warfare. It was just a matter of time. We had to address it.”

Continue Reading...

"Idlewild" reflections

I consider myself a huge Outkast fan (with them coming a very close second to ATCQ as my favorite hip-hop group), but after listening to the new album/soundtrack, I would have to say my sentiments regarding Idlewild fall pretty close to Tom Brehain's (although I enjoyed The Love Below).

After hearing that they would indeed be releasing a follow up to their last effort (which cannot be legitimately called a real Outkast album), I was actually anxiously waiting to hear what new shit they'd be bringing. My hopes would be that this would be the hip-hop album to look for come summer time. Mighty O was leaked/released, and the first thought that came to me was, "Fuck yeah, Dre is actually rapping." And then came Morris Brown (I dug it) , then Idlewild Blues (eh), and then half the album became readily available to anyone that frequents various hip-hop blogs. I became greatly disgusted by the high expectations that I placed Outkast, and am now with the consensus out there thats pleading with Andre to stop his poor excuse of a Prince impersonation.

I was one of those fans that dismissed the cries for Outkast's return back to that Southern ATL slumpish style as conservative calls for their music to be non-progressive. One thing that I have always appreciated from the duo has been their progression with each new album. Though it appears over time that they chose to create and abuse a formula for what they had been doing. Folks can blame Badu for Andre's transformation, but Common was able to make Be after the release of Electric Circus. Thus, I see what has happened to Outkast as more of a conforming to non-conformity attitude towards making music.

Don't get it all twisted though, there were a few enjoyable selections in Idlewild, particularly Big Boi's contributions. Whenever Dre is able to drop a verse, its almost always pleasurable. Atleast half of the album is listenable. My personal favorites include: Mighty-O, Morris Brown, N2U, In Your Dreams, and my personal favorite, Hollywood Divorce. Hollywood Divorce is easily the best track out of the entire album, though controversey is rife in the song with folks claiming Lil' Weezy used a ghost-writer.

Its all good though, I'm just a single blogger... Just because I don't like something, it don't mean that I'm hating. And Big Boi and Andre have nothing to worry about because they've reached a point that only a select few in the music industry (and even less in hip-hop) ever reach. They can take a shit on a record, call it experimentation, and every hipster out there that doesn't listen to hip-hop, except for Outkast and maybe Kanye West, will go out and buy the album the day it comes it.

Alls not lost with summer 2006 hip-hop music though, there is still Game Theory, which is is arguably the best Roots release since Things Fall Apart.


Manifest Destiny Trail

You can take your Sims, Counterstrike, or whatever fuckin games computer geeks play nowadays, its all about the classics. And this site has all the games that let those of us in the Apple II generation relive our days in the computer lab at elementary school.

Virtual Apple has to be the greatest thing on the internet for nostalgists since Retrojunk.

If by having played these games and remembering what an Apple IIE looked like, would it be characteristic of a non-80's baby?


Before the Music Dies

Taken from the website:

With outstanding performances and revealing interviews, Before the Music Dies takes a critical and comedic look at the homogenization of popular music with commentary by some of the industry's biggest talent such as Erykah Badu, Branford Marsalis, Dave Matthews, Elvis Costello, Bonnie Raitt, Questlove (from hiphop group the Roots), and many more. Using historic footage the film looks at the evolution of American music and the artists who created it and pulls back the curtain (in a very creative way) to expose the sad truth behind today's "artificial" music stars.


Work Break - 8.8.2006

I hope he didn't get that shirt from AC the PD

The Pack's "Vans" video is finally here (youtube clip now up)

Eric K Arnold traces back the history of rap's pimpology roots.

Rock the Bells reviews: So-Cal and Nor-Cal

Damn... Del's got problems... no wonder he's always out of it during his performances.

It was about time somebody made use of the soundbite that showed everybody just how powerful a Youtube clip could be:

Killer Mike - The Juggernaut (via FiftyOne:FiftyOne)

So when's the new Killer Mike coming out? This dude is another truthspeaker. Its actually refreshing to start hearing more and more rappers speaking, hopefully its not just a trend with only a few folks.

At work, all I listen to is NPR (via KPBS), KPFA, and podcasts of Mistah FAB's Yellow Bus Radio... check out his interviews with Husalah, Yukmouth and E-40.


"Too $hort was a movement"

Davey D conducted an interesting interview with Too $hort last Friday on Hard Knock Radio. Short Dogg speaks on his own contributions to the Bay Area rap game, his relationship with 2Pac, thoughts on backpack rap and rappers, the legacy of other Bay artists, the emergence of the "West Coast sound", and more.

Listen to the entire interview.

Since we're on the topic of a rapper from the City of Dope, the good folks at Oh Word killed it last week with their week long salute to crack. In case you missed it.

c'mon, america... i thought i had more faith in you

I guess I was wrong. Have half of America been keeping their heads buried? I suppose it shows us that 50% of America only watches Fox News. So much for an informed public.

Half of U.S. still believes Iraq had WMD

Pacquiao entering the political ring?

What did I say?
Manny Pacquiao, the other day, admitted that he needs to think twice or thrice whether he would make the big jump from the boxing ring to the political arena next year.

"I really need to think about it. But as of now, I haven’t made a decision yet," said Pacquiao, who arrived in Manila last Friday after spending a week with his family in Gen. Santos City.

Talks about Pacquiao’s possible retirement from boxing, and his plans to run for vice mayor of Manila in May 2007 moved around town Thursday, creating excitement for some and apprehension for others.

Fanning the reports about Pacquiao’s political plans was his filing of a transfer of residency from Gen. Santos City to Manila where he owns a condominium unit.

Pacquiao quietly went to the Commission on Elections office July 5 to file the transfer of his residency. Ali Atienza, son of Manila Mayor Lito Atienza, accompanied the boxer to the Comelec.

If he runs, it’s almost impossible for Pacquiao to lose.

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I really am unsure about what political ideals Pacquiao has, but let's just hope he's not another Joseph Estrada or Fernando Poe Jr. Also, I still have yet to see or hear about him publicly criticize GMA for her own corruption charges and her abuse of human rights, so unless he becomes all Muhammad Ali of Philippine boxing on us, I'll hold on to my hesitation in supporting his political endeavors.


Got my Furls on but they look like sneakers


Phili Fili Pilipino...

BEP collaborated with the folks at Xylophone Films to make not one but two videos for their song "Bebot". The videos attempt to show different generations of Pilipino-Americans. The first one is set in 1930's Stockton, showing the farm working "Manong" generation doing their thing. The second video is on some house party/bbq with a bunch of Pilipinos tip, with a stereotypical Pilipino mom in the mix. Hella Pilipino "celebrity" cameos. Check the Kid Heroes website for more info on it.

I was and still am very reluctant to post this video just due to the fact that I have my own personal gripe with Black Eyed Peas ("sell out"/"fell offs" are just too elementary of terms to use). Not to mention, the song is cheesy as hell. But due to the fact that I know they funded the video themselves and are doing it out for the Pilipino-American community, I can't hate on them too much. Oh yeah, they got Native Guns in the video, make sure to pick up their new album "Barrel Men," its dope.

Also keep your eyes open for Charmaine Star and Nump.

Here's Generation 1:

And Generation 2:

The Forgotten Veterans

A friend of mine, Marnette, wrote a piece, for VoiceofSanDiego.org, on the continual struggle of Pilipino-American veterans fighting to recieve recognition for the sacrifices that they had offered the United States during WWII.

Peep it:

The Forgotten Veterans
By MARNETTE FEDERIS Voice Staff Writer

Friday, Aug. 4, 2006 On assigned days, Joe Esloa is in charge of unlocking the Filipino American Senior Citizens office at a senior center in Mira Mesa. He looks on at a small group practicing traditional folk dances in another room, and laughs as he remembers the days when he too would dance.

"But not any anymore, I’m a little too old," Esloa said in his native Tagalog.

When Esloa was still young enough to dance, he kept his legs busy during World War II, hauling fish and salt to the mountains near his town in the Philippines. He was the supplier for guerilla groups fighting against the Japanese, who had occupied the entire country.

After the war, Esloa joined the New Philippine Scouts, a unit working with the U.S. Armed Forces. Members were trained for combat, but their focus was on rebuilding in the Philippines and Japan, which were destroyed during the war. Esloa remembers constructing bridges and other structures in Okinawa until the Scouts was dissolved in 1949.

"Training wasn’t so bad," he said. "You learn discipline and love of the country."

There are many veterans like Esloa who gather at senior centers and community meeting places around San Diego, sharing war stories and battle scars. But amidst the chatter at the senior center in Mira Mesa, there a unique element: the uncertainty of the actual status of these men. They've never been recognized by the U.S. government as veterans of World War II. They talk about disability claims that have not been approved, visa petitions for adult sons and daughters still in the Philippines, and friends who have recently passed on without the full benefits once promised to them.

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When will the escalation stop?

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to keep as much of an updated account of the Middle East conflict, as I would like, but I'm sure those who are interested in keeping up to date with the situation have already been doing so. I would like to keep an optimistic outlook on whats been going on, but with the arrogant attitude of Israel and the US towards the rest of the world, pessimism begins to become the more pragmatic outlook.
And Its difficult to be optimistic when the tension keeps rising.
Prayers for those devastated from the attacks in Qana and the rest of Lebanon and Israel, but unfortunately for the Qana residents, what had happened on Sunday was a revisitation to the past.
Though Israel halted attacks for a minute, they still say "No" to a cease-fire and keep pushing more forces into Lebanon.
An honest critique of the damages to the Lebanese People, by Gideon Levy.
Balance your Fox/CNN/MSNBC American corporate news reports with some alternative perspectives on the conflict: