By now, everybody has seen the ingenius clip, simply titled as "Little Superstar".

But when I first watched the clip, I knew that the blasting synths coming from the cassette player sounded very familiar. Fortunately, I was directed to the legendary Netherland duo MC Miker G & DJ Sven's classic record "Holiday Rap", a rap remake of Madonna's "Holiday". The track was a huge international hit in the 1980's, so I'm sure I heard the song somewhere as a youth, and it remained in the back of my conscious until a resurrected Bollywood movie resurrected "Holiday Rap".

So for your enjoyment, a performance of "Holiday Rap":

And a bonus mp3 treat:

MC Miker G & DJ Sven - Holiday Rap



Brooke Hogan feat. E-40 - About Us (remix) [produced by Traxxamillion]

We all knew the day would come. But not so soon, and not this way. We all were waiting for the day that "hyphy" would become accepted by the mainstream and become a commonplace subgenre leaving snap music and screwed & chopped in the halls of hip-hop history. But not this way.

In a way, I agreed that E-40 shouldn't have been the one introducing the growing Bay Area phenomenom to the rest of the nation? A youth related culture, being introduced by a 60's baby? As the Roots would say, "It don't feel right". Though, I still had faith in the man. But now, I must question the reasoning to the decision to make this song.

Traxx, props on the beat, shit slaps. You got paid. But I still shake my head to the whole situation, and not in a a "going dumb" type manner.

And to Brooke. Much respect to the Hulkster. But whats with your daughter, brother? She didn't need to adulturate this. Atleast so early in its infancy into pop culture.

The madness to the inevitable intercourse between respectable Bay hyphy artists with shitty pop/r&b singers doesn't only exist with the cocaine complected. Miscegenation occurs with the "Pinoy" boy bands too, thanks in part to Next Phaze [1] and Clyde Carson.

Why Clyde? I thought things were going so well. Hyphy Juice is blowing up, and you even have that Black Wallstreet deal [2].

Next Phaze feat. Clyde Carson - Hit It Up


[1] Respect to the Pilipino representation. I actually know several people that actually enjoy their music. But wack tracks need to be held back.

[2] You've already made one misstep since the signing, just don't get caught up in this mix.



(street date: 10.10.2006)

My introduction to the potentials of a Zion I and Grouch collaboration came on Zion I's "Mind over Matter," with the track "Silly Puddy". Amp Live's eerie spaced out production and Zion MC and Grouch's self-reflective lyrics gave the listener a lucid dreamstate feeling. It was in this song and then on Grouch's "Moves That Make Me", followed by Zion I's "Flow" that demonstrated the strong chemistry of the team to make some fresh ass hip-hop. With each additional collaboration, I began hoping for some more.

Luckily, the self appointed "Heroes in the City of Dope" will be dropping their first full length lp in a few weeks. With Zion MC's hard hitting versatile delivery and Grouch's complex simplistic lyrics, I have my hopes for this album. From what I've heard from the sampler to what appears to be the lead single featuring Fabby Davis, "Hit Em", backpackers might be able to get a solid album, something which I haven't come across in the scene in a while.

Zion I & Grouch - Hit Em feat. Mistah FAB

"Heroes in the City of Dope" sampler (courtesy of Eric K. Arnold & SF Gate)

Zion I - Silly Puddy feat. Grouch

Bonus mp3 that some Zion I purists might decry... A clubbish, hollar at a shorty joint, from Traxxamillion's recently released, "Slap Addict":

Traxxamillion feat. Zion I - Top Down


Fuck Rapidshare and their 1 download an hour limit and their 2 minute wait. Its Zshare from now on (or until I finally have my own place to host mp3s). I salute Zshare for allowing me to preview mp3s prior to downloading.

Bonus links:

An interview with Mac Minister

New hot fiyah from San Quinn (by way of Fader, by way of Catchdubs)

And tomorrow's my last day of this office job, then I'm off to get my Tom Berenger on and start substitute teaching again. What does that mean? No more 8 hour shifts with only 45 minutes of actual work to do, thus less consistent posts. The past 2 months have been the busiest this blog has ever been, but I'll do my best to update when I have the chance.



Let's watch square-crow "Modesto Bee" online editor, Brian Ramsey, do his best to report on the university's decision to ban the E-40 concert.

And to answer your questions... Yes, Turlock is that square.



Wackos like this Vernon Robinson get elected.

Holy shit. North Cackalack Republican, Robinson must really be on one to put out such a racist, disgusting, and crazy campaign ad:

(source: Election Central)

Fear. Its whats for dinner.



Went to Banksy's "Barely Legal" art show yesterday. Among the crowd of pseudo-revolutionary/white liberal LA hipsters arriving in their Priuses, there was also art pieces taken away from their urban guerilla art context and put into an abandoned warehouse turned art gallery. Though, on Friday night, Branjelina showed up to purchase half of the canvased pieces, to reclaim their self-importance in the progressive community and feel good about themselves (it ain't just a new trend with rappers).

Apparently PETA type folks' trousers are in a bunch due to the pink elephant (it actually appeared to be more red) that everybody is aware of but does nothing about (ie: poverty). Boing Boing breaks down this outcry against the painted pachyderm. But, what about the cockroaches being forced to spend 3 days alongside doctored images of Paris Hilton? Personally, I had mixed feelings about the elephant (not so much with the use of non-toxic paint) but more so of the public exploitation of her as on object with which to gawk. I'm sure most people were totally unaware of what Banksy even meant with the elephant, as I didn't see any cards going around (the day I went) that told of its message. Would that be part of the artistic illustration that Banksy tried to carry?

The most poignant piece of the show.

After getting over the fact that I was one of the few people of color, other than most of the security guards (my theory is that the one white security guard had to have been Banksy), I began to self-debate about the legitimacy of his urban guerilla art in the confines of a sterilized gallery. I couldn't look at a piece and think of how much stronger it would be situated on a busy street, which was what made his art that much more brilliant. Although, already discussed since the days of Basquiat, maybe even longer, I wasn't a art history major, Banksy's anarchistic [1] techniques seems very opposite to what I saw at the show. Commodities being sold for hundreds of thousands of dollars, sponsorship by Ebay, and an almost artificial underground aura with the use of the warehouse, among other things. Maybe it was his way of sticking his middle finger to the uber-chique LA crowd that would pay endless amounts of money, not knowing the irony of buying a painting of an art auction with individuals bidding on a painting with the words, "I can't believe you morons actually buy this shit".

And what of the income generated from this event? I've read of Banksy being totally against advertisement and merchandising of any kind. Commodifying a statement can at times be used to help bring a political message to a larger audience, though it can also become lost in the midst of the public shock value. But who knows, though, he might just be the Abbie Hoffman of the 2000's, an anarchistic individual, so aware of his iconic status within the counter-culture that he knows he could take a shit on a video reel and someone would buy it.

Photos and photos

And for those who want video footage rather than pictures, BBC news coverage:

[1] Chomsky on Anarchism



Its a weekend of subversive art from the newsworthy, Banksy.

The location (just announced today on his website):

Hunter St, Los Angeles.
Fri 15th, Sat 16th, Sun 17th Sept 2006. 12-8pm.

And apparently thats it. No mention of an exact address or anything.



As I was preparing to leave Turlock this morning, one of the headlines on the front page of the Modesto Bee grabbed my attention:

"Hyphy fear cancels concert"
California State University, Stanislaus, officials canceled a concert Saturday featuring Vallejo hyphy rapper E-40 and Sacramento hard-rock band Papa Roach after hearing safety concerns expressed by law enforcement.

Stanislaus State officials said the event was called off because of what they said was potential violence associated with the hyphy movement. The Warriors Welcome Back Concert was scheduled for 6 p.m. at the university's amphitheater.

"Heavy concern expressed by the law enforcement officers was the key factor in the decision to cancel," said Stanislaus State President Hamid Shirvani.

Fear strikes again and prevails in Small Town, USA. And I wondered why nothing ever happened in Turlock.

One more quote from the article that amused me:
A Sept. 1 university news release announcing the show called E-40 "one of the Bay Area's finest groups."



Two Sundays ago, promoters in the city of Modesto held a club for the under agers. Promoted as a "hyphy" event all over Myspace, the function ended up maximizing the 300 people capacity of the venue, thus leaving a plethora of youth to be left outside, congregating with nothing else to do. What ends up happening?

These articles might answer your question:

Brawl: 'Hyphy' or a lot of hype?

Downtown brawl still a puzzle

Brawl nips shot at 'best community' for kids list

Examine Sunday brawl and learn lessons from it

Police will attend meeting on melee

To sum up what happened: Bitter high schoolers use the streets of downtown Modesto to get dumb at. Someone gets their purse snatched. Cops are called in, in great numbers. Cops overreact and start attacking minors. 17 minors arrested. Cops blame hyphy culture; community activists blame the cops.

As much as I can assume that young fad riding "thizz kids" from Central California shared some of the responsibility to the irresponsible behavior, from what I've read and heard about the incident, the overseers officers clearly overstepped their boundaries.

Today, I arrived in Turlock to visit the family, and on the front page of the Modesto Bee is this article:

Parents, teens decry officers' response

My favorite part of this article has to be a quote from one of the defensive police officers:
"A promoter told me this hyphy stuff is just short of having sex," Wasden said. "Parents, you need to know what's being promoted to your children."

Several parents applauded Wasden's words about responsibility, even as many teens laughed at his definition of hyphy. The teens countered that hyphy is nothing more than a dance during which kids "get loose." One woman compared it to punk rockers who head bang.

Though, I would disagree with the "nothing more than a dance" explanation by the teens, the statement by the officer clearly shows his lack of understanding of youth culture, which is definitely a problem when trying to find solutions to the effects of youth idleness.


When I go on my trips back home to Turlock to visit the family, I rarely have the opportunity to see what the nightlife is in the neighboring town of Modesto. While I have been to a few bars in Modesto, I never have the opportunity to do a full on ethnography about the local scene and to see how much the "hyphy movement" has spread to the region. So, I have never witnessed anything like this while I've been out in Modesto. It is without a doubt, though, that hyphy has left its footprint in the soil of the 209, as Bay Area rap has done for the past 15-20 years.

*In somewhat related news, Inside Edition aired their own piece on ghostriding the whip lasst Friday. Although I had to miss it because the San Diego channel fcuked up and aired an episode from the previous week, apparently our good friend Jonathan Lovecchio and the Middle Aged White Men Crisis Posse were in full effect in the segment.





Yesterday, I was tuning in to Hark Knock Radio, and was pleasantly surprised to find out that there was going to be an interview with DJ Shadow. (listen to podcast) DJ Shadow discussed his upcoming project, The Outsider, the reasons for his shift in musical direction, as well as his own hyphy experience. I've read my fair share of recent Shadow interviews, and while I praise his new directional shift, if I didn't hear or read the word "reinvention" in one of his new interviews, I'd be happy.

While Shadow was out discovering the formula for his reinvented sound, Keak da Sneak was formulating his own hood theory of relativity, as told by Mass Appeal.

After the whole MTV-"Vans" fiasco, which I was somewhat guilty of overhyphing (though I still smell that anti-Bay bias), Eric K Arnold offers his piece on the controversy.

Speaking of kicks, US authorities intercept one of the largest counterfeit-merchandise schemes in US history. Over 600,000 pairs of Nike knock-offs were seized.

And it looks like KMEL is doing FAB wrong due to radio politics. (via Davey D).

In unrelated news:

Senate debunks Bush's claims of links between Saddam and Al-Qaeda. Like I've been saying since 2002, my enemy's enemy isn't necessarily my enemy's friend. Though even with this report, my pessimism is still telling me Americans will still be too ignorant to believe this information. But who knows, lets see if Fox changes things up and don't actually add to the misperceptions about Iraq.

And for your enjoyment: "J. Dilla Blends" mixed by DJ Food Stamp

15th Annual FPAC

Check it: This Saturday and Sunday... 15tha Annual Festival of Pilipino Arts & Culture @ Pt. Fermin Park in San Pedro, CA.

For more info: FilAm Arts


Us Against the World

It has been 10 years since one of hip-hop's greatest faced the bullets that would ultimately end his life seven days later (enter Tupac 7 day conspiracy theorists).

Each generation is left with a single moment that supposedly shapes what that generation becomes defined. These moments range from the assassination of JFK, the bombing of Pearl Harbor, and most recently 9/11. The moments are poignant due to the imprint that is left in the memories of those that are conscious of the events as it had taken place. Tupac's death might not have left the same political and social impact as some of the aforementioned events, but for much of the hip-hop generation, it is one of those moments that still and will forever remain in our conscious.

I can still vividly recall the moment when I learned that Tupac was shot. It was the beginning of my 8th grade school year, and I was mowing the lawn the lawn for my parents. Nearly finished mowing the lawn, I see my older brother pulling up to our house in the 1987 Ford Tempo GL (that gangster ride was my first car). Broham parked the car right by where I was, and yells out from the car, "Tupac's been shot!" The first thought that ran to my mind was, "Oh shit, not again." I finished the yard work, with the news stuck on my mind, but also thinking about how Tupac would recover just as he had done before and that he'll come back stronger and angrier than ever.

Unfortunately, seven days later, I was wrong, and the man that shaped much of my ideas as a youth was gone. As much of a big Tupac fan as I was and still am, I'll admit that he was not the most talented rapper lyrically or even flow wise. But, the power that made and still makes his music resonate was the ability that he possessed in igniting thought among a population that much of the "conscious" rappers today fail to capture. If it hadn't been for Tupac, I probably would not have gained the desire to learn more about the struggles of the Black Panther Party, the incarceration of Mumia, Assata, Geronimo Pratt, and countless other revolutionary voices. His anti-authority stance and disses against C. Dolores Tucker appealed to me as a youth stuck in a very uptight small suburban-rural city. Although I maintained a very conservative political stance throughout my junior high and high school, up until community college professors allowed me to fully see how the power structure in America really existed, the lingering "fuck the system" mentality was always in the back of my head.

We shouldn't get it twisted though, as Tupac music wasn't even close to being free of mysogenistic and homophobic lyrics. What he yelled in his songs were a reflection of the patriarchic and sexist society that he was raised. Although they were inspirational in how much of my political ideals were eventually formed, it wasn't Public Enemy, NWA, X-Clan, or Poor Righteous Teachers that directly pushed me to be against our oppressive system. It was Tupac who had the most direct influence, with his rebellious middle finger salute yelling, "Fuck the world" while still telling the kids to "Keep your head up."

So 10 years have passed (murder still unsolved), there is still the cultural war against rap music, along with full scale institutional programs targeting hip-hop artists as well as more problematic programs that target the youth, with which the hip-hop generation is composed. And just like the aftermath of Katrina and with the approaching 5 year anniversary of 9/11, it seems as if America has become intent on moving on a downward spiral away from progress.
Random tidbit of information, the image of Tupac that I used above as actually taken from an image I took from Google that was being hosted by our favorite right wing neo-conservative Pilipina pundit, Michelle Malkin.

"Jesus Camp" Trailer

Bush and the rest of the neo-cons are inciting their rhetoric of fear with their war against Islamic-fascism. But right now, I'm worried about the Christian-fascists in America.

Though, what's more frightening than that trailer itself is knowing that one day rat-tail boy and the rest of the kids will one day become old enough to vote.

(spotted at Jay Smooth's Insane Asylum)


"Thats Hot"

Banksy adds his own mash-up [1] flavor to Paris Hilton's self-indulgent debut album.

A couple of links: BBC news article, images of the manipulated cd insert, and of course a YouTube clip.

In other news, RIP, Steve Irwin .......
[1] Taken from Poplicks.