Thursday, June 29, 2006

Hip Hop Told Me it Loved Me.


How do I know Hip Hop loves me?

Well. A few songs can illustrate said love.

1. Bonita Applebum- Tribe
That video was so, fun and playfull, brimming with whimsey.

I like to tell you things, some brothas don't.

Satisfaction, I have the right tactics/ and if you need 'em I got crazy prophylactics/
So far I hope you like rap songs/ Bonita Applebum/ You gotta put me on.
It reminded me of kids at the "popular table in the cafeteria", banging out a beat, serenading the a sista' who was president of the drama cluba and still didn't give him any play.

2. My Favorite Ladies- Doom
The song opens up with,

"girl/ you make me wanna eachu/ everytime I see you/ its like the first time a sentchu/."

"She from Columbia so she really Spanish/Cookie know how to make a bank account vanish."

Yeah. It do go down like that from time to time.
What. Doom got game like that.

3. On the Road Again- JB's

There is something about this song that I have allways liked. Um. The singing on the hook.
The Horns, the bass line. It allways reminded me of running through the jungle, looking for my love.

4. Hot Sex Onna Platter- Tribe
This bass line is sick. And the fact that Tip just started it off w/ "Where ya At", like what nigg@, where yo a$$ at, cuz I got something for you with them broad a$$ shoulders. Hello!

5. Freaky Tales- Too Short
This was the most raunchiest song I ever heard up until that point.
It was differnt from 2-live Crew, cuz luke and 'nem would Rap n' scream. 2 short, would, just slur his sh*t out, so you could hear ever nasty 'lil word.
Whereas short, was like, "I met this girl, her name was brenda",
with that crazy a$$ 808.
That jawn would lbe rumbling the trunks of mad oldsmobiles in east oakland.

6. Paper Thin- Mc Lyte
She started it off right. Just brining it to heads.

/When you say you love me/ it doesn't matter it goes in my head as just chit chatter/.

That was BBC's ring tone when I couldn't talk to him last fall. Lyte put a FOOL on blast
IN A SONG. Again the bass line was all swirley and fast. When I hear it I think of riding downhill on path in the woods, hair blowing, smelling jasmine blossoms.

6. Why You Wanna- TI
What can I say. He killed me with , "give him back his ring/ and his key".
Those two issues are hugely symbolic in a relationship and he hit the nail on the head!

He ends the song with , I got one question, "Is you happy?". Thats that trill right there. Because, if you are not, then it is the perfect segue for a conversation on why TI needs to be given a chance.


Men are interesting in the way they are able to compartmentalize.

BL and I go at it b/c he can separate sh*t out, and put it in categories, whereas I see things as being Super Connected and related.

For instance, when he introduces me to people, I wanna know a little bit about their story jus to get some context. It helps me see how they fit into his relationship web. Wherease he doesn't really see the back story as being relevent.

Another example was a conversation that I had with Gotty about an estimated 40 thousand women being brought to Germany to have sex with World Cup spectators.

Gotty was on some 'ol, I can't do sh*t about it, so why should I trip.
I responded stating that, dude, that is out and out slavery.
And of course it deserves a response, simply because it reflects global societies view of
poor women as available sexual objects.

No one "chooses" to be human sex pods, and if they do, they deserve, health care, 401k's, vacations and childcare. Don't half a$$ it, give it the structure and respect that the "oldest" industry deserves.

Its human trafficing. Its slavery. It does not need to be happening. If it is going to happen, it needs to be monitored, analyzed .

There was no way, upon learning about these women, that I could not connect
their position to the often powerless position that poor women, and poor people as a whole, around the world, have been in.


Apparently Big Pun usta smash his wife's face on the regular. It will be interesting to see HOW MANY MORE women speak up.

Sista's who were in relationships with and had been physically abused by rappers are speaking up. Muy interesante.

Can we call this the Ms. Stepphans affect? (Women in the game that live to tell it, tell it.)

I procured this from

Wow. It is the fourth of July in '06.

I think I ate my weight in watermelon.

I have some Brooklyn, Coney Island, kids throwin' sand stories to tell yall.

How was your fourth?

Sunday, June 25, 2006

The Beauty is in the Bassline.


Yes. Dear friends. This image is BEING SOLD ON T_SHIRTS. Excellent dude!

10 Things That I Have Learned about Myself Since I Have Last Blogged.
1. Failure Can Be Career Defining.
2. Bullies at work, continue to bully because no one has stopped them.
3. It is painful to watch hundreds of Black and Brown People fight eviction, without and attorney, in Housing Court.
4. I really like the Gap Band.
5. You can tell alot about a person based on how they handle a crisis.
6. People Really like to Argue over the word N-GGA.
7. Jay- Z likes to announce concerts that we can't afford.
8. American Apparrel Dresses are really snug and sexy.
9. A diner that me and BL brunch at from time to time was in the Soprano's Grand Finale. Deep Hunh?
10. If a man does not feel like he is making you happy, he will bounce. ____________________

Who innna h-ll is Saalam Remi and is it legal for him take haunting, Queensbridge, doing 80 on the freeway type beats.
The beauty is in the bass line yall.

Peace to for the laink.



Lady gets bucked at for tryning to rid her building of D-Boys.


This dude was posted up in Union Square train station with this. I thought it was very "Berkeley" and decided to take a picture of it. And I dontated a $1.


Washington Post done went ahead an did a whole series on Black Men. It is not as substatitive as I would LIKE for them to use their powerful resources to produce, it certainly is better than that Doom and Gloom Orlando Peterson piece in the NY Times earlier this year.

African American Men: Moments in History from Colonial Times to the Present Colonial Times, 1492-1776

1492: Among the crew on the Santa Maria during Christopher Columbus's voyage to the Americas is Pedro Alonzo NiƱo, a black man. Afri
cans also accompany Ponce de Leon, Hernando Cortes, Francisco Pizarro, Hernando de Soto, and Francisco Vasquez de Coronado in the early 16th century.
1623: William Tucker, the son of indentured servants living in Jamestown, is the first recorded black birth in America.
1625: A census of Virginia counts 11 black men among a population of 1,227.
1641: Mathias De Sousa, a free black man, is elected to the Maryland General Assembly. He had come to the colony as an indentured servant.
1644: Lucas Santomee, a black physician and one of the major landowners in what is to become New York, is granted a tract by the Dutch that stretched from modern-day Greenwich Village to Brooklyn.
1700: About 60 percent of all African Americans in the colonies (16,390) live in Virginia.
1712: Though other colonies had passed laws regulating the behavior of slaves, South Carolina passes a slave code that becomes the standard for slave-owning states. It proscribes escalating punishments for rebellious acts including death for escaping, authorizes whites to punish any slave found violating the law, and prohibits slaves from growing their own crops, working for money or learning to read and write. 1729: In an early precursor to lynchings, Maryland passes a law that mandates savage punishment for slaves accused of violent crimes: decapitation, hanging, or having a body's remains publicly displayed after being drawn and quartered.
This info was, er- procured from



I had to wade through, six or seven paragraphs before the New York Magazine article on Damon Dash got to his conflict with Jay Z. No one ever talks about power dynamics, atleast not in a transparent, constructive way. And finally they did here. Reading is confirmed that men take their friendship losses hard too.

Although Jay-Z had already spent years searching in vain for
a record deal, Dash says he was drawn to him from the outset. “Everybody thought he was too old; they didn’t like the way he dressed: like a Harlem dude. He wore Nike Airs, which everybody called uptowns.” The class distinctions were lost on

nobody. “The Brooklyn cats who were more dominant were known for doing things like gold teeth, much more ghetto,” and they viewed Harlem’s aesthetic as soft.
But Dash saw in Jay-Z a sort of uptown swagger. “I was shocked. Here was a guy with the same aspirations that I had. We wanted to be known for making money.
All we talked about was making money and how to spend it, what the best of everything was and how bad we wanted it.”
“He said, ‘It’s business,’ ” Dash says. “But we were always
supposed to be about more than business, Jay especially.” Dash saw his own role as the executive’s so that Jay-Z could remain an artist at all times. “I did everything I possibly could so that he didn’t have to raise his voice. He just had to whisper something in my ear and I’d take care of it. The people I fought with to make money for him, Lyor Cohen and Kevin Liles”—executives at Def Jam—“he’s made friends with. He hangs out with Puff now. It’s like if your brother leaves you.”
Dame's comment regarding the fact that Jay is now friends with the people that Dame usta negotiate with. It is almost as if Jay is parlayed his intelectual property into leverage for his career and Dame does not feel useful anymore. Men take the breaking up of menships hard too. Sometimes the thing you want the most is the thing that money can't buy, friendship.



So the sandals are out. The two for $12 Old Navy tanks are getting rocked. I got hella competitive playing Taboo in Staten Island (which looked like the Bay, by the way) last night.
Life is good. What's cracking wi'chall?


Saturday, June 17, 2006

Model Minorties Love.Hate.Love Their Fathers.


Our fathers. We wouldn't be here without them right?!?!?! Well. I thought of putting together a post listing books and songs that speak on what it means to be a father. First up. Is Ed Og and the Bull Dogs, be a "Father to your Child".

I got a Uncle who will tell you inna heart beat, that "Be A Father to your Child" is his all time favorite rap song. He is old school. In his heart music needs to have a positive message. While I don't agree 100%, I do understand his reasoning.
Where is Ed OG? Didn't he put out a EP Pete Rock?

Second is RM Harris's series of Books. Now RM is one of those dudes that let you know from jump street that he is writing about the brotha's and that he loves them, the all good AND the all bad.
RM Harris is on some other sh*t now. However his first novels, are written so lovingly about black men, abandonment and trying to hold your family together in face is insurmoun
table obstacles. (Did I just use insurmountable inna sentence? I need to stop going to school).
The next up is. His book Finding Makeba by Alexis D. Pate. Finding Makeba is beautiful. It is about rediscovering your daughter. Thinking that you can live without your her only to learn that she is a essential part of your life.

In a Philadelphia bookstore, African American writer Ben Crestfield asks a young woman for her name so that he can autograph a copy of his first novel for her. When she replies, "Makeba Crestfield," he realizes she's his only child, the daughter he hasn't seen and he left her mother when Makeba was 10. Ben's novel is the thinly disguised story of his marriage to 19-year-old Helen, who was pregnant with Makeba when he was a 22-year-old part-time English major studying on the G.I. Bill in the 1970s, and how the relationship unraveled over the next decade as he tried to be both an artist and a responsible family man, churning out copy at an ad agency to pay the bills.
The next up is, writer who, if I were his friend, I would e-mail him every day and tell him that you need to write about being a Black Male Father, who IS committed to raising his son, who is largely motivated by the fact that his OWN father left him. Maybe I will summon him with this post. Smile.

Samori Maceo-Paul Coates is the big-headed result of my union with Kenyatta Matthews. We met during a mutual stint at Howard University and have been together ever since. Before we met, she had a dim view of men as fathers. Her plan for parenthood was basically: get pregnant by some dude and then conveniently lose him. A father would only complicate things, she thought. When she got pregnant with Samori, I was able to convince her otherwise, but during my time as a dad, I have given my share of evidence to bolster her original view, and today's trip in the rain only promises to add another letter to the file.


On a personal note. I scared the bejesus out of my father last week . I did not call him back and I was going through that 'ish getting grades back and adjusting to a "few" new jobs.
He panicked. It was the first time, since 9/11, that he showed up at my moms front door, first thing in the morning. Real Talk.

Suffice it is to say he got a taste of what it was like to try and contact me, and I was unreachable. Historically, he has been the one who dissapeared on me. He conceeded that, in an ironic twist, he got a taste of it last week. Full disclosure. I did not do it on purpose. In fact,
I never thought of it like that until he brought it up.

It was very comforting for him to concede how panick inducing it is to try and contact your father/daughter, when you know they are going through some 'ish, and you can't reach 'em.


How 'yall spending fathers day blog fam-a-lam? Its hot all-across the country. Summer here. The feet are out!

Blogger is really tryna rock with me yall. I have been trynin' to post this post since Friday. Come on blogger, don't start tynaa front, just when the comments section start poppin off.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Rock music is SMARTER than rap.


Ummm. Yall ever peep how Tina's I Can't Stand the Rain, is the Grandfather of all Neptunes beats. Think about how spare the drum is, and those forshawdowy 80's keyboards. For some reason that song popped in my head last week and it has not let go. You can tell that when she was in the studio, she got on her knees singing" Can't stand, stand, stand, tha RA HAAAAIN". Speaking of Tina. Can I rock like that in my 60's. Damn. Black REALLY DON'T crack.


There is a comment by Eric Nord in the post section over at Hip Hop-blogs that lit a fire in my n*rrow a$$. Peep it below:

Let's face it, hip hop has become focused on selling macho-ness. It is now an alpha male enterprise. "Conscious" isn't macho.
Compare rap with rock. Rock has its fair share of macho-ness. But it has a place for non-macho stuff too.[Yes, there is a balance in Rock that is not in rap. In fact there is a balance of how white folks are represented in the Media as a whole, where there is an IMBALANCE of how non-white folks are portrayed. For instance, for a "black movie" to come out there has got to be a whole lotta coon factor. Dancin, smiling, shuckin' and jivin. I enjoy happy darkies as much as the next, but stories that reflect the range and depth of the brown experience is not coming to the silver screen or even tv frequently if at all. Perhaps HBO/Showtime will try, but they don't get it right all the time either. And don't even start with how my other MM's (Latinos, Asians, Muslims) are presented by Hollywood]. In the rock market, there is audience for both macho and sensitive (often combined) and even artsy. But in the rap world, it's pretty much 99% macho. [This goes to my point that unless you are in control of your image and how the will be used, the money is ONLY short term pay-off].

Whites have always been the primary consumer of Black music, but I think the relationship has changed. Black men are now free to make macho music and white people will buy it. We can go into the reasons for that, but that's a side discussion.
Back in the 1960s, there was simply a much bigger audience for
non-macho music.
[I think this lets music listeners off a little bit too easy. I think that people can be smarter than this. But sex and violence is sooooo seductive. Who can beat it?]
And also I think black men were also more receptive to non-macho music. I mean, how many old school artists are like "Yo, I love the new beats... but can't take these aggressive (read: mac
ho) lyrics." [I don't have anything to say to this. I think that I have to process it a little bit more.]

In short, I think there is an attempt to equate black maleness with being insanely macho [re: a hypersexual, hyperviolent idiot who is only capable of singing a song or carrying a ball provided he can stay away from the 'roids]. and I think black people and white people buy into without realizing what a bunch of idiots they are. Green Day might call them American Idiots. On that

how the eff did white people become the most prominent voice of political consciousness?????????
That is a good a$$ed question. Y'all tell me.



When was the last time you read a book and knew that you would HAVE to read it again? Or at least buy it. Not since Danyels or Nichell's have I
known that I needed to own my own personal copy of a book. I grew up using libraries, so if I come outta pocket for your jawn, it is special to me. That is how I felt while reading Martha Southgate's "Third Girl from the Left".

In the first 20 pages she tackles, the Tulsa Riots and the burning/murdering/genocide of Black Wall Street, Blaxsploitation Films, Class Mobility, The Playboy Mansion and sex in the 70's.

It has been a long time that a novel required me to read it with an index card and pen handy because I knew that at any moment, I would have to reocrd something because it was so beautiful.



How this n*igga Randall Kennedy gon' testify that the "N" word is used by NON Black kids all the time, and consequently, supports the inference that Minucci did not commit a hate crime. F*ck outta here ock.

If you are a white dude with a bat and you tell a n*gga, what up n*igga, you have clearly declared that you are FOE not friend fam.

Mr. Minucci's lawyer, Albert Gaudelli, said he hoped Professor Kennedy's testimony would convince the jury that the mere use of the epithet did not constitute racism. On the stand yesterday, Professor Kennedy's explanation of the modern usage of the word seemed to support Mr. Gaudelli's claim.

"The word is a complex word," he testified. "It has many meanings."Professor Kennedy had just taken the stand in a packed courtroom and rattled off his impressive credentials — which include attending Princeton, Oxford and Yale, a clerkship for Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall and his membership in the Bar of the Supreme Court.

He said the epithet was "a word that can be put to many different uses," ranging from a pejorative term to a friendly salutation.Mr. Gaudelli asked Professor Kennedy, who is black, about his
book on the subject.

"My second book is entitled, 'Nigger: The Strange Career
of a Troublesome Word,' " the professor responded. Mr. Gaudelli handed him a copy of the book, and had it entered into the case as Exhibit W.

In the cross-examination, Mariela Herring, a Queens prosecutor, asked Mr. Kennedy, "Are you here to tell us the "n" word is no longer a derogatory term?" She then asked more directly, "Is it a derogatory term?" Professor Kennedy responded, "It can be."

They called it unfair that Mr. Minucci, who they said grew up in the ethnically diverse neighborhood of Lindenwood and had many black friends, could face up to 25 years simply for confronting [in his skull with a bat], who admitted to a history of violence and criminal encounters, and to hoping to steal a car that night. [He hangs out with negros, how could he ever beat one. Right, ock].
Oh. The dope thinkers at Biochemical Slang, which allways represents lovely, has a great take on the Minucchi case.

Black boys up to no good in the wrong neighborhood. White vigilante with a bat makes a sound like "Barry Bonds." Minucci, with racially motivated crimes on his record, is arrested.

Case closed.

But, this guy is part of the new Howard Beach.

Racism, that's an
autosomal recessive trait. We wear G-Unit, Sean John, and bump Snoop D-O-double G in our $60,000 Escalade. DWU. That's Driving while unemployed. "What up, nigg__?" (that's Howard Beach talk, it means I am protecting the neighborhood).
This wasn't a hate crime.
This was a white kid that grew up near the projects, with Hot 97. He's got Black friends, too.

Question for juror # 12: "Do you listen to rap music?" Then you must be familiar with the new and improved n-word. They use it amongst themselves, he grew up around them. He's a product of his environment.

Lawyers are geniuses. The original hustlers. They'll sell you ice in the winter.[ Hey hey hey now. Thats what they get paid to do now. Hate the game. Hate the game]. He spells it nigg_, not nigg__. He fell on
his head. Minucci loves Black people. Look, he's reading a Randall Kennedy book, and he's a Black Harvard professor.

Yeah. I jacked they post. Couldn't help myself.


Umm. Oakland Spanked them Yankies. Thatiswhatiamtalkingabout!


So 'yall, I ain't go all Wil E. Coyote with the post. I kept it nice and light. I guess my version of lite at least. So the sun was out today. But it was hella windy. Dude. And I ask again. Where is summer? Anybody go to the Rhino show? It was so overcast and gray, I am glad I did not buy tix. It would have been nice to see The R. though.


What if Rakim had the Internet?


If Rakim had the internet in 1990 Hip Hop would arguably be different. I think that people like us, who adore music from the back pack, boom bap era would have a constant cycle of music to listen to and tours to attend.

Think about it. The problem isn't Hot 97 or KMEL. The problem is how a few artists are played over and over again and how their artistic range is tied to Universal Music's shareholders dividends *[more on this in the next post].

If Rakim had the internet in 1990 perhaps:

1. Eric B could have e-mailed beats to Rass Kass.

2. We would have an online distribution network of emcees and artist.

3. You Tube in 1990 would have circumvented the power of MTV. N*ggas could just put their videos up on YouTube.

4. VIBE arguably would not have been as powerful, as there would be OTHER sources to get hip hop from and consequently Biggie and Pac would not have been murdered. Nah. That prolly would have happened. With Rapcointelpro and all:(

5. Doom woulda been doing jawns with Del and Souls of Mischief.


That you are getting paid for your images does not make you powerful. That is my argument regarding the popularity of Buffie the Body. But I think that it can be extended to hip hop also. Getting paid is one thing. Being in control of your images is another.



Nahright has the Jay-Z HP commercial. I don't know how I feel about it. Watch it and tell me what you think.



I have been away blog family. I missed 'yall. How do you think HH would be different today if Rakim had the internet in 1990?



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