March 24, 2011

DITC Interview

I can't remember the last time I saw an interview with a hip hop collective where every member spoke out.  Normally it's one or two predominant members speaking on behalf of the collective, and leaving you with the distinct feeling that their views are slightly biased or that someone didn't really get a mention.  Not here.

This interview tracks down each member and reflects on what they are currently doing, their DITC history and they each pay tribute to Big L.  It's an interesting insight into what has probably been the most consistent collective of MC's and producers in the last 20 years.

March 20, 2011

The Bomb dropped.............and then nothing.

I don't know what to say here really. The trajectory of this mans career, despite strong hopes to the contrary, has followed that of an eighty year olds erection. Crude you might be saying Randy, crude. But i have no doubt that the octogenarians limpness was brought on by watching one of the Aks amatuer porn productions married to a jarring set of noises he would later controversially call tracks.

It wasn't always like this though, the first album, (whilst admittedly providing more than a hint of where he might journey next, it was charmingly entitled "Vagina Diner') was a fierce piece of wax. Akinyele could really rhyme. Whilst many of his contemporaries became embroiled in losing battles with passing fads or styles, The Yak had realised that his booming voice, married to a flow that journeyed into interesting stories or wordplay that didn't ever feel forced or studied, would be more than enough. Head nodding poetry seemed to come naturally to this lyricist, and he had a charisma both on the microphone and video, which always gave me confidence that the people who dismissed hip hop as a gimmick, where missing out. Really missing out.

The boards for Vagina Diner were manned by the Head of Beat Making Classics, The Large Professor, and it made for a potent combination. Extra P, perhaps sensing that it was Akinyele's verses that would be the stars of the show, kept things minimal, with a bassline often the only hook. Their understanding saw a classic album emerge, and today it is very tricky to acquire without handing some reputationally questionable dude on Amazon £90 for the privilege of him creating an unlikely tale of non delivery, crucially involving your proof of posting certificate.

I would love to know what the great Professor thinks of his student, as they didn't work again together to the best of my knowledge and i can't help thinking we're the poorer for it.

Anyway enough of my unread ramblings, please check the link below for a genuine hip hop classic with a truly gifted duo in the mix.

March 16, 2011

Nate Dogg - RIP

Nathaniel Hale aka Nate Dogg is the latest in a long line of people to leave the world of hip hop at a young age, he was 41 years old.  Thankfully there aren't any tales of guns, drugs or beefs etc to accompany this sad news, it appears that he died from problems relating to his health which had been deteriorating in recent years following several strokes.  No further details are available at this time, but it seems only right to take a minute to remember some of Nate Dogg's contributions to hip hop.

He was a contributor to Dr Dre's 1992 classic The Chronic, he had the hit single Regulate with his partner Warren G and he helped to launch Mark Ronson's mainstream career by lending his catchy vocals to the track Ooh Wee.  Despite pursuing solo projects, Nate will surely be remembered most for his distinct and infectious choruses that seemed to turn mediocre melodies into chart hits. Let's face it, you didn't need to see the credits to know that Nate was singing on the track.

Nate Dogg - August 19, 1969 – March 15, 2011

March 13, 2011

The Greatest Man Alive.

Anybody who has had the misfortune to read my previous posts (no mocking please, i'm sure there is something wrong with the hit counter) knows i am obviously not self referencing. No, that would be The Greatest Blogger Alive!!

Moving swiftly on, and i really couldn't blame you if it were to another blog, i have often noticed that when people are discussing their favourite, or even the greatest MC's of all time, 3xDopes EST never seems to be mentioned, and i cannot mo fo understand why. Granted he had set the bar ambitiously high when they released 'The Greatest Man Alive', but even if he falls short of this heady target, trailing narrowly behind Charlie Sheen obviously, then he was certainly close. Expansive diction, smooth yet distinctive delivery and some quite incredible jumpers, made the group a memorable sight.

The video linked to below is from their classic first album that contained some fantastic material, sadly record label issues saw them release a second album, that whilst enjoyable, was a collection they were later to admit, was far more commercial than they would have liked. Predictably it didn't do as well as was hoped, and from 1990 onwards they seemed to disappear from the scene, only to release a 3rd album in 1999 entitled 'The Sequel 3' without warning, and apparently, publicity, marketing strategy or melody!

Please check the link below to appreciate a great M.C. at the peak of his powers backed ably by Chuck Nice and Woody Wood.

March 11, 2011

Mad C - 700 Wall

700 Wall - Final Update from Molotow on Vimeo.
Thanks to Battlechasers for the nod on this one.  This is one of the craziest graffiti pieces I've ever seen.  German graffiti artist Mad C spent most of 2010 painting a single wall in what is probably the biggest graffiti project ever undertaken by a solo artist.  In her own words she says:

"I used 1489 cans; 158 different colours; 600+ caps; 3 different kind of caps, 100 liters primer; 140 liters exterior paint; painted at temperatures from +2C° to +38C° in sunshine, rain, storm, day and night; painted my biggest and smallest piece so far and overall painted my name far more than 100 times on this wall."

When you watch the video you'll start to appreciate what an undertaking this was.  I strongly recommend that you play this in full screen mode and choose some good points to hit the pause button to fully appreciate the detail in her work.  Alternatively, head over to the links below and see some photos of the wall in more detail.

March 4, 2011

Public Enemy Live 1988

Following on from the MC Duke post a couple of months ago, here is another clip from the TV programme Behind the Beat that used to air on BBC2 (UK only).  This time it's a live show from Public Enemy performing My Uzi Weighs a Ton.  This was originally shown in 1988 and is a rare clip, so I hope you enjoy it. 

I've seen Public Enemy perform live numerous times over the last 20 or so years, but it was these earlier shows that had a level of energy that I think was unique to that era.  In the late 80's and early 90's PE were probably the only group that put on a proper stage show and blew their audiences away.  Flavour would be jumping off 15ft high speakers, the SW1's were doing their routines and Chuck was bouncing all over the place without ever losing a breathe, they were incredible.

Don't miss the download link at the bottom of this post if you want a copy for keeps.

Download Link (Hotfile - 27mb)