Archive for June, 2009

Philly Is Still Rocking Truck Jewels…

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009


^ Good looks to my boy VEe Nice on the P-Shop

A few weeks a go I found myself in Philadelphia for the Roots picnic. While in town I decided to get around like I used to back in the day when the fam was posted up at Temple U. Philly is kind of ill in the sense that it hasn’t changed too much since the early 90’s. There’s gentrification going on just like in every city but Philly still retains that Detroit like realness throughout.

I took the subway to the northside and it was still the subway going to the northside. Blunt guts were underfoot as if putting them in the garbagecan was never even part of the ritual. Some dude asking for change on the train looked like he needed a lot more than change. When I came from underground I still recognized Cecil B. Moore as the strip. This is where we used to post up back in the days of the Philly Greek Picnic. The Temple U. auditorium would host the step show and me and the fellas would stand outside waiting for the blowout to get our sidewalk pimpin’ on.

Temple has done some rebuilding in the area but the strip is still the strip. I was making my way to a well known record store sandwiched in the middle of a pizza spot, a chinese restaurant and a barber shop. One of those record shops that managed to stay in business by selling CDs, DVDs, magazines and video games. Definitely legit, and definitely hard working. Phenomenal Records also maintains a recording studio in the rear of the shop that helps them pay their bills as well. This is where I met up with one of the Jamboys. A newly minted supergroup consisting of Black Thought, Malik B, Peedi Crackk, Dice Raw and Truck North. I think you can look at them as the Slaughterhouse 5 out of Philly.

Truck North invited me to a listening session of his new mixtape titled ‘Truck Jewels’. I was anxious to hear what Truck was working on since I have been really getting to experience his rhymes at the Roots weekly Jam Session here in New York City. Between Truck and Dice Raw they have been able to complement, and occasionally supplement Black Thought on the microphone. Let’s be clear though and note that Black Thought is in the Top5 D.O.A. (no Jay-Z). The Truck Jewels mixtape is available here for your review.

Truck North represents the Philadelphia ethos to the fullest. This is a town known for their blue collar work ethic in everything they do. The Roots have been known to put in retarded hours and I even know a couple of people that work here in NYC and commute from Philly and other parts of Pennsylvania. This is the story of the grind that never ceases that Truck North rhymes about in the track called ‘The Never Ending Flip’.

Here’s a hard track called ‘D.Y.B.’ Rock rap ain’t dead either, it’s just been waiting for real emcees to get on the mic. I’m gonna holla at Sean P to see if I can get him and Truck on track together. That shit would be hardbody deluxe.

My favorite track on the mixtape is this joint called ‘Sucka Nigga 09’ produced by ?uestlove. This shit has the knock and the flow that I fux with. It reminds me of something Dilla would produce.

You know a Roots affiliate project wouldn’t be certified without some love shown to Dilla. DJ Bear One definitely plotted out some Dilla music with this track called ‘Trapped Maybe’. The Gil Scot-Heron sample is so real. ‘Trapped Maybe’ is so Hip-Hop. Listen to this joint a couple of times. The art of storytelling ain’t dead in rap. It’s just waiting for a real emcee to grab a hold of the microphone.

The Truck Jewels mixtape didn’t disappoint me and I’m ready to hear some more work from Truck North and Bear One. Philly rappers aren’t done yet. They never left actually. They just been waiting for y’all to be like a tomato and catch up.

The Loudest Moment Of Silence…

Monday, June 29th, 2009

mj motown

I didn’t watch the B.E.T. awards last night because I was on some protest of their programming. The truth is that I don’t have a cable or satellite account so I can’t watch anything on my television set, except for Star Wars movies and the DVD pr0n flicks my homegirl from Twitter sent me (shouts to @Diorcat).

Television is a fucking wasteland anyhoo. I get everything I want to consume via internets anyhoo so I don’t feel like I am missing anything. I certainly don’t think I would have been impressed by B.E.T.’s tribute to Michael Jackson. That shit would have needed to have Stevie Wonder, Patti LaBelle and the boss, Diana Ross on the hook. We all know that B.E.T. doesn’t have the caché (swag) to pull that shit off. This awards show is the network’s single biggest budget production. It’s cardboard behind the performers.

How are you doing to honor Michael Jackson properly without some reedonkey presentation? His brothers have to be involved, definitely Janet, but crazy ass LaToya, not so much. That is why I can’t fux with B.E.T. Shit is LaToya to MTV’s Janet. Vh-1 is Rebbie. Don’t sleep on Rebbie though, shge did have that hit ‘Centipede’. I’m glad that some of y’all enjoyed the B.E.T. awards. That way I know that we still have enough people to fill the country’s permanent underclass.

The general consensus that I gathered from Twitter is that Jay-Z has gotten his swag back by adding Drake-like hand moves to his stage presentation. That’s funny because what I have seen of Drake reminds me of how KanYe performs, but less energetic. So if Jay-Z is performing like a Drake stan then he must look like a really watered down KanYe West. I don’t know if any of you have been paying attention, but for the last few years Jay-Z has been jocking KanYe West swag from hairstyles, eyeglass frames to guest features on his albums. Someone is brodying their little brother no?

I just watched the Death Of Autotune video and I like the slick look. I like the smile that Jay-Z puts on when Harvey Keitel walks up to him. Even though D.O.A. isn’t for smiling how could you not smile when you are hanging with the ‘Bad Lieutenant’? Have you seen that film yet? Harvey Keitel plays a police so corrupt he makes Denzel Washington’s ‘Training Day’ character look like a saint. Great movie. Michael Jackson used to make these epic videos that were filled with a narrative of intrigue and spectacle. Anyone notice Lyor Cohen at the video clips intro opening the car door for Jay-Z? That should’a been you Dame Dash.

The story bubbling in the cut is how the Jackson family wanted Chris Brown to perform in the tribute but Jay-Z blocked that move. I personally don’t believe that Jay-Z has that kind of power behind the scenes on shit that doesn’t directly involve him and what the fuck does Jay-Z care about Chris Brown. I mean. lets get serious, Rihanna has been passed around so much that he can’t be in love with that thing. Meanwhile we have never seen BeYonce nekkid in the media except for that time in Elle (and I have a copy of that).

The overall truth that should have been apparent at the B.E.T. awards is that we are experiencing a dearth of talent within musical entertainment. There was a time when singers could really sing. They could act too. Singers now are more like models who are only built for still image shots. There’s cardboard behind these motherfuckers. These fools NEED autotune. R.I.P. to Michael Jackson for the rest of 2009 in my opinion. Listen to this studio track of Michael doing ‘Workin’ Day-N-Nite’ and tell me who in the game is capable of putting it down like this?



Monday, June 29th, 2009


BERNIE MADOFF is about to go to the same Caribbean island where MICHAEL JACKSON and KENNETH LAY are chilling.

Who wants to bet that 2Pac is a waiter there and B.I.G. is the janitor?

Big Boi Pimp Slaps NYC…

Saturday, June 27th, 2009

af1 crocs

My bosses here at Harris let me breathe slightly because they know I am getting up there in years and I can’t trot around like the faster horses, plus I usually binge on alcohol right after I cash their paycheck.

Hood Rich nigger!!!

In another week I’ll be back in eating my sardines and tunameats straight from the can again. I’ve been running around the city going to concerts, discussing Spike Lee’s legacy as a forum paneist, and getting fucked the fuck up. Mostly the latter. I used my Harris Publications credentials to get into the Sneaker Pimps exhibition concert last night in New York City. XXL magazine wasn’t a sponsor for the event but our sister, or brother [ll] publication Antenna was on the flyer.

I’ve said this before but Antenna mag is the most Hip-Hop magazine still in print. XXL is more like Tiger Beat with big booty broads. XXL needs to grow the fuck up and flash me an areola to let me know they are out there. I love getting my copy of XXL every month. Along with my Eastbay catalog. Anything else in the mailbox is a fucking bill party people. Occasionally, my peoples from send me some shit too. When my Antenna mag comes through I get amped.

This shit is for the dude that is 25 and does his thing. They had a feature on propane BBQ grills. Hells fucking yeah! Antenna doesn’t play around with their features playboy. They highlight the motherfuckers making moves in our generational culture for shit like sneakers, streetwear, extreme sports, techware and whatever else is relevant to how grown folks keep it fly and flashy.

Sidebar: I just took out some time to get into the latest issue of XXL and I apologize for the slight. Even though there isn’t an article about a gas grill there are some dope features in the issue. The Mos Def feature is good and so is the article on dance rap in the south. XXL is still the shit we all need for the culture to continue to spread. Even if I feel like its sometimes diluted.

So back to the matter at hand which was the Sneaker Pimps event. At a past event held in Atlanta Big Boi became the butt of jokes because he wore a pair of Air Jordan shoes that had not been produced by Nike authentically. The truth is that any collector of athletic shoes will have acquired a counterfeit pair at some point because they are accessible and in some cases they are very well made.

Big Boi’s kicks were 100 at this event and his performance was also legit. I’ve never seen Big Boi live until I saw him perform at the Hip-Hop Honors awards show and that wasn’t his material he was performing. His set was dope and I thought that maybe I’ve been hard on ranking he and Andre 3K as one of the all time duos. Red & Meth still > tho’.

After Big Boi the Clipse came out immediately with no delay to the thunderous thump of ‘Grinding’. Clipse are good rappers and they always kill at the Sneaker Pimps shows. As a matter of fact, Clipse call themselves the GOAT duo. We all know this isn’t the case except in the area of stunt rap. Clipse are the pushers that spend they whole grip stuntin’ and just re-up the next day. Too bad this was a short set of theirs and no one from the Re-Up gang came out. The Clipse still killed it though. I didn’t get to see what kicks they were wearing but the Clipse swag is usually at or near 100.

That is what Sneaker Pimps is about in general but I didn’t represent too hardbody on my Polo steez. That was my fail. Its not like Sneaker Pimps happens every month because it doesn’t. The next time I go to an event like this which is basically for stunting in the culture (a necessary thing) I will make sure I have stepped up my game. It’s not like I’m not holding heat either, even for the fat man sizes I have some heatrocks. Plus I do have the ‘Heat Rox’.

Internets! Fux with Sneaker Fiends Unite!

Long Live The King…

Friday, June 26th, 2009


Death is the only thing that we can’t reconcile with philosophy.

It is final and complete in its judgement.

Death ends the story forevermore.

My only advice is to read the book again.

To celebrate the lives of the loved ones we have lost.

Peace to JaiSlayer who sent me a message this week that his mother has passed away. J went through the fire to become the man, husband, and father that he is today. His mom got to see that transformation. I know that J will have a hard time processing his loss. The rush of emotion is so overwhelming. My heart goes out to him and his brother Jayson.

Peace to all the old Earths and the old Gods.

MICHAEL JACKSON’s death is numbing to me. I still haven’t even really heard the news yet. I still haven’t gotten the word. Maybe he is just on tour in some crazy place like Abu Dabi, or maybe he is visiting the U.S. space station? In some sort of sad prescience the Brooklyn Academy of Music is having an all night dance party and movie marathon featuring flicks like Friday, Mahoghany, Saturday Night Fever, Top Gun and The Wiz.

I’m going to take Chocolate Snowflake out Saturday night so we can enjoy The Wiz and get our dance on. If you are in Crooklyn you might could want to fall through BAM. Do like me and bring yourself a flask of whatever water you like to imbibe and celebrate the memory of a giant musical genius. The great thing about a movie theater is that in the dark you can cry without anyone noticing. Or you can cry in communion with others. I prefer the latter.

Beat It


Don’t Stop ‘Til U Get Enuff

Remember The Time

The Girl Is Mine featuring Paul McCartney

Say, Say, Say featuring Paul McCartney

Liberian Girl


Human Nature

Baby B Mine

U Rock My World

Workin’ Day-N-Nite

Billie Jean

OMG Internets Celeb Billy X. Sunday Bonus Beats

I told you this man was a genius. Listen to his ad-libs and melodies for Billie Jean. Incredible!

Billie Jean – A Cappella

Billie Jean – (studio demo session)

Aww Ish The DJ J.Period MJ Mixtape Tribute

^ Click the text above, its really a hyperlnk