Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Point of no return



Last year, Detroit City, home of Super Bowl XXX-tra Large embraced it's heritage as the home of Robocop, Jerome Bettis, Motown and the most balls-out urban decay this side of Ohio. Sure, there was a little shame around the edges, but fuck it, Detroit wasn't apologizing to nobody, ya heard?! When you're in Deeetroit (Basketball!) you just have to get dystopian with it or you're gonna get your ass beat. As a resident of Philadelphia, I can completely understand this attitude. Go with what you know and represent yourself with no shame.

So why is it that Miami hasn't dialed up its true Zeitgeists to be the honorary MCs for Super Bowl week? They've got that drunk Nassau County trainwreck Billy Joel and Prince, who has a very Miami flair but reps Minnesota. Who should be on board for this week's festivities?

National Anthem



Uncle Luke. This kind of goes without saying (Sayin). Splack Pack to provide the hydraulic 64 with girls in daisy dukes flying off the hood everytime it jumps. "Don't stop, pop that coochie, let me see you wave that flag!" Eat your heart out Jeff Weiss.

In-Demand Party Figure



Tony Montana. This could be a boon for all South Florida based airbrush artists. Think about the possibility of getting an airbrushed shirt of Scarface in an all new pose that you can choose!!! Besides, it's gonna take a lot of llello to keep those celebrity parties going. But let KSK remind you, the Bengals are not playing this weekend.

Motelier



Rick Ross. If you're like me, and you're holding your pursestrings a little tight, you might be hurtin in the wallet after you rent your obligatory BMW 745 for that Miami white-on-white look. Hotels don't come cheap, but see my man Rawssss. He in room 222. Did I mention he the Bawssss? Ricky is a good fall-back if Tony Montana can't come to your party.

Security



Crockett and Tubbs.
The OG, not that Colin Farrell bullshit. Basically, Crockett and Tubbs will keep shit safe for you, but there's a good chance that doing so may mean gunfire in the stadium or on the field at some point during the Super Bowl game.

Halftime Show



Debbie Deb, Expose, Freestyle, Nice N Wild. Have you ever wanted to hear "Don't Stop the Rock" at a party but you don't want to go to Jersey? Put on some leopard print and touch up your fade. Jim Nantz will have no fucking clue what's going on after he sees special guest Jellybean Benitez do a bump of yay off Debbie Deb's decrepit nipple on national TV.

Elian



I dunno. Why was everybody all flipped out about this again?

In-the-know Miami party



The U Football Party. This is crucial right here, because these guys are the national ambassadors for Miami culture. Let's get Mike Irvin, Ray Lewis, J. Shockey, Edgerrin James, Warren Sapp, Kellen Winslow, Clinton Portis and Donna Shalala together, put our cammo on, throw on the Tootsie Roll and get fuckin' rediculous, nahmean? Shit, party with Clinton Portis?!

Other recommended activities:



-Find Dennis Farina, punch him in his face
-Carjack somebody
-Hire Hank Azaria to be your Guatamalan man-servant (That's for you Tony Dungy)
-Buy a white blazer and pastel shirt
-See if you can figure out what happened to half the people from Sunnyview Records
-Prank call a pet detective
-Drive a fastboat to Cuba for a mohito, have sex with an Asian druglord
-Rush Rush
-Ride the child molester beat with Shaq

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disco bat-nose



wild times round herre. last weekend there was the OG P-Yinz party with them Broadzilla kids, but I didn't really get any good flix. I'll put em up anyways, but they're lackluster. stay tuned.

last wednesday I went and saw Clipse at the Bowery Ballroom. last time I saw them dudes, I wrote about how they were confused but invigorated by their hipster fanbase, and excited to see so many fans they probably didn't know they had. now, with the single and the album (and the inevitable backlash), they're back to just-some-dudes-rappin status. they brought out Roscoe P. Coldchain for "Chinese New Year" and dude was rockin an airbrushed Curtis Mayfield shirt. Pusha's chain was so icy I couldn't read it. I had a good deal of that motherfuckin Henny in me, so sorry if the recap is blurry.

a couple months removed from Hell Hath No Fury, I still think the album is damn good, but "Aint'cha" and "Ridin Around Shinin" are still the best jams on there, and I'd buy a Re-Up Gang full-length without hearing it.

after the Clipse show, I stumbled to the Mercury Lounge for Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. I don't think I'm their target audience.

--
-The Times on Barbaro
unfortunately this isn't just "HE WAS A FUCKING HORSE, GET OVER IT" in 50 pt. font.

-Wiley retires because there's no money in grime.
I guess this is a logical extension of the before-I-had-a-deal-I-three-wheeled-hundred-spokes mentality of the hustler-ternt-rapper or something, but this kind of sucks.

-Billy Dee Williams to appear on Lost 3.14
"This Soul-Glo was here before we were even on the island!"

-Techdirt rethinks the RIAA.
Dude's been killin it with his series of posts on the economics of the music industry's downfall.

-3xWes on Z-Trip
...who will be at Studio B on Saturday.

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Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Take your helmet off, show your...



Super Bowl Media day is like the Las Vegas of days, if you're a football player and you experience time as more of a spatial dimension. There are highs and lows and stupid things and funny things and Gilbert Gottfried and odd questions from undercover marketers from Irish Spring.

But what would WE ask?


Tony Dungy
What's it feel like to be the first black head coach to look like Herm Edwards?

Lovie Smith
If I told you i know how to make a spear pit out of the toilet stall at the Chicago Sun-Times, would you ask me how?

Dallas Clark
Who the fuck made up your name?

Robbie Gould
Do you think your Dad went to his grave troubled by unresolved questions he had regarding the explosive post-Pleiocene speciation? What do you think about before a big kick?

Marvin Harrison
How did you avoid being a locker room cancer when you played with Donovan McNabb at Syracuse?

Rex Grossman
My grandma once told me "glat kosher is bullshit." Is that true?



Joseph Addai
What's your favorite gang from the Warriors?

Tank Johnson
Is it a misnomer to call a car an "Isuzu Jeep?"

Jeff Saturday
What was it like recording with DJ Drama?

Cedric Benson
How much money do you get every time I hear "Breezin'" in the supermarket?

Nick Harper

Do you think that your relationship with Ben Roethlisberger bears a lot of parallels to the Mexican indie film Amores Perros, only with motorcycles instead of cars and no dog fighting?



Ricky Manning Jr.
Now that you're in the Super Bowl, you think they'll stop referring to you as just "Ricky Manning's kid?"

Ben Utecht
As the son of an art-supplies magnate, did you ever consider going into the family business instead of risking it in football?

Muhsin Muhammad
How has it been reconnecting with your Polish heritage in Chicago?

Jim Irsay
Could you comment on the significance of your father dying before Art Modell?

Brian Urlacher

You used to run in some pretty crazy circles. Does the phrase "baby rat" mean anything to you?

Peyton Manning
So how long have you been a black quarterback?

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Hood so hard

People forget that Youngstown, Ohio is one of the gulliest cities in the country, even though Mo Clarrett isn't walking the streets. Ever since Lordstown GM assembly plant shut down (which I remember driving by on my way from Pittsburgh to Detroit as a kid), it's been tough(er) times. With Cleveland, Cinci and Youngstown all in the top 20 of gully burgs, it falls to Ray Cash and Fat Al to lift their people (Ohioans) out of the darkness.

[Post-Gazette: 4 murdered in Youngstown]
[CBS News: Gully cities, 2006]
[Ray Cash myspace]
[Fat Al myspace]
[Fat Al ft. Lil Wayne- Done Came Down (radio, zshare)]

P.S. Since when did Lil' Wayne get on some Fat Al shit? Turnpike represent.

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Monday, January 29, 2007

He owe me a hundred favors



There's mad internets out there:

-John Amato of Crooks and Liars has been monitoring John "The Great Moderate Father Whose Shit Don't Stink" McCain's cow-tow to the right in preparation for another White House run. Now, homeboy Cliff Schecter is getting his nose dirty, starting up therealmccain.com and calling McCain out on voting to abolish the federal minimum wage, his support of the escalation and other misdeeds.

-This is kind of an old piece of news, but peep the Slate interviews with former CIA spy, Che Guevara hunter and Watergate mastermind E. Howard Hunt, who died last week. This guy was absolutely ruthless and amoral. My favorite quote:
Slate: What led you to leave the CIA?

Hunt: I found out the CIA was just infested with Democrats. I retired in '70. I got out as soon as I could.
Nixon is dead, long live Nixon!

-Helmet for your dog (or guinea pig!).

-Harp Magazine's artist favorites list is kind of weirding me out. If you know me, it's no secret that I am a friend of several members of Dr. Dog, but seeing their list above Beck's list isn't the strange part, it's seeing them on Beck's list... along with SpankRock and GirlTalk. Don't get me fucking started about GirlTalk (no offense to Tech Support Andy, who used to be in Joy Stick with the dude back in Pittsburgh), but Jesus man, that list just doesn't even make sense. I guess that's why Beck is Beck. (seen via philebrity)

P.S. Peep Zach in that photo, looking for the best spot to sell newspapers. Extra! Extra! Gehrig hits two! Extra! Extra! Read All About It!



-Strip club cookie monster set Ying Yang twins is once again blurring the lines of good/bad taste and funny/not funny (pending the clean version). The new track- Jigglin, as in "Ass get to jigglin, motherfuckin' wigglin'."

"Jigglin (Dirty)" (zshare via Different Kitchen)

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Buckle ya kneez



As John Lennon said:
Love Hyphy is real , real is love hyphy
Love Hyphy is feeling , feeling love hyphy
Love Hyphy is wanting to be loved hyphy
Now gas, brake, dip
It seems useless for me to explain our company line on Hyphy when Noixe Skinny already did so in an incomparable overview of the genre he did over at popmatters.com as part his review of the Hyphy Hitz comp. An excerpt is included below:
But between new words and new styles, northern Cali has always been a hotbed of innovation, but with little or no recognition. Maybe that’s why the hyphy movement feels less like a real scene and more like a marketing strategy, like E-40, San Quinn and Mistah F.A.B. had a symposium at the Fairfield Mall to decide on the trends that would dictate the next few years in the region. It’s possible they just put some ideas in a hat and went with the first 15 or so; how the hell else do you end up defining the wave of the future by dancing on top of your car wearing novelty oversized sunglasses and gold fronts? Hyphy definately has a sound—fast and clubby, built on synth licks—but it’s mostly about a littany of catchphrases. You can turn any verse into a hyphy magic by mentioning your scraper, stunner shades and/or going dumb. Yadadadamean?
Indeed. I've been having a hard time getting any hyphy outside of "Tell Me When to Go," "18 Dummy" and "Vans" to flow in my warm-up 105-115 BPM sets without shit completely putting the clamps on the vibe. One particularly conspicuous culprit, and perhaps quintessential opus by the Hyphy zeitgeist Mistah F.A.B. is "Ghost Ride It," which just came out in video form (as seen through Nation of Thizzlam and Still Listen to Gangsta Music:



As an aside, can anybody confirm that "Ghost Ride It" samples the Ray Parker Jr. Ghostbusters Theme and not "PopMuzik" by M AKA Robin Scott? I think Scott sued RPJ over the extreme similarities between the two.

Perhaps the surest sign Hyphy is either achieving a certain amount of acceptance or undergoing the transformation into an established stylistic base is Scweez's "Dumb Love" - an extended analogy comparing sex and various Hyphy behaviors (not including the oft-debated 19th element of Hyphy, "partying with E-40 in a Jabba The Hutt-stylee"). So Many Shrimp's Sergdun marvels at the heavy dumb petting and Beer and Rap provides an mp3. For me, two words come to mind: Power. Ballad. Sayin.

So, in conclusion, dumb dumb retarded spongebob gas brake stunna shades. Ghostride 1800 yellow bus.

P.S. The photo at the top comes from bayareakicks.com, which contains the following phrase: "The original thought of creating these [Spongebob] Rare Jordans was looked down upon by both Spongebob and Jordan Shoes lovers."

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Thursday, January 25, 2007

File under: people who ought to find themselves alone in an uncomfortable situation



This post has nothing to do with our "Is this racist" series, because the following is unequivocally, really motherfuckin racist:

From Nation of Millions:

The president of the Tarleton State University chapter of the NAACP said Wednesday that he and other students are upset about a Martin Luther King Day party where students ate fried chicken, drank malt liquor and dressed in faux gang apparel.


See the shameful pictures here.

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Contraband hollow apple



There's a new feature we've been meaning to roll out for a while, where we report something and ask (Shouted to the cadence of "WHEEL...OF...FORTUNE!!!")

IS...THIS...RACIST?!?!


-We warned you about this a while ago, but as a result of the crusade of real, non-fictional ex-cop Jerry Rocks, Philly has finally banned...Phillie Blunts (and Vega and Backwoods and Strawberry wraps and whatever else). Talk about renouncing your birthright.

[Related: JS2000 "Let's all roll a 01001 and get 110110 up"]

Other news:

-The Onion zings Bill Simmons real hard, saying "Confused Bill Simmons Picks The Departed to Win the Super Bowl."

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Wednesday, January 24, 2007

PSK '07



Jim Webb gave the Democratic response to the State of the Union address last night. Damn boy, he kicked the shit out of the stadium. I haven't heard a speech like that in a long time. Also, plus 2 for Webb almost losing his shit and cracking up like three quarters of the way through. Don't see that enough. It was eloquent, impassioned an contained that good old "Fuck You, I'm a Progressive" attitude that we've been missing in the Clinton Democrat era. While the full transcript can be found here, I'll provide my favorite highlights:
In the early days of our republic, President Andrew Jackson established an important principle of American-style democracy — that we should measure the health of our society not at its apex, but at its base. Not with the numbers that come out of Wall Street, but with the living conditions that exist on Main Street. We must recapture that spirit today.
Dre Jack is a good character to bust out the pocket- rugged, ill haircut and old. Webb went on to cite figures about how much CEOs made when he started working (20x the average worker's salary) versus now (400x) and made sure to mention that this is a blue collar and white collar problem. By this point, dude was putting motherfuckers on blast.
Like so many other Americans, today and throughout our history, we serve and have served, not for political reasons, but because we love our country. On the political issues — those matters of war and peace, and in some cases of life and death — we trusted the judgment of our national leaders. We hoped that they would be right, that they would measure with accuracy the value of our lives against the enormity of the national interest that might call upon us to go into harm¹s way.

We owed them our loyalty, as Americans, and we gave it. But they owed us — sound judgment, clear thinking, concern for our welfare, a guarantee that the threat to our country was equal to the price we might be called upon to pay in defending it.
Webb mentioned the service of his father (Berlin airlift), brother (Nam) and son (Iraq) as well as his own so people see he's not one of those Communist Pornographers like most Dems, just a Socialist Sodomite with a military background. But seriously, he raked the C in C over the fucking coals here, basically calling Bush's calculus for the value of a person's life into serious question and making a truly forceful charge of reckless endangerment. Watch out, money shot coming up:


On both of these vital issues, our economy and our national security, it falls upon those of us in elected office to take action.

Regarding the economic imbalance in our country, I am reminded of the situation President Theodore Roosevelt faced in the early days of the 20th century. America was then, as now, drifting apart along class lines. The so-called robber barons were unapologetically raking in a huge percentage of the national wealth. The dispossessed workers at the bottom were threatening revolt.

Roosevelt spoke strongly against these divisions. He told his fellow Republicans that they must set themselves "as resolutely against improper corporate influence on the one hand as against demagogy and mob rule on the other."And he did something about it.

As I look at Iraq, I recall the words of former general and soon-to-be President Dwight Eisenhower during the dark days of the Korean War, which had fallen into a bloody stalemate. "When comes the end?" asked the General who had commanded our forces in Europe during World War II. And as soon as he became President, he brought the Korean War to an end.

These presidents took the right kind of action, for the benefit of the American people and for the health of our relations around the world. Tonight we are calling on this president to take similar action, in both areas. If he does, we will join him. If he does not, we will be showing him the way.
Ethered.

P.S. George Bush also gave a speech last night in which he made a bunch of gradiose statements about national values and our collective future backed not by policy but by Dikembe Mutumbo.

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Tuesday, January 23, 2007

shark bloggers pt. 17

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you heard it here a few days after Deadspin. and here it is on Page 2.

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the state of mutumbo

I am very proud of our president for getting through the entire portion of the state of the union recognizing Dikembe Mutombo without snickering and saying "now who wants to sex Mutombo?"

also Wesley Autrey is still the mack.

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Breaking but unconfirmed news- RIP Disco D

I am catching reverberations in the internet echo chamber that Disco D has committed suicide. I am unsure if this is true and I have not seen it substantiated in any credible way. If it is true, This is quite sad. We (Philadelphyinz) played a show with him just a month ago and he was quite a nice guy. His set had like 30% overlap with mine, so it was also refreshing to see somebody on the same page playing old bass tracks and such. I kicked him off the decks for going over his set time.

We are waiting for somebody to confirm that these reports are incorrect- hit me off with a Mark Twain-style correction like "Reports of my death are greatly exaggerated." I'm in the middle of working an edit of "Hug it Out" on my new tape, and I don't want to have to overdub no "Disco D, Rest in Peace" shit.

Low-beezy board: Disco D RIP

[Still Listen to Gangsta Music: RIP Disco D]
[EatSkeet: Rest in Paradise, Disco D]
Disco D's myspace

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Monday, January 22, 2007

mp3's and c4

File this little fact under "not the least bit fucking surprising":
Bradley A. Buckles, who served ATF for 30 years and was named director in 1999, will come head of the Anti-Piracy Unit of the Recording Industry Association of America (search), the trade group announced Tuesday.

Actually this is ironic; the jackass who probably greenlighted the raid on Drama and Cannon spent the last three decades greenlighting raids on some of Drama's favorite rappers. Just sayin.

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princes among thieves

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New Ya Boy mix out called Prince Of the Bay, or possibly, Prince of the City. Normally I'd give a Mixunit link, but that's not really gonna fly right now.

Anyways I don't even know if the tape is that new, seeing as how a lot of it is pretty old and his myspace hints that a new tape, Chapter 1, might be on the way. But it did get me thinking how many rappers I'm really checkin for call themselves the prince of something. Wiz Khalifa, Peedi Crakk, Ya Boy...pretty sure Willie The Kid does too. Weird.

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Rooney: "I rep Minnesota"



Welcome to your future, Pittsburgh.

Mike Tomlin to coach the 'Lers. Can't say I am super surprised. He's a defense guy, he's under 40 years of age (34 actually) and most importantly, he was the dark-horse candidate like Cowher was. People (myself included) think they know so much about football because they watch it on TV, but the Rooneys, they know a thing or two about football. I basically take their word as gospel here.

A few things are gonna be different. Tomlin is a 4-3 guy, not a 3-4 guy, so that probably means LeBeau is out. I like the 3-4 zone blitz, and I like LeBeau, but I know that there's no sense making a half-assed change. Grimm is likely gone as well. Uh-oh Pittsburgh, change. No! Not Change!!!!

P.S. I was gonna say something about Tomlin looking like Omar Epps, but as I was searching for a second picture, I realized Deadspin had already done this, although they did it in yesterday's false alarm of a post. So let me be the first to make an OFFICIAL announcement that Mike Tomlin looks like Omar Epps. Tomlin is not related to Mike Epps.

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Sunday, January 21, 2007

same song



Kind of amazing it took Bill Simmons this long to figure out that we're all sick of the Pats. It's rare you see the symptoms of self-denial in the form of 3000-word rants on popular web pages. Simmons goes on a long tangent about a so-called "hater-culture", how we chew up and spit out celebrities like Leborn's Lemonade Lightning. This itself is a pretty bad look, whimpering because his team isn't popular anymore. That's like the antithesis of fandom.

The Patriots are not the Yankees because, in a vacuum, it's not easy to hate the Patriots. We hate the Yankees because they are the baseball equivalent of the millionaire developer trying to bulldoze the neighborhood park (and the shack where Ol' Luther lives) in your average 80's adventure movie. And as forgettable movies are the crux of Simmons's played-the-fuck-out cultural references, he should be familiar with the dynamic. You have a good thing and the man in the suit with the briefcase wants to ruin your fun for personal gain by throwing around money. And so he will buy out your rookie all-star for ten times what you can afford. He doesn't care about his reputation; he loves the negative press. And if you look at the 80's villian's entourage, it's all skeevy mob types. Giambi, Jeter, Sheffield, even Ol' Dirty Randy until recently, all unsavory individuals. A-Rod is the fat one they all crack on.

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The Patriots would be lucky to have that kind of character. Simmons even says this:
They don't have any self-promoting a-holes doing sack dances or touchdown dances, they haven't been whistled for any substance abuse violations, and as far as I can recall, not a single Patriot filmed a commercial this season.
Yup, your team's boring. No charismatic elder statesmen, no controversial superstars, no fucking personality. Just a pretty boy quarterback, a grumpy, enigmatic coach, and an endless list of interchangable wide receivers. Playing on both sides of the ball like Vrabel or Brown is not revolutionary, as I imagine every single player on the field has put in work elsewhere. Half the team could probably helm the Raiders next season if they so desired.

A note on Belichick (and also Brady). When fellating the Patriots, NFL talking heads like to point out that the team "just wins". And that's pretty much the case; Brady does have the most game winning drives of any NFL quarterback (if in-game graphical montages are to be believed). But that's really all you can say about the Brady/Belichick combo. They win. They play average football very well. During the games last weekend, GW9K and I were pondering who we would root for should the Colts and Pats meet, as they did, in the AFC Championship, and we made a note of this. Even if Peyton Manning never wins a Superbowl, his style is unique and somewhat revolutionary, and watching him is watching greatness. Whereas watching Brady is like watching any other quarterback on a good, incredibly lucky day. So while I'm willing to agree that Belichick is one of the finest coaches to ever stroll his fat ass down a sideline, his success is not enough to make him compelling.

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When Simmons starts going off about the nuts and bolts of the game, he sounds like that kid who still likes U2, trying to sell you on the new U2 album ten years after anyone with taste stopped caring about U2. We know how great the two quarterbacks are, and we know how The Edge gets revolutionary sounds out of his guitar. We know that you can never count out Tom Brady, and we know about Bono's heartwrenching concern for his fellow man. We know Adam Vinateri switched teams, and we remember Rattle and Hum. We're still not buying the album.

And that's the point right there. Simmons doesn't understand that, in sports, neither success nor technique correlate with popularity. As Ian eventually points out, teams ride their personalities more than their stats or their playbook. Yeah, Colston and Brees were as integral a part of the Saints' '06 run as anything done by either Bush. But even if they had rode an emotional wave to a scrappy, Eckstein-esque eight wins, they would have been a team to watch. And this year's Jets "just won" too, but they "just won" despite opening the season without a running back, and with the tearingest rotator cuff in New York City under center. The Patriots are the Patriots, and as long as they are an extension of the Brady/Belichick ticket, their fanbase is not going to change a whole lot. And, actually, when the sports commentariat groaned at the prospect of another Pats/Colts AFC Championship, it had less to do with anyone being sick of either team than it did with them being sick of the exact same storyline year after year. So popularity isn't even relevant.



This column isn't just annoyingly self-absorbed. It's troubling. That dude trying to give you a copy of the new U2 album he just burned for you? He doesn't like music. He likes U2. So Simmons begs the same question here: does he like football, or does he like the Patriots? (Although I guess "does he like football, or does he like betting on football" is an appropriate question too. Just sayin.)

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Cats do the knowledge



Sayin

- Gravy "Fuck the RIAA" (stream from XXL) Yes.

- Bobby Valentine, who has been managing baseball in Japan for the last several seasons writes a blog that has been fantastically strange, if not entertaining, for me over the last several months. It reads like he dictated it in English to a Japanese interpreter who then smoothed it over into cordial and polite Japanese with just a touch of humble deference...then the whole thing gets translated back to English and eventually makes Valentine sound like he's on tranquilizers. Each post is put up in English and Japanese. Oh yeah, and he likes to hang out with his friend Phil Collins. He also prints submissions of biographical sketches of people's pets.

-A rare photo of your favorite sports bloggers get drunk and looking terrible together: behold. Peep KSK to figure out who is who (Clue- none of them are us).

-19 US soldiers died yesterday. Recently we reported on the Iraqi civilian death toll from 2006, which was over 30,000. If you are pissed off, STOP BEING A WELL-BEHAVED PUSSY AND DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT!



-A big up to JS2000 compadre and my former DJ partner Burnso (before there was a Philadelphyinz, there was The Myron Cope Experience). He's getting hitched, which is in essence, a legal agreement that somebody has to tolerate his farts. This all but guarantees a tearful reunion for the Myron Cope Experience- we haven't played a set together since Hollertronix Halloween '05 (although some may remember my gully birthday).

-In a breaking internet development, DJ Stretch Armstrong of the old and legendary Stretch and Bobbito Garcia radio show on WKCR 89.9 FM has started writing a blog called KonstantKontakt. He reminisces about his days as a pivotal member of the 90s underground hip-hop scene and posts balls-out rediculous tapes from the show. He also drops various gems from his collection like old Rap-Attack radio appearances and all sorts of other rare material that gives me a lightheaded rush just thinking about the days when hip-hop offered so much promise. He is currently soliciting tapes that he doesn't have from the early days (1990-91) to try to compile a more complete digital archive. This is a must read and a must-listen.

-Lastly, thanks to everybody who came out this week to hear me spin at Paradise on Thursday and Tech Support last night...but stay tuned for the super-duper Philadelphyinz jumpoff at the Khyber on the 27th featuring the Broadzilla DJs- my old college get-drunk-and-wreck-shit fam. Peep dem flyer here.

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Friday, January 19, 2007

Can't sleep, government will muffle me



What are right wingers doing now that they're on the defensive? Acting mad ignorant, what did you think? Let's look at the manuveuring steez of the anti-ignorance zeitgeists, cloak and dagger (dagger and dagger?), Obama and Colbert:

-Obama smeared by FoxNews, but not for being black. (thinkprogress.og)

-Speaking of Obama, peep his crisp David Tompson-esque fro and nickname "Barry" courtesy of Daily Kos. "We go play hoop." Word.

-Colbert Vs. O'Reilly: Round 1 and Round 2. (Quicktime links seen through Crooks & Liars)

-Dinesh D'Souza gets goaded by Stephen Colbert into wild accusations that liberals (including F.D.R.- Douglas MacArthur Rewind!!!!) are complicit or responsible for 9/11. D'Souza sort of makes up for it by looking like an elf. (thinkprogress.org)

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i'ma swell my town

Wiz Khalifa - Pittsburgh Sound (video)

When JJ put up the "Pop, Lock and Drop It" video, I spent like ten minutes trying to expain to my girl how great it is when there's a video filmed in your city. There's nothing representing my slice of StL in that video (although you can see my apartment in the "Air Force Ones" clip), but, y'know, reppin is a beautiful thing.

So I should probably show her the "Pittsburgh Sound" video, because it's damn beautiful, and it's so fucking Pittsburgh. The shots on the Mt. Washington overlook are CRUCIAL.

"Pittsburgh Sound" is also real Lone Catalysts. The sped-up soul is a little simple for J. Rawls, but the organs stabs are cool, and the track is on that meloncholy shit that so many pseudo-"conscious" underground rappers were flipping in '00 and '01. Right before "true school" got played out. And it might be because I spent all day listening to Divide and Conquer (WTK reminds me of Wiz), but Khalifa sounds great on this. "That's what I call a steel curtain." CHEAH!

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Thursday, January 18, 2007

Will you ever Got it For Cheap again?



This post is intended to explain a little bit about Industry Rule #4080 to those readers who may not have a context for the current mixtape scandal down in Atlanta.

For those who don't know, DJ Drama and Don Cannon were arrested yesterday for making "illegal CDs," which (in this case) actually means making promotional mixtapes with the approval of artists and marketing related pay from major labels. Recidulous grown-folks video news story here. Nahright has a pretty straightforward rundown. I was at Armands records yesterday, and those guys buy Drama's tapes and many know him from his days in Philly. Apparently I was the first to break the news to them and motherfuckers were shocked (also shocked because they say he compensates artist with generous cuts). General consensus amongst internet music folk (as I have heard it) seems to be that the music industry needs these guys because they have propped up the most viable sector of the rap market (the Soufff) to the benefit of an industry struggling with a falling market.

The thing that bothers me is not the actual prosecution of people for making mixtapes. I suppose selling another person's music without their consent is technically in violation of the law, but it is so nitpicky and minor- didn't the internet and sampling knot up the RIAA's panties too? Mixtapes probably have a positive effect on sales and interest in music, as opposed to Napster, for example. Most mixtape DJs end up selling relatively few units compared to LPs sold by the artists. Furthermore, the exposure that you get from having your track included on a good or popular mixtape means opportunities to make money from shows, record deals (to record more songs for maybe even more mixtapes), sponsorships, radio-ops. Plus you get free circulation. Mixtapes were the original incarnation of the guerilla marketing we see with the internet- a viral, word of mouth spread of a phenomenon or song or whatever.



Mixtapes are such an accepted part of the rap music industry. You can pick somebody off the street and they could probably tell you how 50 Cent made his name (mixtapes) and now he's off being an acceptable American businessman, selling snow to the eskimos. Let's not forgetthe Clipse, Papoose, T.I. and countless others. Idolator received an unsolicited email yesterday stating the following
What makes this situation so completely ridiculous is that every significant "urban" release when I worked at a major label featured a line in the marketing budget for "mixtape promotion". I personally authorized checks to be written to the big mixtape dj's, and I'm sure DJ Drama kept some check stubs that would incriminate the same labels that make up the RIAA that raided his studio.
I kind of expect the music industry to back off if they know what's good for them. Notice how he said "the RIAA..raided his studio"? Hmmm.

The thing that bothers me most here is that it's the RIAA (which is a trade group) essentially dictating the actions of law enforcement. As Eskay said, this is nothing new, but it is scary. According to 33jones.com, mixunit has stopped selling all of its mixtapes. However, I ain't skurred, the new Philadelphyinz tape will be dropping in several weeks. I'll kick the shit out the stadium.

Video[My Fox Atlanta: "Apparently DJ Drama and DJ Cannon are DJs"]
[Nahright: Drama and Cannon got Feds on they Ass]
[33jones.com: Free DJ Drama]- Great rundown on scenarios which may play out in the wake of all this
[Different Kitchen: Link Roundup]

Industry Rule #4080: Record company people are shadyyyyyyyy!

Edit: A few comments on the Fox 5 Atlanta Video: The guys on the SWAT team were wearing RIAA jackets, also, the one square-ass dude standing in a room full of nice synthesizers (you know, for making your own music?) was alternately identified as representing the RIAA and law enforcement. This indicates that the RIAA, AN INDUSTRY TRADE GROUP, is affecting arrests?!? What's next, the National Frozen Pizza Institute (NFPI) busting me for making my own pizza and freezing it myself? Look, the RIAA is on a list of Industry Trade Groups (including the NFPI) on Wikipedia.

Also, what the fuck is up with constantly mentioning that people who sell "illegal CDs" typically do "other illegal activity too."

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Period lace



I've been resisting the new blogger platform (I fear change) but now I've been forced to, so welcome back...to me...to us. Thanks to everybody who didn't tell anybody I was actually in withdrawl from an ether binge.

Here is some bullshit from the internet:

-Lost in the shuffle of weekend football, MLK day and an off-the-chain spectacular at Philadelphyinz 2 @ Medusa Lounge was the death of jazz pianist Alice Coltrane. Coltrane had only recently begun to be appreciated in her own right as a musician. She was 69. Pound for Pound has some choice AC mp3s and Jazz Police has an obit.

-SilverBird returns to freedarko from his eighty day mission aboard the lunar orbiter to obliterate Wages of Wins- Isaiah Thomas, get out your calculator.

-According to the UN, 34,452 Iraqi civilians were liberated killed in 2006. Your tax dollars and votes, hard at work.

-Unless you pay close attention to baseball, there's no reason you would know that the Nutting (a-yo!) family is the whole reason that the Pirates are perpetual losers and "paupers." Collectively, they have controlled the Pirates' board for years, but have left McClatchey as the front man. It turns out it's more profitable to run a shitty baseball team than a good one...and that's why the Pirates are so bad. BucooBlog reads the riot act.

-I have to say I was sad to see the Eagles lose this weekend, it was the first time I ever cared about them and probably the last time I ever will. It was a very un-Philly-like ride the last half of the season, very little knee-jerk fatalism, an actual light-hearted sense of anticipation, not to mention slightly reduced levels of racism regarding Donovan McNabb.

-Speaking of Medusa, peep them flicks.

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Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Moose Pelican, MD- Private Eye



For starters, a big middle finger goes out to blogger for being down all day. I don't have anything particularly profound to report, other than the fact that Moose Pelican, MD is my new bowling name and it works.

Internets is goin nuts:

-Sickamore of XXL gets into the non-existant now existant Darrent Williams discussion about race, poverty and sports. Dude takes a whole bunch of questionable swings at Page2's Jamele Hill aka "The Oreo Sports Writer" (his words) and accusations of Uncle Tommery fly around. Exciting stuff, name calling, the works. Hill's piece is included in that link.

-Joe McCarthy fetishist Sean Hannity is now annointing an "Enemy of the State" on his show. Below is Sean Penn, whose pedantic exploits are apparently enough to land him in Hannity's "Fair and Balanced" Siberian labor camp (spotted via TPMcafe):



-Jeff Weiss explains how you write a Lil' Wayne verse in 10 easy steps. Jeff apparently doesn't find Lil' Weezy nearly as funny as we do- I know my brain grinds to a halt any time I try to comprehend anything Weezy f. Baby. Noixe used to make a Lil' Wayne character in Tony Hawk 2- wearing two pairs of drawers. Sometimes you just gotta roll with the insanity. If you want a comprehensive understanding of our rap-dada worldview here at JS2000, look no further than Ultimate Sayin XVII.

-Should the NCAA lose it's tax exempt status? (Seen via the wizardofodds) I say hell yes, and I think anybody who watched the BCS championship would agree that this isn't rah-rah college sweater shit, it's business.

-Apropos of nothing: Baby mooses/meese. Be sure to peep the enormity of the adult moose- daaaaaaaaamn!

-Santorum has signed up with the religious conservative think tank, the Ethics and Public Policy Center. He is directing a program called "America's Enemies" (quite the theme today). Abortionists, democrats, activists, environmentalists, working women, book learned people, urbanites and Muslims, watch out!

-Meandering but entertaining piece on Straight Bangin about Pistol Pete, modern NBA style and the FreeDarko ethos.



Tiempos Extras:

-Len Pasquarelli, himself a kielbasa-eatin' yinzer accuses Cowher of being a "counterfeit 'Burgher." Absolutely rediculous. If Pasquarelli were right, would there be dozens of hagiographic comments on this architecture and real estate site which has photos of Bill Cowher's Raleigh house on it?!?!?!

-We just bombed Somalia. Fuckin great. Somalia is a really fun place for international conflict. Apparently we were going after the guys who bombed our embassies in Africa in the '90s. One can't help but wonder what our role was in the secular vs. Islamist conflict that just cooled off between factions in Ethiopia and Somalia. In 25 years, we're going to hear about all the totally insane shit the CIA has been doing since 9/11. Minds will get blown.

-Lastly, cats in Venezuela name their kids really crazy shit like Willderman, Darwin Lenin, Rosaherbalaif, Taj-Mahal Sánchez, Elvis Presley Gomez Morillo and the ever entertaining Hitler Eufemio Mayora. Word.

Friday, January 05, 2007

be alright be ok



Still mulling over the Chin departure, but I like what Mondesi's House had to say. Cowher did his job about as well as anyone could have and I can't be mad at the dude for wanting a change. I'm also feeling the Rooney quote (thanks JJ), which reminds us all that we're still basically working with a Superbowl-caliber team.

Note that Cowher turned down an invitation to be an analyst during the playoffs. This is kind of like asking Bob Dylan to live-blog the Grammy's.

Peripheral vision



Now this is the sort of swaggerjacking we like. Dave Krieger of the Rocky Mountain News writes:
The brutal truth is that if Darrent Williams weren't a Bronco but just another young black man, his shooting death early on New Year's morning would have been noted as the first homicide of 2007 and little more.
He also makes mention of the role alcohol seems to play in high profile acts of violence involving athletes.

I spotted this story via thebiglead.com which is a fine site, and not just because it gave a nice boost to my piece on Tuesday about Darrent Williams, young black athletes, hood culture and violence. Yes, that does sound like a very familiar arc, because you read it here first. But for once, I ain't mad.

I usually (like most bloggers) get pissed off when print journalists, through plagiarism or subconscious haughtiness rip off a theme or idea from a blog without mention or citation. I am not suggesting that Krieger read the Sardines for Dinner post here on Tuesday and then lifted the idea, because that may not have been the case, although close to a thousand people read that post. But if he did, I don't care in this one particular case, and if he did, I am glad. The purpose of that post was to implore mainstream journalists to ask difficult questions that make people uncomfortable, to be journalists.

As many of you know, I am somewhat contemptuous of sports journalists, both because of their twisted perspective about the relative importance of sport and their complacency borne out of the simple and formulaic nature of most sports news. (Note: Sean Salisbury is considered a "journalist.") However, swaggerjacker or not, Mr. Krieger is doing his job as a journalist by taking this on. Hopefully others will follow and be more wont to, as I said, "connect the dots," despite the potential unprofitability of doing so. The price of public trust is responsibility, even if it doesn't sell papers.

[Rocky Mtn News- Krieger: We all can learn from Williams' death]
[Just Sayin- Sardines for Dinner]

P.S. As the web's resident erudite Steelers scribes, you know we're going to weigh in about the cosmic implications of Cowher's retirement, but we need to meditate on some beer and rare electro records first.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

doors open

Flash donuts.

Whoa.

Make money money go shopping/ Take money money go shopping



MSNBC puts out its list of the 15 most valuable college football programs, led by Notre Dame, worth $91 million, followed closely by a number of Big 12, SEC and Big 10 schools including Texas, Georgia and Michigan.

It really is time for a salary cap players union in college football. Get yours.

P.S. Nick Saban gets paid double stack lootcakes!

Related post: JS2000: Molders of Men- the argument for collective bargaining in college football

Ultimate Sayin Vol. XVII

I have been looking for this for a while. I saw it on public access like six months ago and I saw it again this evening. For a while I was sure I had dreamed it. Careful your head doesn't explode.



Now that you've seen it, you know why it's...the Ultimate Sayin.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Sardines for dinner



With the Darrent Williams shooting, the hood has poked its unwelcome nose into a world of hack columnists, fantasy leagues and over-unders. Once again, the uncomfortable and messy underside of the American experiment has come to disrupt the marketing and categorization of sport- charging into your living room and defying you to reconcile heaters and flankers, TANF and RPI. As Joe Buck so often says, the pressures are complicated when you're "young, black and famous with money hangin out the anus." No, Joe Buck didn't say that, because, like so many, Joe Buck doesn't, and never will understand.

Many professional athletes live on the margin between the most visible and most invisible realms of American society. Their faces are on trading cards and they get bought and sold in office fantasy pools. They come into your living room every night. They are part of a product being sold for your consumption. Many are also nominal ambassadors of another nightly television staple- the hood. In the hood, as many of you may have forgotten, people get shot, live in substandard housing, have little access to jobs, banks, public services and basic necessities, can't afford health insurance, can't take out loans, probably don't have two parents. Carmelo Anthony, Chris Henry and the like are, for lack of a better term, moving parts- and problematic ones at that.



Woe be it for me to tell anybody that there are at least two Americas. Periodically, something happens to drive that point home- Selma, Newark, South Central, Ninth Ward. However, inherent in the definition of a "period," interest and awareness rises and falls. When Kanye said W "doesn't care about black people," some folks were fucking shocked. The story of the perpetual underclass is a pretty old one (500 years at least), and it doesn't sell any papers. Jay Marriotti probably doesn't spend a lick of time in East St. Louis after a Rams-Bears game. Chris Berman usually doesn't stop for a beer in Newark when he's going to catch a flight. And these guys are barely journalists, they're sports journalists- accustomed to reporting the most formulaic and programmed "news" where the same shit happens 99 percent of the time (The blogosphere's typically ironic, pithy style doesn't really provide much depth either). Professional sports are diversionary, brought forth in England as a baron's best remedy for labor unrest- bread and circuses. How are the ringmasters supposed to handle this?

When Darrent Williams gets shot or Len Bias ODs, it's a "tragedy." When Stephen Jackson licks shots in a parking lot or Chris Henry yacks 'yak out of a car, it's "young black men behaving badly." But is this all the same story? (I know Bethlehem Shoals thinks so.)

Waliy Abdur Rahim (better known as Demetrius "Hook" Mitchell), who Jason Kidd and Gary Payton both describe as (my words) "way, way better than me," held up a video store. His friends and acquiantances (including Brian Shaw and Antonio Davis) went to the NBA. The line is thin. Very thin. Perhaps there is as much Hook Mitchell in Gary Payton as the other way around. Gary Payton, Darrent Williams and the like did not evaporate from the ghetto ether when they got their mugshots on an ESPN player card, which has a text field for "born," but not one for "died." They invisibly went on living the life they had before in parallel with the life they earned through their physical talent and hard work. This fact may have been subtly acknowledged in a United Way PSA. We all know living in the hood is more about trap-or-die than it is about reading Dr. Seuss with Tiki Barber, but we damn well don't want to think about it.

Just weeks ago Jay Mariotti was absolutely skewering Tank Johnson for holding heat. If it were Tank dead in Denver, would we be saying something to the tune of (sarcastically)
How surprising that someone actually would harass Tank on the dance floor, prompting [housemate Willie] Posey to respond in the bodyguard role and wind up taking a fatal bullet in his chest.
Could we deign to say that the dead man or Johnson "asked for it?" Did he fuck up by hanging around with people that he grew up with? Should you just ditch everybody you knew back in the day because you "made it?" Would you do that? If not, did he fuck up by being born black in the hood?



I don't know much about Tank Johnson or Darrent Williams personally, but I know some people who may have grown up in very similar circumstances, and live in them still. It's dishonest to leave dots like this unconnected, but it's much easier to sell ad time if you do. Sports are games, but they employ real people from real places, with a wildly exaggerated focus on human resources, relative to other businesses. Some games, like football, employ disproportionate numbers of people from some of the more dangerous and forgotten places in our country, and market them to audiences who are scared out of their minds to so much as drive a car through those places. In the process the leagues require a lot of assimilation from their employees in the name of marketing.

I am not an apologist for bad behavior on the part of athletes, but I have some qualms about exactly how we define "bad behavior" and how we suggest that it be addressed. Perhaps the way to save the next Darrent Williams is to address the issues which confront young, black athletes in a more pragmatic and thoughtful way. The first step is to stop pretending Williams has nothing in common with the 400-odd people who got murdered around my way in 2006, and start believing he has everything in common.

deception



Wait, you mean Apostle of Hustle isn't some d-boy from, like, Jacksonville? Mixunit.com won't be featuring his Wally Sparks-hosted mixtape Ghetto Apocrypha, featuring his lead single, produced by either DJ Khaled or The Runners? Damn.

optimism '07



I got two big reasons to look forward to '07.

As Mondesi's House points out, dem Stillers recaptured some of that coke on Sunday. Shayne Graham's job-destroying shank was lucky, but we'll call that karma for the three horrible calls made in the previous drive. It wasn't just James Farrior's suplex or Fast Willie's touchdown redemption. More than anything, it was seeing Cowher in all his chin-jutting glory, screaming on Willie Colon after a stupid taunting penalty. When things had gone horribly wrong this season, Cowher looked more bewildered than antyhing else, asking himself "who are these losers and where the fuck is my Superbowl team"?

It's looking like retirement is likely, but the Chin will be handing off a playoff caliber team that turned around a season that was more stupid than anything else. Fast Willie is putting down 100 yards like its nothing and Santonio is finding his hands. Big Ben looks capable, even without the heroics of the last two seasons. We're drafting unreasonably high, so hopefully that can shore up some problems in the secondary. And maybe a new coach won't need Memento-style self-tattoos to remember the underused weapons Najeh Davenport and Heath Miller.

Reason number 2? It looks like underground rap is getting interesting again. Copies of Sean Price's Jesus Price Superstar and Brother Ali's The Undisputed Truth have been staring at me from my "LISTEN" pile for a week now, as has Pharoahe Monch's new mixtape. And Liberation, the Madlib/Talib Kweli is the kind of two-dudes-I-sort-of-check-for tag-team that makes me take note. Ghostface/Theodore Unit are pretty much infallable these days; I started an entire post about Trife's magic hooks after hearing "The Roosevelts". El-P has a new album due soon too.

I'm still apprehensive about this change of heart, and I'd still rather hear Yola Da Great say some dumb shit about how he's a legend at 17 than hear the dudes from dead prez say some dumb shit about the impending revolution. And I'll take any of the assorted trap-hoppers over Lupe's self-important bullshit. But as Dipset falls apart and I'm not as blown away by the new Chamillionaire mixtape as I thought I would be, the creativity balance might be swinging back towards the underground. Either way, I might need to cop more streetwear before I start going to shows again.

Special optimistic shouts go to the Democratic congress, Eliot Spitzer, my mom's new house and assorted dudes I know taking the blog hustle full-time. LET'S E-GET IT!