Indy Hip Hop World

"A setback is just a setup for a comeback." --from Bebe Moore Campbell's "72 Hour Hold"

Monday, December 29, 2008

Some Hip Hop I'd Love to Check Out, If Only I Had the Time

My schedule is crammed and I have lots going on and I am sure that you do too. I barely have time to post to this blog, but I do love my hip hop and isn't it true that we make the time for the things that we like...?

But as each week passes, I realize that there is yet another hip hop project that is released that I have not had a chance to listen to. As a result, the list has grown, so rather than keep the good info from you, I am putting it out there. If you have peeped any of these, then do share some insight on what is exceptionally awesome and what is merely okay.

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"White Van Music" by Jake One
This Rhymesayers Entertainment artist has released his first project under Jake One and it is riddled w/his label mates talent and then some. I know that I am missing out. I hope to check it out sooner rather than later.

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"Separate But Equal (Drama Free Version)" by Little Brother
This baby just dropped last month. The most I've heard on this one is the 30 preview on Amazon. They gets down and I want to hear it in its entirety.

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"Fun DMC" by People Under The Stairs
I have not listened to anything by PUTS for about a year now. I like their delivery and their longevity; they've been in the game for over a decade.

That's only three and yes, there are more. I'll try to share those in another day or so. If I don't get around to it before the new year though, remember, everything in moderation hip hoppers. kfox.

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Saturday, December 27, 2008

You Won't Need a Reminder About The Knux

I don't know what has taken me so long to write about The Knux because now it looks as if I am jumping on the bandwagon. Nothing wrong w/that, as in, 'better late than never'.

But I've been diggin The Knux on Imeem for sometime. I don't know when I got turned on to this brother duo, but I am hooked. They seem to have an upbeat and positive spirit despite having been displaced from their hometown of New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.

Their first disk is called "Remind Me in 3 Days...". Nice one too. They have some fun, play around w/some non-traditional hip hop beats and they lay it down. I like their lyricism - raw and quirky.

Word has it that they gained some notoriety from the track "Bang Bang" which was featured on an episode of HBO's "Entourage", but since I am cable-less, I don't know that firsthand ... but I do believe it to be the truth.

Here are a few more resources so that you can get your Knux fix:
I highly recommend that you check out them out on Imeem; lots of music, videos and an extended bio.

I may or may not remind you, but hip hoppers, you don't want to miss out on a good thing. kfox.

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Thursday, December 25, 2008

The Hip Hop Holiday Classic: "Christmas Rappin" by Kurtis Blow

This is an all-time holiday fav of mine, right along side "Santa Baby" by Eartha Kitt, "Merry Christmas Baby" by Charles Brown and "This Christmas" by Donny Hathaway.

I can remember when this song came out. I can tell you all the details including what I got for Christmas that year - 1979. Good times. I am particularly fond of the extended version, but I'll take what I can get.

So to celebrate the season, here is a different version of the song, but nice to see Kurtis Blow delivering the lines. I could listen to this song year round.

Interestingly enough, I could not locate the lyrics for this song which are so fun and boastful. We should all do our part and post up a section.

Happy holidays hip hoppers. kfox.

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Monday, December 22, 2008

The Metermaids Don't Need Your Change

The Metermaids have been together for roughly two years. But you'd never really know it. They do have a chemistry. When I say they, I mean the two of them Swell and Sentence; a couple of guys from N-Y-C.

Their first full length project is "Nightlife". I only had a chance to listen to two tracks. And unfortunately their style left me desiring something different, something more at least that's how I felt listening to "Feel Alive". I like it, it just seemed kind of ho hum. "Nightlife" was cool too, but it did not come off as original. I kept thinking 'I know that I've heard that sound before ... '.

They've even gone out and done a mash up of "Nightlife" and Sufjan Stevens "Illinoise" called "Nightlife in Illinoise". I did not get a chance to listen to this one. But it is on my short list.

And you too can check out the Metermaids:
So keep your change hip hoppers, and remember that you heard the Metermaids when ... ? kfox.

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Saturday, December 20, 2008

The download - Adele: 1988 (UPDATED May 2012)

So it's here ... another Mick Boogie treat.
Hot off the heels of "Viva la Hova" Boogie's mashup of Coldplay and Jay-Z, he brings us "Adele: 1988; this link no longer works (May, 2012)." This project combines the vocal excellence of Adele w/some late 80s hip hop.

I had some trouble downloading this one, but that's just the state of things for me right now. Point is I like it, but I have no concrete review of this one.

As I previously mentioned, many of Adele's tracks have a slower flow. I don't really get down w/slow flowin songs. So I am diggin the fact that there is some tempo on the tracks.

That's it for now hip hoppers. Go on and get your download on ... kfox

UPDATE: Seems the download police have tagged this post as a DCMA violation. As a result the original link has been removed. "I don't want no trouble officer."

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Spotlighting Black Milk - Yes, Again!

So when a good thing is good, I just can't get enough.

I tried to put you on to Black Milk a few weeks ago, but I'm not certain that the message came through loud and clear.

So here are a few more convincing options:
It's just nice to hear him do his thing w/out the assistance of ten other emcees. Nice loop on the beats too. Nothing fancy, so the focus is on the lyrics and his delivery. Me thinks you will like it. Especially the funky beats at the end of the track.

So go for it hip hoppers ... add some milk to your rotation. kfox.

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Thursday, December 18, 2008

Jake One's "The Truth"

I stumbled on this this gritty and grimy track w/its slow beat and searing lyrics on the Rhymesayers webbie. It's Jake One accompanied by Freeway and Brother Ali. Ali's delivery stands out as strong and dank.

Here's the vid:

Time for me to diversify my hip hop palette ... what are you hip hoppers listening to? kfox.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Common's "Universal Mind Control"

I do like Common. I'd say I'm a fan, and I am, but I am not the biggest fan. I know there are some stalwarts out there who can outdo me in the fan category. But I would stand in line in the cold for an hour and wait for a FREE ticket to a show. How's that for a little schutzpah?

But nevermind, we all like good music and that's the point.

I wanted to focus particularly on the music and video for the single "Universal Mind Control" which comes from Common's newly released disk of the same name.

Before I got a chance to listen to the track, it was mentioned that the tune has the vibe of Afrika Bambaataa's "Planet Rock". Now, what you don't know about me is that if I were stranded on an island and could only have one song, "Planet Rock" would be that joint! I only wish I had heard that comment after I'd listened to the song.

I can feel just a twinge of "Planet Rock" in "UMC". But I sort of hear more of Common's "Go". Maybe it's the uptempo pace. But unlike "Go," whose lyrics I did not like, I am feeling "UMC". It also shows some growth in Common as an artist. He could go w/more of the same. But it seems he's building on his career nicely. That seems to be the case for all of the G.O.O.D. Music guys: Kanye and John Legend among them.

So now I need to go and cop the full "UMC" disk. Keep it legal hip hoppers. kfox.

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Sunday, December 14, 2008

All Hip Hop, All the Time

So I've finally discovered I sometimes feel like I'm on the 'last-to-adopt' list when it comes to these things. But then there is the reality ... some of my friends are just learning about Facebook - not signing up - but just learning about it. I'm not ridiculing anyone, it just is what it is.

Back to Alltop and why even if you don't do Facebook, why you should do Alltop.

I like to ingest alot of information including news, music and crafting. I've tried some news aggregators like Google Reader. It's okay. Alltop is something like that. But it's topical. Once you search your topic, you will get three columns of results and each source will list the top five most recent stories/posts.

I was elated that they have a topic dedicated to hip hop:
Very cool to not have to email the admin and say 'hey, can we get a hip hop section?' But if you need it now, check the side bar on this here blog. I try to give you the things that you need.

So go and get your crave satisfied hip hoppers ... just another way to help you stay on top of your game. kfox.

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Saturday, December 13, 2008

Adele + 80s Hip Hop = Mick Boogie's "Adele 1988"

This gonna be hot!

I know that you all have heard the buzz on Adele, if not, then it's not too late to jump on board. But jump fast so that you can fully appreciate dj Mick Boogie's latest project. It's purported to be a mixture of Adele and 80s hip hop. Whhuuudd? At least I am curious.

Now here's the most interesting thing, at least from my perspective. I love beats. Uptempo music. Adele is so not that. But her voice is butter. So imagine that, that voice, along w/some hip hop beats...

If you can't imagine it, then check out this video promo for the project:

Mick Boogie presents... Adele: 1988 from MickBoogie on Vimeo.

And it's gonna be a freebie download too. I do like spreading the love about good stuff. The fact that it's free is just a bonus. December 17th is the date.

Go ahead hip hoppers and do your research on Adele's "19" or even give it a relisten so that you can appreciate the next phase. I'm off to do the same. kfox.

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Friday, December 12, 2008

A Holiday Treat from P.O.S.

P.O.S. is sayin hello by sayin "Goodbye". It's a track from his upcoming release dropping in February. In case you did not know, he's on the Rhymesayers roster and that means good, quality hip hop.

Right now - the holiday season - P.O.S. befriends us by providing a FREE download of "Goodbye":
And it gets better ... P.O.S. is going on tour in '09 w/the "Never Better" Tour. The dates are covering a lot of ground - East coast, West coast and the midwest (seems the South won't get a piece of this, at least not this time around).

I am still amped up on P.O.S.'s "Audition" from a few years ago. So if you need to do an about-face, then do that and come back to this or just do it all. Because it is all good.

So go ahead and catch that download or just take a listen. Happy holidays hip hoppers. kfox.

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Roots are the House Band for Jimmy Fallon's Show

Wow, this announcement is crazy. The Roots have been known to go on tour, then turn around and go right back on tour. So for them, to sort, of settle down is huge.

Here is the vid of the official announcement from Jimmy Fallon:

And here is the info about Late Night with Jimmy Fallon house band as posted on Okayplayer.

The show debuts in March ... so get caught up on your sleep now hip hoppers because we have a late night jam session to attend. kfox.

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Tuesday, December 09, 2008

The Lady is Back ...

... and that Lady would be Lady Sovereign. Nice to have a female emcee on the block. Some folks think that she is just a lot of hype. I think she has some skills and that there is room for her in this ever expanding arena called hip hop.

This first track is called "I Got You Dancing!" and has some of the signature craziness heard previously on Lady Sov projects. Just kinda quirky. Her style will not be digestible to some. Especially on this particular track it's missing a heavy bass line; has more of a techno, airy - well, dance vibe to it.

At any rate, you can judge the young, British hip hopper for yourself. Rolling Stone has the song for download on their site:
The full disk won't drop until April '09. So get ta gettin hip hoppers. kfox.

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Monday, December 08, 2008

The Grammy Nominations and Hip Hop

There is no week that takes place w/o some level of hip hop activity. Last week was no exception.

In this case the Grammy nominations were handed out. I did, sort of, watch the CBS ramped up edition of 'the reading of the names'. I'm crazy about B.B. King, so any excuse to see him perform on free TV is all right w/me.

Unfortunately ... it is late and I am tired. Fortunately though, I've scoured the Okayplayer webbie for an article on the hip hop highlights of the '09 Grammy nominations.
So much hype; hype that I always buy into. Makes me just a little bit anxious for '09. But just a little big.

Now let's see if I can dig up some 'Best of Lists' as we wind down another one.

And hip hoppers, you too are award winners! Don't let'em tell you otherwise. kfox.

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Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Wrapping up '08 - Hip Hop Style in Cleveland

It's been quite a year for cds and concerts and just having a good time w/hip hop in general. Nice to have a thriving indie area. It's just a nice diversion from the mainstream.

So there are less than 31 days in this year to get your hip hop fix on the Northcoast:

~HIP HOP CONCERT w/Q-Tip & The Cool Kids w/The Knux~
On Thursday, December 4, 2008
@ the House of Blues
308 Euclid Avenue in downtown Cleveland
@ 7 p.m.
Tix begin @ $25 ... call 216.241.5555

~Birdy :: 4th Annual Celebration of Feathered Delights for all the Senses f/dj Mick Boogie~
On Thursday, December 4, 2008
@ Ultra
1212 W. 6th Street in the Warehouse District
@ 10 p.m.
For more info, call 216.479.7717

~CD RELEASE CELEBRATION: "I Aint a Killa" vol 2 by Skent Dukes~
On Friday, December 5, 2008
@ Club E4170 Lee Road
From 10 p.m. until 2:30 a.m.
For more info call 216.659.4780 or email

On Sunday, December 7, 2008
@ Peabody's DownUnder
2083 E. 21st Street
@ 7 p.m.
Tix are $18 ... call 216.241.5555

~RAP PERFORMANCE w/Mac Lethal, Grieves, Soul Crate Music and more~
On Tuesday, December 9, 2008
@ the Grog Shop
2785 Euclid Heights Boulevard in Cleveland Heights
@ 8 p.m.
Tix are $10 ... call 216.321.5588 or 216.241.5555

~CONCERT w/Matisyahu w/K'naan~
On Sunday, December 14, 2008
@ the House of Blues
308 Euclid Avenue in downtown Cleveland
@ 7 p.m.
Tix begin @ $23 ... call 216.241.5555

~HIP HOP CONCERT w/Wu Tang Clan~
On Wednesday, December 17, 2008
@ the House of Blues
308 Euclid Avenue in downtown Cleveland
@ 8 p.m.
Tix begin @ $38 ... call 216.241.5555

~HIP HOP PERFORMANCE w/Doxx / The Kickdrums / The Promise Hero and others~
On Friday, December 19, 2008
@ the Grog Shop
2785 Euclid Heights Boulevard in Cleveland Heights
@ 9 p.m.
Tix are $5 ... call 216.321.5588 or 216.241.5555

~HIP HOP PERFORMANCE: Red, Black, & Green Christmas w/ Muamin Collective / Poetic Republic and others~
On Saturday, December 20, 2008
@ the Grog Shop
2785 Euclid Heights Boulevard in Cleveland Heights
@ 9 p.m.
Tix are $7 ... call 216.321.5588 or 216.241.5555

On Monday, December 22, 2008
@ Peabody's DownUnder2083 E. 21st Street
@ 7 p.m.
Tix are $10 ... call 216.241.5555

For more info on events in Cleveland, in general, check out The CleveEvents list.

Don't let this tough economic times keep you from at least one of these shows. I know that you can use your God-given swagger to get in the door the close the year out w/some hearty hip hop. It's a hustle hip hoppers, get yours on, kfox.

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