Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Ankhlejohn & Big Ghost Ltd "At Eternity's Gate" / "Van Ghost"

"Fueled by the artistic vision of Big Ghost and the iconic paintings of Vincent Van Gogh, Van Ghost is a cinematic collaboration between the underground’s chief trash talker and the grimiest rapper south of New York. Strap yourselves in." A fine breakdown from The Crate Dig serves to introduce this project well. Below is a nice selection from the album, "At Eternity's Gate," featuring Lil Eto, Fly Anakin & a fire verse from Crimeapple, who I've been following since I heard "Turner & Hootch" some years back. When it comes to textures and the layers of art embedded in the final products Big Ghost Ltd not only co-signs but partakes in, I see big steps for our brand of hip-hop in 2019. 

Thursday, July 26, 2018

I'm Just Looking Out For My Music Family

“Noticed she wasn’t breathing for a second then I screamed “She’s dead!” / and everybody took it out on Nasty / I was just looking out for my music family....” So, what now? There are plenty of signs of life in both the underground and the mainstream. So, why does this still rub me the wrong way? Was this trolling before we called it that, lol? There are a lot of elements of the music industry that have died: artist development being one of the biggest. Then, from a fan point of view ... from a DJ point of view ... I miss all the attention to detail. Labels might call it trimming the fat off the marketing budget, but the attachment to the music is weaker than ever (for me). Major label artists are doing 50 million streams per clip, what's the rush to put out an album? To market to fans offline? To invest in anything that won't directly lead to more streams. A stream that has a value that only the majors seem to know because it certainly isn't 0.000x of a penny to them. Nah, it's one of the most coveted pieces of info in the entire industry, what is the REAL value per stream!? Tastemakers of an older time in hip-hop are left with baskets filled with nostalgia and no one interested in hearing their stories. No shade & that's not a blanket statement, let's keep it in context.  It's just ... it's a new era of fans, unfamiliar with the way things used to work & therefore don't know how much they are missing out. All the noise from constant music and an abundance of choice is a distraction. Many artists have stepped up and made a choice to be vulnerable, to let fans behind the curtain to see more of themselves ... which, in many ways has changed the whole concept of what being a celebrity now means. It went from no access = celebrity - you heard from your favorite artist when he/she dropped their new album or when their face was on the big screen ... or not at all. Now, you see them in your timeline daily, you might even get a mention from them. Let me tell ya, it used to be meeting your heroes was a disaster! Now, everyone = celebrity in their own mind, so maybe no one is a hero lol. I dunno, I'm not bitter and I love curating a playlist that reflects my own taste of music, but there's also a reason I hustle nostalgia on the side. But ... this is a treadmill conversation, let me get off this. Any thoughts, for/against? Am I trolling, too?

Monday, July 23, 2018

Saba "Care For Me" (Album Stream)

This album was recommended to me by someone that knows I enjoy music that evokes emotion. "Trust me, you'll get into it," I was told. At first, it wasn't my particular brand of hip-hop, but sure enough, it did grow on me and did evoke emotion, which is the sign of a true artist. So, with that said, I also read this via Vinyl Me Please & thought to share it: "Care For Me is the most intense, isolated 41 minutes Saba’s ever released ... the final result is a stunning meditation on grief, survival and growth. The bright palettes of vibrant optimism streaked across much of his earlier works are slathered in greys and blues. It’s neither easy nor palatable, but personal and unafraid. We’re not dealing with any superhero, we’re dealing with Tahj Malik Chandler: a man who’s spent several years teetering from stardom in his city into the national spotlight, losing his stride, finding it again and losing it once more when he lost his cousin. Saba’s finally making the music he’s dreamt of: the rapping is precise and direct, the melodies are piercing and catchy and the weight of every bottled emotion lands until it shatters the heart. Not to mention how it’s so West Side, the traces of his familial importance are left like Remus crumbs: his grandmama’s splotchy grass plot, memories of childhood conflicts and getback, how Walter finessed him a prom date and asked for some extra bread for a prom suit. The detail would suggest several agonizing months of laborious writing, editing, synthesis… but none of it was by design. It was a tribute for a fallen link in the bloodline, a therapeutic breath in a fucked-up time." Give it a chance & stream it below (Updated stream).

Saturday, July 21, 2018

The Offical Hip-Hop Nostalgia E-Store Is Now Open!

I was hesitant to do it, and maybe it won't last long - who knows - but the official Hip-Hop Nostalgia online store is now open for business. I do not have infinite shelf space, so all items should be considered limited edition, get 'em while you can. I have done my best to make the highest quality available and offer the lowest shipping + bundles, but the website only allows me but so much room to communicate certain options, so if you want something customized or the cost seems too high for you, just contact me directly and we'll work something out. I'm online at @DJ_Sav_One and the website is HERE via Big Cartel. We'll see how this goes, your support will help determine that to a great degree. All sales go to legal and medical fees surrounding the tragic death of my mom earlier this year. It's 100% out of necessity, so if this doesn't work, I'll definitely have to focus energy elsewhere, so yeah, hit me up with any feedback or ideas, or anything else to help make it work. Peace and thanks to everyone that has reached out and offered support. Salute.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

Donnie Propa "Diggin' In The Crate Cave" (D.I.T.C Mixtape)

The UK's Donnie Propa has released his latest cassette mix, Diggin' In The Crate Cave, a mixtape of classics and hidden gems from the legendary D.I.T.C. crew. The mix is all-vinyl and available for limited edition cassette from Village Live Records. Much respect to the whole Diggin in The Crates crew: Lord Finesse, Big L (R.I.P.), O.C., Fat Joe, Buckwild, Showbiz & A.G., Diamond D and more. Dig into Donnie Propa's back catalog to hear great tribute mixes to Jeru The Damaja, Masta Ace, Pete Rock, J Dilla, Nottz and more. Cop the cassettes while they are available, too. R.I.P. Big L and Party Arty.

Monday, July 16, 2018

Children Of Zeus "Travel Light" (Album Stream)

It’s been a long road leading to this album for Tyler Daley and Konny Kon. They first embarked on their expedition into the music game two decades back - Tyler entered the scene as a songwriter, producer and vocalist, originally under the moniker Hoodman, whilst Konny began MCing, DJing and beat-making for hip hop crews The Microdisiacs and Broke’n’£nglish, along with DRS & Strategy. To date, Children of Zeus have released three sell-out singles on First Word (‘Still Standing’, ‘I Can’t Wait’ and ‘Slow Down’) and a compilation EP comprised of tracks made by the duo over the last decade entitled ‘The Story So Far…’. Children of Zeus are finally at the stage where they are releasing their debut album proper; the over-riding ethos of which is about keeping their eyes on the road ahead, whilst shedding the baggage they’ve accumulated over the years - ‘Travel Light’. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Dread Solo "I Think We've Met Before" (Instrumental Album)

Creators are gonna create; it's essential to their being. When I read the caption to my brother Dread Solo's debut album, "I Think We've Met Before," it says: "It took me 26 years to make this abstract narrative. This is some of the realest art I've ever made" ... I can't help but exhale. I can understand that, and I'm instantly gonna support it. Known to me (first) as a journalist, then as a sketch artist, and now as a producer, I can sense that desire to create is always working within him. I'm glad he's found quality outlets for that creativity and as with his other endeavors, they have been met with success and acclaim. Dig into this 17-track opus below, and appreciate his expression from behind the boards. Props to Awon on "Night Shift;" dope to see them working together, too.

Sunday, July 08, 2018

July 8, 1994: Invitation to Fat Beats on E 9th Street

July 8, 1994: "In the late seventies Hip-Hop music was being sold out of the trunks of automobiles. On July 14 you and your associates are invited to Fat Beats, New York's unique Hip Hop, R&B, Reggae and affiliates music store. Fat Beats grand opening will have art work by Andrew Marzan, Carlos Paul, Chris Nesbitt, George Guzman, Nuri Bell, Sean Mitaynes, and Zak. The fat beats will be provided by William Bagley. Drinks and refreshments will be served and the party will start at 7pm. Fat Beats is located at 323 East 9th Street Between 1st and 2nd Avenue. Hope to see you. Sincerely, Joseph Abajian (Pres/Founder of Fat Beats)." Joe Abajian aka DJ Jab is easily one of my favorite people I've met in this music thing; he's always been a stand-up guy and to this day, the direct line to him is always open. I'd love to visit Fat Beats headquarters in LA; it's on my to-do list.