Saturday, November 29, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Q Tip discusses the era of "swag". Now, I'm all for looking fresh to death, but Q Tip has a point here. He states "your look, swag, and business acumen, have taken priority over your actual music". I think he is on to something to an extent. We've got dudes like Plies, Ace Hood, ect that can't rap, aren't interesting, and are essentially just jackin' the image of dudes like Lil Wayne. But conversely, I think this new crop of young guys: Wale, Asher Roth, Charles Hamilton, BOB, ect are coupling together that swag, appearance, and showmanship with some very creative music. And wasn't hip-hop born out of a highly stylized image? Just look at Africa Bambaataa:
Now that's swagger on a hundred thousand trillion.
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
If you want to check them out you can find them at:
Being a short little Italian dude, I've always been partial to short athletes. The Pats jersey I own is Wes Welker, and I was all about Mugsy Bogues. That's why watching Spud Webb throw is down is so amazing. I can't even get rim, let alone dunk a full sized ball. Anyone know where I can get a Spud Webb jersey in a size medium or small? I can never find jerseys that aren't L or XL. Also, this Kenny "sky" Walker dude can dunk. Being a mid-80s baby, I really didn't get to see much of him.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
mattababy.com is a blog living in Providence, RI with a bad attitude and a secretly sentimental side. It covers all cultural detritus, large and small, relevant or not entirely.
But underpinning the collapse of the housing bubble is a demand-side problem - the American Dream - that has been hijacked in countless political speeches from an embodiment of America's core values into a crass appeal to materialism and easy gratification.
As marketers I feel that we have a duty to tell authentic, meaningful stories. The initial conception of this American deal is that of a very authentic narratives with themes of self-actualization, pursuing our most genuine dreams and goals, and creating lasting relationships based on social equity. When one is reduced by marketers to that of a simple consumer, we are not doing our jobs, both as marketer and as citizen.
Demar Derozan *2009 NBA Draft #1 Pick!* - video powered by Metacafe
Demar Derozan looks like an absurd talent. He's playing at USC this year and is getting potential 2009 number 1 pick hype. Compton in the house. Check the video.
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Monday, August 4, 2008
Thursday, July 31, 2008
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Research suggests that childhood obesity is more a result of inactivity (i.e. videogames and TV) and lifestyle than dietary choices. Hard Chillin love the kids, but McDonald's offers a somewhat reasonable way to feed a family of four on like six-fifty. Sometimes you need a fallback like that when life gets real. Eating a double cheeseburger isn't ideal, but it's better than a mustard sandwich.
I guess you could argue that the city council is also attempting to combat the kid-oriented branding and marketing efforts that fast food restaurants are famous for, but that seems like a secondary aim of the bill. So if not the kids, then what? The adults?
The real problem with fast food isn't the fatty meats and condiments - it's the full-calorie sodas and french fries. A Double Whopper (even with cheese and mayonnaise!) has roughly 1,000 calories. A king-size fries and Coke also has 1,000 calories. At least you're getting some protein and fiber in with the burger.
I guess the real issue here is at what point paternalism becomes necessary for consumers. Banning fast food restaurants really doesn't make a whole lot of sense unless you already have a plan to establish restaurants that offer healthier options at a similar price. Until we can do that, wouldn't it make more sense to put a moratorium on Value Combos?
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
rick ross’ next album should tell his true story in a cinematic way. but this time a comedy instead of an epic crime story… we meet our hero, a prison guard with an active fantasy life, like the hip-hop version of the secret life of walter mitty.. but the twist of course is that his fantasy life makes him a star… then it all falls apart at the end like a 2008 version of the jerk. maybe carl reiner does a cameo. is he still alive?
get someone like madlib or mf doom on production to capture the self-deprecation and fantasy/reality shit. if rick ross goes all masta ace meta on us to tell us the REAL story of rick ross, that’s a potential masterpiece right there.
look at baseball right now… andy pettitte and jason giambi are heroes again while palmeiro, bonds and clemens are burned as hypocrites… people will forgive anyone who cops (no pun intended!) to their fuck-ups.
Thanks to The Smoking Section for the file. If you're into hip-hop and don't read that blog regularly, you're missing out.
Monday, July 28, 2008
One and the same?
For pretty much anyone that follows hip-hop and has an internet connection, it’s become apparent that Rick Ross is not who he claims to be. But did we really ever think he was an international drug dealer? And does the validity of his claim even matter?
Last week reports dropped that Ricky Ross was once a prison guard in Dade County, FLA. In a the smoking gun article it was reported that pay stubs of a Dade County corrections officer displayed the social security number that was akin to that of Ross. This is essentially irrefutable evidence that Rick Ross' past wasn't what he claimed it to be.
So now that Ross has been outed as former law enforcement, his credibility as international blow slanging kingpin is shot. He’s the Milli Vanilli of coke rap. The internet is blowing up with hilarious Photoshopped pictures of Ross, but my favorite is by a video that dropped earlier today by one of my favorite sites The Real.
Rick Ross' Land of Make Believe from jeff on Vimeo.
This is quite humorous, but I really think it's quite absurd for hip-hop fans to be that outraged by this new finding about Rick Ross' past. The claims Rick Ross makes on his albums are so ridiculous and outlandish, there was no way in hell he actually had that kind of status. Did we really believe he was birthed in a crackhouse? When I listen to a dude like Joell Ortiz rap about freezing his ass off during a NYC winter trying to make chump change selling crack, I believe him. Dealing drugs is 99.9% of the time a dirt hustle, yet it seems like the only people rapping about it are claiming to be making way more money than my MBA colleagues.
I never really believed Rick Ross and therefore was not that surprised to find out he was lying, I mean, how couldn't he be lying. Ross was a fucking cartoon character, blown out of proportion to the point of absurdity, you'd have to be a completely gullible to think Ross' tale was completely sincere.
Thinking about Rick Ross reminds me a great deal of my childhood love of Pro Wrestling. The pre-WWF Attitude days were my favorite. I mean, we knew that the Million Dollar Man was not wealthy, the IRS did not major in accounting, and that Papa Shango did not possess voodoo prowess. Despite this, it was fun and I enjoyed it. I garner the same type of pleasure out of Rick Ross.
Now, as my friend Conor pointed out, comparing hip-hop to pro wrestling is a slippery slope. It is not to say I don't think many rappers are genuine, I just think this obsession with keeping it real and authenticity is quite problematic. Hip-hop should be fun, and needs to stop taking it self so seriously, Rick Ross was a hilarious concept, and I don't think its important if his back story checks out.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Yeah, I know, Tribe is every white college-dweeb's from the suburbs favorite group, and it's probably on my short list of favorite groups, but sometimes white college kids get it right. This video isn't exceptional or blow your mind crazy, but for whatever reason it makes me feel really good and wish I lived in a more urban area.
Monday, June 9, 2008
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Saturday, May 31, 2008
Thursday, May 29, 2008
It’s been reported today that the NBA Will Impose Fines Against Players That Flop next season. Details regarding how fine-worthy flops will be determined, the price tag of the fines, or if further penalties, such as a suspension, will come to “serial floppers” like my boy Manu Ginobili, have not been determined yet.
Most NBA fans that I converse with are vehemently opposed to flopping and feel that it takes away from the quality of the game. Flopping is perceived by most American fans (the only fans I’ve had the pleasure of conversing with) as cheating. In addition to this, most believe flopping is a bitch move. Conversely, I believe flopping is a great skill, and view it as an important implement in a NBA player’s toolkit. Many argue that a referee’s job is difficult enough without having players acting out fouls that don’t exist, but I think that the heavy roll the referee’s perception plays adds a special flavor to the NBA game. Flopping just brings this reliance on the referees perception to the forefront, which I have no problem with. NBA basketball is an imperfect game, but I’m comfortable with the lack of complete fairness and subjectivity in NBA basketball.
As I previously mentioned, a lot of folks think flopping is for pussies. Floppers are generally portrayed as frou frou Euros (read: un-American FAGGOTS, probably even vegans). This is why Manu Ginobili and Anderson Varejao are generally viewed as the NBA’s flopping spokes-models. This portrayal of floppers as faggot Euro pussies also stems from an inherent hatred and feminization of soccer on the part of Americans. Flopping is after all a crucial and prominent act in Soccer. I would even go as far to say that there is a little bit of latent homophobia in the hatred of flopping, but I really don’t want to get into gender and queer theory right now.
Regardless if you view flopping as a bitch move and cheating or an acceptable manipulation of imperfect rules, the NBA’s decision to attempt to fine floppers will probably make little or no impact. Much like the decision to call a foul or not, calling a flop is quite subjective, therefore I believe very few people will even get fined for flopping, and even if they do, NBA players stack enough to paper that a small fine is of little consequence to them. Flopping is here to stay just like the hack-a-Shaq, and any other unconventional attempt to gain a competitive advantage through the manipulation of imperfect NBA rules. The debate whether or not the flop is unlawful, “faggotry”, or smart play, is irrelevant.
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Pretty standard Neptunes fare here, Ross shows a little more lyrical dexterity than normal, the beat does tend to not match up with his flow though. I wouldn't call this straight garbage like a lot of folks are but this is mediocre at best, I expect better from both the Neptunes and The Boss.
Pretty interesting essay here arguing that ambivalence and working towards the greater good is the most effective and profitable business model. Maybe all the Clark heads should be getting jobs at corporations that subscribe to this philosophy, not under-funded, poorly managed, and overall inefficient non-profits.
Mr. Nassir Jones is at again, and I’m fucking tired of his crap. He is once again, baiting the public with a controversial album title, much like 2006’s Hip Hop Is Dead. The difference is that this time, his album’s title carried with it a valid and intriguing message, unlike Hip Hop Is Dead, which is a straight up unfounded assertion. Hip-hop is not dead, and neither is the conception of Nigger in America.
When the announcement came that his new album would be titled “NIGGER”, that’s right, hard ER, I thought, this is a solid idea, forcing people to truly confront, arguably the most important and significant word in our American cultural lexicon. This could really create a constructive discourse regarding race in America. Nas would not only force confrontation, but appeared to be arguing that despite a lot of hard fought change, African Americans, are in many respects still viewed, treated as, and even possess a self-conception of “NIGGER”. Initially, it appeared that Nas was not going to back down, Def Jam got behind him, and as the weeks passed, the album’s title remained constant. But Nas ended up being quite the cock tease, finally backing down, and changing the album’s title to the simply self-titled Nas. I’ve fucked with Nas for a while now (Since “Hate Me Now“, I‘m not gonna act like I was heavy in the streets with Illmatic when I was 11 years old), and it’s easy for me to say “shame on you Nas”, for not following through, with what I believe is a great idea. Conversely, I am just getting tired of Nas’ bullshit. He wields so much power, has one of the largest platforms to shout from, and seems to “get it”, but can’t seem to pull off the execution, and really perform some sort of generative work. His influence and position as elder statesmen of hip-hop is going to waste.
Now, one could argue that Nas accomplished his goal by generating public discussion and discourse regarding the title “Nigger”, which is somewhat valid. Despite this, not completely following through was quite the bitch move, you’ve gotta close it out, bro. Nas isn’t starving in the streets, he can live without the sales in Wal Mart and Target, and fuck what Jesse Jackson thinks.
In, what appears to be a consolatory move on Nassir’s part, he is planning to release the Nigger Mixtape with DJ Green Lantern.
This is simply too little, too late. Additionally, this mixtape is only going to get into the hands of internet nerds and hardcore heads, like myself. Nas will essentially by preaching to the quire with this one. Your average Nah Right reader gets it, a kid that actually still buys CDs at Wal Mart, probably does not.
With all the hype and anticipation surrounding this album, I am a little worried for Nas. I doubt this is going to be the 5 mic classic Nas is purporting it to be. Nas is in a difficult position, if this album is less than great it will be considered a flop by myself and many of my fellow hip-hop heads. How much longer will Illmatic, an album that dropped when I was 9 years old, afford Nas this legacy status in hip-hop in which he can do no wrong? Andre 3000 recently rapped about how “they got me out here Brett Favrein’”, but I think Nas is starting to look more like hip-hop’s Brett Favre, holding the true heads hostage with bullshit.
Let’s hope the album formally called Nigger is a gem, for hip-hop, and Nas’ sake.