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Topics - MaddStone

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Hot Traxxx / New Wu
« on: October 06, 2007, 12:27:10 PM »

The Heart Gently Weeps:
http://LINK REMOVED/download/4001427a84ce77/

Hot Traxxx / Kanye Bonus Track from Graduation (Limited)
« on: October 04, 2007, 12:33:36 AM »
Enjoy the track......Check the link:

Kanye West (feat. Mos Def) -- Good Night (Graduation Japanese Bonus Track):
http://LINK REMOVED/audio/3479646b693c82/

General Discussion / An open letter penned by David Banner to "leaders"
« on: September 30, 2007, 12:26:22 AM »
Once again, similar to what he said to Congress........nothing new, yet interesting to read and see the viewpoint.

The following is an open letter penned by David Banner, regarding his recent back-n-forth with Al Sharpton. It is posted in its entirety.

To all the black "so called leaders" -- Al, Oprah, Jesse, etc, etc, etc... I'm saddened by your current direction and current "pet projects" you guys have taken under your wing at the expense of Young Black America. As an urban professional living in this crazy world, I dare ask, who are you leading? I listen to what you say, I hear you complain about the youth, and about the direction of our lives, the kids, and where Black America is going and yet I still ask -- who are you guys leading? And most importantly, where are we going? Do we know the goal we are trying to reach before we get there? Have we identified our end before articulating our means to an end! Who are you REALLY reaching?

Why do you feel the need to attack the young generation for the things we are doing? WHO DID WE LEARN THESE THINGS FROM? We are trying to have fun in the midst of our traumatic circumstances. People are trying to make a living by any means necessary, people are voicing their experiences, people are speaking the truth about situations and honestly the truth hurts and sometimes it's ugly. If music / hip-hop / rappers are wrong with the language they use, the images they portray in their videos -- then come talk to us -- I use the term "us" as a collective because I'm defending what I have a pa**ion for, so this also involves me. Pull us to the side and say "hey kids, that's not the way to go" and then we can say "change what we see daily, so we can sing and rap about the roses and not about the bullets."

We will say, "help give us better situations to create better verbal material." Don't just go running off to the media to air the dirty laundry of the family and not expect us to fight back in some kind of way. What you are doing is wrong and it's pissing off a lot of people with less money and camera time! Young Black America's problem is not Hip-Hop or the music, Young Black America's problem is Old White America. In the young black community, there is a growing level of resentment toward the "so called leaders" because you guys DON'T WANT TO REALLY FIX OUR PROBLEMS.

You guys don't really want to be on our side fighting for better school systems, more after school programs, more money for college funding! Where are you leaders at when there's a need to break down to freshman in college on how not to get caught up with credit cards by singing up for an MBNA card, with high interest rates that eventually screw up your credit and makes it that much harder for you to become a homeowner after you graduate college, pending you can find a job in your field after you've spent all this money in student loans!? Where are those seminars? Dubois had it right when he spoke of the Talented Tenth! Rally around us to help teach us about THIS life! It's not our fault that the world is messed up and filled with debauchery. It's not our fault that our communities are screwed! The problems in our community should not fall on our lap. And if you begin to hold us accountable for simply our words -- then I will begin to hold you accountable for your actions; or lack there of. Right is right and wrong is wrong. You as our leaders should have taken a better approach to gaining the attention of those that you are dissatisfied with and had a conversation with them. You don't scold your child in public without fair warning!

Al Sharpton: You run around towns and cities speaking words of wanting to better our community by cleaning up the airwaves. You hold rallies in front of radio stations saying "turn off the music and clean the airwaves." You want to shut down local stations that are playing urban music when most of these local stations house and employ the same people in your community -- the black community. When you visit any station in any city (big or small) playing urban / rap music, the staff is generally black. Now if those stations were to ever shut down -- where do those employees go? Al, if you are for the people, where was your rally when the 3 college students were executed in New Jersey by black men. Where is the rally at for those families and that neighborhood??? I don't see you out there asking for justice yet that incident happened in a black community. If someone was to rap about "how f---ed up black on black crime is and how even if you go to college, you aren't safe on the streets and n----'s aint' sh--" -- that kind of tone is offensive to you and you want to stop that! If that's the truth, then why are you censoring it? No, you need to stop the crime before it happens so that there is no gangster song about a gangster situation.

Oprah: You recently you held a town hall meeting dedicating 2 days of talk to have an open forum about the "Nappy Headed Ho" comment from Imus. Everyone had their 2 cents to say and yet the people that needed to REALLY be there were not at all on your panel of "experts." The questions all were about "why use the word 'ho' or 'bitch' or n---- etc," yet the rappers in question ala Nelly, Snoop, Ludacris weren't anywhere present on your panel. In my eyes you had all the wrong people on there representing and speaking on behalf of other people.

Common is great, but he's not gangsta. If you had a problem with the true content of rap songs then where were those that do that kind of rap 100%? You want to talk about change, and about having us not call women in rap songs "bitches" and "hoes," but one thing I noted, you had all men on your panel of executives. Russell is wonderful, but he's not the Zenith when it comes to new school rappers or their new school mentality. Kevin Liles is great, but what happened to Sylvia Rhone, the head of the label that Nelly is signed to, or Kathy Hughes the head of Radio One or Deborah Lee the head of BET. If the problem really was about women and the "bitch, ho" term being used, where were those ladies to speak on their stance on this issue? They are the ones with the ultimate say pulling all the strings and yet they weren't dully noted as absent from your panel! Oprah you are suppose to protect us, I can find more harm being done to the black community by the movies and sponsors you promote than any rap song.

Just like your son or daughter, niece or nephew... rappers are just kids growing into their own. They aren't always right, but they aren't always wrong either. If our path is misguided, then help us get back on the right road. I'm young, I'm black, and I'm a hard worker. I'm from the hood where mothers leave their kids in the hands of strangers and never look back, I've been with killers, dope dealers, b******, church folk, grandparents, bad parenting from good parents, pushers, junkies, robbers, middlecla** workers, but that's the life I've been around. Gunshots and church hymns usually go hand in hand in most neighborhoods. The grim reality for a lot of kids out there living alone is that life is harsh and cold; kids grow up faster than they want to because they are forced too! Kids are growing up in situations that are f---e up. So the songs we listen to mirror the things we see, the things we dream about and the fantasies we have! Don't change the songs I listen to, change the circumstance from which it comes from -- then the situation will be better!

Growing up in this world of hip-hop, it's disheartening to see our "so called leaders" leave us out to dry. Fine you don't like what we say. Fine disagree with our choice of topics; however, the things we talk about aren't new. We didn't invent the term "pimps, pushers, hoes, tricks, doobies, n----s and gangstas." Hip-Hop didn't create that. Those words were left here for us to use by you guys, your generation. This life we are continuing to live was handed to us by the people before us who didn't do much to clean it up. There may never be a time that we agree on anything, but there is always room for change. As a family -- we will agree to disagree, but it's the synergy in which we do it. If you are on one extreme tangent, and I'm on another, we will never meet eye to eye. At the same time, I will not allow you to bash, yell, condemn, and have a condescending tone on my source of refugee and happiness. As you leaders call out the hip-hop community, saying that we are wrong for what we do and how we do it, I am CALLING EACH OF YOU OUT saying you are wrong for what you are doing to us.

How dare you guys not call Nelly, Snoop, Lil Wayne, David Banner, Jim Jones, Akon, Rick Ross, Fabulous, 50 Cent, Young Buck, Bun B, Too Short and say "lets talk this through." Do you even know who ANY of these people are??????? You are so disconnected from us that we don't even look at you for guidance. If you really want to change something, start by changing your dialogue. Don't talk at us, talk to us!

General Discussion / David Banner's Speech To Congress Over Hip-Hop Lyrics
« on: September 29, 2007, 05:32:12 PM »
This is a very interesting read, if u havent caught the address on youtube or on a blog somewhere.The transcript follows.I'm keen to see more on the outcome from these deliberations.

David Banner was among the few voices for hip-hop that spoke at a recent hearing in front of Congress over the lyrics of the genre. Full transcript of his testimony. Read it below:

"Good afternoon Mr. Chairman and members of the Committee. My name is David Banner. I am an artist for Universal Recordings, a producer, and label executive.

Thank you for inviting my testimony.

This dialogue was sparked by the insulting comments made by Don Imus concerning the Rutgers women's basketball team. Imus lost his job, but later secured a million dollar contract with another station. While he appears to have been rewarded, the hip-hop industry is left under public scrutiny. As this dialogue played out in the media, the voices of the people who create hip-hop and rap music were silenced. We were not invited to participate on any panels, nor given the opportunity to publicly refute any of the accusations hurled at us. While Congress lacks the power to censor, it is of the utmost importance that the people who's livelihood is at stake be made a vital part of this process.

I am from Jackson, Mississippi. Jackson is one of the most violent cities in the United States. Much like Washington, D.C., Jackson stayed in the murder capital run. When I was growing up, it always ranked as one of the top ten cities for the highest number of murders per capital. Being located right below Chicago, a lot of kids got in trouble up there and were sent to Jackson by their grandparents, who were from Jackson.

The by product of this migration was violence. I was blessed to have a very strong man for a father, and a very, very strong woman for a Mother.

Honestly, rap music is what kept me out of trouble.

Statistics will never show the positive side of rap because statistics don't reflect what you do, if you don't commit a murder or a crime. When I would feel angry and would think about getting revenge, I would listen to Tupac.

His anger in a song was a replacement for my anger. I lived vicariously through his music.

Rap music is the voice of the underbelly of America.

In most cases, America wants to hide the negative that it does to its people. Hip-hop is the voice, and how dare America not give us the opportunity to be heard.

I am one of the few artists who went to college. I still see my friends who, as college graduates, are unable to get a job. The truth is that what we do sells. Often artists try to do different types of music and their music doesn't sell. In America, the media only lifts up negativity.

People consider me a philanthropist. I give away close to a quarter of my yearly earnings to send children from impoverished neighborhoods to different cities and to Disney land. This gives them another vision. Rap music has changed my life, and the lives of those around me. It has given us the opportunity to eat. I remember sending 88 kids from the inner city on a trip. I went to the local newspaper and TV station, only to be told that the trip wasn't newsworthy. But if I had shot somebody, it would have been all over the news. I threw the largest urban relief concert in history. That never made the front cover of a magazine. But as soon as I say something negative, rise up against my own, or become sharp at the mouth (no pun intended), I am perceived as being disrespectful to Black leaders. That negativity overshadows all of the positive things that I've done as a rap artist.

Some might argue that the content of our music serves as poison to the minds of our generation. If by some stroke of the pen, hip-hop was silenced, the issues would still be present in our communities. Drugs, violence, and the criminal element were around long before hip-hop existed. Our consumers come from various socioeconomic backgrounds and cultures. While many are underprivileged, a large percentage are educated professionals. The responsibility for their choices does not rest on the shoulders of hip-hop.

Still others raise concerns about the youth having access to our music. Much like the ratings utilized by the Motion picture a**ociation of America, our music is given ratings which are displayed on the packaging.

These serve to inform the public of possible adult content. As such, the probability of shocking the unsuspecting consumers sensibilities is virtually impossible. If the consumer is disinterested or offended by the content of our music, one could simply not purchase our CDs. The music that is played on the radio must comply with FCC guidelines. Again, this provides a safeguard. Ultimately, the burden of monitoring the music that minors listen to rests with their parents.

Some argue that the verbiage used in our music is derogatory. During slavery, those in authority used the word "nigger" as a means to degrade and emasculate. There was no push for censorship of the word back then. The abuse that accompanied the label "nigger" forced us to internalize it. This made the situation easier to digest. Our generation has since a**umed ownership of the word. Now that we are capitalizing off the use of the word, why is it so important that it be censored? The intent and spirit of the word "nigga" in rap music does not even remotely carry the same meaning nor historical intent.

Attempting to censor the use of a word that merely depicts deep camaraderie is outrageous. People should focus less on the offensive words in our music, and more on the messages that are being conveyed.

The same respect is often not extended to hip-hop artists as to those in other arenas. Steven King and Steven Spielberg are renowned for their horrific creations. These movies are embraced as art. Why then is our content not merely deemed horror music?

Mark Twain's literary cla**ic, Huckleberry Finn, is still required reading in cla**rooms across the United States of America. The word "nigger" appears in the book approximately 215 times. While some may find this offensive, the book was not banned by all school districts because of its artistic value. The same consideration should be extended to hip-hop music.

As consumers, we generally gravitate to and have a higher tolerance for things that we can relate to. As such, it is not surprising that the spirit of hip-hop is not easily understood. In the 1971 case of Cohen vs. California, Justice Harlan noted that one man's vulgarity is another man's lyric. The content and verbiage illustrated in our music may be viewed as derogatory or unnecessary, but it is a protected means of artistic expression. In 2005 Al Sharpton, who is a proponent of censorship, stated on CNN that rappers have the right to talk about the violence they come from; if they're going to rap about it and sing about it, they have the First Amendment right. Much like imagery supplied via television, literature, and by other genres of music, we merely provide a product that appeals to our patrons.

Our troops are currently at war under the guise of liberating other countries. While here in America, our rights are being threatened daily. This is illustrated by homeland security, extensive phone tapping and ill placed attempts at censorship. If we are not careful, we will find ourselves getting closer to a dictatorship.

Traditionally multi-billion dollar industries have thrived on the premise of violence, sexuality, and derogatory content. This capitalistic trend was not created nor introduced by hip-hop. It's been here.

It's the American way.

I can admit that there are some problems in hip-hop.

But it is only a reflection of what is taking place in our society. Hip-hop is sick because America is sick.

Thank you,
David Banner"

General Discussion / Latest from Just Blaze!!!
« on: September 24, 2007, 01:12:29 AM »
Just peeped something from Just Blaze:

"You get to a certain point where you look at everything that’s going on within the culture overall.  And you get to a certain point where you start to wonder… what happened?

Then you realize it’s not a cultire anymore, it’s a business. Well, it is a culture that has BECOME a business, which is always a gift and a curse.

The curse is starting to get on my nerves.

Or like Timbo The King (who apparently has some not so nice things to say about me in the final Scratch mag, but that’s okay), I’m bored.

Thought I maybe needed to switch it up a bit, so I’m working on some stuff for Jennifer Hudson right now. Cut a few songs,  this one record is retarded. If you liked "Throwback", you’ll LOVE this.. some real

cla**ic soul.

(If it makes the cut that is)

Saigon video shoot this weeked, and mastering the rest of the album shortly after.

Looks like they want to do a 4th quarter release after all… serious gamble but that this point, hey….why not.

See you on the other side.

PS. Remember you have never heard me talk about release dates, or even time frames before, so don’t start with the "heard it all before, just put the album out/leak more songs already"  nonsense .

‘Cause you’ve never heard anything from me… until now.

More updates and rants in due time, probably sooner than later. Some other things are about to happen."

And that was str8 from the man himself.Keen to check Saigon album & the Jennifer Hudson material.Niceness. :wink:

Producers - Discussion / HIPE & Kanye having fun
« on: June 20, 2007, 03:11:55 PM »
Just sumthing interesting to listen to.Sumthing from HIPE for the AG.Its all luv.

Download at link below:

Old news I know.........but worth a relook and listen. :lol: Check link below:

General Discussion / Urgent: The Death of Internet Radio
« on: May 06, 2007, 11:51:25 PM »
RIAA killed the (Internet) Radio Star:

Have a look at this article at the following link:

A very good read about the action taken against internet radio and the bleak future it may have in the US.

Here's the link to an interesting interview:

General Discussion / Taliep Petersen Murdered!!!
« on: December 18, 2006, 12:31:28 AM »
Man, this was some crazy news that filtered thru early yesterday morning.I still can't believe it.Senseless killings dont seem to want to let up.This guy was an Icon along with David Kramer creating some masterpieces, among them District Six. 8O  8O  :cry:  :cry:

Deepest Sympathies to his family.

General Discussion / THE COUP NEED HELP (bus crash)
« on: December 16, 2006, 07:18:55 PM »
I just came across this recently.Not sure if others know bout this already.Have a read.Its crazy.Wish the Coup all the best and hope them and their fams can get some good support in all ways possible.This was on the Myspace site:

From Boots Riley:

      So, we got on the bus after doing a show at The House of Blues San Diego as part of The Coup/Mr. Lif tour. As the bus took off, I thought that I would go lay in my bunk, listen to my Ipod, and write. But then Zhara, Mr. Lif’s friend and the tour’s merchandise seller, announced that she had “Anchorman” on DVD. Oh Shit. Will Ferrell or writing? Hot 16s would have to wait tonight…Good Night San Diego! So I stayed up in the front lounge of the bus and, even though I’ve seen this movie twice, commenced to laugh my a** off. Almost literally, because of what happened next. Shortly after the acapella singing of “Afternoon Delight” by Ferrell et al., a big bump, then another, then plummeting down as we tipped over to the left. I was sitting in the diner-like booth that many of these buses have in the front. I held on to the table with one hand and tried to guard my head with the other, all the while thinking that I was probably about to die. I don’t remember seeing everyone flying and flipping around me as it was happening, but Carter’s (the road manager) and Wiz’s face were covered in blood, and everybody seemed to be laying around hurt. The bus was on it’s side, with the entrance door up. I called for people to say there names so we could get a head count of who was conscious or not. Silk E, Q (drums), Riccol (ba**), and Metro (Lif’s hype man) were trapped in the back lounge because the doors connecting the front and back lounges to the bunks were electrically powered and didn’t move with no power on. They ended up ripping and squeezing their way out of a tiny little window and jumped down off the bus as the rest of us got out the front. If anyone had been sleeping in the bunks, they would not have been able to get out. I was the third person to jump off the front of the bus, as I hung down to make the jump shorter, I saw that the front of the bus was on fire. I yelled to everyone, saying to get off the bus immediately because the bus was on fire and it could blow up. We all did. No one was killed. The bus was totally engulfed in flames. For a while no one stopped to help, supposedly because the thought we were “illegal aliens” crossing the border. Eventually some great folks stopped and helped. Silk E has two broken ribs and a punctured lung. Wiz has a broken nose, two deep lacerations to the head, and a shattered knee. Zhara has injuries to her hand and had to undergo surgery. Carter had to get stitches to his head and lip. The driver, Glenn, has a broken jaw. All the first three will be in need of follow-up treatments. We all have aching backs, legs, heads etc. Many of us are on pain killers.

      We lost everything in that crash and fire. We were packed to live and do shows on that bus for a month. Most of us had every stitch of clothing we owned on there. We lost clothes, computers, recording equipment, cameras, IDs, phones, keys to cars and homes. We lost cash.We lost all our damn instruments and equipment to perform with. We were and are happy to walk away with our lives. But now we’re home. Most of the band touring with The Coup has kids, rent that won’t quit, bills, and holiday expenses coming. We need money, because like I said the band doesn’t have the tools that they make a living with. Not only did we lose cash and material things on the bus, but we also were depending on this tour for money to make it through. It may take a year for us to see any money from the insurance company.

      I have set up a Paypal account so people can make donations for The Coup. The money will be split between Me (Boots Riley), Silk E, Q, Steve Wyreman (guitar), and Riccol. Mr. Lif is setting one up on his site and when I have that info, we’ll let you know.

      To make a donation, hit button in the “about” section on the front page of this profile, right below the paragraph and above the “We Are The Ones” video. This allows you to donate even without a paypal account.

      If you have an account, ours is Thank you in advance to anyone who does this, this is a really crazy situation. I never thought I would would be doing something like this. I also never thought that we would almost die like like that.
We’re grateful for anything you can do.

Thank you,
Boots Riley

P.S. Thank you for the messages of love and warmth we’ve been receiving. It makes a difference.

Politics / Historical Flashbacks: The Freedom Charter
« on: October 01, 2006, 01:19:22 AM »
I was reading some old news archives and stumbled upon the Freedom Charter.Havent read in a while, but think a glance at it, now and again should be a regular practice for us all, government realise where we've come from and where do we still need to go.Met someone who was present on that day in Kliptown.Had some interesting stories to tell. :)

The Freedom Charter

Adopted at the Congress of the People, Kliptown, on 26 June 1955

We, the People of South Africa, declare for all our country and the world to know:

      that South Africa belongs to all who live in it, black and white, and that no government can justly claim authority unless it is based on the will of all the people;

      that our people have been robbed of their birthright to land, liberty and peace by a form of government founded on injustice and inequality;

      that our country will never be prosperous or free until all our people live in brotherhood, enjoying equal rights and opportunities;

      that only a democratic state, based on the will of all the people, can secure to all their birthright without distinction of colour, race, sex or belief;

      And therefore, we, the people of South Africa, black and white together equals, countrymen and brothers adopt this Freedom Charter;

      And we pledge ourselves to strive together, sparing neither strength nor courage, until the democratic changes here set out have been won.

The People Shall Govern!

      Every man and woman shall have the right to vote for and to stand as a candidate for all bodies which make laws;

      All people shall be entitled to take part in the administration of the country;

      The rights of the people shall be the same, regardless of race, colour or sex;

      All bodies of minority rule, advisory boards, councils and authorities shall be replaced by democratic organs of self-government .

All National Groups Shall have Equal Rights!

      There shall be equal status in the bodies of state, in the courts and in the schools for all national groups and races;

      All people shall have equal right to use their own languages, and to develop their own folk culture and customs;

      All national groups shall be protected by law against insults to their race and national pride;

      The preaching and practice of national, race or colour discrimination and contempt shall be a punishable crime;

      All apartheid laws and practices shall be set aside.

The People Shall Share in the Country's Wealth!

      The national wealth of our country, the heritage of South Africans, shall be restored to the people;

      The mineral wealth beneath the soil, the Banks and monopoly industry shall be transferred to the ownership of the people as a whole;

      All other industry and trade shall be controlled to a**ist the wellbeing of the people;

      All people shall have equal rights to trade where they choose, to manufacture and to enter all trades, crafts and professions.

The Land Shall be Shared Among Those Who Work It!

      Restrictions of land ownership on a racial basis shall be ended, and all the land re-divided amongst those who work it to banish famine and land hunger;

      The state shall help the peasants with implements, seed, tractors and dams to save the soil and a**ist the tillers;

      Freedom of movement shall be guaranteed to all who work on the land;

      All shall have the right to occupy land wherever they choose;

      People shall not be robbed of their cattle, and forced labour and farm prisons shall be abolished.

All Shall be Equal Before the Law!

      No-one shall be imprisoned, deported or restricted without a fair trial; No-one shall be condemned by the order of any Government official;

      The courts shall be representative of all the people;

      Imprisonment shall be only for serious crimes against the people, and shall aim at re-education, not vengeance;

      The police force and army shall be open to all on an equal basis and shall be the helpers and protectors of the people;

      All laws which discriminate on grounds of race, colour or belief shall be repealed.

All Shall Enjoy Equal Human Rights!

      The law shall guarantee to all their right to speak, to organise, to meet together, to publish, to preach, to worship and to educate their children;

      The privacy of the house from police raids shall be protected by law;

      All shall be free to travel without restriction from countryside to town, from province to province, and from South Africa abroad;

      Pa** Laws, permits and all other laws restricting these freedoms shall be abolished.

There Shall be Work and Security!

      All who work shall be free to form trade unions, to elect their officers and to make wage agreements with their employers;

      The state shall recognise the right and duty of all to work, and to draw full unemployment benefits;

      Men and women of all races shall receive equal pay for equal work;

      There shall be a forty-hour working week, a national minimum wage, paid annual leave, and sick leave for all workers, and maternity leave on full pay for all working mothers;

      Miners, domestic workers, farm workers and civil servants shall have the same rights as all others who work;

      Child labour, compound labour, the tot system and contract labour shall be abolished.

The Doors of Learning and Culture Shall be Opened!

      The government shall discover, develop and encourage national talent for the enhancement of our cultural life;

      All the cultural treasures of mankind shall be open to all, by free exchange of books, ideas and contact with other lands;

      The aim of education shall be to teach the youth to love their people and their culture, to honour human brotherhood, liberty and peace;

      Education shall be free, compulsory, universal and equal for all children; Higher education and technical training shall be opened to all by means of state allowances and scholarships awarded on the basis of merit;

      Adult illiteracy shall be ended by a ma** state education plan;

      Teachers shall have all the rights of other citizens;

      The colour bar in cultural life, in sport and in education shall be abolished.

There Shall be Houses, Security and Comfort!

      All people shall have the right to live where they choose, be decently housed, and to bring up their families in comfort and security;

      Unused housing space to be made available to the people;

      Rent and prices shall be lowered, food plentiful and no-one shall go hungry;

      A preventive health scheme shall be run by the state;

      Free medical care and hospitalisation shall be provided for all, with special care for mothers and young children;

      Slums shall be demolished, and new suburbs built where all have transport, roads, lighting, playing fields, creches and social centres;

      The aged, the orphans, the disabled and the sick shall be cared for by the state;

      Rest, leisure and recreation shall be the right of all:

      Fenced locations and ghettoes shall be abolished, and laws which break up families shall be repealed.

There Shall be Peace and Friendship!

      South Africa shall be a fully independent state which respects the rights and sovereignty of all nations;

      South Africa shall strive to maintain world peace and the settlement of all international disputes by negotiation - not war;

      Peace and friendship amongst all our people shall be secured by upholding the equal rights, opportunities and status of all;

      The people of the protectorates Basutoland, Bechuanaland and Swaziland shall be free to decide for themselves their own future;

      The right of all peoples of Africa to independence and self-government shall be recognised, and shall be the basis of close co-operation.

      Let all people who love their people and their country no say, as we say here:


General Discussion / Phonte Lashes out!!!
« on: August 06, 2006, 06:12:59 PM »
Below is an interesting read as well as some links to 2 tracks of the Little Brother "Seperate but Equal" mixtape:

For those who missed it, Phonte of Little Brother recently got into a bit of a blog beef. The origin of the argument itself wasn't that interesting, but he did say something that I thought needed to be further examined. In explaining why he thought most people were not into his group, Phonte stated that, "The majority of the hip-hop audience is dumb . . . because they have to be told what to like or not like."

Continuing on, he made the comment that insiders acknowledge that "tastemakers" are an integral part of the music industry. This is a point that I think a lot of hip hop fans (and music fans in general) aren't really aware of. Whether its a dj at a major club, a promoter with connections at a radio station or a major label A&R, there are individuals who play a significant role in deciding what music the public hears. If a club dj -- and I'm talking about djs in the major cities, not DJ Local from your around the way hole-in-the-wall -- decides he's going to play a certain record over and over (or completely remove a certain artist from the rotation) that can have a huge impact on what songs become popular within that region. And you can bet that promoters from music labels are willing to make it financially worthwhile for a dj to play whatever artist they want him to. During my brief career as a Boston dj, I saw it happen on more than one occasion. Word to Benzino.

More important than clubs, in the process of determining what music achieves national success, is the radio. Though the practice of paying radio stations for broadcasting a specific song, known as "payola," is technically illegal, there is a loophole around it. While the current U.S. law says that radio stations must announce whenever a record label has paid the station for playing a song, this law does not apply if someone other than the record label pays for the "spin." To get around this, record labels hire agents to pay the radio stations a promotional fee to play a song. When a third party pays the radio station, it does not have to be reported to the audience. It isn't always direct payments of money, either. Often, record labels will give members of the radio station (both the radio personality and the executives behind the station) gifts in the form of paid vacations, hotel stays and gift certificates.

The result is that certain songs get constant play on major radio stations without the audience knowing that they are listening to what is essentially a paid advertisement. This affects more than just the listeners of the radio station that is taking in payola bribes. Many smaller radio stations decide what music they will play based on music industry publications that report how many spins a song gets on the major national radio stations. By spending enough money to get a song played on the major radio stations, a record label can create a domino effect causing the song to be put in constant rotation on stations nationwide. Hurt the most by this practice are artists on smaller labels who cannot afford to play the payola game. Without enough promotional money to buy spins on the radio, these artists have little hope of ever seeing a platinum record. Listen to Hot 97 for an hour anytime this month and I will give you better than 50/50 odds of hearing Lil Jon and E-40's Snap Yo Fingers. Do you think people in New York are really that into this song?

At the top of the tastemaker food chain are the A&Rs and other record label executives. If a record label decides that it is not the right time for a certain artist to release an album, whether or not the album has already been put together, then you are not going to hear any music from that artist. M.O.P. claim they have put together over 60 album-ready songs in the past few years, yet they weren't able to release an album until they left Roc-A-Fella. Damon Dash & co. felt that the time was not right for an M.O.P. album, so it was never released. Its not just individual artists, either, that are affected.

Record labels have the power to push an entire genre of music onto the public, whether they like it or not. This has been particularly evident in hip hop, with the labels promoting at various times Crunk, Reggaeton, Snap and Hyphy as the dominant form of rap (though in hindsight, that Hyphy thing never really seemed to work out). Crunk music has been around since the early 90's, but it wasn't until 2003 that any of the major labels picked up on it. Once the promotional machine got behind Crunk, that's pretty much the only hip hop music you could hear on the radio or on t.v. And its not like all of these crunk artists suddenly decided to pick up a microphone at the same time. They had been around for awhile but only received attention once the major labels made a coordinated effort to promote Crunk.

This isn't to say that hip hop fans don't have some responsibility when a group like D4L starts selling records, and this is where I disagree with Phonte, who I think gives too much credit to the industry's ability to brainwash consumers. Hearing a bad song over and over on the radio might get it stuck in your head, and it might even convince you that you don't actually hate it, but you have to take an active role to go out and buy the cd. There's only so much the tastemakers of the music industry can do. They can expose you to the music that they want you to hear, but they don't have the power to pull the money out of your wallet and pay for the album. Maybe we all just have to face the facts and accept that people actually like Laffy Taffy enough to pay for it.

LB - Let It Go feat. Mos Def

LB - Macaroni

General Discussion / Ice Cube - Best Rapper Ever?!?
« on: July 29, 2006, 07:00:26 PM »
Just read this lil article........have a look and see what you think:

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