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Out Of Control?

Don't Knock The Hustle

Like a Pimp: Terrence Howard

"Man, it's hard out here for a pimp . . . "

Hip-Hop is in the news -- some of its good and some of its bad.

Hustle & Flow, starring Terrence Howard and Ludacris, had a solid opening weekend, hustlin' up an estimated $8.1 million to finish in seventh place. Meanwhile, the film director's Craig Brewer recently inked a two-year production deal with Paramount Pictures. The first film under the pact is the previously announced Black Snake Moan, starring Samuel L. Jackson and Christina Ricci.

Terrence Howard will probably nab a Best Actor nomination for his performance in Hustle & Flow. And don't knock Terrence's hustle either -- homeboy has three more movies coming out this year. Pimpin' is in his vein, beeyotch!

Two employees from the Source magazine allegedly were involved in a shootout at a club in New York Saturday night that left three men hospitalized with multiple gunshot wounds. According to reports, the five men were embroiled in a heated argument over rap music, which then spilled outside of the club and into a full-scale brawl. The two suspects allegedly then pulled out guns and started firing at the three victims.

They called this tragic incident a hip-hop shooting. Now if these two alleged gunmen were stock brokers, would they have called this a Wall Street shooting? I think not. Nevertheless, this is a messed-up situation. No one should ever get shot-up over rap music. Let's keep it positive, folks.

The Diddster -- P. Diddy for the clueless -- is working hard to make sure his Bad Boy record label and his Sean John fashion company are financially successful this year: The 411 on P. Diddy's Empire

'90s female gangsta rapper Boss is taking another stab at the rap game. I was a big fan of Boss back in the days when she released her debut album Born Gangstaz. That track "Deeper" was on heavy rotation in my boom box. I liked her more than her fellow rhyme-spitter Yo-Yo. Read It: Same As the Old Boss
(Hat tip to Funk Digi)

Props to journalist Jeff Chang on winning the prestigious American Book Award for literary excellence for his page-turning, hip-hop history book Can't Stop Won't Stop.

Smooth jazz artists like Gerald Albright, Roy Hargrove, Ledisi and others have raided the vaults of Def Jam Records and reworked several of the label's classics for the upcoming tribute CD Def Jazz (due Aug. 9). Among the tracks covered include Ledisi's version of Oran "Juice" Jones' "The Rain," Roy's reworking of Method Man's "All I Need" and Gerald's take of Slick Rick's "Hey Young World."

This is kinda hot. This collection reminds me of those Hidden Beach's "Unwrapped" compilations. But there are some glarling omissions on "Def Jazz." Where's Public Enemy's "Don't Believe the Hype"? And instead of reworking LL Cool J's "Doin It" why not cover his classic banger, "Big 'Ol Butt" (Just Joking). The list is endless, of course, so here's wishing that "Def Jazz, Vol. 2" and "Vol. 3" are in the works.

Rap Quotes of the Week: Hip-Hop 101

"D, it's not a game out [here]. They don't respect old school artist[s] the way they used to. I rap because it's how I pay my bills. I can't get a job in McDonald's and have a kid telling me, 'Kane, let me get a burger and some fries, and no half steppin' with that either.'"
-- Big Daddy Kane

(via D-Nice's blog)

"I'm not a businessman, I'm a business, man . . ."
-- Jay-Z