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October 2006

Posts from September 2006

God Bless The Dead

"We talk a lot about Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr., but it's time to be like them, as strong as them. I don't want to be a role model. I just want to be someone who says, "This is who I am and this what I do."
-- 2Pac, bio for Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z., 1993

I had to write a 2Pac tribute story for my job. It was one of the hardest assignments I had to write ever. For two weeks, I couldn't bang out a sentence on my computer keyboard explaining why 2Pac was/is such a beloved rap icon. Otherwise typing, "2Pac is dead," I was coming up blanks. I was having a serious mental block.

I mean, what can be said about 2Pac that hasn't already been said or documented? To be honest, I was never a HUGE fan of 2Pac. After Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z., I most loved the late rap icon's singles more than his entire albums. "Dear Mama," "So Many Tears," "When My Homies Call," "Hail Mary," "Keep Ya Head Up," "Holler If You Hear Me," "California Love," "I Ain't Mad at Cha" and "Changes" were just some of my favorite 2Pac joints.

2Pac was all things to many people: He's an ex-con, a charasmatic actor, an activist, a misoygnist, a lyricist, a son, a brother, a revolutionary.

For me, 2Pac was a great rapper who died way before his time. A man who wasn't afraid to speak his mind. Now, don't get it twisted, I'm not exalting 2Pac to G.O.A.T. status -- dead or alive.

I just simply loved the man's music. Period.

2Pac is a beloved artist who will be sorely missed.

And on the 10th Anniversary of 2Pac's untimely death, the only thing I can say about 'Pac is . . .

I ain't mad at cha.

Rest In Peace. God Bless The Dead.

3rd Eye Open poet/MC hardCore did a better job explaining 2Pac's legacy, read his 2Pac tribute right HERE.


Where Were You?

On Sept. 11, at 10 a.m. ET, I was on the job watching on television the horror that was unfolding that day. I was one out of three journalists who made it into the newsroom that day. All transportation in and out of the city were shut down after the Twin Towers collapsed. I overwhelmed by all of the television, radio and internet coverage of the disaster. At some point during the day, I became emotionally drained and put my head down on the desk in my cubicle and became teary-eyed.

It was a long sad day for me. The hardest part was having to write news reports to our radio affiliates about what was happening in New York that day. To be honest, I didn't know what the hell was going on.

Much like Hurricane Katrina, 9/11 is another American tragedy that we must never forget. In addition, many thanks goes out to the brave police, firefighters and rescue squads who rose to the occassion to save numerous lives.

So with that, it's time to reflect and get informed.

To continue with the Fifth Anniversary of 9/11, below are articles of an exhaustive discussion between two esteemed journalists Kevin Powell and Charlie Braxton on 9/11 and what the hip-hop community needs to do to move forward.

Read up:

Article 1
Article 2
Article 3
Article 4

Also, check out five new books on 9/11.

And Ian from a Different Kitchen offers an excellent post-9/11 rundown.

And finally, please look at the Memorial List and pay your respects to the fallen 9/11 heroes in New York, the Pentagon and in Pennslyvania.

May they all rest in peace.

Never forget . . .


Believe The Hype!

The Best Hype Williams Video: Music Poll Results

01. Busta Rhymes: "Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Can See" -- 33 Percent
02. 2Pac (F/ Dr. Dre): "California Love" -- 17 Percent
03. Aaliyah: "Rock the Boat" -- 12 Percent
(TIE) Jay-Z: "Big Pimpin'" -- 8 Percent
(TIE) Missy Elliott: "The Rain" (Supa Dupa Fly) -- 8 Percent
(TIE) Lil Jon: "Snap Yo Fingers" -- 8 Percent
(TIE) TLC: "No Scrubs -- 8 Percent
08. Notorious B.I.G.: "Mo Money, Mo Problems -- 4 Percent


Dreamin' On

"I've been doing it for so long I feel like a veteran. I feel like I'm ready to retire. I got kudos, I got the respect of damn near the entire music industry, so I've done everything but put an album out."
-- Lupe Fiasco, as quoted in Illinois Entertainer

In and around a few blogging circles, Chi-City verbalist Lupe Fiasco is being touted as this fall's hip-hop hero who going to save us from the mundane rap stuff that overunning radio and video channels right now. I don't expect Sir Lupe to change the musical climate of today's rap music scene, but here's hoping that his sound will perk up a few ears who think that hip-hop is all about bitches, bling and brew. The good news here is not only is Lupe's music turning heads, but the videos for his latest singles are also on point. Peep these four clips by Lupe Fiasco -- they are all off the chain (no hang low)!

Go get 'em Lupe!

Lupe Fiasco -- "I Gotcha" (Featuring Pharrell)

Lupe Fiasco -- "Daydreamin" (Featuring Jill Scott)

Lupe Fiasco -- "Failure"

Lupe Fiasco -- "Kick Push" (Remix) (Featuring Pharrell)

However, Lupe Fiasco is on Atlantic Records -- home to North Carolina rap trio Little Brother. We all know how Atlantic bungled their project The Minstrel Show, so it's my gut feeling that they are going to fuck up Lupe's promotion, as well. Even blogger Eskay says that Atlantic Records is clueless when it comes to promoting Lupe Fiasco's new album Food & Liquor. Which probably means -- in the end -- that Lupe's album will get ethered in its first week of sales like his Chicago brethren Rhymefest's album Blue Collar.

Sad isn't it?

Nevertheless, here's a plug:

Lupe Fiasco's Food & Liquor CD drops on Sept. 19. Go cop it!


Nibbles And Bits

I haven't been keeping up with the insanity of VH1's Flavor of Love 2, which is why I'm glad that the Flavor of Love 2's unofficial blog is on the case. The blog often posts scoops and "insider" information on the show, which has been real helpful for me since I haven't been watching the series lately. Blogger Groovy Noodles is a real champion for posting episode recaps on the day of the show's broadcasts. Check out this blogger's recap of episode 5 that recently aired -- it's kinda funny.

But seriously . . . is the show really that off the chain?

I also recently discovered some more craziness outside of Flavor of Love 2 . . . check this out:

First, the Flavor of Love blog has already reported this . . . but last season's sore loser New York may actually return as a contestant on the show. If that happens, shit is really going to hit the floor -- ala Somethin. If the rumors are true, New York might win Flavor Flav's heart, or if all else fails, start a bitch fight with one of the girls. Let's hope for the latter -- LOL!

Now, for the record, I predict that Nibblz to win it all.

And speaking of Nibblz, guess what I have found . . . .

I've found new photos of Nibblz right HERE. (NSFW!!!) Also, Nibblz gave an interview, in which she briefly talks about her love for Flavor Flav. Here's an excerpt that I've found particularly interesting:

Let's get down to business, are you really hot for Flav?
Nibblz: Straight up! Flavor Flav is outrageously charming. There's something hot about a man that acts on his primal urges. If Flav likes your ass in those jeans, he's gonna take a handful of it! What can I say? I like my men a little beastly!

So you'd like to be Flavor's woman?
Nibblz: Sure. Why not? Flav is dynamic; he knows how to make an entrance and how to have a good time. I need a man that can be a show-stopper too. You've got to be a little crazy to keep up with me!

What makes you different from the other women on Flavor of Love 2?
Nibblz: I've got Pussy Power! Men sense that one night with me could be life-changing. I can blow your mind! Trust.

Pussy Power? Guurrl, stop it.

And check this out, Nibblz will launch her own official site -- -- on September 21.

This tells me three things:

(1) Nibblz is indeed the winner of the show.
(2) Nibblz will lose and launch her career as the "Flavor of Love" vixen.
(3) Nibblz is trying to stretch her 15 minutes of fame for all its worth.

Well I guess it's No. 2! If you haven't seen them by now, there are "video spoilers" of Flavor of Love 2 floating around on the Internet and one clip reveals that Nibblz was kicked off the show in Episode 6. Apparently, Flav didn't see Nibblz as a good role model for his kids. Noooo! Really? Also, New York joins the show as a contestant and the shit hits the fan -- for real. I'm not going to reveal any more details or link the videos. You know where to find them.

In the end, I truly believe New York is going to win this thing. The girl is fierce and she's not going to go out like she did last time. The ladies are in serious trouble. The claws are definitely out. Meow!