yeloson: (Default)
One of my favorite hiphop groups from Seattle, Blue Scholars, are funding their next album through Kickstarter.

What's really interesting is that this is effectively folks doing "pre-orders" to fund the whole thing.

This can only work after you've built up a fanbase appropriately, but Blue Scholars has always been savvy about targeting their market- they started by hitting up the small out-of-the-way college towns that rarely get hiphop, or music at all. Consistently hitting up these towns on tour not only made money, it was a good way to build a market.

Now, they're kicking $21,000 out of a $24,000 goal in 9 days. Although I don't think this preorder/ransom model is going to be THE way of music in the future, I think it's going to be a significant method.
yeloson: (Default)
For all the pearl clutching, ZOMG TONE, politeness demanding folks who fear the orc hordes... a little bit of real militancy for you...


Jun. 19th, 2010 10:37 pm
yeloson: (Default)
Hiphop. A chain of transmission.

Despite all the drama and the beefs, the divisions, etc. - hiphop is a community. The divisions exist because even with all the hate, the fact is, folks had to be listening to each others' music to even take it there.

Less considered and more taken for granted is this: hiphop is connected. Lyrics reference other songs, other artists, common experiences ideas.

It's like auditory hypertext- each phrase might connect to a hundred songs before, a hundred songs since.

But only if you've been listening.

This sampling, electronically, this flipping back a phrase verbally, from before, new, twisted, changed just a little, this isn't plagiarism, it can't be - it's summoning spirits, it's repeating words of your lyrical "ancestors", it's forming ritual and prayer.

"Raise your hands in the air" has no need to be original, it only needs to connect you now, to then, to those before, and those ahead of you. When and where you flip it, it's like griots speaking their family lineages to the seventh generation, "...and here I stand, mic in hand."

This is the culture.

And this is the disconnect in how folks relate to it. They want a song, or a few songs, they want the lyrics simple, self contained. But they're never that- they're history, they're tied down, tied together, syllables taking middle passages across the dangerous oceans of passion, to rebel and find freedom broken out by screaming your name, your real name, or as real as it can be, with so little left, and so little remembered.

If you take the past away, we'll make a new past, stronger, better than before. We still speak the songs of our forebearers, even if it was just 10 minutes ago, because building family is what we do no matter how far away you move us.

Hiphop is a group endeavor. It is a community religion. This is the line between the practitioners and the appropriators - who still participates with the community - who performs with other hiphop artists, who brings them in, who says their words as well, because if "I shine, you shine"?

Hiphop is always a dialogue.

We can say the lyrics together because we know the song. Because we know -the- songs. Because we kept together, connected, tied by words passed from house party to house party, corner ciphers and turns of phrases spoken years before they got radio play and years after Clear Channel wiped them from the collective memory.

They say hiphop is dead, yet we keep raising it's spirit, saying it's names over and over.

"The job of resurrectors is to bring back the dead", and so, each MC and each fan, we do so again and again.

Hallelujah, put your hands in the air.

Town Shit

Mar. 28th, 2010 03:15 pm
yeloson: (Default)
Random 206 hiphop for your enjoyment:

(this one's on some teenage boy shit, but I think y'all can relate to the hair issue):

Bisexual from Class Project on Vimeo.

yeloson: (southside)
A little bit of kali stickwork in this video. Also "We're the reason they made the 4 pound go blaow" - I wonder how many folks will catch that reference to the origin of the .45 caliber bullet?

Bambu: Slow Down (with Prometheus Brown of Blue Scholars) from Beatrock Music on Vimeo.


yeloson: (Default)

November 2012



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