By: Hot Gossip Gal Ok so Hov has his love child safely tucked away in the islands but from the sounds of things, he might need to think about spending a bit more time with his only child as his girl Beyonce has been putting out there that she won’t be having kids for at least another ten years. Could this be Beyonce putting her foot down over the secret love child? She said last year she wanted to retire within five years and have a family and now suddenly its ten years. If Jay were to be her baby daddy that would make him nearly 50 when Beyonce’s baby alarm would be ringing. Can’t see that myself.
By Quibian Salazar-Moreno Even though Stephen Marley has been part of a musical family since he was born in 1972, he never ventured out on his own. For years he was part of the Melody Makers his brother Ziggy Marley’s award-winning band. In the 1990’s he produced Damian Marley’s debut album and also did production work for the Fugees, Michael Franti and later on Erykah Badu, dead prez, Eve and Mr. Cheeks. An avid hip-hop fan, Stephen concocted and produced the hip-hop tribute to Bob Marley, Chant Down Babylon which featured hip-hop remixes of Marley classics and appearances from Busta Rhymes, Lauryn Hill, Rakim, The Roots, MC Lyte and Chuck D. But what really got people excited about Stephen was his work with Damian Marley on the Welcome to Jamrock album. After the success of Jamrock, Stephen quickly got started on his own album, Mind Control, which hit shelves in March. We caught up with Stephen and talked about the new album, upcoming projects and what it was like growing up the son of a legend. How’d you come up with the name Mind Control? Mind Control is a song on the album that’s speaking about physical and mental slavery. High tech slavery. Just reading books inspired it like the late Great Planet Earth and actually a book called Mind Control. Why did it take so long for your solo album to come out? It’s been one long effort. It was supposed to come out like two or three years ago. At the time I was producing for my brother’s, Damian, Welcome to Jamrock album. At the time his single, “Welcome to Jamrock”, just took off but the album wasn’t ready. So we couldn’t afford to lose his momentum. But my record wasn’t really started anyway. So we decided to put mine on the backburner and finish up his album. We were trying to catch up with the momentum of the single. That was one thing on why it took awhile and then after I got a chance to sit with it you know, I made some changes and redirected it and it turned into Mind Control. Is “Traffic Jam” a true story? Yeah, that happened to us in Tallahassee. We got arrested and charged and they locked us up. Is there ever any pressure of being compared to or following in the footsteps of your father’s musical legacy? Well, it’s a good pressure. It’s a good thing; it’s not a bad thing. Our father is our mentor, so it’s okay to be compared or be pressured to be like him. That’s our teacher, it’s a good pressure, and it’s not a bad pressure. It’s not like our father is a bad influence you know. So any pressure should be in any which way like our master musically, it’s a good pressure. You produced the Chant Down Babylon album which merged Bob Marley’s music with hip-hop and you received some criticism for that. You think your father would have been cool with the project? Yeah, man. Yes! I mean there’s good and bad, but he would find things that he likes. How was it growing up as a son of Bob Marley? Was there a lot of attention or was it just regular? It was just regular for me and where I come from is an island, and it’s all good. Everybody was cool in that sense ya know? Nobody was really in awe, it was more like, “What’s up bro?”, a cool, cool, vibe. You have Mos Def on the album, how did you hook up with him? Well, first we are fans of his music. Then Damian did some work with Alicia Keys, she had a concert special. That’s where Damian and Mos Def met. Then he came down to Miami to do the Bob Marley tribute concert that we do every year and we met. He’s a friend of ours also, he’s a conscious youth, a conscious rapper, ya know? What other projects do you have coming up? We have a Kymani Marley album, that’s coming up in the fall. Kymani’s record is almost finished so that’ll be out in the fall. Then we got Julian’s record and then Damian’s record early next year and then after that, we’re going to do the Marley Brothers record. We’re all going to do a record together. You got the tour launching in April, what should fans expect from the show? Well, you know, we got the whole Marley vibe, first of all, because that is the banner that we fly. It is our crest, ya know? We’ll come out do some tracks from the old, the old stuff and some of the new stuff off of the new album. Some of my father’s stuff will be incorporated into it. Then I’ll bring out Damian, and then we’ll do the stuff that we do together and make it a nice finale. It’ll be good vibes it’s going to be a very uplifting show, ya know? Uptempo, up-vibes, up everything. It’s gonna be fire! How are you feeling about the current sound of dancehall and reggae nowadays? Well, you know there’s good and bad. Good thing to say, bad things to say. I can’t say that the music that is being pushed forward is… it’s not the essence of what we’re coming from. It’s our music still, but it’s a lighter side. I’ll just say that, So who would you recommend that has that essence? There are a number of people that come with that essence as far as youths today. You have Sizzla, you have Capleton, you have Buju, you have Spragga, all the youths that know how to balance it. Where you can enjoy the beat and dance but at the same time, they’re saying things that are constructive. So you have youths and you have youths upcoming but at the same time you have people that hustle the music and you can tell the hustlers from the difference of the real people, ya know? That is why it gets tainted sometimes because these hustlers are just in it for the hustle and don’t really have a genuine love for it, so anything goes for them. They bring all the murder into it. What gets you in the mood to start writing and making music? Anything. Anything, really. Life itself, of course is a big influence. So anything. There’s a song called “Dragonfly”, because he was outside looking at a dragonfly, so that’s how it is. Anyway which way it comes. What are your top 5 Bob Marley songs, or songs you wish you would have wrote? Come on, bro! That’s like asking who is my favorite child! Top 5… right now we’re talking about “Exodus”, because we’re getting ready to re-release that album. At the same time, where my father was musically at that time, making that album with the messages. It has “Jammin’”, that’s the album with “Turn Your Lights Down Low”, you know it was a nice balanced record. Exodus, that message, it was again, a landmark for where he was at the time. So “Exodus” is one of the songs, “One Love” is one of the songs, and then the tune “Catch a Fire”. Then the tune, “Africa Unite”. One more… “Is This Love?” You have produced outside of the family, who are some of the artists you’ve worked with? We did stuff with dead prez, we did stuff for Eve, Busta Rhymes, we did stuff for Guru. Guru’s stuff is coming out soon and we just did a remix with Gwen Stefani. As far as hip-hop, who are you feeling? For hip-hop, we tend to stick with the same people that we know until something that comes out that really just… alright, I like Lupe Fiasco. I like his style and everything. Any last words? Just keep supporting the conscious music and thank you for your support.
By: Rizoh If you’re like most of Xzibit’s fans, you probably disliked many of the songs on his last Sony album, Weapons of Mass Destruction. In the fashion of artist censorship that runs rampant among major record companies, Sony frowned at one of the songs on Weapons of Mass Destruction, because of its controversial nature. While on tour to promote his new independently-released record, Full Circle, X to the Z spoke to the Herald Sun about his back-and-forth with Sony over song selections. “On Weapons of Mass Destruction I put together a Bush speech. There were Sony lawyers who wanted me to sign something to leave them clear of repercussions,” said X. “I was like ‘Aw man’. We’d argue about the songs they wanted as singles and it’d hold my record up for months if I didn’t agree with them. It wasn’t cool.” In the interview, Xzibit also states that “Pimp My Ride” is a wrap, and he’s now focused on doing what he loves most – music.
By: Rizoh You’ve heard the expression “Last night the DJ saved my life,” right? Well, the reverse was the case in this story which sounds like a scene from Stephen King novel. A disc jockey in Shelby, NC suffered a seizure while on-air and managed to give a public plea for help before passing out. The DJ, Tim Biggerstaff of WOHS, said to be diabetic, was the only person working on the holiday. A listener named Gerald Weathers heard the 46-year old DJ’s call for help and raced to the nearby station. His quick response helped save Biggerstaff’s life. The Associated Press reports that this isn’t the first time a listener has had to rescue the DJ. A fan donated a kidney to him when he needed a transplant in 2003.
By: Hot Gossip Gal Not surprising she is going for the new generation of performers as she has pretty much worked her way through the thirty somethings. Anyhow Ms Steffans new main squeeze is supposed to be the self proclaimed sex addict Ne-yo. Can’t say I am surprised. The two were spotted at the opening of the Def Jam recording artists new studio in the A.
By Quibian Salazar-Moreno El-P’s new album, “I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead” is already being called one of the best underground hip-hop albums of the year, and now he’s taking it on the road. P started his tour last night in New Orleans and will run until June 15, ending at the Bonnaroo Festival in Manchester, Tennessee. But while you’re waiting for EL-P to come to your town, the rapper and his label, Def Jux, has put a secret code on their website, DEFINITIVE JUX. Fans who are able to decode the message will receive further instructions (which will self-destruct in 15 seconds) and have a chance to win a $150 shopping spree. Then later on, Def Jux will put another coded message on the site giving fans a chance to win a trip for two to New York City. For now, here’s El-P’s tour itinerary: 06/01/07 – Orlando , FL – The Social 06/02/07 – Common Grounds – Gainsville, FL 06/03/07 – Ybor City , FL – Orpheum 06/04/07 – Atlanta , GA – Lennys Bar and Grill 06/06/07 – Ashville , NC – Stella Blue 06/07/07 – Carrboro , NC – Cats Cradle 06/08/07 – Washington , DC – The 9:30 Club 06/09/07 – New York , NY – Irving Plaza 06/12/07 – Philadelphia , PA – First Unitarian Church 06/13/07 – Pittsburgh , PA – Diesel Club Lounge 06/15/07 – Manchester , TN – Bonnaroo
By Quibian Salazar-Moreno Not only has Just Blaze been producing hits for Jay-Z and the Roc-A-Fella fam for awhile, but he’s also been trying to develop his writing skills. He’s been writing video games for XXL Magazine for the past couple of years but now he’s trying to get his blog on. Last weekend he quietly launched THE MEGATRONDON2 where he will muse about hip-hop, gadgets, video games and anything else he wants. “One thing I realized in the past 10 years of my career is that what came along with my fame very semi-celebrity was a lot of misconception,” Blaze wrote. “And i realized it all comes down to perception. In other words, if the people know nothing about you aside from your music and then all of a sudden you pop up in a BADLY edited scene in a movie making it look like all you do is play video games all day … well…. that’s what they are going to go on. The little glimpses into someone’s life are all the public has to go on. So I figure I’ll share the real deal. No, I am not going to be posting day by day video feeds of my day by day activities, you guys would probably die of boredom and I’m not that self righteous.. I dont know WTF im gona post and it’ll be completely random.. Enjoy the ride..” So far Blaze has posted reviews of new gadgets, songs he’s listening to at the moment and even some very old beats (1992), that he made when he 14 or 15 years old. He’s already made 16 posts in 5 days, hopefully he keeps on making beats.
By: Rizoh While Cam’ron is busy getting his vacationing on, Diplomats Records President Freekey Zeke is back on his grind. Zeke is set to release his solo debut, Book of Ezekiel, on July 24, and we can’t guarantee that it will include any biblical verses. To keep production inexpensive, Zeke turned to his fellow Diplomats—Jim Jones, Juelz Santana, Jha Jha, Hell Rell, JR Writer, and the one and only Killa Cam—for collaborations on Book of Ezekiel. Fresh out of a three-year jail stint that ended in November 2006, Zeke headed straight to the studio to create songs that reflect his viewpoints on hip-hop and the world at large. (Or so we’re told.) We’re also promised Zeke’s trademark humorous skits on Book of Ezekiel. "I’m happy tofinallyshow the world what I can do as an artist in my own right," said Freekey Zekey via a statement. "Book of Ezekiel is my own story, and the Diplomats family is a big part of my music. Ithank thefans who have stood by me through everything, and I am sure they’ll feel what I’m bringing on the album." You can listen to the first single, “Hater What You Lookin’ At,” in our Audio Section. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN Book of Ezekiel Tracklist 1. Intro – prod by Dramasetters 2. Daddy Back f/ Cam’ron & Juelz Santana – prod by J.A. 3. Like This f/ Sen – prod by DA 4. Skit 5. Shoot’em Up f. Hell Rell & JR Writer – prod by Spectacular 6. Hater what You Lookin’ At – prod by Freebass 7. Crunk’d Up – prod by C Dub 8. Skit 9. Livin’ It Up f/ Tobb – prod by Flava Beats 10. My Life – prod by StreetRunner 11. Skit 12. Killem Killem f/ Juelz Santana – prod by J.A. 13. Streets – prod by Ash 14. 730 Dip Dip f/ Jim Jones & Ash – prod by Carmelo Torres& Ash 15. Where The Dutch f/ Tobb – prod by Tito Green 16. Fly Fitted – prod by The Firemen 17. Bottom Bitch – prod by The Firemen 18. Steph f/ Sen – prod by DA 19. B without Base f/ Lil Wayne & Jha Jha – prod by JR (Legendary Media Group)
By: Hot Gossip Gal We still don’t know if she is pregnant or not and I doubt us lil people will be the first to know anyway…BUT Ms Berry just has the looks and the style to make pushing a grocery cart sexy.
By: Rizoh Bill Max was a professor at Stillman College until he realized that he had wasted two years of his professional career trying to redeem the irredeemable. “My students’ academic performance had been generally disappointing, and I could not persuade most students to even attend class regularly,” says Max of his first year at Stillman. Of course, hip-hop was to blame for his plight. Says Professor Max: “Instead of taking pride in being exemplary students, many were devotees of hip-hop culture. They were anti-intellectual, rude and profane.” I don’t know what’s worse—Bill Max’s myopic understanding of hip-hop culture or his “quitter” attitude.
By: Hot Gossip Gal Someone brought to my attention, thanks Michy, that it is being rumored Jeezy’s gal, Keisha Cole took the whole f**king for tracks to another level. Word is that she used to give up her goodies so that her brothers who were trying to get deals could get in the studio and lay something down ..obviously not what Keisha was laying down for of course. Not sure what to think about this as as we all know..anything is possible.
By Quibian Salazar-Moreno It’s been three years since Def Jux artist Aesop Rock released new music (2004’s Fast Cars, Danger, Fire, and Knives EP) and six years since he released a full album’s worth of tunes (2001’s Labor Days). But that doesn’t mean he’s been slacking. Aesop collaborated with Jeremy Fish to make a “children’s book that’s not for children”, called the “The Next Best Thing”, he scored a couple of movies (“Fishtales” and “Walleyball”), and made a mix CD for Nike’s Original Run Series. But in a recent interview, Aesop said that he’s been working on his new album, “None Shall Pass”, for the last two years. "I get so focused that I forget that people have to actually hear this sh*t some day, so those songs where I went off on weird tangents just to try something new … I start thinking, are people gonna get this?," Aesop told Billboard.com. "Me and Blockhead (Aesop’s longtime collaborator) are really like a well-oiled machine at this point. One of the main differences was how much we mixed and matched samples with live instrumentation. A lot of it was pre-planned, but then at one point we ran into a handful of sample issues, and between me and a group of musicians I know, we had to restructure a good amount of the production. It ended up being this really hefty mix of samples and live stuff." The album also features contributions from DJ Big Wiz, Rob Sonic, El-P and John Darnielle of the Mountain Goats. Look for “None Shall Pass” to hit stores on August 28.
By Quibian Salazar-Moreno MTV’s Real World: Las Vegas season was probably the most popular season in the series’ history. It was so popular that MTV has decided to reunite the cast of Alton, Arissa, Steven, Irulan, Frank, Brynn and Trishelle for a new season which has them holed up in a Las Vegas hotel for two weeks. While everybody has pretty much grown up and trying to start careers, Arissa is taking a shot at hip-hop. For those that don’t remember, Arissa is the Black girl who appeared in Playboy alongside Trishelle after the season ended. And apparently Arissa is pretty serious about this hip-hop thing. She has about four tracks on her website, and gives an explanation of what is being heard. “What you are listening to is me raw and uncut in the studio,” she writes. “What usually happens is that when I write a freestyle to a beat (huh?), I am just trying to see if what I’m saying fits the music. Then I take it home and listen to it 2,000 in a row. See what needs to be tweaked, and go back to the studio and redo it.” She been staying in Las Vegas and working within that local hip-hop scene. She’s hoping to add video and more music to her website in the near future. You be the judge.
By: Rizoh Master P, who has been playing the role of bad-rapper-gone-good lately, has set September 4 as the release date for his new album, Hip-Hop History. There’s nothing spectacular about that date, except it’s the same day 50 Cent hopes to release his self-titled third album. In response to P’s newfound approach of promoting a positive image, 50 Cent exclaimed that “Master P doesn’t sell CDs anymore,” and it looks like the No Limit founder is ready for a showdown with the G-Unit General. On the contrary, Master P says that his new release date has nary a thing to do with Curtis getting under his skin. “I can sit back and say nothing about that because I’m good,” said Master P. “Think about it, he stopped all these guys’ careers but now he’s approached the wrong person. God is my boss and this album isn’t even about me. A lot of people don’t think an artist can put a clean record out and make it work so there’s no pressure on me but what if it does? Will the rest of these guys out here start to think about what they’re saying and doing?” P insists that this first ever father-son hip-hop collaboration is about showing that it’s possible to engage thinking minds via rap music, and balancing out the negative content. Preach!
iHipHop Blog Team