Monday, September 27, 2010
Every time I watch this video, I still get surprised by the ending. Before i leave the UK, I am definitely trying to see Francis and the Lights live. One of the dopest frontmen in the game, hands down. Btw, much more introspective posts are on deck. They may in fact come out as poems. Just wanted to be sure I hit ya'll with this video first, as it's one of my favorites. Stay tuned!
Thursday, September 16, 2010
As of been late, I've been doing my best fight against the way I used to imagine, talk about, and show love. In the video above, Sho Baraka makes it clear that he and I are on the same page. This brother said, "If you're a player...grow up." Powerful stuff. Enjoy!
Thursday, September 9, 2010
One of my closest friends and favorite beatmakers, Hayling Price is truly a Renaissance Man par excellence. He hit me up the other day to listen to his (sort of) new beat tape, and to say that I was thoroughly refreshed is an understatement. Sometimes we forget to celebrate nuance and delicacy in the world of hip-hop instrumentals. Often preferring the boom of the bass to the humble hum of the keys, we fail to remember that there must always be room for groove music, tunes to relax and reflect to. Hayling's corpus of work forces us to re-imagine sonic boundaries, to unlock our palates in preparation for something new. Keys Open Doors indeed. Go get em, Hayles!
Here are some words from the man himself:
I've played the keys all my life- was classically trained by a Juilliard professor growing up in New York, played in a hip-hop soul band in Philly, and currently produce for emcees and vocalists from my home in DC. Although I know how to sample I've usually relied on my skills on the keys to guide my production. This time, instead of composing my own stuff I chose to take a different approach.
I wanted to challenge myself to find chord changes instead of make them, so I went back to some of the musicians (Ahmad Jamal, Herbie Hancock, Thelonious Monk et al.) who have been the most influential on me and hip-hop at large. You can hear this on the intro track, which includes commentary from jazz greats and original tunes that have been immortalized by hip-hop classics. On the rest of the album, I looped and chopped up jazz piano samples up on the MPC and came up with the finished product that is KeysOpenDoors. Enjoy.
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
"Polly" was my favorite movie as a child. I would ask my aunt to play it every day. That YouTube has allowed me to re-live that sort of expectant joy, even for a moment, is truly a blessing. Do you see this choreography?! It's off the chain (which has a whole new meaning, really, when you listen closely to the content of the song). It's a beautiful day to do the Lord's work. Time to get focused!