Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Summer Toyz

As you know I'm a huge extreme sports enthusiast. I luv riding anything with a board or wheels. My current addiction is snowboarding but in the summer its a little difficult to ride, unless you go to indoor slopes. That's where the Dirt Surfer comes in. Its a cross between a mountain bike and a skateboard...and its awesome! It can be ridden on all down hill terrain, is equipped with disk brakes and easy excess foot bindings just in case u need to bail quickly. Check out the clip.

Another innovative summer toy I found is the OrbitWheel. Its rides like a wave board without the board and you wear it like roller skates. I like the idea but this is not my type of ride because it limits my forward motion...but different strokes for different folks, so I posted it anyway. The clip is below.

Monday, July 19, 2010

AniManga: Dragon Ball Z

Dragon Ball Z was the first anime I saw when I went to Japan, this was back in 1993. I lived there for over a year and DBZ had already been running for almost four years when I started watching. DBZ started out as a manga (like most anime) and became a T.V. show around 1989. The series follows the adventures of Son Goku and his children from his childhood through adulthood as they train in martial arts and explore the world in search of the seven mystical objects known as the Dragon Balls, which can summon the mystical dragon Shinron who could grant 3 wishes. The wishes could be used for anything like bringing back the dead, to granting immortality. Due to their incredible power the dragon balls attracted a wide variety of villains, both alien and human which Goku and his group of warriors had to defeat.

The show was broken into three seperate series first was Dragon Ball which chronicled Goku's childhood. Then Dragon Ball Z the most popular which dealt with his adulthood and growing martial arts expertise, and finally Dragon Ball GT which dealt more with his children and descendant than Goku. He makes appearances throughout the show, but due to a curse he was reverted to the child form he had in Dragon Ball. Recently DBZ has been re-mastered and released as Dragon Ball Kai, which changes the original footage and story.

Since its release, Dragon Ball has become one of the most popular manga series of its time in both Japan and North America. It enjoys a high readership, with over 150 million volumes of the series, has 17 feature films and was ranking number 12 among the best anime series of all time in 2006. Below I posted a small clip of one of the best fights in the series Goku vs. the Galactic warrior Freeza. Peep the part where he bitch slaps the taste out of Freeza's mouth...if that doesn't get you hooked on the series then the fight with Goku vs. Perfect Cell will.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Winner Is...

What’s poppin my cyber-surfing, internet addicted, blog reading, Hip-Hop hooligans,

The Best Remix Contest is over, school vacation just started and the timing couldn't be better. Thank all of YOU who participated, there were almost two hundred entries to the contest so it took awhile to listen to everything. It was a tough decision so I had a few friends ( artists and producers) listen to the final 5 and help me decide. The winner is Richard "R.K. Cerman" Kaliarik a producer from Slovakia. He got his track in on time, the beat was dope and he made sure to matched it to the song BPM. I received allot of entries a day or two after the deadline and they had to be disqualified. This doesn't mean they weren't dope cuz we listened to them and a few were, it means it would've been unfair to all the other contestants if I bent the rules to allow late entries. This is why we made a deadline. R.K. Cerman has been producing for two years and describes his style as sample heavy similar to DJ Premiere and is currently working on a beat tape project. You can check out more of his music on his myspace page and if you want some of his production his contact info is below.

MySpace : myspace.com/rkcerman
Swift.FM : swift.fm/rkcerman
Twitter : twitter.com/rkcerman
Facebook : facebook.com/rkaliarik

A group that receives honorable mention is OERJGRINDER (www.myspace.com/oerjgrinder), their death metal infused with funk and Hip-Hop mix was creative and reminded me of Linkin Park Hybrid theory. The group consists of Krovx guitarist with bass players Nasty and Punished Earth, they describe the music as Grindcore Beatdown. For those of you that don't know I also listen to a wide range of other musical genres outside of hip-hop, including rock, metal, house, drum & bass and quite a few styles in between. This contest was about originality and creativity, something the music business is lacking right now. What inspired me to start the contest was the remix style of the 90's. 

Notice that in the 90's when producers made a remix they not only added new verses, but in some cases added a new beat. The reason Murder Inc, Bad Boy, Def Jam and other labels at the time stopped doing this is because of money. The way labels track a records success is thru BDS (broadcast data systems) spins, which is the current system in use. In the 90's if they changed a records beat it wouldn't matter as long as the chorus was the same or if it had the same title with the word "remix" behind it. Now If they change the beat of a record the BDS system doesn't recognize the record anymore and starts counting the spins from zero.

So this means back in the day if you had a record that sold 20,000 copies (which by industry standards is a failure) then had a remix with a new beat selling 130,000 copies your total would be 150,000 which would be a successful. Under the current system using the same analogy, if the first record sold 20,000 copies and the remix sold 130,000 copies the label would have one successful record and one unsuccessful. So to capitalize off remixing and getting the most sales from a record, labels stopped changing the beat. This is good for business but bad for creativity in Hip-Hop. The remix contest was a way to bring that creative freedom back to Dj's and producers and it worked. You can listen to both the winning remix and the honorable mention below.

Aside from the contest I’ve been rehearsing and preparing for my trip to the U.S.. School just ended this week. I'm on summer vacation until the end if August and seriously I need it. Juggling classes and a career is tiring work. My intentions for the summer are simple make music, workout, more music, paint, more music and tour. (can u dig it) other than that I’m just taking things one day at a time. Holland is in the World Cup finals and this place is going bananas. The weather has been so hot Satan would get a sunburn, everyone is wearing orange, people are blowing the vuvuzelas (a long, loud horn associated with soccer) until they break and public intoxication is at an all time high.(I luv it) 

That's it for now, I hope this post finds all of you outside and enjoying the summer cuz winter will return way to quickly. If I have any words of wisdom to survive this scorching weather its ...drink less to party more, do less drugs to have less regrets and if you do allot of both learn to exercise control. Food for thought.

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Sunday, July 4, 2010

French Hip-Hop

Being a real Hip-hop connoisseur living in Europe, I'm privileged enough to hear music from all the countries bordering Holland. This includes France, Germany, Spain, U.K, Belgium and a few smaller places. In France they have a huge Hip-Hop culture and like the Germans they rhyme in their native tongue instead of English. One of my favorite groups from France is the Saian Supa Crew. They are a three group collective of MC's, singers and producers who make witty, funny, conscious  Hip-Hop with a strong Caribbean flair. Their name comes from the incredibly popular Dragon Ball Z series (which I will discuss more in another post). 

The individual groups are Explicit Samouraï, OFX, Simple Spirit. While most groups try to emulate the US artists they see on TV this group has been making music consistently for the last ten years doing their own style. Their topics discuss everything from drug problems, ("Que dit-on?") to racism ("La preuve par 3"), relationships ("A demi-nue"), suicide ("La dernière séance") and the justification of violence by religion ("Au nom de quoi"). Since they disabled the embedding code on most of their clips I was only able to post the collabo track with Ghostface and Rza below. If you want to know more about the group or purchase some music go to http://www.myspace.com/saiansupa. 

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Shut Tha F**k Up

Yea, u read that right. It's the title of the new Sean Price clip posted below. One of the many reasons I respect dude is cuz he maintains lyrical excellence. Every track he spits on is fiya, plus he's gained international acclaim without a major record deal. I've been working on that for almost a decade and to see someone from the same background (straight out the projects) achieve what I desire, proves that its possible. Aside from all that he's a funny guy. I've met him numerous times over the years and he's always been down to earth with his fans and always cracked jokes backstage. Check out the new clip.