Thursday, March 5, 2009

Getting Theirs...Day: Jabari Johnson

In the spring of 2005, I had to come to Howard University's open house. My ex-girlfriend came as well, because her HU Alumni parents wanted her to carry on the legacy. She was not really interested in coming, but her cousin was. He was really interested in the music & entertainment & he felt that Howard University would be a great place to start up a career.

Literally four years later, Jabari Johnson has interviewed pretty much everybody who is anybody in hip-hop. From old heads like Russell Simmons, to individuals who are on top of the game like 50 Cent, to artists whose careers are growing with their best days ahead of them like Young Chris, Jabari has had one on one interviews with them, asking questions that reflect a true hip-hop fan's perspective.

If you regularly check hip-hop blogs, then you have seen his work. He has set up his own YouTube channel, "IamJabari," where you can watch all of his interviews back to the days when he was waiting outside of LOVE in the rain, waiting to interview the Clipse. If you ever get a chance to hear it, it's a great story by the way. Now he is getting sponsorships from Fresh Juice, Commonwealth and Orisue just to wear their clothing during interviews & he just signed a management deal with Creative Minds as a video journalist. He is currently putting together an album with all of the artists that he has become friends with over the years. He also has a role in the upcoming movie “State of Play,” starring Ben Affleck and Russell Crowe.

So yeah, first "Getting Theirs...Day" goes to Jabari Johnson. I remember when it was all a dream, now it is a reality & he's just getting started. I can't wait to see what he is going to accomplish without being a student with a full courseload.

On that note, here is a video of Jabari & Young Chris working on the upcoming album. It's going to be serious...

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Sometimes It's The Small Wins...Day

It's the first week of March.  Midterms to take, papers to write, grad school applications to fill out, beats to produce, etc., etc., etc.  With due date after due date, I am living my life day to day.  But sometimes you have to celebrate the small wins.  So from now on Wednesday is Small Wins...Day.  Today, my old Business Law professor agreed to write a letter of recommendation for my grad school application.  His rule is that he only writes recommendations for students that receive an A in his class, but I was only points away from an A, so he said reluctantly said yes.  All I was looking for was a yes, so I got a small win. On Small Wins...Day.  Go figure.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Good Things Come In Twos...Day: Cipha Sounds & Rosenberg

I am incapable of doing just one thing at once. I can not focus on anything without some noise around me. You would think that listening to music would help, but I start going through my vast iTunes library and playing DJ. Shortly thereafter, I am going through blogs trying to find random material that I do not have (last night I downloaded Crunk Juice & the Lil Scrappy & Trillville double disc...why? I am not really sure...). So in order to get my work done, I like to listen to the radio.

I know you're thinking "...but the radio plays music..." True, because it is love talk and slow jams time before I even start my work, but I am talking about radio podcasts. Entertaining talk, few songs, no commercials. I think the best in the business are Hot 97's Cipha Sounds & Peter Rosenberg. They upload their daily morning show (minus the commercials) everyday & it is great to listen to while trying to get something done. Topical humor from a Puerto Rican from the Bronx & a Jew from suburban Maryland. Gotta love it. Their diverse backgrounds would make you think that they have nothing in common, but at the end of the day, they both have cynical senses of humor & a love for hip-hop. Plus, they record special Juan Epstein Podcasts every now & then where they sit down with hip hop legends, such as Big Daddy Kane, Q-Tip, Mister Cee, Large Professor, etc., & ask in-depth eye opening questions about their careers. For example, Pete Rock going into detail about how he made the beat for Biggie's Juicy, but because he did not understand the business side of the music business, Diddy basically stole it from him. Yep, its true. Honestly, listening to Pete Rock's Juan Epstein & Mister Cee's Juan Epstein make watching NOTORIOUS almost unbearable becasue they give that much information.

Everyday's podcast is full of hilarious conversation between a Puerto Rican & a Jew from suburban Maryland. The Juan Epstein podcasts are like a history class that you would actually want to go to everyday. If you want to, you can subscribe & iTunes will automatically download Juan Epstein podcasts to your computer. Somehow their personalities work together. I have no idea how, but they do & that is all that matters to me. Cipha Sounds & Rosenberg, good things come in twos...

Monday, March 2, 2009

Once again, back is the incredible...Mixtape Monday

Hi haters, I am back off my hiatus. Been busy trying to get my life together, but I had to drop this off. My boy Ice the Villain posted his mixtape, "The L.@.Me Mixtape" over the weekend and its already at 500 downloads and counting...great lyricism + great variety of topics = great mixtape. And he goes to Howard University, so you already know its quality. I have been hearing his material since the classic freshman dorm mixtapes, but this is the first full project of his & it clearly will not be his last...