Well I’ve been traveling for almost 4 months now which is good news and bad news. The bad news is I haven’t been at a computer to update the blog. The good news is now Im back, AND I had the opportunity to hear some great music in my travels so have a lot to share now.
What better way to start than with my good friends of 2AM Club who today unveiled their first official lyrics video of a track off their forthcoming album. Now a “lyrics video” is just that, a simpler music video that features music, basic video or graphics and then the lyrics of the song so viewers can follow along. Its a cheaper and more interactive way for bands to connect with fans, and allows artists to get their music out there to video playing outlets without the expense of full video production.
This first single from 2AM Club is called “Mary” and with a quick scan of the lyrics you should be able to ascertain the not-so-subtle metaphors. Check out this lyrics video, share it with friends, and of course let me know what you think. Welcome back me!!!
The music world lost an icon this week with the passing of Beastie Boys Adam “MCA” Yauch. When they released their first album, the legendary License to Ill, in 1986 many people had trouble taking this trio seriously. Some of that came from their sophmoric humor and antics, some came from the fact that it was three white kids from NY trying to fuse rock and roll and burgeoning rap music genre. The result however was pure innovation that paved the way for so many others and in many ways led to the music we see so often today which mixes hip hop, rock and dance.
Their influence went far and wide, and that is exemplified below in a beautiful tribute by Coldplay on May 4, 2012 at the Hollywood Bowl. Just another reason to love Coldplay too.
Check it out.
2010 saw the release of the collaboration album between Damian Marley and Nas that was first teased by the track “Road to Zion” on Marley’s hit album “Welcome to Jamrock”. While their collabo album didnt do a ton for me, this track “Patience” was a true gem. Featuring a sample from the great musical duo from Mali, Amadou & Mariam‘s track “Sabali” (which means Patience), this song really reflects the energy of the overall album which is about ancestry, Africa and poverty issues.
This is a great track as background music while having people over or for driving down the highway to
K’Naan is definitely trying shed his squeaky clean Coca Cola/World Cup/”Wavin Flag” image with some of his new tracks, and so far I like what I hear. This song, “Nothing To Lose”, is a nice little ditty featuring Nas where they draw some parallels between life in Queens and the struggles K’Naan saw growing up in Somalia. I also like K’Naan’s flow…its choppy and intentional but unique. When I talked with him at the Video Music Awards last year he was very low key and interested in the struggles different people were facing in the US and abroad. Im interested to see if he continues to use his platform to bring about awareness and incite change…I hope he does. Check out “Nothing To Lose” and let me know what you think.
Headed down to Tucson last night to check out Drake since that was incredibly the closest show to Phoenix (still wondering what touring company he is with that wasnt able to book a large venue here in PHX). Anyhow, the show opened with Chase N. Cashe and A$AP Rocky…A$AP, representing Harlem (yayuh!) was solid, although they definitely used the cheap sound system for those performances which diminished any opportunity for their music to be heard, let alone appreciated. The crowd was amped up for all the performances which was great to see, and when the lights dimmed for the last time as Drake was set to take the stage people went nuts.
I thought Drake’s performance was fantastic. Great visuals on stage, had a elaborate set of 100 TVs as his back drop, and came with a live band which is a must these days at hip hop shows. The audio was great, he played everything the crowd wanted to hear from his mix tapes, to label albums to his collaborations with other artists. It was a well timed, well planned show and he kept the energy levels high even during his more R&B-ish tracks. He also made the night of dozens of fans when he spent a solid 10 minutes of the show doing what I call “I see you’s”. He basically stood on stage going around the arena giving shout outs to fans “I see you with the green shirt jumping around, I see you with the U of A shirt, etc”. It was actually a lot of fun and now dozens of people can brag today that Drake gave them a special shout out at his show…a great way to interact with the fans and the first time Ive seen an artist do that. Well Done Drizzy Overall, Id definitely say it is a tour worth seeing. Check out a video I shot during the show.
Wiz Khalifa is a guy that gets a lot of respect in the hip hop world and its well deserved. This Pittsburgh native is in my mind a breathe of fresh air in the game, has great style and I appreciate his independence. I like this track because I think its Wiz’s honest reflection on materialism. Check it out!