Version 2.0

Culture, healing, politics and bullshit - Not necessarily in that order

The general, socio-political and very personal rantings and ravings of a hip hop head from the hood hustling for change... Of himself.

You all know me and are aware that I am unable to remain silent. At times to be silent is to lie. For silence can be interpreted as acquiescence.
—Miguel de Unamuno


Thursday, March 23, 2006

Not just knee deep...

I've been knee deep in the bush the past couple of days. It seems that I have time to rest and that's good, but other than that when I leave the house I'm locked into work.

Well, everything seems like work these days, regardless of what the action is.

Recording the current music project is fun, I get a chance to make a dent doing something that I truly enjoy. I just need to keep focus and remember that this is my opportunity to provide that missing element that I complain about in hip hop. I know that in the grand scope of things I'm just one cat, but I know if Al and I maintain that focus and keep quality and enjoyment on our minds then we'll do just that. Drop a quality album that will provide some serious satisfaction and my people will enjoy and appreciate that. Damn, it is for the love!

Yaz, my darling. (that's me dammit, how dare you!!!) This is all that I've been talking about... If you've been following along for a minute, you know that I am an artist and that this is my big indy joint scheduled for release this spring. What I wanted to do is give you all a chance to hear the drafts and have input on what the final tracks sound like. I know that there are dead spaces and extra shit, but know that THESE ARE DRAFTS. Nothing final has been scheduled for this or other tracks I plan on posting.

I hope you enjoyed me posting that newly recorded joint from the other day. In order for me to make quality music I do need feedback and I'd like it from you. I do plan on posting a few more songs here in the near future. You see, I figure if you help craft these joints then you and others would be inclined to buy the finished project seeing as it's something that you enjoy that much more because you had your hand all up in the production process. You know, for the people, by the people. I still need feedback, so the most recent joint is still over there on the right, just click on the play button, listen to the track and give a brother a little critique.

Don't get it twisted, I am more of a poet these days than a lyricist, and we are recording them joints as well with live instrumentation. It takes so much more attention and detail recording live music. To have others see your vision and interpret it is a whole different animal. I have a certain thing happening in my head and I depend on Al to sync with me to provide proper direction to the band. I am a writer and he is a composer. Whenever Al adds his flavor to my words after hearing the concept of a track that I have embedded in my mind it becomes something else. It becomes neutral in the sense that is no longer my idea alone. We then start tweaking things to better complement the vocals, but this time with the verses I've written we're going to attempt to have the music stand alone and partner that with verse. We plan on adding song, the element of hip hop flow and sensual funk grooves to create an experience for the listener. This is hard work, and timing (and available time) is everything. With poetry being my bread and butter these days it is imperative that I lay some of my better and more in depth joints down because I need a recorded body of work to represent me as I travel and speak to you. In other words, I'm tired of having folks ask if I have a CD when I'm at the spot spitting... Plus, to actually get a little loot to help the cause shows the love is really, really there. I got a day job, so I ain't thirsty.


I've again given thought to making music my full time hustle, but I remember years ago us actually pursuing a record deal and me acting an outright ass because I actually predicted the whole indy thing and I wanted the creative freedom that came with that. Not that I'm Nostradamus or anything, but I knew the internet would change the game and with all of the home versions of hardware and software available (I got some, access to the rest) to budding musicians, one could make an album in their bedroom, get critical acclaim (see: Cody ChestnuTT) and strike a distribution deal and keep most of the profits related to mechanical royalties, thus keeping the majority share of one's publishing. Plus, one could lease his or her masters to a label and have a reasonable buyback rate when the label finished pimping the album(s). We watched Master P, Public Enemy, Prince and Elton John (as well as countless others) keep a high percentage of their publishing and keep ownership of the masters as well as doing P&D (pressing and distribution deals, where the label gets 35% of the profit for manufacturing the CD's and shipping them to record stores using their freight systems) deals and then because they own the masters, they can offer downloads of both whole albums and single songs that go directly to them (and not the labels) over the past decade and a half. Look at where it got them. I/we weren'tÂ’t ready to get into publishing and self direction as far as owning a label back then was concerned anyway. Plus, record labels and their minions (read: A&R's) were in straight denial on the future of music. They pumped us with this "you really need the record label" type of shit, basically telling us that we wouldn't survive without the direction and money provided by the label, and that we needed to 'phase' our creative direction in segments and give the public pieces of us... Basically string them along with one concept for a year or two, maybe three so that the legs of an album can stretch. In other words, compose one album with a limited budget and follow direction from someone that has no clue as to what dimensionn your creative flow came from and then stretch this snapshot of how you felt at that moment (as an artist) for about 2 to three years so one can get 3 to 4 singles out of the album.


That's why we never got a damn record deal. I could never imagine being that much of a puppet, I mean did you listen to that joint I posted the other day? How would I be able to maintain my platform? I'm not going to lie, the more love I get out there on the road the more I want to make getting out there a permanent part of me doing my thing. As with blogging, I get a little deep and introspective (this being my therapy), and reading and responding to you that have made my little blogspot a regular destination has become a part of my life that has this gratifying, satisfying sense of fulfillment. I've even gotten a little deep and personal with a person or two since I started blogging (okay, only one person that I got my bond on with, but the experience has taught me a thing or two... Positively, regardless of what she says), so imagine what it would be like to travel and to just speak my pieces and bond with y'all on a regular basis. To get paid to chop game with folk that wanna chop it with you... Damn. Almost gets me moist down there in my nether regions.

Yup, I'm quitting my job. I should do this full time.


Chubby Chocolate said...

Remember: Who feels it knows it.

Anonymous said...