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The Late Great Paul C
03/14/2018, 6:49 PM
Filed under: Random

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I helped edit this very thorough, very detailed piece on the mythical– and perhaps rap’s most underrated producer ever– Paul C. If you’re curious as to why Ultramagnetic MCs’ Critical Beatdown (and a few other notable records of that era) sounded so hard and so advanced, it’s all due to Paul, his extensive record collection and forward thinking engineering techniques. This piece examines his history and tragic death, exploring more of what became huge hip-hop lore. Written by my dude and upcoming music journalist Gino Sorcinelli. Read it HERE.

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PREEMPTIVE POST: DJ SHADOW COVER
10/11/2017, 1:00 AM
Filed under: Random | Tags: , , ,

I wanted to get this post up since it’s been days since an update: The current issue of Wax Poetics (in print! on newsstands!) features my story on the venerable DJ Shadow. I don’t think I’m over speaking by saying this is the deepest piece ever on him, his history and catalogue-. It’s not only his origin story but has so many deep, fascinating tangents of other eras, particularly Bay Area DJ history and Mo Wax’s early days of dominance.

Check out some rad pictures and order it HERE.

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BADASSSSS SOUNDTRACKS
10/11/2017, 12:06 AM
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I had a lot of fun writing about this a few months back for The Guardian. They wanted a list of the Top Blaxploitation Soundtracks to coincide with the reissue of Sweet Sweetback’s Badasssss Song’s soundtrack. Have a read HERE.



Who Got Da Props???
02/04/2017, 4:21 PM
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fullsizerender-27fullsizerender-28Over 2 years in the making, and after tons of orchestration, we’re proud to announce that Black Moon’s Enta Da Stage, a record that arguably changed the landscape of ’90s rap releases that followed, has been given the full reissue treatment. I was asked by Fat Beats to write extensive liner notes for which I am honored and thankful for the killer efforts the entire team did to bring this to fruition. Check it out and pre-order HERE. PROPS!



POW’S BEST RAP SONGS OF 2016
12/21/2016, 7:17 PM
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Passion of the Weiss (POW) is currently one of my favorite music blogs and is ran by my dude, prolific journalist Jeff Weiss. I was asked to write about one of the year’s best cuts, “Nas Album Done” by DJ Khaled ft. Nas. Read my review below and check the rest of the thoughtfully compiled year end list HERE .

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[#31] Forget the song’s 8-minute video featuring Khaled in different brightly colored satin shirts—here’s the real major key: Nas’ agelessly nimble tongue and the track’s underpinning “Fu-Gee-La” sample. Here, Nasir sounds like he just finished a Gandhi marathon, successfully tricking his wisdom with the system that imprisoned his son. He’s on fire, backed by bombastic drums and a voice that’s gracefully aged like an Argentinian malbec; textured, smooth yet robust.

In an era where dexterous bars are seldom celebrated, this has enough energy to keep both the millennial and aging classicist happy. Both self-referential and forward moving, says Nas: “To every baby on the album cover existing/This trend I was setting came to fruition.” Seemingly full circle for the MC who at 16 boasted about kidnapping the president’s wife without a plan.

The minimalist production knocks while Nas himself even proves a bit clairvoyant, touching on our now president-elect’s cheap pursuits while shouting out the marginalized: “Celebrity Apprentice a devil show/Big up to Africa, Mexico.” So when exactly will Nas’ album actually be done? He’s recently had fire moments and for whatever reason seems reinvigorated. Dismissing any new hip-hop that came after you is decidedly very non-hip-hop, but there’s nothing wrong in relishing older cats whom are shockingly spry. The song title itself is at worst inaccurate, and at best premature, but it shows why we still owe the prodigious one our due patience. — DAVID MA



Allow Me To Re-Endtroduce Myself…
12/21/2016, 6:58 PM
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We’ll soon be unveiling the most extensive piece ever written on DJ Shadow. It not only commemorates Endtroducing‘s two decade anniversary but is also a pretty sizable feature for the upcoming issue of Wax Poetics. I conducted the interview in his studio which was huge honor and HERE’S a sneak peak at some ill old photos from his personal documenting his origin story and subsequent rise. 



Thank You, Sharon Jones
11/23/2016, 5:16 PM
Filed under: Random | Tags: , ,

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These last couple weeks have been gut wrenching and just when I thought it couldn’t get worse, news came in that Sharon had passed. To say we’re heartbroken would be an understatement. She was one of the best live performers one will ever see and seemingly just a tough, kind soul.

Sharon was kind enough to write a little foreword for our piece on Binky Griptite which was done as a favor that now seems even more priceless. I was honored to write an appreciation piece for The Guardian which you can read HERE. RIP Sharon. Thank you so much.