9th Wonder

Mini Album Review: Indie 500


After a typical Saturday night behind the bar I decided to do some digging for new music. Now, just incase you didn’t know this about me, I definitely have a go to list of artists and musicians that I keep tabs on. I’ve been jamming these talented individuals for years, and if you rock with me then you would probably know at least a few names on this list.
Anyway, I started thinking about what I wanted to hear, and it didn’t take very long for me to recall an article I read online a little over a month ago about two of my favorite hip hop artists collaborating on an album. Talib Kweli and 9th Wonder’s Indie 500 album dropped November 6th of this year, and it definitely doesn’t disappoint. Talib’s poetic lyrics flowing on top of 9th Wonder’s melodic, and timeless tracks creates the perfect “this is a future classic” body of work.
The albums collabs shouldn’t go unnoticed either.Tracks like, “Pay ya Dues” featuring Problem and Bad Lucc undoubtedly adds extra flavor to the album.
Although I’m very much aware of how jacked up the industry is, I still wish Indie 500 would’ve received the same exposure that other 2015 albums did. This collaboration is so important to the Hip Hop music community. Music like this is a reminder that Hip Hop is still alive and well. I hope y’all hear this s***.


Ashley Judd Apologizes For Hip Hop “Rape Culture” Remarks


Ashley Judd


Via hiphopdx.com:

“In her new book, All That is Bitter, and Sweet, actress Ashley Judd strongly questioned the use of particular rappers in public charity events used to bring awareness to important issues. She slammed the YouthAIDS organization and MTV’s ‘Staying Alive’ concerts for inviting Snoop Dogg and Diddy to perform at their events.

“Along with other performers, YouthAIDS was supported by Rap and Hip Hop artists like Snoop Dogg and P. Diddy to spread the message…um, who? Those names were a red flag.”

She went on to state her opinion on Hip Hop culture, asserting that the genre promotes misogyny and violence against women…”

read the rest @ http://www.hiphopdx.com/index/news/id.14706/title.ashley-judd-apologizes-for-hip-hop-rape-culture-remarks

Too much of a good thing?

    During this past weekend, I had some downtime to get my music library in order. As I was doing so, I realized how many songs I had on my computer that consisted of a sample. I then

not the king of pop...the king of samples. haha

Kanye,not the king of pop...the king of samples.

started to count out of curiosity. Let’s just say there were more songs with samples on my laptop than I had anticipated. I then asked myself the questions, “Do we have too much of a good trend in  hip hop today, how much sampling is too much, and why aren’t  there more producers, and artists using original tracks…completely original tracks?” Now don’t get it twisted…I love a good sample, but when “producers” simply speed up or slow down an original song and throw some percussion on top, it makes me scratch my head a little.

    I was in a pretty heated debate Tuesday at Starbucks with a friend of mine about this very topic. I was trying to explain to him that the “Kanye’s” of hip hop are given a little too much credit for having portfolios that consists of pretty much nothing but tracks with samples, no originals. My friend then got upset, saying that I was downing other producers who use (or used in Dilla’s case) samples. Producers such as J Dilla, or 9th Wonder. Not what my point was at all. Dilla, for example, used a Singers Unlimited sample to compose the SlumVillage favorite “Players”. Sounds basic right? Not at all. It’s not basic because Singers Unlimited was an a capella singing group during the 1970’s, and the song he sampled from was called “Claire”, slow it down enough, and it sounds like “Players”. This clearly means there where no instruments or a beat to slow down or speed up.

sigh....what can i say..... :-)

J Dilla....what can i say. 🙂

     My point is J Dilla used a sample to ADD a touch to a track. He baked the actual beat from scratch; only using the store bought icing to top off the cake. Kanye, on the other hand, has gotten into the habit of simply taking a Duran Duran sample, slowing it down or speeding it up, and rapping on top of it. He simply ran to the store bought cake mix…anyone can get. It’s what you do with the sample. Do you transform it like 9th Wonder? To the point where you have to rewind the track a couple times to actually catch the sample (ex: Food for Thought – Buckshot and 9th Wonder from the Chemistry album) or do you just take Move on Up by Curtis Mayfield, slow it down, and…well, that’s it? If an artist is going to have several tracks consisting of samples, he or she should also have several original tracks to match them. Let’s demand more from our artists and producers. Some of them are getting by a little too easy.

9th Wonder...a beast with a mouse :-)

9th Wonder...a beast with a mouse