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May 23, 2005



<...Looking for the Perfect Beat…>

Reminiscing on the “glory days” of Hip Hop, we remember the foundational MCs who dropped solid LPs (you know, where U never have to fast forward, but you wear out your rewind?) & the DJs who were expert diggers, masters of the scratch, jugglers, and painted musical Graffiti with their routines and mixtapes. Funny how I spent so much time in L.A. in the clubs, at the shows, and in the streets seeking MCs who could do this one thing...it had me trippin. Crazy how I scoured every DJ in the industry AND in the streets in NYC looking for the perfect beat.

This week I’ve been blessed with not just one, but with both of these phenoms – in a place least expected…Minnesota.

I Self Devine, who’s known for his work with the group The Micranots and his O.G. Graffiti styles from L.A. to the Twin Cities; laced me with a listening session of his upcoming LP “SELF DESTRUCTION”… This is that ol’ boom bap, kickin’ some real raw deal shit from one of the dopest MCs with one of the most highly-anticipated solos in a long time. There’s no filler, or miscellaneous guest appearances…this is just pure Hip Hop. The album drops in early August, I’ll post up again when the first single’s about to drop. (Some production by Vitamin D and Jake One...shouts from me to Walt Liquor, wherever he's at.)

Desdamona, myself, and Unique, a dope Poetess/MC from Central Touring Theater in St. Paul appeared on Siddiq’s RSE Radio on KFAI last night (check the archive here). After we dropped in to check Brother Ali, Toki Wright, Freeze, Illumious 3, Orikal, and a few other local cats performing at that little club in the basement. It was cool to see such a diverse group of MCs on one stage in one night. DJ Stage One hooked me up with an advance copy of his mixtape, STREET CINEMA, and I was basically waiting for him to start spinning. It was getting late, but he finally started mixing sometime after 2 a.m. I was sleepy, yawning, tired from dancing and generally exhausted from the stress of the upcoming event. As usual, he dropped some of that old illmatic shit, and I was stuck off the realness, unable to leave the spot until long after 3 a.m. Don’t worry, I took a cab home this time instead of trooping it on foot!

Came home, got fresh, laid it down, turned the lights down low, and threw the mix CD into the Hello Kitty walkman. I closed my eyes and just listened. I knew this kid was nasty, I’ve seen him transform a lil’ something just fucking around at the club. But this mixtape is straight wildstyle. I had just been thinking on how true DJs do their shit a lot like my Graffiti guys (and gals) – doing the knowledge to old-school styles, digging through the racks for paint (digging in the crates, blowin dust off that O.G. shit), and combining styles, flavors, and colors in a way no one else would think of.

Stage One’s new shit starts off with an interview (most likely from the Style Wars director’s cut DVD) of DEZ ONE talking about how he went from Graf artist and street-scientist to becoming DJ KAY SLAY a/k/a The Drama King. Then he cuts to another O.G., MIN ONE, and a piece of an interview where he explains his downfall from King of Graf, to drug addict/hard timer, to where he is now - "I've got a little family now, and I'm doing good."

Of course Stage used to be a Graf artist too. Are you noticing a fucken pattern here? This is the Star Wars of mixtapes, with an interstellar variety of beats, cuts, blends, genres, samples, and crazy drops. I’m telling you, the kid Stage One is sick wit it and, mark my words as always, he’ll be a DJ with a household name sooner than you can name this tune…

I'm just an addict
Addicted to music
Maybe it's a habit

I gotta use it
Even if it's jazz or the quiet storm

I hook a beat up
Convert it into Hip Hop form

I write a rhyme in Graffiti and
Every show you see me in
Deep concentration

Cause I'm no comedian
Jokers are wild
If you wanna be tamed

I'll treat you like a child
Then you're gonna be named
Another enemy
Not even a friend of me
Cause you'll get fried in the end
When you pretend to be...>



At 3:38 PM, Anonymous Christina said...

I Self's album is going to be so hot, he's not just an emcee the way that he lays out his CD is almost a science, he's a storyteller. As for Stage One, his mix tapes are to die for!! Much love to you for reppin' Minneapolis the way you have been, I swear we (Minnesota) is a hidden treasure just starting to be discovered.

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At 7:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Everyone has days when they are down, worn out, coping with anxiety and just not feeling all that happy.

That's OK, you need to have days like this, otherwise how would you know when you are happy. You need to have something to contrast your happiness with. What is black without white?

Even though you know that sadness (coping with anxiety) is a part of life, let's try to make it a small part of life.

With that said, here are a few tips to help you feel better when you are feeling down in the dumps. They are easy to do, easy to practice every day and they work!

1. Stand up straight, sit up straight. When your body is in alignment your energy can flow and when your energy is flowing freely, you can flow.

2. Smile! Yes, just smile. Easy to do and effective.

3. Repeat positive affirmations. Things like "I feel good", "Positive energy flows through my body", "I see the good in all".

4. Listen to some music that you like. It doesn't have to be anything specific, just something you enjoy. Certain types of music work better than others, but experiment and see what works for you. Studies have shown that Classical music and new age music work best.

5. Take some time out for yourself, relax and read a book, do something for yourself.

6. Meditate. Meditation is an excellent habit to develop. It will serve you in all that you do. If you are one who has a hard time sitting still, then try some special meditation CDs that coax your brain into the meditative state. Just search for "Meditation music" on Google or Yahoo and explore.

Our outside work is simply a reflection of our inside world. Remember there is no reality just your perception of it. Use this truth to your advantage. Whenever you are sad, realize that it is all in your mind and you do have the power to change your perception.

These tips will lift you up when you are down, but don't just use them when you are sad or coping with anxiety . Try and practice them everyday, make them a habit. You will be surprised at how these simple exercises will keep the rainy days away.

On a final note, if you are in a deep depression that you can't seem to shake, please go see a doctor. This is your life and don't take any chances. coping with anxiety

At 2:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Many of our modern drugs have harsh side-affects and cost the “earth”, so the next time you come down with a cold or the flu or anxiety depression, why not try a gentle alternative that costs next to nothing?

Instead of immediately forking over large amounts of money for over-the-counter drugs, go to the kitchen cupboard and see what you can find to relieve your symptoms including anxiety depression.

Here are some helpful hints for anxiety depression …

A simple hot compress applied to the face is very soothing to those throbbing aches and pains of a blocked sinus, while a few drops of eucalyptus oil on a handkerchief can provide welcome relief for similar conditions. While supplements of vitamin C, D and zinc will shorten the lifespan of a common cold, a hot lemon drink is also extremely good. And be sure to cuddle-up in bed when you have a cold, as it will make the body sweat out the germs.

Cool lemon juice and honey are a great soother for a sore throat and gives the body much-needed vitamin C at the same time The juice of one lemon in a glass of water is sufficient. Melt the honey in a little hot water for ease of mixing.

A smear of Vaseline or petroleum jelly will do wonders for those sore lips and nose that often accompany a cold.

A 'streaming cold' where the nose and eyes water profusely, can respond to drinking onion water. Simply dip a slice of onion into a glass of hot water for two seconds, then sip the cooled water throughout the day. Half an onion on the bedside table also alleviates cold symptoms because its odor is inhaled while you sleep.

People prone to catarrh may find that chewing the buds from a pine or larch throughout the day will clear up their condition in just a few days.

Do you suffer from sore eyes? If your eyes are sore from lengthy exposure to the sun, try beating the white of an egg and then spread it over a cloth and bandage the eyes with it. Leave the preparation on overnight. Soft cheese (quark) is also a good remedy for this condition.

For those unpleasant times when you suffer from diarrhea, two tablespoons of brown vinegar will usually fix the problem. Vinegar can be rather horrible to take, but who cares! The problem is more horrible. Vinegar can usually be found in most people's cupboards, so you don't need to worry about finding someone to run to the shop for you in an emergency.

Sleepless? Instead of reaching for sleeping pills, which can quickly become addictive, try this: Drink only caffeine free tea or coffee starting late in the afternoon.. Go to bed earlier rather than later, as being overtired tends to keep people awake. Make sure the bedroom is dark and quiet. Use only pure wool or cotton sheets and blankets. Polyester materials can cause sweat and make you thirsty (if your child constantly asks for water throughout the night, this could be the reason).

And don't watch those scary movies just before retiring! If you still can't sleep, make a tea of lemongrass or drink a nightcap of herbal tea containing chamomile. It's easy to grow lemongrass in your garden or start a flower pot on the balcony for ease of picking. Simply steep a handful in boiling water for five minutes. Honey may be added for a sweetener.

Of course there will be times when you do need modern drugs, so if these simple remedies don't have the required affect, be sure to see a health care professional.

anxiety depression

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