Who links to me?
Take the MIT Weblog Survey Who links to me?

July 02, 2005



Yes, yes ya'll. The streets is talkin. Good shit.
First of all, re: Ying Yang, Stripper Rap and Hoe-Hop...

Fresh said...
The Ying Yang Twins just need to stop. They are always trying to justify their ignorance. And Free is sitting herself up and back. It's bad enough she was pretty wack on that Fighting Temptations song now she bragging about giving incredible head. I can't even look at her without thinking about how she put herself out there like that. I wonder if she's been kicking it with Khia down in Tampa.
7:37 AM

princess of the poem: Desdamona said...
damn. damn. damn. Miranda. Thank you for posting this. I can't stand this song and I am thankful that I have not had the misfortune of hearing these holla back tracks by the ladies. I have thought of doing a response track but honestly, I don't even know where to begin. The ying Yang Twins were recently in the Twin Cities for the "high school summer jam" They headlined. I don't understand what the hell is going on.At this point, if I were to write a response record it just might end up violent and I'm not trying to perpetuate that shit either. Besides, I can't even listen to the damn song long enough to even catch all the lyrics. Just when you think it can't get any worse....des
9:59 AM

MJ said...
Peace Des. I feel U. Especially about the violence. But that's the point, in essence, the song alludes to date-rape, or worse, club-rape. The song is on your MTV, BET, Clear Channel and Radio One, all day. The youth them are being pummeled with aural images of this shit, "walkin round the club with your thumb in your mouth, take your thumb out, put my dick in your mouth". WHAT!!??So the answer record, in my mind, is moreso to make a song, with the same beat, with women's voices, letting men know that we ARE NOT anxiously awaiting seeing their dick, but seeing their intelligence, respect, divinity, masculinity, chivalry, and love. U know?? It SHOULDN'T BE NASTY OR VIOLENT, the nasty bitches are already recording over that beat. It's not for the people who The Whisper Song is for, it's for the people the song has hurt and damaged. The truth shames the devil. - MJ

And the much-misunderstood MJ's House of Hoe Cakes/MF Doom/Stonesthrow/MadVillain post

Gangalino said...
I saw your post, I think on Adisa's site, talking about not being a groupie, and blah blah blah, and I'm not saying you are, but you know mfs that listen to this music tend to be around the streets, and that's why we connect with the stories rapped, and how things go down. So you have to know that niggas know how white girls get down with this scene, so I have to ask, if you're not a groupie, being a young white girl and all that, what were you doing "...waking up at one of the half-nice hotels they’ve still got downtown, on the top floor. There’s a fat, balding, older man asleep next to me, calling the hogs a/k/a snoring in a major way. He’s missing a couple of teeth, but he covers them with gold and ruby fronts in public."? You like fat, bald, toothless men? Word?There's nothing wrong w/ doing your thing, don't have to put any labels on it, but tell it like it is, no?
8:56 AM

I want to speak to this one in particular. At least this cat actually READ the piece in its entirety before he came out his face. And this is the point I'm trying to make exactly. I don't judge someone I'm in a relationship with by how they look. I put off Doom's advances for a LONG time before I ever got into a relationship with him. I was not FUCKING him, he and I were together. His wife used to call my house to speak with him. He and I have a relationship that no one can define. I was attracted to him because of his scientific intelligence. YA'LL are the ones who are attracted to him because he's an MC. And most of his groupies are men, so what does that say about you? At the end of the day, despite the bullshit and the bad business, and the fact that we're not in close touch, I still love Daniel Dumile because he's a brilliant mind, as I am. And it doesn't matter what ANYONE else has to say about it, I know he still loves me too. I am NOTORIOUS for telling it like it is, why you think I'm writing all this shit for no money? Get it. Get it. Get it. Money don't move me. Music does. The industry didn't make me. The streets did. I don't have a PhD. I'm still enrolled in the School of Life, studying the Book of Life e'day and writing my own plus lessons as I go along. Don't get it twisted, I'm not the groupie, and I'm not the hoe. Think about it. And ask yourself one question...How DID We Get From the Pyramids to the Projects??

p.s. Don't call me a white girl. That's mad insulting. Just 'cause I'm not blessed with as much melanin as some folks, shit, neither was Yellowman or Krondon or Malcolm X or Sean Paul. If you want to call me anything, call me a B-GIRL, and keep it movin'.

Live from Love Allah, Representin Poor People Everywhere,


July 01, 2005

Reverse Sexism, Mista-ogyny, and all that Ying Yang...

Screen shot from Jacki-O's "Fine" video. Not for the kiddies!

Stop! It's the m'fukken remix. Just found the lyrics for the 'Wait/The Whisper Song' remix and Jacki-O's verse is, well, interesting.

"[Jacki-O] I know you see me calling won't you answer your phone im trying to tell ya baby that im home all Alone im on queen size sheets and there made from silk and my mouth wide open cause im waiting for Milk shh just listen i want you to hear my kitten she goes purrr meow especially when you put her in Your mouth i got a big fat cat and she loves to purr cause she always hot so i shave the fur i got the Lollipop candy and i licked it im here with nothing on but some fish nets and im wetter than niagara Flicks on the plasma ohh i just pop the viagra stop what your doing and come get it ya stick ya fingerIn it now lick it what Wait til you see my clit (purr) Wait til you see my clit (hey boy) Wait til you see my clit You gon eat this pussy up Wait til you see my clit (purr) Wait til you see my clit (hey boy) Wait til you see my clit You gon eat this pussy up like Aw aw aw aw aw aw aw aw aw aw aw aw aw aw aw aw Eat the pussy up, eat the pussy up (X29)"

Then there's some chicks named Spoil'd Rotten who've cut an "answer" to your boyz...download that and look at their photos (if you dare)
right chea... Apparently there aren't too many variations on the hook's lyrics coming from the Strip-Hop rappers, Spoil'd Rotten's dirty version says "wait til you see my clit" while their clean version says "wait til you see my lips". Something in there as well about making the Twinz pay for it... There were rumours that this "answer record" came from Kelis, but they were unfounded. For posterity, check this blurb from SOHH.COM, "Free gets nasty with Twins. Free always warns 106 & Park Freestyle Friday contestants to abstain from cursing and using sexually explicit lyrics during battle, but she sure doesn't practice what she preaches on the Ying Yang Twins' "Wait"(Whisper Song) remix [listen: hi/lo]. On the track, which also features Busta Rhymes, Lil Scrappy and Missy Elliot, Free borrows the twin's whisper flow and blasts a hole into her PG-13 image when she offers, "I got a nice little … and my ass poke out / automatically I can ride a… no doubt/I'm known for getting all the haters mad / I can go slow but go crazy fast/ I give amazing head / Backside a little softer than a baby's ass / And that's wild soft / I let a rich ni99a hit it on his golf course.

Not to be outdone, West Palm Beach femcees,
Spoil'd Rotten recently dropped their own solo version of the "Whisper Song." Mistaken by many (including SoHH.com) to be Kelis, the indie duo signed to Breakin' Bread Entertainment get XXX-rated with lines like, "If you want me to get in your bed / You can lick it while I grab on your dreads / If you like to fuck / Well I like to put my legs up / Let you lick all in my butt." Spoil'd Rotten switches up the Ying Yang's chorus by offering, "Wait till you taste my clit" moments before instructing to "Eat the pu$$y up." The hook is then followed with a series or orgasmic moans. Believe it or not, SR takes it up a few notches on the second verse. Building on the oral sex theme, one of them woman requests, "Just eat this cat like a dog / Don't stop till you hear me go awwww and oohhhh!."

So the problem is that none of the women recording these so-called "answer tracks" are NOT dissing the Twinz! They're co-signing the date-rape raps with their own brand of Hoe-Hop! I'm WAITING til I hear a real female MC drop some karma on they ass. Where ya'll at?

In other Ying Yang news, according to MTV, they'll be getting their own "reality" show wherein a stranger will become their roommate. This brings up a convo I had with my best friend in the wash-house the other day. If you HAD to get with one of the Ying Yang Twinz, HAD TO, like if you didn't you'd spontaneously combust or some shit - which one would you choose? We both chose the bald one.

I'm never too shocked by the outrageous things folks say to justify their dirty music and business, but this one really take a lot of cake... "People think that just because we speak about those women in that manner, it must mean that we disrespecting them. But how you look stripping to "Mary Had a Little Lamb?" - Kaine of the Ying Yang Twins,
XXL, June 2005 (thanks to Crunk & Disorderly for that one, filed under the "Nigga Please" section)

Last thing, in the "shit happens" category,
Eve's pissed off 'cause a "personal sex tape" of her and her ex-old man ended up online. I feel her, but I've also seen the flix of her "dancer" days and she was doing more than dancing with one of her fellow pole-swingers, like whoa. I mean with Heather Hunter and Gloria Velez making records, and former strippers Eve and Jacki-O rhyming, no wonder the wires are crossed when it comes to feminism and empowerment within Hip Hop.


BRONXSTYLE + the blueprint

Alien Ness...So Fresh

"You got this record playing, just take time to listen to it." - B-Boy Alien Ness

"If you ain't doing what Alien Ness is doing, you ain't doing nothing." - Wyclef Jean of the Fugees

"The brother definitely proved to be out of this world." - Popmaster Fabel, Heirophysics/Rock Steady Crew

"Alien Ness is one of the illest b-boys out there." - Grand Wizard Theodore, Creator of the "Scratch"

"Alien represents real hip-hop and I am proud to know him. I hope he succeeds in every way." - Kurtis Blow

"The quintessential b-boy…it's in his soul." - Grandmaster Caz, Cold Crush Brothers

"He's numero uno…The original…b-boy killer." - Afrika Bambaattaa, Godfather of Hip Hop

"He came to break!" - Crazy Legs, Rock Steady Crew

The homegirl B-Girl Asia One (No Easy Props) hooked me up with a copy of the double DVD from Alien Ness, Bronxstyle/the blueprint. I just finished checking it out for the first time, and I'm floored (no pun intended). Since I shot some flix of Ness a few years back at the RSC Anniversary, he's been one of my favorite B-Boys to watch. But this shit is ridiculous!

First of all, for those who've never been to a B-Boy/B-Girl jam, Rocksteady Anniversary celebration, Universal Zulu Nation event, B-Boy Summit, Freestyle Session, etc. let me begin with some background on Ness. A B-Boy since 1982, he's been down with a number of crews over the years such as Electric Ave Rockers, Dance System 10, the NYC Breakers, B-Boys in Action/Bronx B-Boys/Boogie Down Productions, High Performance, Heirophysics, Rock Steady Crew, and the Universal Zulu Nation. He got a lot of his skills and foundation from two O.G. B-Boys, Buck 4 and Kuriaki, both of whom went back to the essence (God bless their lives). "Buck 4 used to tell me to practice slow," explains Ness on the how-to DVD, "and to think of different combinations and variations." In fact, Ness dedicates this to everyone he's learned from, including Buck 4, Kuriaki, Crazy Legs, Popmaster Fabel, Icey Ice, Mr. Wiggles, Sugar Pop, Melle Mel, Steelo, Sab, Wicket, Trac 2, and many more.

With footage from the Furious Styles Crew 10th Anniversary jam, demos from RSC Queen Jeskils, words from Mr. Freeze RSC, and mad demonstrations, explanations, breakdowns, and moves from Ness himself; one thing is clear - even newbies can learn to break with these DVDs and a whole lot of practice. Ness shows you how to toprock and go down, stressing that the best ways to learn are to run through drills (shown/broken down in the DVD), study old-school breakers, and use some common sense. It's the little things he explains, such as how to toprock on the balls of the feet - not to toprock flatfooted - that make these lessons golden.

In the mindstate of "each one teach one" intact, Ness pays homage to the B-Boys who taught him these moves so he can today teach others how to rock. Breaking down how to do the "Ness Glyde" he explains that the move he started from to create this new move was "The Float". In demonstrating the 4 Corners he explains that Crazy Legs taught him how to do it. The DVD gives inspiration to up-and-coming B-Boys and B-Girls as well, 'cause like Ness explains about coming up with his signature moves, "a majority of them were mistakes, or doing something I was trying to do by accident."

While most folks might not sit through a 2 DVD set about skills and steps, it's worth it to see the raw energy of the moves showcased here from dozens of B-Boys and B-Girls. And it's entertaining and comedic at times to listen to what Ness has to say about the dance..."Bottom line is, it's gonna work like Daniel-Son - wax on, wax off". Speed, leg steps, footwork, twists, bicycle pumps, figure 4 spins, swipes, windmills, chair freezes, baby freezes, transitions, poses, forms and flows - it's all here for the learning.

Check out a preview of Bronxstyle here and the blueprint here. To cop the videos visit B-Boy Summit Dot Com, or visit Alien Ness's site at B-Boy Alien Dot Com. And if you want to keep up with the B-Boy/B-Girl scene, subscribe to the Tools of War newsletter. That's what's up.



I Might As Well Tell U Who I Am...>

I wanted to post this brief question and answer session for ya'll. An educator by the name of Tracey Salisbury, who came all the way up to B-Girl Be from the University of North Carolina, is putting together an online course on Hip Hop for the fall semester. She's dedicated an entire section of the curriculum to Women and Hip Hop, and has her tech team putting together a "Hip Hop feminist/scholar" virtual roundtable as we speak! Her students will be able to click on each scholar's name, and in my case, they'll be linked to some of my online articles and editorials, as well as P2P. I love that she's doing this because she's one of the few people who acknowledges the Hip Hop scholars who DON'T have PhD's, as well as the ones reppin' Hip Hop for what it's worth within the "Ivory Tower". DOPE SHIT.

Without further pontification...

What is your view of hip-hop feminism?

I embody Hip Hop Feminism because of my politics, activism, and heritage. My Grandmother, Audrey Tuffli-Fuss, founded the first "ad-hoc" women's studies department at CSU Long Beach which eventually became one of the first women's studies departments at a University. I am a staunch activist when it comes to preserving Hip Hop culture, and as an editor and writer I've strived to portray artists and their work in a manner that is historically accurate. Hip Hop is my culture, my life, and my family. Within that culture there lurks a dichotomy and often a disconnect between Hip Hop and Rap, men and women, Commercialism and Consciousness, and even Black and white. As a woman who comes from a generations-long herstory of feminism, I am careful to include women in Hip Hop whenever and wherever possible in articles, book chapters, lectures, discussions, my blog, and even personal conversations. Women in Hip Hop are responsible for SO many "firsts" and half the Herstory will never be told. But for the other half, I've dedicated the better part of my life to Hip Hop, to feminism, and to supporting the growth and development of women within the Hip Hop sphere. I consider myself a wise woman warrior who's fighting a war against silence, misogyny, misrepresentation, sexism, rape, harassment, discrimination, and historical genocide. By any means necessary, through my words and actions, I support women who are working toward this common goal.

What is the greatest issue concerning women and hip-hop?

From my perspective, the greatest issue concerning women in Hip Hop is that misogyny and sexism are rampant throughout the music business and the business of music. Furthermore, this has been a problem for upwards of 20 years; so there is much work to be done to clean up the dirty history and misrepresentation. Images of women in Hip Hop have hit an all-time low, with the only slots available for female MCs falling under the category of Hoe-Hop and Stripper Rap. As women, we must financially support ALL female Hip Hop and Rap artists who do not fall into this "tender trap". Furthermore, we MUST NOT support those artists, male or female, who serve the other side and rhyme to reinforce stereotypes, perpetuate misogyny, and/or hoard wealth for themselves. By this I mean a total Girlcott of radio, TV, CDs, DVDs, films, and any other consumption where women refuse to spend their hard-earned cash supporting those who are against women, against Hip Hop culture, and against women in Hip Hop especially.

What is the future for women and hip-hop?

The future is brighter than ever from Women in Hip Hop. With ongoing movements encompassing the Spelman College Nelly Girlcott, Essence Magazine's Take Back the Music campaign, the Feminism in Hip Hop Conference at University of Chicago, B-Girl Be: A Summit For, By and About Women in Hip Hop in Minneapolis, and a rise in women in power at CNBC, MTV, and BET; change is in the wind. Feminism is the new F-word, and every woman knows somebody who knows something about it. Artists like Jean Grae, Mystic, Psalm One, Desdamona, Goapele, Misundastood, Rayna Shine, Jewel Brown, DJ Kuttin Kandi, The Anomolies, Earth Everest of Black Elephant, D-Lo, Invincible, and so many more may or may not consider themselves feminists; however they are creating the music and lifeforce to sway Hip Hop back to the days when we were Queens and Ladies, not bitches and hoes. Whenever any of these women picks up a mic, they inspire a younger generation of B-Girls on the rise to do the same. It will be these "fourth-wave" B-Girls and Hip Hop feminists to whom we'll pass the baton; and trust me when I say that they'll be rough, rugged and raw when it comes to respecting and protecting the legacy of Women in Hip Hop.


Miranda Jane

Tired of Bloggin'

And another one down, and another one down...DAAAAAAAAAAAAMN!

What the hell. There's not gonna be anymore
Beats and Rants for awhile, apparently. I'm a little miffed about this.

To add salt to the already excruciatingly-painful wound left by
EXO's departure from the game, now I'm reading that Lynne D. Johnson is taking the ever-more-popular hiatus as well.

At least these folks get it said.
Jonramanica and Jazzy-Bo just leave us here withering away and occasionally feeding us crumbs.

Plus my two guilty pleasures, Cassidy AND young Gucci Mane (SO ICEY), are both possibly/probably headed up the river without a paddle toward the big house. FUCK ME!

Not only that, but Meshack's not publishing The Kronick no mo'; and Asia One has discontinued the annual B-Boy Summit events. Ironically, these ventures were both L.A. institutions and both lasted 10 years running. It's all good thoug, they both have big things going on; so always onward and upward. More on that later...

I can't make any promises, but I myself will make every attempt to keep this goin 'til the wheels fall off. After all, it's the only place I don't have to worry about some machete-happy editor-in-brief fucking up the program, right? Thank God for small favors.



MUST...READ...NOW...Version 2.0

Pretty Enough to be a Guerilla...>

I'm going to go all over the place, so please try to keep up. There will be a test at the end, but it won't be biased toward rich white folks. Some of you need to get up to speed before we move on in the lesson plan, and those of you who remain behind in your reading WILL be terminated, posthaste. Can you keep up? At least TRY to make me lose my breath...

by M'Bwebe Aja Ishangi fka Jehvon Buckner
If you read Neely Fuller's, The United Independent Compensatory Code/System/Concept and Francess Cress Welsing's, The Isis Papers, you would be familiar with the 9 Areas of People Activity. Those areas consist of economics, education, entertainment, labor, law, politics, sex, religion and war. When studyin' global white supremacy — which is maintained by the Illuminati — we find they basically have it locked down. So that we didn't fall into the namin' the culprit "they" while never tellin' you WHO SPECIFICALLY, we did futher research and found that there is such a company that is in the final stages of virtually sewin' up many of the 9 Areas. The company's name is Vivendi Universal. Vivendi is the worldz largest record company, which ownz Uinversal Music Group and Universal Studios, as well as 51% in the European pay-TV provider, Canal. Among other thingz in other fieldz, they have sister divisionz in Vivendi Environment, which dealz in water, air, waste and soil; Vivendi Publishing — where they own over 800,000 copyrighted catalogz such as Louis Armstrong, Chuck Berry, John Coltrane, Ella Fitzgerald, The Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, Jimi Hendrix, Billie Holiday, Jackson5, Bob Marley, Smokey Robinson, The Supremes and the Temptationz; Vivendi Internet and Vivendi Telecom.
Finish the assignment here.

A Weekend With the Five Percenters
by Michael Muhammad Knight
I arrived in Harlem on Friday, just in time for jumaa prayers at Masjid Malcolm Shabazz with the bulbous green dome. This mosque had once been the Nation of Islam’s Temple No. 7 but was now run by Warith Deen’s community. I checked my bag at the door and walked up a flight of stairs to the prayer hall. A brother gave me a plastic grocery bag for my shoes. I walked in right-foot-first to find security guards in suits and ties positioned throughout the mosque. One pointed to an open space in the back row so I went and did my sunna. When I sat down he came over and had me sit closer to the brother on my side. I looked around and found myself the only white guy but felt alright since we were all Sunni there, this was the Islam of Malik Shabazz. The imam’s khutbah was long and went all over the place, quoting not only from the Quran but also the New Testament and even Elijah Muhammad but most of the time he read directly from a Warith Deen speech. Doctrine-wise it was Sunni but he used old terms from the Nation of Islam like “trickster” and “grafted minds” without their racial connotations.

PIMP OR WIMP? Why Black Rappers Glorify the Pimp Mentality
by du ewa m. frazier
Pimp has become synonymous with the name rapper these days. Whether it's in a music video, on a television show appearance, or in their lyrics, rappers just can't get enough of likening themselves to being pimps. We know the word to mean a man who manages the daily work of a prostitute and takes a percentage (if not all) of her or several women's earnings. We've seen the original "Shaft", actress Pam Grier's movies featuring gritty street pimp characters or even read the racy, hard edged tales of street and pimp life in books by Donald Goines. We know who pimps are, or rather who they used to be: slick, greased down cats, wearing lavish, attention getting suits, shoes, hats and coats, to match their bigger than life egos. And of course we cannot forget about their unforgettable pimp mode of transportation: the Cadillac, or "Caddy" as some would call it. The men we've heard of as being pimps are notorious for woman beating, drug and alcohol abuse, run-ins with the law and hardened personalities who womanize and seem to be proud of their distasteful interactions with women. Pimpin ain't easy. Pimp life can't be easy, after all, it is illegal, a sort of non-career for hustlers who make a career out of street life dealing and womanizing. Pimping, however uneasy it is, has gotten very popular as in mainstream popular. So mainstream, that it's become entertainment, a stereotype of Black men, a joke. HBO did a documentary on the pimp lifestyle, profiling rapper Ice-T, with his friends who have been pimps for years and the seemingly happy women they pimp.
More pimpin'?

Isis, though worshipped all over Egypt, was specially venerated in certain cities, and the following are among the most common of her titles: --"The great lady, the God-mother, lady of Re-a-nefer; Isis-Nebuut, lady of Sekhet; lady of Besitet; Isis in Per Pakht, the queen of Mesen; Isis of Ta-at-nehepet; Isis, dweller in Netru; Isis, lady of Hebet; Isis in P-she-Hert; Isis, lady of Khebt; Usert-Isis, giver of life, lady of Abaton, lady of Philae, lady of the countries of the south," etc. From a list of title of the goddess collected by Dr. Brugsch, it is clear that Isis was called Usert, in Thebes, Aat, in Heliopolis, Menkhet, in Memphis, God-Mother, in Coptos, Hert, in Letopolis; and "Hent," i.e., "Queen," in every nome; and another important list tells us that Isis was called Ament, in Thebes, Menhet, in Heliopolis, renpet, In Memphis, Sept, in Abydos, Hetet, in Behutet, Hurt, in Nekhen, Thenenet, in Hermonthis, Ant, in Dendera, Sesheta, in Hermopolis, Heqet, in Hibiu, Uatchit, in Hipponus, Mersekhen, in Herakleopolis, Renpet, in Crocodilopolis, Neb-tept, in Arsinoe, That, or Tchetut, in Aphroditopolis, and Shetat, in Bubastis. Among her general titles may be mentioned those of "the divine one, the only one, the greatest of the gods and goddesses, the queen of all gods, the female
Ra, the female Horus, the eye of Ra, the crown of Ra-Heru, Sept, opener of the year, lady of the New Year, maker of the sunrise, lady of heaven, the light-giver of heaven, lady of the North Wind, queen of the earth, most mighty one, queen of the South and North, lady of the solid earth, lady of warmth and fire, benefactress of the Tuat, she who is greatly feared in the Tuat, the God-mother, the God-mother of Heru-ka-nekht, the mother of the Horus of gold, the lady of life, lady of green crops, the green goddess (Uatchet), lady of bread, lady of beer, lady of abundance, lady of joy and gladness, lady of love, the maker of kings, lady of the Great House, lady of the House of fire, the beautiful goddess, the lady of words of power, lady of the shuttle, daughter of Seb, daughter of Neb-er-tcher, the child of Nut, wife of Ra, wife of the lord of the abyss, wife of the lord of the Inundation, the creatrix of the Nile flood."
You know you want more.

Three Gems of Alchemical Initiation
Part 2: Sublimation of Ching, the Second Gem of Alchemy
Lynn Osburn
The sublimation of ching is the second alchemical gemstone. When ching is sublimated through the inner circulation you can become aware of your subtle body. Chi circulates through the inner circulation. Ching can rise through the microcosmic orbit and enliven or activate the dormant subtle body. The subtle body is the complement of the gross (physical) body. When enlivened by the reverse flow of ching the dormant subtle body begins to develop. The old Taoist masters called this development of the immortal fetus.
Study up on it!

Black Gods of the Inner City
by Prince-A-Cuba
(Fall 1992 / Gnosis Magazine)
After centuries of slavery, lynchings, discriminations, miseducation, policebrutality, and poverty, it was not difficult for semiliterate Black migrantsin the Depression era to believe that the White man was a devil. What wasdifficult, after generations of being taught in schools, textbooks, and themedia that Black people were inferior and had no history of achievement beforeenslavement, was for them to see the divine nature in themselves. It was not for Black people to rehabilitate their view of Whites, but to raise their ownself-esteem. The doctrine of Black godhood responds to this need, and the Black gods of the inner city are symptomatic ot this effort.
Required reading...

The Cotton Club
Black-conscious hip-hop deals with an overwhelmingly white live audience
by Bakari Kitwana
Armed with messages of Black political resistance, Black pride, and opposition to militarization and corporatization, designed in part to counter the commercial hip-hop party-and-bullshit madness dumbing down the nation's youth, hip-hop's lyrical descendants of the "fight the power" golden era today are booking concerts in record numbers—far beyond anything imaginable by their predecessors. Problem is, they can hardly find a Black face in the audience. As the Coup (Pick a Bigger Gun), Zion-I (True and Livin'), and the Perceptionists (Black Dialogue) get set for a wave of touring to promote their new CDs this summer, the audience that will be looking back at them unmasks one of the most significant casualties of hip-hop's pop culture ascension: the shrinking Black concert audience for hardcore, political hip-hop.
"My audience has gone from being over 95 percent Black 10 years ago to over 95 percent white today," laments Boots Riley of the Coup, whose 1994 Genocide and Juice responded to Snoop Dogg's 1993 gangsta party anthem "Gin and Juice." "We jokingly refer to our tour as the Cotton Club," he says—a reference to the 1920s and '30s Harlem jazz spot where Black musicians played to whites-only audiences.
Finish it!

by David Bediz
Hatshepsut, as a female, had many obstacles to overcome. There was always a threat of revolt, especially as her bitter nephew came of age. Using propaganda and keen political skills, she deftly jumped each hurdle she faced. To quell the fears of her people, she became a "king" in all statuary and relief during her reign. She even dressed in the traditional garb of male rulers: the shendyt kilt, the nemes headdress with its uraeus and khat headcloth, and the false beard. Although there were no wars during her reign, she proved her sovereignty by ordering expeditions to the land of Punt, in present-day Somalia, in search of the ivory, animals, spices, gold and aromatic trees that Egyptians coveted. These expeditions are well documented in the hieroglyphic inscriptions on the walls of her temple. With these inscriptions are included incised representations of the journey, including humorous images of the Puntites and their queen, at whom the Egyptians no doubt looked while restraining a giggle; the queen has folds of fat hanging over her knees and elbows, her back is crooked and she has an aquiline nose. To the short, thin Egyptian she was probably quite a sight. Hatshepsut, in a final bid to be recognized as a legitimate queen, constructed a fabulous temple in the Valley of the Kings, of all places, by a tall plateau at Deir-el-Bahri, across the Nile from Thebes.
You guessed it...homework.

What, you thought "How'd We Get From the Pyramids to the Projects?" was some rhetorical shit, or me just being cute? Wrong again...learn about it.

P.S. Believe nothing. Question everything. Come up with answers. Don't believe e'thing you read; especially on the internets.


All Natural Beauty

100% Natural

I always get comments in the streets about how good I smell, how smooth my skin looks, and how I have such shiny, healthy hair. Those of you who know me know about the whole organic health food regime on my Mom's side of the family, it's been going on for four generations now. My homegirls know a few of my beauty secrets, and some of them are hip to a few of the products I use. But today, in an unprecedented act, I'm going to share all my secrets right here on Pyramids 2 Projects. Check it out... And to all my gentlemen readers, don't leave yet, read ahead and click on these links - your grandmother, mother, aunties, sisters, daughters, and Queens will thank you for it!

It's Da Balm! For real, that's what it's called. Perfect for dancers, skaters, walkers, runners, bikers, or anyone who has owie feet.

I'm the third generation of women in my family to use this
pure Olive Oil soap. The best face soap, period.

Jasmine Petal Sea Salt Soak...relax in a hot bath and smell good doin' it.


The true test of a righteous person - do they wash up with
Dr. Bronner's? Peppermint, Lavender, or Almond are the best!

For the teeth, I like Tom's of Maine flouride-free toothpaste in Cinnamint. To keep my teeth white I sometimes brush with a paste of pure baking soda and just enough water to make it stick to the toothbrush.

www.lifesvigor.com (Tom's of Maine no longer sells direct from their site, www.tomsofmaine.com)

Another wonderful bar soap,
Dudu Osun, the best of the Black soaps I've found.

Try the
Aloe Herbal Hair Wash with Ylang-Ylang & Vanilla scent.

Alba deep conditioner is thick, rich and leaves a delicious scent in your hair. I use a teeny, tiny bit as a leave-in.
www.houseofnutrition.com (don't know if Alba has a website of their own, also available at Whole Foods markets!)

I can't live without the
Beeswax and Banana hand creme...it smells like yummy banana bread fresh from the oven
www.burtsbees.com (Also try the complexion soaps and the amazing citrus facial scrub)

The "Aries" scented
butter smells SOOO good...but my favorite is the CitrousCin.
www.myemagine.com (I met this Sister at a street fair in Eagle Rock, and her products are TO DIE FOR. Try the Milk bar soap, which doubles as a shampoo!)

Anahita's Hair Butter is divine, Heavenly Spirit Body Butter works every time!

Khoret Amen Shea Butter Hair Smoothie! Sweet Almond Cookie Oil! Mmmmm...yummy

body scrubs in Ginger Sweet Coconut or Peppermint Dark Chocolate

I suggest
Aura, Honeydew Melon, or Hibiscus. My signature blend is Chocolate Kiss, Orange Blossom, and Peppermint (Essential Oil) mixed together - three parts chocolate, two parts orange, to one part peppermint.
www.bodytimeproducts.com (this is the original Body Shop, however when the company in the UK started they got richer faster and so they changed the name to Body Time, located on Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley, CA)

Hella Good! What more can I say?

Shea Butter is the best moisturizer I've found for hands, feet, lips, even hair. I custom-scent this butter with an oil or two from Body Time, and keep it moving...

Before I cut off all my hair, I used
this oil during the summer to prevent my hair from drying out. The scent is Tiare (Tahitian Gardenia) and it smells amazingly good. If you really want to go for the gusto, wear this scent along with the hair oil.
Monoi Tiare hair oil from http://mailorderhawaii.com and fabulous Hawaiin solid perfume from www.maliekauai.com

Try the
CitrousCin (Orange and Cinnamon) in the sugar scrub. Um, er, uhh...it's "lickable" literally, edible. Now that's all natural!

Now ladies, if someone sent you a gift basket with all of the above items inside, not on a special occasion or "holiday" but just because...how pampered would you be?!!

I almost forgot!
Jane Carter Solution leave-in conditioning spray. It brings out the curls in my hair and it's not greasy at all. Thank you Jane!

I've made my own sugar scrub with great success, the recipe is

1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 cup Bustelo fine-ground coffee (or other "Spanish" espresso)
1 tablespoon madagascar vanilla
1 orange (juice, pulp and outer peel)
1 1/2 cups Sugar in the Raw
1/2 cup Sage Honey
3 cinnamon sticks, crumbled
1/4 cup rock salt

Mix into a paste and use as a body scrub in the bath or shower. Keeps in the fridge for a couple of weeks. Add an essential oil such as Rosemary or Peppermint, or some grated fresh Ginger root, for a more invigorating scrub. I made that up when I was living in Brooklyn, but it worked wonders, and people say if you take a bath in coffee you'll come in to money.

I guess this all started with my Mother who made her own candles from scratch in different colors, scents, shapes and sizes. Check out this site for
candle-making supplies, and this message board with tips on making homemade candles (and soap).

Check these techniques and tips from other women who get down the All Natural Way:

B-Girl Peppa

Funk Creative Diva

Yetunde Taiwo Rodriguez

Stephanie Rose Bird

Susie Parker Goins

Donna Maria

P.S. If you have any favorites to add on, post up in the comments or email me at mizmirandajane@yahoo.com

P.P.S. If you're reading this, and I shouted out your product, send me a lil gift basket or something, Please? Thank you.

June 30, 2005


L-R: ET, Akon & Booba from www.skyrock.com (Senegalese/French site)

"Akon's roots in music can be traced back to his father, the legendary percussionist and jazz musician Mor Thiam. Exposed to many forms of music at an early age, Akon gravitated towards hip-hop as a teen-ager, but he is a true musician who refuses to be limited. The charismatic performer has collaborated with a diverse range of artists that include: Baby Bash, Jesse McCartney, Brian McKnight, Styles P and Bobby Vinton- whose "Mr. Lonely" inspired Akon's current hit "Lonely."" - from www.akononline.net

At first I thought Akon was just another guilty pleasure. After hearing the sped-up, slightly chimpmunkish "Mr. Lonely," and of course his collabo with "Baby Bash" (who I recently discovered is mixed Mexican and white, hence "the whole enchilada" line he kicks); I was certain that he was just another voice on the TV/Radio/Matrix that had been rendered enjoyable and interesting with multi-million dollar SSL boards and an obese marketing budget.

At the same moment, I'd find myself singing to myself while writing to my Kings locked down, "I got locked up, they won't let me out, no..." not even knowin' that this too was by the man Akon! THEN, after being reintroduced to satellite TV and a plethora of video channels the likes of which I've never seen, I delved further into the mysterious Songsta when the video for "Ghetto" came on.

So I'm convinced. I love Akon. He fucken rocks, dude. He's African born, child of a Jazz player, and obviously he's spent 'nuff time in the 'hood and has some homies in the bing-bing.

Just wanted to share.

P.S. Right now on VH-1 Soul there's an Ali Shaheed Muhammad video on, "Banga", and my GIRL B-Girl Peppa is ROCKING OUT as we speak. She's a No Easy Props B-Girl, plus a Break-Girl Breakin' It Down. Check out the links, check out the video, U can't stop the body rock. NUFF RESPECT, SEEN!!??

P.P.S. I can't tweak on it, or spend a week on it, but check here for the race debate that's about to really get set off...


From the 2003 Hall of Fame...>

I had an itchy, apprehensive, melancholy feeling all weekend. I tried and tried to teleport myself to New York, to the corner of 106th and Park Avenue, but couldn't quite get there. Before I even got my Tools of War newsletter, I knew it was coming. Around this time in June, for damn near as many years back as I've been livin on this earth, the greatest Graffiti artists of all time have convened in Harlem to pay tribute to the Graf Gods. Belton/Mototow, Montana, even Krylon; they sacrifice thousands and thousands of cans every year.

I've been so blessed in my life, from meeting Afrika Bambaataa, DJ Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash, Grandmaster Caz, Busy Bee, and so many more legends of Hip Hop. But my greatest wealth of friends and acquaintances comes from the close-knit community of Graffiti Kings. I've had the immense pleasure of watching some of the best of the best, strictly kings, queens, and better, paint -

So if you're in NYC, run, don't walk, to the yard to check out the illness on walls that is the Graffiti Hall of Fame. And hurry up before the inevitable haters, toys and the wack come through and tag some bullshit over a piece of fine art.

And if you wanna make a donation toward my plane ticket to NY, hit me up with cash, money order, or a check at the address next to the photo of the lady with HIP HOP tattoed across her back. Trust you'll be blessed back one-hundred-fold if you do.



Dr. Malachi Z. York, Imam Isa, "The Lamb", Chief Black Eagle...go 'head, it's your birthday!

Peace. Today is June 26, 2005 by the gregorian calendar. Sixty years ago today, a man named "Malachi York" (As Savyid Issa Al Haadi Al Mahdi) was born. He's held myriad attributes in his sixty years; spoken and written many languages; introduced dozens of cosmologies; and taught, mentored, fathered, and inspired countless followers - many of whom are your favorite producers, MCs, writers, editors, industry executives, and other influential individuals representing the full spectrum of careers and jobs under the Sun.

I'm sad to report that "Doc" as he's often called by his students is spending this particular birthday in a federal prison. You can
read more about the rig-up here. I have never met this great man, however MANY of his students are my most dear and trusted friends. My most meaningful relationships have been with those who happened to, at one time or another, follow his teachings or live on his land. I would stake my life on the fact that he's innocent of the alleged charges.

Thankfully, he has
an excellent attorney working on his appeal. For anyone who listens to Hip Hop music; any fans of Wu-Tang Clan, Jay-Z, KMD, MF Doom, Tragedy Khadafi, Stetsasonic, De la Soul, Jaz-O, and so many of the artists who followed them, know that you too have been directly influenced by Dr. York and his teachings.

You can learn much more about him and his case
here; or take a moment to send a note or letter of support to

Malachi Z. York
P.O. BOX 1000
MARION, IL 62959

Sending all the Blessings in the Universe to U, Doc. Thank U for your contributions to the education and upliftment of so many without whom I could not exist on this Earth.


June 29, 2005


Megalon got locked up...they won't let him out (anytime soon)...>


I print out pages from the blog and send them out with my kites to my homeboys and loved ones who are locked down. One of my "pen pals" is an MC named Megalon, certain of you may have heard his name ring bells with Monsta Island Czars, or heard him on MF Doom or MF Grimm LPs in the past. The kid is one of the sickest MCs I've ever heard, and the illest most of ya'll have never heard. We've never met, but on the strength of friends and fam in common, I started writing him about six months ago.

If you're a fan, or just want to do a good deed, hit him up with a letter, note, card, money order, or whatevs. He'll be home in a couple of years, but until then his album "
A Penny for Your Thoughts" rocks on. Write to Megalon at:

Thomas N. Rollins
DIN#: 04A0875
State Route 96
P.O. Box 119
Romulus, NY 14541


Carlito's Angels do it Carlito's Way.

Dear Summer,

I bugged out the other day when I saw a link on Jeff Chang's blog for Carlito Rodriguez. Carlito is one of my favorite writers, and I sorely miss reading his column "Carlito's Way". He was EIC of the source in the more glorious days of the rag/mag; and I wish that I could have worked under the great man. I love to read Carlito for the same reasons I love to read Bonz Malone, Meshack Blaq, Monalisa Murray, kris ex, Kenji Jasper, and myself - 'cause we bring the street edge to life in print; not for the glorification or commodification but because we often write to kick some truth in addition to our opinions. So suffice to say, check Carlito's blog out right here, and show him some love in the the comments - let him know you're reading, you know?

I also want to stress that everyone pay a visit to the God
CBS A'Life Allah's blog. He's been writing for YEARS, and dropping science online on the NGE.org, various Hip Hop message boards, etc. Regardless of your thoughts/feelings on the 5% Nation of Gods and Earths, all of the Hip Hop generation has been influenced heavily by Father Allah, the first 9 born, and all of the Gods and Earths from then until now. In addition to reporting on current affairs from the 5% perspective, CBS is a serious Hip Hop afficianado and old-school B-Boy, and anyone who wants to learn more should check the blog, stat.

In related topics, there's a new book called
Five Percenter Rap: God Hop's Music, Message and Black Muslim Mission; which is a musicology text published by the Indiana University Press and written by Felicia Miyakawa. The first parts of the book include a "history and theology of the Five Percent Nation" which, in my opinion, should be taken with a grain of salt. However, the later chapters on Lyrics, Flow, Layering, Rupture, Groove, Sampling, Borrowing and Meaning are definitely interesting. The author is a musicologist and professor, so it's interesting to see how she analyzes the rhythms used by producers like DJ Khalil of Self Scientific and correlates them back to Supreme Mathematics. I think this book opens the floodgates for more nonfiction books about the NGE and other "schools of thought" which have influenced Hip Hop music and the Hip Hop generation so strong.

Over there on
www.daveyd.com there's a heated convo about some church group that's "condemning" Afrika Bambaataa and KRS-1 for their teachings. I put in my two cents, below, in response, so check the links and judge for yourself. Feel free to drop any knowledge or wisdom on it in the comments here, or over on Davey D's board.

"Peace. First of all, there is no church or pastor or bishop or preacher-man or any other organization or entity that has the decision-making power to judge Afrika Bambaataa, KRS-1, Imam Isa (Dr. Malachi Z. York), Father Allah (Clarence 13X), Noble Drew Ali, or any of the other men or women who've had a hand in creating Hip Hop cosmology or who have been instrumental in leading the young men and women who together encompass the global Hip Hop community. That's A, #1. Hip Hop is a culture, a way of life, and a set of art forms. Hip Hop is fluid, swift and changeable. KRS-1 said quite a quotable when he dropped this one, "Rap is something you do, Hip Hop is something you live." True to this day. Those who are down by law within Hip Hop, whether their said birth date with the culture begins with DJ Kool Herc or with DJ Kool Akiem (Micranots) -- or even later than that -- know better than to let someone dictate to them what Hip Hop is. And no one can tell us what Hip Hop is not. Other than that, I don't know what to say about this "church," or it's "teachings". I ain't Hov, I just know what I know. Every day when I wake up, I'm blessed to be here and to still look 18 years old. Hip Hop is the fountain of youth that keeps me vibrant and alive. Hip Hop is my religion, and my masjid/temple/church for that matter. I know those outside of the culture love to stir up mess; but where I come from we live by one credo...DON'T START NO @#%$, WON'T BE NO @#%$
Peace, Blessings, Guidance, and Balance...>"

There's going to be a lot of good music comin' out soon. Counting down until August when I Self Devine drops Self Destruction on
Rhymesayers, September when Tha Alkaholiks drop their much-anticipated LP through a joint venture with Koch, and October when Self Scientific will release the follow up album to their self-titled debut and the recent mixtape release Gods and Gangsters. The new joint will come out through DJ Muggs' and Self Scientific's joint-venture/label ANGELES Records. Until then I've been bumping Desdamona's LP "The Ledge", available now on CDbaby (she's a female poet/MC who is RAW and happens to have Sly & Robbie on production!), and DJ Stage One's "Street Cinema, Volume 1". Hit him up if you want to order a copy...for a DJ living in Minneapolis he's easily burning a lot of the NYC mixtape DJs. Except for the kid DJ Eleven, who along with Cosmo has the SICKEST mixtape out at the moment, "I'm Rick James Bitch"!. Hit him up to order this joint, ASAP, or check your local Fat Beats.

And be easy, 'til next time.



That's Just My Baby Daddy...>

What do DMX, RZA, Rakim, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Funkmaster Flex, P-Diddy, and Busta Rhymes have in common? They’ve all been involved in at least one paternity suit in the past five years.
Most recently, (thanks to
All Hip Hop for the info), DMX and RZA have both been sued. "DMX and RZA appeared in court last week in separate paternity cases. DMX had requested a paternity test to determine if he is the father of a three-year-old in Buffalo, New York. The test returned 99.99% chance that X is the father of the child. The rapper’s lawyer requested another test, while the child’s mother’s lawyer asked the judge to issue an arrest warrant because DMX failed to appear in court. Both motions were dismissed, but DMX must attend another paternity hearing next month or face arrest. DMX has another paternity case pending in Maryland. DMX’s wife recently gave birth. X was arrested on his way to the hospital the day his wife went into labor. The rapper was charged with various driving offenses including driving with a suspended license, after he struck a vehicle from behind, which in turn struck a police car."
Now, I know plenty of artists who have a woman in every city, and groupies on top of that. But this is ridiculous. Some will point the finger at the women, calling them gold-diggers, hoes, and worse…but at the end of the day all the child support in the world isn’t going to take the place of a two-parent household. And I have to hand it to RZA, who according to All Hip Hop "was present for his paternity hearing and according to reports, did not need a DNA test to acknowledge his 4-year-old daughter. RZA previously denied being the father of the 4-year-old, but RZA admitted siring the child after seeing noting his resemblance to the girl. According to RZA’s lawyer, RZA is accused of fathering at least six children by various women."

Same goes for ODB (PBUH, RIP). He had a gang of kids, but he was proud of them. He only got caught up in paternity lawsuits because his babies’ mother was hoping to have him cremated to avoid further paternity suits in the future. A-Son Unique went onstage at the Grammy Awards to yell "Wu Tang is for the children!" and he openly said that he had fathered at least 13 children. While he was in and out of the courts dealing with child support issues, at least he claimed his babies. In 1994 MTV recorded an infamous segment where Dirt put many of his children in a limo and drove to the welfare office to pick up his food stamps.

Busta Rhymes was sued in 1999 by a North Carolina woman named Jill Miskelly who said that her daughter was the result of a one-night stand with Busta. After paternity tests proved he was the father, he began making child support payments of $1,250 a month. For a man with a $5,000 belt buckle, this just ain’t right.

Sean "Puffy" Combs claims his children from both Kim Porter and Misa Hylton-Brim, and he pays child support. Still, in 2001, Porter sued him in Manhattan Family Court, asking the judge to declare him the father of Christian Casey Combs. I used to work with Misa at The Source, and she was no pampered princess. Whatever monies she was receiving from Puff for support were definitely going their son, and she was working hard to pay her bills.

Radio personality Funkmaster Flex was sued in 1992 by Haydee Diaz, who claimed her son Dante was his child. Unfortunately, Flex was married to Oxygen host Monica Joseph at the time, and the couple had a 9-month old daughter.

It’s really sad to see married men slippin’ like this…although women can participate in some of the evil that men do as well. Daz Dillinger divorced his wife and demanded a DNA test for their child when Suge Knight recorded lyrics claiming HE was the father of Daz’s child. And I can’t neglect to mention that rumours abound about singer/actress Macy Gray – that she has 10 children and leaves them with relatives most of the year.

Don't get it twisted or take any of this as stereotype reinforcement, 'cause there are plenty of Hip Hop families who, under every circumstance, take care of their children whether they’re together or not. Erykah Badu and Andre 3000 of OutKast, Big Gipp of the Goodie Mob and chanteuse Joi, and plenty of other Hip Hop couples are making family happen, even if it’s not traditional. I just hope that all of these moms and dads are looking toward the future and putting some of those advance monies and royalty checks into college funds and trust funds.

So while it’s most definitely scandalous that a lot of Hip Hop’s pops aren’t being fathers to their children, I have to acknowledge and shout-out some of the Hip Hop fathers I know who are doing such an amazing job raising their children. A-Plus from Souls of Mischief is a proud daddy of a beautiful son. C-Rayz Walz dedicated his last LP (Ravipops) to his seed, Ravi and is an integral part of his life. J-Ro from Tha Alkaholiks raises his two boys and coaches their Pop Warner football team. Parish "PMD" Smith of EPMD also has two sons, and is careful to mold his music business schedule around their lives. Even MF Doom, whom I have plenty of reasons to dislike and beef with, is a father to his sons and really takes time with their growth and development.

I was the daughter of a musician who had plenty of groupies and wives to spare (yeah, Pops, we know you're reading and I know you've been married ex-amount of times before your current wife...so let's just keep it real!), and I know what it’s like when daddy is in the studio, on the road, and just not there; while mommy struggles to make ends meet on a little bit of nothing a/k/a court-ordered child support. That’s why I want to end this on the positive tip and reinforce the fact that a lot of Hip Hop fathers are doin’ it for themselves and their seeds. So it’s not all bad. Don’t want anyone thinking this is the man-hating post, ‘cause it’s certainly not. We love men. MEN. Who acknowledge their children, and take care of them – financially, spiritually, and in myriad ways. And at the end of the day a lot of it breaks down to biology. A mama has a baby. A daddy can always cop out and say…maybe.

* Originally published on my other spot over at www.blogcritics.org

June 28, 2005


Whoa. Just heard a track on the homie Mr. Kamoji's blog-radio station where Kanye showed his whole, entire ass. To paraphrase, he said somethin like "Ralph Lauren wasn't cool until I wore Polo". I'm feelin' the fuck outta the Diamonds video, even though the lyrics are mad contradictory, so I'll give him a cool point for that one.

I remember there was some drizzz-ama at the source when they shot the Kanye cover, something about he wouldn't do the photo shoot if he didn't wear Purple Label (the most "elite" of the Ralph Lauren brands); and conversely Ralph Lauren and 'em were like, Kanye who? Kanye what? So they had to BUY some fucken' $12000 suit for this guy.

So yeah, like I was sayin, I can't stand these new-jacks who come in to the game, get famously over-blown, and start tooting their horn to the point that they sound ridiculous and possibly skee'd out they faces. KANYE WEST, DON'T EVEN TRY TO FRONT LIKE YOU'VE NEVER HEARD OF THE LO-LIFES. THE ORIGINAL LO-LIFE CREW ARE THE ONES WHO MADE 'LO FLY, COOL, DOPE, FRESH, SUPER-CLEAN, AND THEY OPENED THE URBAN WORLD'S EYES TO THE WHOLE RALPH LAUREN AND POLO STEELO. They're infamous and notorious for robbing stores for entire racks of Polo, and eventually organized what they called the "Million Man Rush" where they planned and executed a strategic racking mission with dozens of participants. That's some real robin-hood-rob-the-rich-lace-the-poor shit right there. RESPECT THEIR GANGSTA.

It's not just the Polo thing. I know Kanye done heard of Thirstin Howl. I know he wouldn't battle him, if the challenge arose he'd probably 'fess on some "I'm too rich to battle that nigga" type bullshit. It irks the shit out of me that Thirstin Howl III and Rack-Lo and 'em pump out dope albums on a damn-near quarterly basis, only to toil in underground quasi-obscurity and underpaid oblivion. While these A&R's are bullshitting, they need to hit up "The Polorican" and offer him the multi-million dollar deals that they're giving to (c)rappers like Kanye. Or just step aside and let me have their cushy jobs, company credit cards, expense accounts and major-label signing power.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not hating on Kanye. I just don't want him to get too big for his Purple Label britches, you know? I mean, Son makes some nice beats, but not hardly as ill as DJ KHALIL.

Diamonds are forever, but so are 'hood legends like the Lo-Lifes. Respect the style master generals.

June 27, 2005

I'm Comin' Out...

Well, well, well, I'll be damned, I might as well tell you who I am...>
Besides being oh-so-blog-her-ific, I'm a beautiful blazin' B-Girl with a bevy of bylines. My nomes de plume are many, so just to get it all the way straight here's a little breakdown. Back in the day on NGE.org and on theDSC.com, you may have read some words from Queen Wise Intelligent. Of course everyone knows the e'day moniker, Miranda Jane. Some people just stick with MJ, which is actually a name given to me by Tragedy Khadafi; it's so funny when I hear my family or elders say "Hey, MJ!". exo and Chace Infinite, in an uprecedented case of concentric circles of contemplation, took "MJ" a step further and now it's "emjay". Then there's Nasira, a name given to me by one of my God Mothers, as in Nasira Salaam or Nasira Miranda Jane (Nasira = of the victorious one, helper of others).

As a recording artist I've been credited as Allah's Reflection, on Grimm's Downfall of Iblys and Madlib/Doom's Madvillainy - this name was chosen because of my affiliation with the S.O.L.A.R. Panel and S.O.L. MusicWorks - Sons of Light, Allah's Reflection; being one of the only Queen working amongst a crew of 30-some odd Kings, the attribute kind of stuck with me . Then of course there's Isis the Alchemist, she's got somethin' up at www.allhiphop.com right now! More obscure and harder to pinpoint is Nunya Biznet, say it aloud with the "t" silent until U get the drift. And (somewhat) finally, Marijuana Jones, which is my R&B name (look out for the album in 2006) and one I recently had the pleasure to bust as my byline. Check the wreckage, below.

*BIG UPS to Robbie and 'em who let this rock on the most scintillating buddha-blog ever, A Salute to Weed Carriers.

First of all, gully gutter shouts to all the weed-carryin' ladies in the house. Here's to the ones with "weed inside they pussies with they minds on the finer things in life/Props is a true thug's wife." Yeah, yeah, you know: "a few bitches who fucked dreads, on Sudafed, pussies hurtin', they did it for a yard for the feds". Rockin' - not lots of ice - but "four finger rings, and gold teeth, and ain't afraid to hold" weed.

It might go back to the days of the Juice Crew. Many have pondered as to how/why Marley Marl recruited a teenage Roxanne Shante into the crew at such a tender young age. For someone (presumably) named after Marley - Bob Marley - weed ownin' was most likely right up there with making funky music - a must. MC Shan, Craig G., and all the cats rockin with the Juice Crew were easy targets for a bust, right? But not young Lolita Golden a/k/a Roxanne Shante. She could freestyle all day, cold get retarded with Biz, and all the while have a couple of ounces stashed away for good measure, unbeknownst to the D's. She built a bridge for the queens of weed holdin' that came after her.

Think about it. Every new-school crew worth it's salt has a "first lady" right? Eve - the first lady of Ruff Riders. When Jada and Holiday Styles said "I need a ride or die bitch" they basically were on some "damn, I really need a nice-lookin‚ female w/c right about no" shit. Lil Kim started out as a weed carrier with the M.A.F.I.A. Funny, because she modeled herself after one of Brooklyn's most O.G. bitches and a sho' nuff weed owner, the original Queen Bee. Queen Bee used to rock flashy neon-colored wigs with matching fur coats, so she was obviously on some w/o shit. But Lil Kim, the Junior Queen Bee, she loved her some B.I.G. and wasn't ashamed to find 100 ways to stuff a couple O's up her scantily-clad coochie to prove it.

Now, one w/c comes to mind who really would have been an owner if gender bias didn't run shit. That would be none other than the first lady of the Flipmode Squad, yeah man, I'm talking 'bout Rah Digga. First of all, her babydaddy's her w/c - Young Zee - so there that go. Then, she damn near dope as Bussa Bus but gotta carry for him? It's gotta hurt. Then, just because she's Rahshida and not Rahquan, she gotta hold for this hypeman-ass Spliff Star kid too?! Pure fuckery, I tell you.

But see, the point of this thing is that there's even some feminism in the owning/carrying dichotomy. There are some strong women holding it down - I mean their man's holding it (on the down low). Their weed, that is. I give you Kelis, who's definitely the w/o of her house. Take young Beyonce, who - heaven forbid - don't puff trees. But if she did, it's looking like Young Hovito would "hold it for her". Lauryn Hill. Now, whether she's still with Rohan or not - he's Zion's daddy and most def a pro holder. Even with the Fugees, L-Boogie mighta held for Wyclef, but we all know Pras had to hold hers regardless.

But now, speakin on Fugee Lah, I have to give a fat shout out to my man Jon Forte, who's currently holdin' it down in the Fed. Hold your head, Forte. We know you ain't ask them blonde, Paris Hilton-looking skags to hold liquid coke for you. Shit, you can't help it if Joni Mitchell was holdin' your trees, and these random groupies decided they wanted to hold some other shit. Fuck that! Free Jon Forte.

I can't leave without shouting out the mother of all weed owners. Ladies and gents - Ms. Erykah Badu. She's had mad cats holdin' all her shit, gone off the ism. The Baduism, that is. We all know Andre 9000 was always bugged the fuck out, but after he carried for Badu, it was a (head)wrap for son in the clothing department. I think he had Cee-Lo hold some of hers for him on the low a couple times, because look how he started wearing pink feather flamingo pants? Now all these backpackers are back jocking Common Sense, but it's in the not-so-distant past that he was carrying mad isms for Badu and wearing manpris and floppy hats. Last I heard she had the D.O.C. holdin' for her out in TX, and he was already funky enough before he hit the Baduism. I'm saying, her w/h's and w/c's go On & On. Shit, the only dude who ain't hold for Erykah is M-1 from dead prez. Just goes to show you, dpz are from the old-school when it comes to holdin‚ and foldin‚, carryin‚ and marryin'.

So who am I holdin' for? I pity the fool, B. Don't play yourself. You know I'm the w/o!

- Marijuana Jones

June 26, 2005


This ain't the Daily Star, motherfathers!


Pardon up front, this one's gonna go on and on til the breakadawn.

Yesterday I got the chance to build with an old-school homie from the Bay, The Bishop of Hip Hop, the illustrious
Adisa Banjoko. A self-proclaimed "sexist in recovery", loving father of two beautiful children, author, public speaker, devout Muslim and expert on Islam in Hip Hop. He's recently published a book, which I'll get to in a moment. He's also recently been put through the wringer at the source publications, this time in a tug-of-war between Adisa as the writer, Jimmy Iovine as the subject, dave mays as the overseer, Fahiym Ratcliffe as the Editor in Chief, and Da'Sun Allah as the staff writer. You can read about the whole saga right here over at Adisa's spot, however our conversation touched on a lot more than that. We flipped over onto the sexual harrassment, sex discrimination and gender bias situation over there, and he asked me frankly what I think about the lawsuit. Then we got on the topic of integrity. To paraphrase Adisa, he's angry because no female journalist has come out and directly said that there are tenants to writing, interviewing, reporting, similar to how there are pillars in Islam.

So, I'll take that leap of faith, and say this. When female journalists cross the line toward sexual or personal relations with their subjects, they destroy the illusion of integrity that somewhat exists in the music business. Many people will now jump up and put their two cents in, and accuse me of crossing that line, or of being a groupie, etc. BECAUSE A) THEY DON'T KNOW ME FROM EVE AND B) THEY WOULDN'T DARE SAY SHIT LIKE THAT TO MY FACE. In the example of the most infamous episode, I met that person via a phone interview, however I didn't begin any type of relationship with that individual for over a year after that interview; and further I did not write about that individual, review any of his music, or conduct any further business in relation to him as a journalist, critic, writer and/or reporter. Furthermore, no one in this universe can name ANY artist that I've "fucked" on an interview, press junket, listening session, etc. Nor can anyone name anyone I've dated, or had intimate relations with, who is at all wealthy, famous, over-exposed, or "hot" in the rap game; because no such person exists. When I like (or love) someone, it's because of their mind, not because they're in rotation on BET or MTV Jams. I have my own money, and my own fame, and my own power. Ya'll dumbasses don't know me, I don't even fuck with dudes 'cause of how they look; I'm on a whole 'nother level.

I have NEVER been with anyone because they are famous, or because they are rich. People who know me know this. I am not a groupie. I'm not a hoe. I've spent years at a time on celibacy. I don't fuck rappers. I'm not a groupie-with-pen for hire. I'm a Hip Hop woman. I'm a B-Girl. I'm a cultural critic. I'm a music business expert, and I often write/report on the topic. Whom I sleep with is my own personal business, and if I choose to speak on it, I will.


Now back to Adisa. Check out this
MP3, it's just a little sample of a CD he's fixin' to drop with DJ Relm and Balance to go with his next book, Lyrical Swords Vol. 2: Westside Rebellion. And while you're there, check out his style! This is a man who's challenged KRS-1 to a debate, so if you want to know where the real Hip Hop is, it's right here at Lyrical Swords!

IN OTHER NEWS, I received an email today from journalist Peter Agoston, who's also a businessman who's released a lot of the instrumental records from ya'll male groupies' favorite Super Villain... I'm sharing this email, and my response here with you now, to answer any further concerns about integrity in general.

peter agoston wrote:
Miranda,I saw your diatribe on mf doom. As a journalist yourself, don't you think it would have been appropriate to ask my permission before opening your story with a two-paragraph quote from me? I found it was used out of context, in effect fashioning my words into an opinion that was not my own, in a language that was not being expressed in the story I wrote. Granted, for a blog it was, its irresponsible writing that if used in print may be considered Libel, and would not be taken as lightly as this email.Next time you want to use my words, I suggest contacting me first.
Regards,Peter Agoston

mizmirandajane wrote:
Peace Peter. Thanks for the email. As a journalist, I would have asked for your permission and "Egon's" permission as well. However, what I write on my blog is for the most part off the dome, and I've not said anything about the whole situation in writing for upwards of two years. Reading the piece, and reading what Eothen said, pissed me off to such an extent and reminded me exactly how much $ we're talking about -- I had to write about it; and not in a newspaper, magazine, or for a news site. As someone who's all too familiar with the work-product and subsequent b.s. I trust you can understand where I'm coming from. Also, you know exactly who I am and you know my years-long history with this situation. Before
Rhymesayers, Stonesthrow, Ninja Tune, Nature Sounds, Female Fun, and all the rest; there was Day by Day and I'm proud to have helped Grimm build that foundation. At the end of the day, what happened to me (and so many other businesspeople) and the resulting words (and actions) are ultimately the responsibility of one person...Doom. I do apologize to you if you feel that the quote I used from Egon withing your piece somehow created a false sense of what your opinion on the situation may be. And in future I wish you the best with all of your endeavors.
PEACE Miranda Jane




Live from Love Allah,
Miranda Jane