Categories
Hip-Hop Music Nostalgia Rap Wu-Tang Clan

The Return of the Purple Tape: Raekwon’s Classic Sequel Turns Ten

“Got me behind the pot again”

The odds were stacked against him.

Categories
Hip-Hop Music Rap

A Decade of Slaughterhouse

“Soon as I hold a pen I co-defend the sickest MCs”

August 11, 2009.

I walked into the FYE in the Gallery at Market East in Philly and headed straight for the new releases section. I had already gone digital with my iPod Classic but a new album dropped that day and I wanted an actual physical CD.

Categories
Books Films Hip-Hop Music Pop Culture Rap TV Uncategorized

The Things We’ve Lost in the Streaming Era

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I am old enough to remember a time before everything was readily available at all times.

Categories
Books Life Music Wu-Tang Clan

The Most Unique Book in History: Ghostface Killah’s “The World According to Pretty Toney”

It’s no secret that I’m a Wu-Tang Clan superfan.

I know obscure trivia about the group. I have their logo on my coffee mug. I own old issues of The Source and XXL with the group on the cover. I also own items like the “Protect Ya Neck” cassette single, the “C.R.E.A.M.” single on vinyl, and the actual Purple Tape (the cassette version of Raekwon’s Only Built 4 Cuban Linx…).

One of the more obscure Wu-related items I own is a copy of
The World According to Pretty Toney, a 2007 book by Ghostface Killah with J. Brightly.

Categories
Media Music

To My iPod

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Dear iPod Classic,

You’re lying next to me as I type this, but it’s easier for me to write what I feel than it is to say it to you.

I just wanted to let you know that I value and appreciate you. You have now been by my side for a decade and although we’ve had a few rough patches (remember those dark times you said “iPod sync is complete” but there were actually no songs?), we’ve stayed together and I think our bond is stronger than ever.

Categories
Hip-Hop Music Rap

We’re So Spoiled by the Availability of Music That We Don’t Appreciate It

I have a confession to make: I didn’t love Enter the Wu-Tang [36 Chambers] the first time I heard it. Actually, I kinda sorta didn’t even like it. I know that’s like the Pope saying he didn’t dig the Bible the first time he read it, but it’s true.

Categories
Films Hip-Hop Music Rap

No Streaming: Why I Choose to Control My Media

It seems everyone is now listening to streaming services. From Spotify to Pandora to Tidal to Beats 1 Radio, there are plenty of options.

Categories
Hip-Hop Music Wu-Tang Clan

The Triumphant Album of My Youth – “Wu-Tang Forever” at 20

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“Reunited, double LP, world excited”

It wasn’t just an album release. It was an event.

Categories
Books Movies Music Opinion TV

Dear Critics…

An open letter to all those that review and analyze films, music, TV, and books

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Dear Critics,

Categories
Music

1999: The Year Hip-Hop Sprang a Leak

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In 1999, as the world was prepping for Y2K, another, less heralded innovation in the world of computers was about to change the music business: “Napster launched in 1999, and over the next three years tens of millions of music fans eagerly (and by today’s standards, incredibly slowly) downloaded oft-mistagged, low-bitrate mp3 versions of new music to their hard drives, and shared what they’d ripped themselves with software like the WinAmp player.”

The industry would never be the same.