Los Angeles, CA (March 2011) One of the Southern Cali’s most buzz-worthy MCs, Amad Jamal, along with Urban Umpires Unlimited, is proud to announce that Barely Hangin’ On: The Chronicles of a Brotha Like Rodney King is featured as one of Itunes "top hot new releases." Amad Jamal's debut solo LP is the brand of cultivated, artistic, and poetic wordplay that reminds real music connoisseurs just why we all have fallen in love with hip hop.
The controversial album title, which pays homage to the now 20 year old unjustified beating of L.A. native Rodney King, is an intentional call of awareness to a situation that persists in much of the USA and in fact perhaps the world - for certain groups of people. “I chose the title because 20 years later we have not fully learned from the mistakes of the past, not just me but black males in general are often viewed like Rodney King in the eyes of the law. Any of us could work downtown, be wearing a suit and tie, turn the wrong corner in our 540 BMW, and be pulled over for ‘driving while black’. We might not always get tazed or beaten but the underlying motives are the same.” – the Rodney King Syndrome.
Barely Hangin’ On: The Chronicles of a Brotha Like Rodney King is 13 tracks of poetry put to music, with thoughts and messages that are stated eloquently and based in truths we all can relate to – but may not have the courage to face. "Hardcore Beautiful" pays homage to the lives and places many live where what seems overtly rugged is really something spectacular and lovely when you step back to view it on a deep level.
"Boy Meets Girl" uses a theme we all have experienced (lost love) to wrap in the more important message that pain is about progress and that all experiences - good and bad - open your mind to new truths.
"Stop Fuckin’ Around" is an ode to Amad’s mother, where he uses her often-futile warnings to him against tagging buses and cruising the Crenshaw strip to relay the message that we often have to open our ears to open our minds – but you have to be ready listen.
“Going Postal” pretty much sums up the feelings of the working class worldwide – nuff said ☺ and the aptly titled “Rodney King” takes a view of L.A. from the perspective of the Amad’s alter ego Tom Bradley, mayor of L.A.; it is light and fun but with a real underlying message that real change is far from here.
Overall the LP is a tantalizing mix of jazz infused beats with live instrumentation and boasts a line-up of long respected talents and lesser known artists – including (on vocals) Dilated Peoples, Defari, Gotham Green, and the angelic soulful voice of Maaya Ota aka Lady Dragon; production is shared by Bahamadia Protégé and Urban Umpire Brisk One and the ever talented DJ Dahi, while the album art is a collaboration between the ideas of Amad Jamal and gifted hands of French artist Ben Gaisne.
Amad Jamal has been deeply entrenched in the Los Angeles music scene since the late 90s. Born and raised in LA, he was named by his mother after the famous Jazz legend, and had a pretty typical L.A. upbringing, listening to N.W.A records and free styling at The Good Life Café as a teen. He attended John Burrows Jr. High with Rakaa Iriscience where they were both immersed in the graffiti scene. Upon entering college he found himself surrounded by artists who in the future would become his industry peers. “There must have been something in the water at my college,” quips Amad-Jamal who attended Clark Atlanta University with the likes of Lil John, Arrested Development’s Speech, and Saul Williams.
In 1999 he formed with the group The Solution with Salt Lake City producer Brisk One, Colonious Funk (base), Kurt Fagan (drums), DJ Kai Wing, Nongenetic (MC) and vocals by Maaya Ota aka Lady Dragon. In 2000 alongside Rakaa, Evidence, and Defari he released the maxi-single The Renaissance. Later he released LA City with Evidence and Amad was featured on the Always Bigger & Better Volume 1 where he recorded "What I Need" with DJ Khalil (of Self Scientific). In 2003, Amad-Jamal was the only West Coast artist booked for the Rock Steady Tour and has performed live and toured with industry greats including the Beat Junkies, RZA, Talib Kweli, Cali Agents, Prince Po, KRS-ONE, Myka 9, Dilated Peoples, Defari, Freestyle Fellowship, Mr. Fab, Zion I, Prince Paul, Saul Williams, Mos Def, Wu-Tang Clan, Eminem, Q-Tip, Little Brother, and Bahamadia.
Amad eventually met Just Jay, the founder of Urban Umpires, and joined the ranks of the exclusive artist coalition by unanimous vote. Upon his entry Just Jay reportedly said “Amad Jamal’s a super star!”
Some people just are… One listen of Barely Hangin’ On: The Chronicles of a Brotha Like Rodney King and you will be saying it too.
It's been over 12 hours now since an earthquake of at least magnitude 8.9 struck off the coast of Japan. Frequent earthquakes are commonplace in that region of the world, and major cities are for the most part built to withstand the seismic shock. The close proximity and shallow depth of the quake had a secondary effect though - giant tsunami waves.
If this reminds you of the Indian Ocean earthquake just over six years ago, it's no coincidence. The waves of flooding were described as striking farmland in "sparsely populated" areas, but that's not the same as UN-populated areas. Lives have been lost, the destruction is severe, and the death toll is rising. The ripple effects of this event have yet to be felt fully.
If you have a moment, stop and take a look at the coverage on CNN, or from any other news network. If you're moved by the devastation and so inclined to help, we recommend the American Red Cross. They are already coordinating rescue and relief efforts to help the people of Japan, much as they do in every crisis, such as the recent devastating earthquakes in Haiti.
Whether or not you choose to donate, spare a thought today for Japan. Even though people in the major cities were largely spared, the size of the earthquake was horrifying even for people used to regular seismic events, and the aftershocks were large and frequent. Those aftershocks led to fires, explosions, and even collapsed buildings that caused more deaths. Whether on the Northern coastal lands or not, the people in Japan suffered greatly these last 12 hours.
We at RapReviews offer our prayers and support to Japan and all Pacific nations and peoples affected by these events.
Dropping April 12th (Dawn Raid/SMC Recordings/Fontana)
Long Beach, CA - To watch Monsta's latest video, "Wesperado's ft. Yukmouth and Ganxsta Ridd" - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAiwLeQmQy4&feature=related is to be transported back to the West Coast's rap hay days of the 90's - and it's a fun trip. Truth be told, Monsta has been rhyming with Yuk and fellow Regime members since the early 2000's but that is not his only Hip Hop legacy; he is also nephew to the infamous Boo Yaa Tribe. Anyone unfamiliar should pick up his recently released EP "Allow Me To Re-Introduce Myself" which features some of his best material with Yukmouth and Techn9ne from back in their Rap-A-Lot days.
If you are thinking, "why all the re-hashing?", well, Monsta will be releasing his debut solo album, "Pacific Coast Highway" on April 12th on Dawn Raid/SMC Recordings/Fontana with brand new material featuring Jacka, Huslah, Masspike Miles, Hell Rell and of course, Yukmouth and Boo Yaa Tribe.
Gangsta, right? Well, Monsta does have a softer side too, believe it or not. Just watch this ode to his Mother, "This Is Love ft. J Boog", a single that was recently certified RIANZ Gold, if you don't believe me - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTCqNRcIxQE&feature=relmfu (346,840 plays on YouTube)
"Pacific Coast Highway" is anything but a rehash. It is the culmination of the past 10 years on Monsta's musical journey beginning as a Mexican/Samoan child growing up in the church, to growing up as a teenager in the violent streets of Carson City and Long Beach, CA.
Take a roadtrip with Monsta along the Pacific Coast Highway - April 12th, 2011!
In an industry based solely on gimmicks, Kontroversy Committee is hoping to shake the business. With their unique individuality, comes a fresh sound.
Originally from Los Angeles, ON 1 and E-luzhen learned that growing up on the streets of L.A. is a tough life. With all the gang violence, both ON 1 and E-luzhen's families decided to move them out of Los Angeles to more "family friendly" neighborhoods. ON 1, who's family originates from Guatemala, grew up in Inglewood, CA. After twelve years, he then relocated to the Antelope Valley where he resides today. E-luzhen grew up in a Mexican American home in the San Fernando Valley, just outside of Los Angeles. When E-luzhen's family moved shortly to the Antelope Valley, Kontroversy Committee was developed. After developing a good friendship in high school and creating the sound that is Kontroversy, E-luzhen was suddenly moved back to the San Fernando Valley where he continued to grind and stir up a buzz, working with artists such as Kurupt, Rass Kass and also catching the ear of Deathrow CEO Suge Knight. Although Suge planned on signing E-luzhen, Suge ended up getting locked up and the deal fell through. Currently they have signed With West Swagg Music Group who has partnered with Universal Bungalo, to take the gentlemen to new heights in their career.
Today, Kontroversy is stirring up just that. Crowds expect to hear the typical "Chicano Gangsta Rap" when Kontroversy Committee hits the stage, but instead are treated with the most impeccable sound of Hip-Hop, Rap, and R&B beats. Their lyrics are unique, their metaphors creative and style is original.
Kontroversy Committee's current single "Angel," off their ground breaking "This Changes Everything" EP, is sure to place Kontroversy Committee on the forefront of the new west movement with a new Album name, A.L.A.N.E. (All Latinos Are Not Equal) ON 1 and E-luzhen are ready to be the new representatives for the Latino culture.
Kontroversy Committee has performed many showcases opening up for many artists from Jon B to Glasses Malone, and possess the talent that has landed them their recent label deal with WestSwagg Music Group / Universal Bungalo. The gentlemen are not your typical Hip-Hop artists. They come with a new fresh sound, they are not afraid to take a risk and for that reason they will soar in the music industry!
West Orange, New Jersey emcee GDP has announced his new full-length album Useless Eaters will be dropping on March 29th via Run For Cover Records (Title Fight, Transit, Man Overboard). With the announcement is a double premiere from the album including a video for the song Neural Circuitry (directed by Josh Sandler with beat produced by live electronic act Frozen Gentlemen) on GDP’s revamped website. Print music and art magazine Alarm Press has also premiered the song Quintuplets today on their online site.
Combining futuristic grime with homage to hip hop’s past, Useless Eaters” is GDP’s most focused effort as well as his darkest. Regarded as one of the one of the hardest working artists in hip-hop. The album was mixed and mastered by GDP and his frequent collaborator Pistol in the midst of a 52 date national tour that he booked himself. Aside from Frozen Gentlemen, Beats were handled by Melbourne Australia’s Aoi and Perth, Australia’s DOS4GW whom GDP met while supporting The RZA (Wu-Tang Clan) on Australian dates. Appearing on the album are legendary emcees Tame One (The Artifacts) and Young Zee (The Outsidaz).
After years of relentless touring and consistent releases, GDP has gained respect from many of the same hip hop legends that inspired him growing up as well as forward thinking hardcore and punk artists. He has shared the stage with artists ranging from Wu Tang Clan, Dead Prez, Rah Digga, and Masta Ace to Trap Them, Skeletonwitch, Suburban Scum, Product Of Waste, and Dead to Me. GDP is set to play a string of East and West Coast release shows followed by some European dates.
TOUR DATES (more to be announced shortly)
3/5- @ Cyclecide Bike Collective Death House- Hackettstown, NJ w/ Pistol
3/10- @ Maggie McGuires- Cranford, NJ w/ Choc Bread, St. Joe Louis
3/11- Laundromat- New Brunswick, NJ w/ Pistol, Space Jeez, Bartlomein
The first single off A.M. Breakups’ debut album, The Cant Resurrection. The Utica, New York native is only twenty-four but has already been on the scene for years, starting with his work with MC Eleven as the duo 11 A.M. and growing into collaborations with artists across the indie-rap spectrum; Teddy Faley, Super Chron Flight Brothers, Nasa, K-Swift and V8 of Chicago’s TFD crew. With a strong local following, rabid online fan base and a solid resume in the scene, Breakups is releasing The Cant Resurrection, an LP where stark production, heavy with layers and texture is interspersed with verses from some of this new millennium’s most promising indie talent. The album features Billy Woods of the critically-acclaimed Super Chron Flight Brothers, Baltimore luminary Teddy Faley, Chicago’s V8 and of course, classic verses from Breakups’ partner-in-rhyme Eleven. the Cant Resurrection is another in a line of bold, unique releases by Backwoodz Studioz and continues the label’s tradition of progressive, critically-acclaimed indie hip-hop out of New York, following in the footsteps of Vordul Mega’s Megagraphitti and Super Chron Flight Brothers' 2010 LP Cape Verde.