Stat Quo Clarifies Future with Smokin' Mirrors Exclusive Digital Album with Gracie/EMI on April 21
Atlanta, GA -- While everyone appears to be scrambling for their place in the rapidly changing ranks of Hip Hop, Atlanta's microphone marvel Stat Quo is staying true to his name as he sets a consistent pace for his career to flourish. His street album Smokin' Mirrors will be released on April 21, 2009 in association with Gracie Productions and EMI. Taking a step away from typical mixtapes, Stat Quo will showcase a variety of original collaborations with fresh new producers from his own Sperry Park Productions camp.
The past few months have given way to promising opportunities for the young lyricist, after a highly-publicized rally for freedom from his major label deal with Shady/Aftermath finally came to be. Although he had been signed since 2003, Stat knew that the wait time for his debut album may be longer than originally anticipated. He asked to be let out of the situation, however the process for his liberation was a slow, angst-filled ride.
"I knew that they couldn’t put a record out on me before they put out the Dre, Eminem or the 50 Cent projects," explains Stat Quo. "They knew that too, so when I was asking to be let go, I just don’t think they moved with the sense of urgency of somebody that you really got love for. By the time they came around to it, the momentum I had died down and I had to build everything back up to get my name out here.”
Once he was able to operate on his own, Stat Quo got to work in the studio, creating an impressive catalog of mixtapes and original work. He is now prepared for the April 21 release of Smokin' Mirrors, which will be followed by another digital prelude album in June, then his official full-length debut in Fall 2009.
“Smokin’ Mirrors is all original beats and is a sign of things to come,” explains Stat. “It’s kind of like a preview for a movie, but not necessarily telling you what the movie is about. The significance of the title Smokin’ Mirrors is sometimes when you stand in front of the mirror, reality gets f**ked up when it’s clouded with smoke, and you lose focus of who you are in a situation. It’s basically trying to see who you are through the mirror, and that can apply to any one of us.”
Although his relationships in the industry have remained strong, Stat Quo wants to be known for his own unique sound and style. Opting for up-and-coming producers on his new projects has been a big part of that movement, and Smokin' Mirrors is just a glimmer in the scope of his individual expression.
“I want people to recognize that I’m the total package, and I’m destined to be a legend in this game,” he says. “I want people to get past where I’m from and just see me as one of the best to ever do it. When people say I’m the best, then my mission is complete, and until they say that, I’m gonna keep creating.”
01. Intro 02. Swaggin On The Beat - prod by Dub Z 03. I Like That - prod by Ill Tone 04. Barack Skit 05. Badman - prod by DJ Pain 06. Push Me Away - prod by Kevin Rachwel 07. Get High - prod by Mista Encore 08. Pain Goes On - prod by Divided Soul Ent & DJ Dirty D 09. Real Talk - prod by Lyr1kz 10. The Mirror In Me - prod by Kevin Rachwel 11. Mary Jane - prod by Kevin Rachwel 12. In The Ghetto - prod by Mista Encore
ABOUT STAT QUO
Of all the young stars on the rise, few have been able to garner an international fan base without an official album, and even fewer attain the loyalty to carry them through significant changes in their careers. Atlanta native Stat Quo has been one of the most revered emcees in recent years in his rise to fame, and is now re-emerging as a prodigal son to the independent roots of earnest music and lyrical ingenuity that his fans know and love.
After a highly-publicized stint with Eminem’s Shady Records and Dr. Dre’s Aftermath label, and dozens of critically-acclaimed mixtapes between 2003 and 2008, Stat Quo is preparing the release of his first full-length album, due out in Fall 2009. In the meantime, Stat Quo has teamed with Gracie Productions and EMI for the April 21 release of Smokin’ Mirrors. Utilizing fresh-faced producers and zero guest spots, the street album is the first of two original projects that Stat will offer to fans as preludes to his debut album.
The past few years have been a vigorous learning process for Stat Quowith regard to business, and many aspiring artists in his shoes may have come out of such a whirlwind of speculation with a heavy heart. Despite the disappointing break with Shady/Aftermath, Stat Quo has taken his career changes as a time to find the true artistry within himself, and has found his own ways to promote the music.
“It was difficult to leave, because they had me tied up in paperwork for a year,” Stat Quo says of his departure from Shady/Aftermath. “I got some ill feelings because I had so much loyalty to them. I felt that based on the situation that they were in with Interscope as far as Shady and Aftermath, I knew that they couldn’t put a record out on me before they put out the Dre, Eminem or the 50 Cent projects. They knew that too, so when I was asking to be let go, I just don’t think they moved with the sense of urgency of somebody that you really got love for. By the time they came around to it, the momentum I had died down and I had to build everything back up to get my name out here.”
Through it all, Stat Quo is thankful for the media and loyal fans who have given him the opportunity to grow without the hype of the big machine. “If I go to the grocery store or McDonalds and people know me and my music, the first question they ask is, ‘When are we gonna get an album from you?’ That wears and tears on you when you work as much as I do on creating music. I’m in the studio at least three or four times a week, and maybe more sometimes. What I’m doing now is making my music available to hold fans over until I come with that full-length project.”
Stat Quo has put out several mixtapes, and has hundreds of original songs already recorded as he prepares for the April 21 digital release of his first prelude album. “Smokin’ Mirrors is all original beats and is a sign of things to come,” explains Stat. “It’s kind of like a preview for a movie, but not necessarily telling you what the movie is about. The significance of the title Smokin’ Mirrors is sometimes when you stand in front of the mirror, reality gets f**ked up when it’s clouded with smoke, and you lose focus of who you are in a situation. It’s basically trying to see who you are through the mirror, and that can apply to any one of us.”
In keeping with his revitalized perspective on music, Stat has opted to keep his production lean and mean with new talent. Producers from his own Sperry Park Productions camp contributed, including Lyrics and Illtone out of Buffalo, New York and Kevin Rockwell out of Atlanta.
“If anybody knows me and the music I’ve been putting out, I was always affiliated with a situation and doing songs with different artists,” Stat Quo explains. “People always told me, ‘I want an album from you Stat’, so I said with this project I’m gonna give them all of me. So many artists depend on the producer to make the music incredible, and they want to lean on somebody just because they’ve got a name. I want to show the game that there’s so many up-and-coming producers that are hot, and not getting a chance because everybody pretty much runs to the same people. What’s crazy is I found these producers through outlets like Twitter, Myspace and Facebook. We give everybody an opportunity to send their beats in, and we sit down and listen. We listen to all of it, because I know how it feels to send somebody something trying to at least get an opinion back. I feel like if you make hot music consistently you’re Dr. Dre in training, you’re DJ Premier or Kanye West and you just haven’t gotten the opportunity.”
Once Smokin’ Mirrors is released, Stat Quo will continue to record as he finalizes an overseas tour and some dates in the U.S. When all is said and done, 2009 will be the year that Stat Quo found himself, and gave fans the opportunity to welcome him for his true creative gifts. “I want people to recognize that I’m the total package, and I’m destined to be a legend in this game,” he says. “I want people to get past where I’m from and just see me as one of the best to ever do it. When people say I’m the best, then my mission is complete, and until they say that, I’m gonna keep creating.”
Wu Tang Affiliates, The RZA, 4th Disciple, Brooklyn Zu, Masta Killah, Raison Allah, Killah Army, Free Murder and more unite to release All In Together Now Raw, A Tribute to Ol’ Dirty Bastard” to be released May 2009.
Musical Tribute includes DVD trailer from forthcoming documentary
Dirty. One Word Can Change The World
produced by Zu Films, directed by Raison Allah.
Whether you know him by Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Big Baby Jesus, Dirt McGirt, Osirus, or his birth name, Russell Jones, there was no other entertainer/personality like ODB. On November 13, 2004 (just two days shy of his 36th birthday), hip-hop lost one of its most charismatic and outspoken entertainers when ODB’s passed away, ironically while recording in the 36th Chamber Recording Studio. When ODB passed his cousin, Raison Allah, of Wu Tang affiliated rap group, Brooklyn Zu, promised to keep Ol’ Dirty’s legacy alive. Raison Allah Iceman, and 12 O’Clock, have executive-produced a 10 track music tribute disc, All In Together Now Raw, A Tribute to Ol’ Dirty Bastard,” to be released May 2009 which features The Rza, 4th Disciple, Brooklyn Zu, Raison Allah, Masta Killah, Killah Army, Free Murder and more.
“Years ago I promised to keep Dirty’s legacy alive, so we formed Zu Films and starting filming a documentary which tells his life story. But with all the footage and interviews, I still felt like something was missing; Dirty was all about the music. When word got out that we were working on a documentary, Wu fam started sending me so many tracks. We had so many dope tracks that we didn’t want to wait until the soundtrack to the DVD to put them out. We decided to put out a tribute album every other month until the documentary, Dirty. One Word Can Change The World, is released in November. Each tribute disc will include a short trailer to promote the upcoming DVD Documentary.”
The documentary directed by Raison Allah for Zu Films, took three years to produce/edit and features many fascinating untold stories and includes interviews from ODB’s immediate family, friends, and musical collaborators who reveal the true story of a man who defied the world for his own freedom of expression. It’s the story about a highly intelligent and complex entertainer, whose mission was to be free from all rules; to speak his mind whether considered appropriate or not.
His bizarre on-stage/off-stage antics were widely reported in the mainstream media. Raison Allah and his Zu Films camera crew take viewers to places no outsider has access to. He revisits the Brooklyn’s hood where ODB used to hang out and where he lived, including the home where ODB, profiled for an MTV biography took two of his thirteen children by limousine to a New York State Family Services office to pick up his welfare check while his latest album was still in the top ten of the US charts. The entire incident was filmed by an MTV camera crew and was broadcast nationwide. Thereafter MTV named OBD, the most newsworthy person of 2003.
In one of his most famous public moments, ODB stormed the Grammy stage and made an impromptu speech on live TV. He grabbed the mic from Shawn Colvin who was in the midst of giving her acceptance speech for song of the year and surprised the world on live TV. ODB was upset he’d purchased expensive clothes in anticipation of Wu Tang winning the “Best Rap Album,” only for Puff Daddy win. He announced to a stunned audience, "I don't know how you all see it, but when it comes to the children, Wu-Tang is for the children!"
Indeed ODB definitely loved the kids. He and a friend witnessed a car accident from the window of his Brooklyn recording studio, ran to the accident scene, and organized a dozen onlookers who rescued the 4 year old from a car wreck by lifting the Ford Mustang off of her. She was taken to the hospital and treated for second and third degree burns. Under a false name, Jones visited the girl in the hospital frequently until members of the media began to camp out at the hospital anticipating his visits. In the documentary, Raison Allah interviewed the little girl now 13 who ODB rescued from a car wreck. Although she was 4 at the time, she remembers the accident and her hero.
“For our family, Dirt is very much alive,” expresses Raison. “He was more than an entertainer, he was my blood and we miss him! I know the tribute album and documentary would have touched his heart.”
All In Together Now Raw, A Tribute to Ol’ Dirty Bastard is available May 2009.
Zu Films’ Dirty. One Word Can Change The World documentary will be available nationwide starting November 2009.
WIDEAWAKE/DEATH ROW TO GIVE AWAY FREE MUSIC CD SAMPLER ON RECORD STORE DAY, APRIL 18, 2009
SAMPLER CELEBRATES RETURN OF CLASSIC DEATH ROW CATALOG
April 14, 2009 – WIDEawake/Death Row Entertainment LLC announces a hot offer to all rap, urban and hip-hop music lovers. The company has issued a free Death Row “Record Store Day” CD sampler to be given away exclusively at over 750 participating retailers in the U.S. on Record Store Day, April 18, 2009. This special free CD offer is redeemable exclusively on Record Store Day 2009 and at participating Record Store Day retailers only. All three songs are never before heard Death Row music from the Death Row Vault. Fans can then log on to TRYSOMETHINGNEW.TV to download a free ringtone of another unreleased, new song.
The Death Row sampler celebrates the return of one of the most influential music catalogs at retail and features tracks by classic Death Row artists Petey Pablo “Pay for the Pu**y,” Crooked I “Hoodstar” and Danny Boy “Do What You Do.” The CD artwork will include a special link for fans to download an additional free exclusive bonus ringtone and sign up for more info on the new and highly artist and fan friendly Death Row Records.
WIDEawake Entertainment Group acquired the Death Row catalog in early 2009. Only 10% of the music, videos, and artwork of this extraordinary catalog has ever come to market. The company is now free to open these vaults and plans to release the best of the best in North America via its exclusive distribution deal with E1 Entertainment Distribution throughout North America. Forthcoming titles will be officially announced by the label in the near future.
About WIDEawake Entertainment Group
WIDEawake was formed in January 2006 to pursue opportunities in film, music, production and technology. WIDEawake is an ownership model. WIDEawake develops film properties, artists, proprietary technology/marketing models, and multimedia projects. www.WIDEawakehc.com, www.wideawakehc.com/cmw, www.Trysomethingnew.tv, www.seanjonesmusic.net.
About Record Store Day The original idea for Record Store Day was conceived by Chris Brown, and was founded in 2007 by Eric Levin, Michael Kurtz, Carrie Colliton, Amy Dorfman, Don Van Cleave and Brian Poehner as a celebration of the unique culture surrounding over 700 independently owned record stores in the USA, and hundreds of similar stores internationally. This is the one day that all of the independently owned record stores come together with artists to celebrate the art of music. Special vinyl and CD releases and various promotional products are made exclusively for the day and hundreds of artists in the United States and in various countries across the globe make special appearances and performances. Festivities include performances, cook-outs, body painting, meet & greets with artists, parades, DJs spinning records and on and on. Metallica officially kicked off Record Store Day at Rasputin Music in San Francisco on April 19, 2008 and Record Store Day is now celebrated the second Saturday every April.
About E1 Entertainment
E1 Entertainment (AIM: ETO) is a leading independent entertainment content owner that acquires film, television and music rights and exploits these rights in all media in more than 190 countries. The company currently operates in Canada, the U.S., the UK, Holland and Belgium through its four primary businesses units: E1 Television, E1 Films, E1 Music and E1 Distribution. These businesses collectively represent E1’s extensive expertise in film distribution, television and music production/distribution, Kids content, Licensing and Distribution. E1’s content library includes more than 3,700 feature films, 2,700 hours of original television programming and 15,000 music tracks.
La Coka Nostra Added To Rock The Bells Hip-hop Festival Alongside Nas, The Roots and Common; Group Re-caps Bring Tha NoizeTour ***
With anticipation at feverish levels for La Coka Nostra’s upcoming debut “A Brand You Can Trust”, the group has announced they will appear at this year’s Rock The Bells hip-hop festival performing alongside a reunited House of Pain. The tour is expected to hit 10 North American cities from June 27- Aug. 9 and will feature Nas, Damian Marley, the Roots, Big Boi and Common, among others.
The group recently completed their sold-out Bring Tha Noize Tour with Kottonmouth Kings and has offered the following tour recap:
“The Bring Tha Noize Tour was dope. Every night the venues were packed and the fans matched the energy that we brought to the stage. With La Coka Nostra and Kottonmouth Kings on the same bill, you had to know that it was going to be a wild party when you bought the ticket, and that's exactly what it was,” says La Coka Nostra’s Slaine. “Kids were moshing and going crazy in just about every city in the country. Now that the tour is over, I am short a few more brain cells, and I am looking forward to doing it all over again soon.”
La Coka Nostra’s “A Brand You Can Trust” will surface through Suburban Noize Records on July 14th, 2009. The group’s debut features an all-star roster of collaborations between La Coka Nostra and Snoop Dogg, Cypress Hill, Bun B, Psycho Realm, Q-Unique, Immortal Technique and the Alchemist. The group’s video for the track “I’m An American” can be viewed online at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c3qU821mlqM .
“When we first started recording tracks for La Coka, we knocked a lot of joints out at once, and there was a lot of hype and buzz around the project and the group. We started leaking those tracks to feed the hunger that was out there, but in the meantime I think we raised the bar and created an expectation level within the group to really make a dope record,” says Slaine. “While we were on the Bring Tha Noize tour, I had the headphones on and listened to the final version of the album sequenced, mixed and mastered, and bugged out at how good it is. We set out to make a boom bap hip-hop record and we did that, but to stop there would be selling it short, because lyrically, musically, and sonically this album doesn't fit in a box. This summer the world will finally hear what the is really going on with La Coka Nostra.”
You should already know that The Mighty Underdogs are fresher than the average thanks to writer Matt Jost's review of "Droppin' Science Fiction," but now things get even fresher with a new video for the single "Science Fiction." Enjoy!
Our good friend K-Murdock from Panacea and Subsoniq has a remix submission in a John Legend contest that we think is pretty damn fresh. We'd like you to check out the "If You're Out There" remix HERE and if you're feelin' it like we're feelin' it then please cast a vote for K-Murdock's track. It won't take but a second of your time and we know he'd appreciate all the fans and supporters of RapReviews.com showin' a little love!
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Hip-Hop Shop is the precursor to K4D every week on Sunday night. Even though your host Flash has a cold, we get through regardless with great new music from Ali Vegas, Big Shot, Grynch f/ Illa J and more! The show is sponsored by thecancerandmrob.com and replays are available every week on RapReviews.com. The Hip-Hop Shop is 100% podsafe so distribute to your friends and tell them to visit RapReviews.com!
When you see a gorgeous Korean girl with fire red hair and eyebrows to match, it’s pretty hard not to take notice. Frankie Finch is well aware of that fact, it’s pretty much what she’s been going for, and it’s been working. Over the years Finch has been in the public eye in a number of ways as she’s hosted a variety of television shows and launched a fashion company, but now she’s ready to put her fiery personality front and center with her fiery hair and show her talent as a recording artist. The other day I bumped into the California resident while we were both in New York City and we talked about her love of individuality, the sound she hopes to create with her music, and the many places people may have already seen or heard her.