What up. I’m still recovering from a two day hangover after playing a fun show in Denver this weekend. Special shout out to all those who came out.
But, now I’m back in NYC. Laying in bed typing this like it’s my job. Bout’ that work, yall!
Anyway, if you have any questions you’d like me to answer, about anything, send them my way. Either leave them in the comments below or email them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Both those methods have been proven to be successful.
Okay, let’s jump into this weeks bag of crap…
So, you were “recruited” by an intelligence agency to go on 2 time journeys to the past, and your mission was to kill 2 historical figures when they were still infants. You could go as far back in time as 10.000 years.
Who would you choose?
Man, if I’m the guy they pick for that job they must really be at a loss. I’m the type who would be so jet lagged by time travel I’d end up needing like two weeks to just get in the right state of mind to even begin to be ready to kill an evil infant.
#1…Well, hitler seems like the obvious choice. Aside from getting a nice trip to Austria out of it, I’d save the world from his utterly mediocre art, as well as him killing all those jews.
#2 would be Jesus. Not because I would want to kill jesus but I would like to see how years and years of bible retellings and interpretations would explain a baseball hat and sneaker clad man from the future came and killed a baby. Honestly, just to see how the bible would describe a baseball hat alone would be amazing. I’m sure their explanations would make it all worth it in hilarity.
oy block, whats the status quo on sampling in the music business nowadays, or for you in particular? i get that to some degree you might wanna keep some of that on the hush but do you generally pull from old obscure records or from your friends work or do you warp copyrighted stuff til one cant tell what it was or just whatever youre feelin that day? what influence has the internet had on your sampling diet?
and how the hell did you get the insomniac olympics sample to sound the way it does? the lady singin crazy vowels out some hole in her head?
It’s kinda on some don’t ask don’t tell shit for me. I’ve given up sampling dollar bins records cause they’re all either too famous (at least in the sense that it’s major label music that never got popular) or the crates have been ravaged to the point where there’s not much left. So, Nowadays, I just look online at a handfull of rare music blogs and download those albums. Not only are they free (it’s not like the artists were seeing any money from some asshole record collector selling the same records for hundreds of dollars) but they’re the kinda stuff that can slip under the radar. It also doesn’t hurt that I’m not very famous. I don’t sell enough records for people to come looking for me. The only time it’s an issue (in general) is when a song gets in a commercial or tv show. Then the level of scrutiny can rise. In those cases, things either need to be cleared or replayed by live instruments.
as for the insomniac olympics vocal sample, it’s simply sped up with a heavy guitar amp effect on it.
I get asked about twice a week as to the origin of that sample and I have 100% no idea. i made that beat in the 90’s. I wasn’t paying attention to records back then.
Hey Blockhead, I just read this:
If you don’t want to read it, the article questions whether Macklemore is bad for hip hop and is a dilution or deviation from the genre’s roots. While my initial reaction is to agree, I also don’t see the difference between him and, say, Atmosphere or Doomtree. I’ve listened to Atmosphere in the past; I have never really felt Doomtree. I get that they’re talented, but they’ve just never really done it for me. Macklemore seems kind of similar–he’s a decent rapper in terms of technical skill, and he’s been grinding for a long time, but I just don’t feel the overall vibe.
So, my questions are:
Is Macklemore worse for hip hop than any other white rap act (I know Doomtree has some non-white members), or has he simply gained more attention due to his recent success?
If El-P or Aesop Rock–two rappers whose overall artistry is undeniable, in my opinion–achieved the same level of commercial success, do you think they’d be criticized the same way, or does their music pay homage to hip hop’s roots in some way that Macklemore’s does not?
What is the difference between watering down hip hop and respecting the genre, as a white participant?
Lemme just preface this with this:
First off, by all accounts of people I know, I’ve heard Macklemore is a good dude. That’s one thing. I’ve never met him, I honestly have heard maybe three songs he’s ever done and it wasn’t the kinda shit I like so I didn’t look any further into it. Clearly, I’m not his target audience as , not only do i own a penis, but I’m also an old person.
Now, to answer your questions…
1) He’s just another white rapper to me. No better, no worse. There are literally hundreds of rappers just like him out there. That said, He’s certainly more of an artist than Mac Miller. Still, he’s not bringing anything new to the table other than being a name that people are checking out. Slug has BEEN doing that style better for over a decade. I respect his grind though and he has been doing this since the days of fast rapping.
He’s in a position now where people will listen to him. I appreciate that he’s taking advantage of that and trying to make songs about real issues (other than hitting the thrift store). So, no, he’s not worse for hip hop. He’s just another white dude rapping in a world full of white dudes rapping. Sand to the beach, bro, sand to the beach.
2)Neither of them would ever have the success Macklemore has had because neither of them would ever make a song like Thrift Store. That’s not a diss. It’s simply not in their repertoire. Had Macklemore not made that song, he’d still be a very popular underground rapper. Now he’s a super star. Part of the reason he gets shit from people is for that very fact. He was an underground rapper who made a catchy song that blew up. While Aes and El could possibly make a catchy song that might reach outside their hardcore fan bases, they’re both waaaaaay too abstract for that song to ever reach a “Thrift store” level of notoriety. For that reason alone they’d never be under the same kind of scrutiny that Macklemore is/has been. They’re simply a different breed of artist.
3)I’d like to think we’re past the point of thinking about this in a “white/black” kinda way. It’s not like there aren’t artists of all races that don’t make shitty hip hop music. A white rapper making a jokey, silly song that people in cubicles like is far less offensive to me than that same white rapper doing a corny song about the four elements. That shit is beyond played out. We’re past that. At this point, people just gotta put their heads down and make the music they make. Most of the kids making music today are so far removed from an era where “respecting the genre” was even a thing that it’s a non-issue. The only people who still REALLY care about that shit are the boom bap dinosaurs who can’t keep up with the times. I’m not gonna front like I don’t get a little mad when i hear a new Black Eyed peas song but, at the end of the day, people are gonna do what they want to do. If you’re consciously worried about “watering down the culture” while making music, you probably shouldn’t be making the music in the first place.
If you had the opportunity to become the new host for a reboot of any of these formerly popular TV shows, which one would you choose?
1.) The Man Show
2.) The Jerry Springer Show
3.) Fear Factor
I think all three of these shows had cool things about them.
I never watched much fear factor but, when it’s on, I’ll peep it cause it’s usually very entertaining.
Springer is a classic but it’s gotten out of hand. It also has to compete with Maury , which is way better cause he figured out a show of maternity cases will always be better than fake redneck love triangles.
The man show could have been awesome but it fell too deeply into the mind of adam Corrola. Funny guy but also incredibly annoying. Jimmy Kimmel, to me, is way funnier and has proven that his ideas have more longevity than any bit corrola might come up with about fixing cars or whatever. The second run of it was a different show but it feels like they weren’t allowed to spread their wings and do what they wanted to do.
Of the three, I think , if done right, Jerry Springer would be the one you could improve on the best and the quickest. Simply by going back to the roots of the show and finding ridiculous people who do ridiculous things. The catch would be it all has to be real. That show took a hit when it started becoming redneck dinner theater. Sure, real stories may result in less fist fights but it would be way more compelling, in my opinion.
Have you ever had anyone tell you that you dont make actual music because you “steal” music from other artists and put it together to claim it as your own? If so, what do you say to them, and if not, what would you say to them if anyone ever told you that?
I’m the first person to admit i don’t really feel like a musician. I make music but not in a traditional way No one’s ever said that to me directly (though it’s certainly been alluded to) but I’m not gonna blow smoke up someones ass like I’m fucking Beethoven when that’s simply not the case. I sample. Not everything is a sample but most of it is. I’m fully aware of this. If i couldn’t sample, my music would take a serious hit. That’s a fact.
If someone said that to me I’d probably halfway agree but add in that the final product of what I make is never anything like the source material. Also, that doing what i do is not as easy as it seems. Especially to a person who has no reference points to the kind of music I make. But, when it comes down to it, I can’t play any instruments or read sheet music so , you know, I can understand how a musician might be bothered by that. At the same time, it’s 2013 so they should really be used to this shit by now.
I used to work at a restaurant called the Old Spaghetti Factory. We served shitty pasta and all kinds of bland shit, thus white people loved us. Over my tenure I noticed a disgusting/weird trend (or what I thought was gross). White people would very often order a glass of milk to go along with their Spaghetti, Chicken Parm, Fetuccini Alfredo etc…This is nauseating as fuck to me. What are your thoughts on this? Are there any other weird culinary pairings you partake in?
That’s disgusting. I can’t say I’m familiar with the practice of drinking a glass of milk with dinner but I’m also not a cornfed savage. To me, that kinda thing sounds extremely middle american to me. I could be wrong but I don’t know anyone who has even drank a glass of milk since grade school. All the pussies i know are probably lactose intolerant anyway.
As for weird(white) culinary pairings I partake in…I guess the only one I can think of is that I love Mayo. I know it’s not a strange thing to like but there are a large group of people out there who (wrongly) think mayo is revolting. One of my favorite things to eat back in the day was: take a breaded chicken cutlet, slap some provolone on there, place that between any type of bread and slather it with mayo THEN microwave it. Now, everyone on earth has told me microwaving mayo is a terrible idea but if you do it for like 45 seconds (until the cheese melts) it’s harmless. I know this cause i’ve done it a billion times and the result has always been a joyous snack. Also, if you eat it quick enough, the microwaved bread doesn’t get rubbery. In fact, it’s down right fluffy and soft for a minute or two.