Entries tagged with: Phife Dawg
As rumored, rivals Fat Joe and 50 Cent came together to honor Chris Lighty at the BET Hip Hop Awards last night. Q-Tip, Busta Rhymes, Missy Elliott, Diggy Simmons, Phife Dawg, LL Cool J and Funkmaster Flex took part of the 10 minute segment too. Watch it below...
Busta Ryhmes @ Brooklyn Hip Hop Fest
Busta Rhymes headlined the closing night of the Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival on Saturday (7/14) with a set which saw him reunited with Leaders of the New School -- the group which launched his career -- marking the first time Busta's performed with them since the mid-'90s (despite the group reuniting without him back in 2010). Though it had been hinted at, Raekwon and Rakim did not appear as guests at the show, but A Tribe Called Quest members Q-Tip and Phife Dawg, among others, did show up.
HipHopDX was at the show, and here's what they had to say about it:
With Spliff Star by his side, Bussa Bus rattled through a gaggle of hits from his illustrious, 20-plus year career - including anthems "Woo Ha!," "Pass The Courvoisier," "Party Goin' On Over Here," "Look At Me Now," "Everybody Rise," and others. The Brooklyn-native also brought Lil Fame and Slick Rick to the stage for performances of "Ante Up Remix" and "Children's Story," respectively, as well as Reek Da Villain, and BHF regulars, Buckshot and Smif-N-Wessun of Boot Camp Clik. In a classy display of skill, Busta Rhymes continued leading the audience in his rendition of "Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Can See" even after the sound was cut because the show went past the park's 8PM curfew. Those in attendance loved it, waving their hands to Rhymes impromptu, pantomime performance, leaving on an upbeat note despite a day of noticeable challenges.A NewYorkMusicNews video, which you can watch below, reports that Busta's set was cut off due to time constraints and though they turned off his mic, he stayed on stage and got the crowd swaying their arms and cheering. The video's also got a clip of Busta doing one of those mile-a-minute freestyles that he does so well.
Speaking of turning off mics, and as a lot of the internet is reporting, the same thing happened to Bruce Springsteen, Paul McCartney, and Tom Morello in London this weekend.
"Bruce Springsteen had been waiting for this moment for a long time. "I gotta tell you," he said to the 76,000-strong crowd, "I've been trying to do this for 50 years." For the finale of his headline slot in London's Hyde Park on Saturday, he'd arranged a very special treat: An onstage collaboration with Beatles legend Paul McCartney. But the rock megastar hadn't banked on the local London council deciding to show him who was boss." [CNN]Check out the video below.
You can catch Q-Tip again this Friday (7/20) at Irving Plaza where he'll be djing the second edition of his "Offline" party, but note: "There will be a strict door policy. No single guys will be admitted unless there are ladies in your group. Dress To Impress. We love style and we know you do too, so please dress smart. Management reserves the right to refuse admission." Sounds fun.
Brooklyn Hip Hop Fest and Springsteen/McCartney videos below...
Continuing 6 years after Hip-Hop visionary J Dilla's death, the annual Donuts Are Forever tribute benefit is slated for this Sunday at Brooklyn Bowl (2/19). The concert includes DJ sets by TARA, Brina Payne, Ill Digitz, GETLIVE!, and returning act Parler, with producer Prince Paul and DJ Neil Armstrong headlining. Rap trio Tanya Morgan will share hosting responsibilities for the evening, following a performance Wednesday night (2/15) in iHeartDilla's "One Song" lineup at Southpaw. Tickets for the Brooklyn Bowl show are still available. Flyer below.
While "Donuts Are Forever" further solidifies itself as a tradition each year, new odes to the late maestro are still taking form. Questlove recently DJed an hour-long set for Hot 97 devised soley of J Dilla tunes, which is available for download here. The drummer also wrote an essay for XXL rhapsodizing J Dilla's singular talent, explaining his influence on Hip-Hop and his own work:
"The day after he recorded "Think Twice," for Welcome to Detroit, I look at the drum set, and I was like, "Wait, you recorded that on this?" And it was the most dingiest, dirtiest, not even second-hand. [It] looked like the Fat Albert junkyard gang drum set. Screws were missing; some of the heads were broken. Matter of fact, he didn't even use real drumsticks on "Think Twice." He used a vibraphone mallet, and he had a broken drumstick that he got some toilet paper from the bathroom, and some rubber bands. I was like, "You would rather go through this MacGuyver shit than buy new drumsticks?" He's like, "I didn't know where to get 'em this late at night; I had to make due." I was like, "Well, why did you hit the drums with the mallet?" He was like, "I didn't want the dynamic to be too aggressive. I wanted to sound muted, so I decided to play the drums with the soft cotton mallet." It looked like putting a marshmallow at the end of a toothpick [Laughs]. Next thing I know, I'm now flying to Philadelphia--I think the next week, [to work on] The Roots' Phrenology record [and] I tracked both "Quills" and "Pussy Galore" the same way. I went and got some orchestra mallets, and then I too started, just 'cause I seen how he got that sound."As per usual, Questlove DJ'd at Brooklyn Bowl last night (as he will on many more Thursdays). He's also scheduled to appear at "Bowlive" events at Brooklyn Bowl on 3/1 and 3/8.
In Detroit, J Dilla's mother, Maureen Yancey, organzied a "Dilla Day" concert and community celebration in the producer's hometown this past weekend (2/10-2/11). Performers for the Friday night show included Danny Brown, Busta Rhymes,, Jay Electronica, and A Tribe Called Quest's Phife Dawg (who has a NYC show coming up), while Saturday's free event included "hands-on beat-making exhibits for children" and a preview of a short-form documentary "Rebirth in Detroit," which followed J Dilla and other local musicians and is to be released later this year. Above photos of the Fillmore marquee via jmackhh.
Aside from his tribute duties, Prince Paul is reuniting with his erstwhile collaborators De La Soul for a new album. While the group's latest creative incarnation First Serve is still underway, two new videos were uploaded to their Youtube channel last weekend teasing new material. Check out "Life is Great" and "Mr. Big Mouph II" below...
Zulu Nation founder Afrika Bambataa
The Universal Zulu Nation is an international hip hop awareness group formed and headed by hip hop pioneer Afrika Bambaataa. Originally known simply as the Organization, it arose in the 1970s as reformed New York City gang members began to organize cultural events for youths, combining local dance and music movements into what would become known as the various elements of hip hop culture. By the 1980s, hip hop had spread globally, and the Zulu Nation has since established (autonomous) branches in Japan, France, the UK, Australia, South Korea and the Cape Flats in Cape Town South Africa. -[wiki]Afrika Bambataa celebrated the organization's 38th anniversary last night at Le Poisson Rouge (11/9) with Tony Touch , Doo Wop , DJ Mell Starr , Ralph McDaniels (Video Music Box) , Timbo King (Wu Tang) , Rock of Heltah Skeltah , Maffew Ragazino , Rival and Ramon CNN 199 and host DJ Hektek. The celebration continues on Saturday (11/12) with 9th Wonder, PMD from EPMD, Dinco (Leaders of the New School), Statik Selektah, Boogie Black, Latin Hip Hop, Calle Cardona (DJ O Incredible), Bisnelly La Loca, Blu Room Therapy, The Welfare Poets and Smif n' Wessun. Tickets are on sale.
The 38th anniversary of the UZN means that we'll also be celebrating the 37th anniversary of hip hop which will get its own night of remembrance. Afrika Bambaataa, Doug E Fresh, Grand Master Melle Mel, DMC, Cold Crush Brothers & more will join DJs like Q-Tip, Kid Capri, Jazzy Joyce, Lady Love and others at SOB's on 11/13. Tickets are on sale.
In related news, BB King's is the home for many upcoming shows with similarly great hip hop notables. The most interesting of the bunch happens on 2/23/12 with Phife Dawg (of A Tribe Called Quest) "and friends". No details on who "the friends" are, but tickets, go on sale today (11/10) at 2PM.
Another major event goes down a bit sooner at the same venue, on 11/23. Featuring EPMD, Ghostface Killah, Black Moon, Special Ed, Black Sheep, and Black Rob, the show is part of the "Funkmaster Flex Legends" series and tickets are on sale.
The venue will also host interesting shows with Digital Underground on 1/22/12 (tickets) Mobb Deep on 11/22 (tickets) and Slick Rick (featuring rare performances from his The Ruler's Back LP) on 11/25 (tickets) in the coming months.
Ghostface will also be on hand when the Wu-Tang Clan hits Best Buy Theater and Starland as part of a December tour.
And last but not least, M.O.P. will hit Santos Party House on 11/21 as part of a record release celebration for their new collaborative album with The Snowgoons. Sparta is due on Babygrande the next day. Support will be announced, but tickets are on sale. Stream one song from Sparta, and watch some videos, below...
words & photos by Benjamin Lozovsky
The old Knitting Factory used to be a bastion for independent hip hop in New York City. The new incarnation just took a big step at continuing that legacy, as it hosted one of the most historic hip hop concerts in recent memory.
On Wednesday night (1/20), An astounding array of legends and rising stars rocked the stage to honor everyone's favorite five-footer, Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called Quest. The event, Mind Body Soul, was a benefit to raise awareness for diabetes (Phife just received a kidney transplant related to his trials with the disease). And while diabetes was often on the mind and tongues of the performers, the show was really more of a demonstration of the persisting camaraderie and mutual adoration within a genre too often beleaguered with battles and conflict.
After quick opening sets by Hook, Jasmine Solano, Scotch Davis, and Monica Rush, the venue went from a displaced chill to full on engagement as Talib Kweli lead off the roster of A-listers. Having just arrived at the venue and already sent out to perform, Kweli showed his undying humility and his utmost flexibility though microphone heroics on a short notice set. Greg Nice (of obscure but beloved group Nice and Smooth) then burst out with a virulent spirit, with the mohawked, larger-than-life OG launching himself straight into the audience to parlay with the youngsters up front.
Jeru Tha Damaja was glib and full of grimy charm; he laid down classic tracks and told stories from the tombs of Brooklyn Hip Hop lore. A soft-spoken Dres (from Black Sheep) smoothly enticed with new material to go with that little ditty about train derailment you might have heard.
Compared to the illustrious resumes of many performers preceding and following him, up-and-comer Jay Electronica might have felt a bit overwhelmed. But Jay's heartfelt thanks to his peers was the most touching moment of the night, and his outrageous performance - with help from Mos Def, Hi Tek, and Kweli (all of whom recently cancelled performances at Highline Ballroom) - resonated with the youthful segments of the crowd and proved his position as the brightest star on the hip hop horizon.
Jay might have been the showstopper if he wasn't followed by hip hop ambassador (and its greatest living performer) KRS-One. Accompanied by hype man BusyBee (of the original Zulu Nation crew), KRS got metaphysical with beyond-cerebral freestyles. But still being the most humble braggadocio around, he bumped out covers of Biggie and Tribe to continue the showing of utmost respect and brotherhood that categorized the night.
There were some awkward and antagonizing moments throughout: posse upon posse swelling to the width of the stage and getting shooed away numerous times by Heavy Sound (the presenter) organizers, strange interactions between host Michael Rapaport and house turntablist DJ D-Lyfe, not to mention an off-performance by a sheepish Mr. Cheeks (of The Lost Boyz).
But it wouldn't really be a memorable hip hop conglomeration if it wasn't just the slightest bit disorganized or sporadically contentious. Even without a single piece of original vinyl brandished throughout the laptop-swapping spree behind the DJ table, the event still felt like a storied Bronx block party or an impromptu Brooklyn corner concert or a Queens Native Tongue poetry slam.
As Consequence dragged Phife on stage, followed by Ali Shaheed Muhameed and then Q-Tip to perform the final set of the night as a united Quest, on display was a vivid demonstration of the greatest hope for the future of hip hop: its ability to nurture its own existence through such reciprocal love. It might take a village to raise a child, but on this night, it only took one Tribe to raise up hip hop.
Ghostface was on the bill, but didn't show. More pictures from the night below...
by Benjamin Lozovsky
Former Blackstar bandmates and continuing collaborators Talib Kweli and Mos Def are keeping up the busy pace they each set in 2009 with even more tour dates and releases to come in the new year.
After performing a spattering of shows with long-time producer Hi-Tek as a reunited Reflection Eternal last year, the much beloved pair is coming back to the New York area with a late show at Highline Ballroom on Friday, January 22nd (tickets are on sale). This date comes in the support of The Re:Union Mixtape, the fantastic new free compilation of fresh and unreleased Reflection Eternal cuts (with some classic Kweli and Hi-Tek jams throw in as well) mixed, mastered, and co-produced by Statik Selektah. If the new tracks are any indication, Kweli and Hi-Tek are poised to make a splashing return to form on their upcoming full-length LP Revolutions Per Minute, which has a tentative release date of March 2010.
Before that gig, Talib has two more scheduled local appearances. The first is this Sunday, January 17th, when he'll perform at Pyramid for an End Of The Weak party with special guest Webbafied.
The second, and definitely more eye-popping event is Mind Body Soul: A Concert Event To Raise Awareness For Diabetes. Organized by Heavy Sound and taking place at the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn on Wednesday, January 20th, the benefit concert will feature hosts Michael Rapaport, Okayplayer (perhaps ?uestlove), and Phife Dawg, and performances by Kweli, Ghostface Killah, Jay Electronica (whom Talib just collaborated with for killer Re:Union track 'Just Begun'), and Consequence. Tribe Called Quest member Phife, a long-time diabetic, was first diagnosed with the disease back in 1990, and is making his first appearance in the public spotlight after recently receiving a much needed kidney transplant. Other performers are promised as well (an earlier flyer for the event had Blakroc listed, although that has now vanished from the more updated version...let's hope they might be one of the special guests). Email RSVP@heavysounds.com to get in for free before 11:00pm.
Meanwhile, Mos Def will be back to perform tracks from his Grammy-nominated album The Ecstatic this Sunday, January 17th, at The Highline Ballroom. The show is a rescheduled appearance from December 20th of last year, which was canceled due to weather ($45 tickets). Later in the month, the Mighty Mos performs two more times. First it's at the Apollo Theater for IMAN Presents: Special Edition of Community Café, on Saturday, January 23rd. He'll be there along side Daily Show correspondent and comedian Aasif Mandvi as well as other guests ($20 tickets). Then you can catch Mos when he opens for DOOM at Nokia Theatre on January 30th ($40 tickets)
Event flyers below: