Why ya wanna go and do that love, huh?

Lately, I’ve been in Hyde Park Record Store and Dr. Wax more than I’ve been at home. Well, maybe not THAT much. But I have found myself roaming the aisles of those two stores, seemingly on a hunt for good ish to listen to. Not so much hip hop, but just good music. I rarely buy new releases anymore, mainly because they’re overpriced and most aren’t worth the price. I bought a copy of Outkast’s “Aquemini” and Do Or Die’s “Headz or Tailz” for $4.99 each. Two classics, and I barely spent more than $10, including tax. Today, I bought The Clash’s “Combat Rock”, an album that I hadn’t heard for almost 3 years. I paid only $7.99 for it. C’mon, son.  If I’m not at a record store, I’m downloading some otherworldly, extraterrestrial mixtape that no one else seems to have listened to. How many people do you know that have heard Mick Boogie and Adele’s mixtape? I didn’t think so. I take pride in having such an eclectic taste in music. It’s starting to show in my iTunes, on my iPod, and my random performances throughout the day. I’m just walking around Chicago, trying to catch up on some of the music that has seemed to escape my ears. Everything I hear is dope, including Diplo’s remix of “Flashing Lights”. I’m most definitely not allowing anyone to influence what I listen to nowadays. That mentality died back in high school. I’d like to keep my music library pure, at least by my definition. P.S. I miss Karen!!! P.P.S. #shoutout to #myfavoritenerd, L-Boogie, Jon, and Fowler for introducing me to some pretty dope muzak of late

Word?

The winter has shown herself early this year. I’m not sure how I feel about that. Oh wait, I absolutely hate it. With a fiery passion that cannot be described beyond that. Growing up on the south side of Chicago and attending public schools made my hatred for the winter and its weather much stronger. When there were “snow days” for Catholic schools and suburban schools, public school students were often the ONLY students in the Chicago area attending school. I was naive as a kid, which is why I didn’t understand why kids would be treated that way. Didn’t they understand that it’s a snow day?! Being a public school student and growing up at my Granny B’s house didn’t help my relationship with winter, either. She lives in the South Shore area, about 20 minutes away from Lake Michigan. Anyone who lives near the lake(#shoutout to the Kenwood students, who have braved those winds)will tell you that when the weatherman calls for it to be 54 degrees, you might as well figure that to be 39-44 degrees if you’re anywhere NEAR the lake. I played baseball in high school, and our home field was separated from the lake by a beach and Lake Shore Drive. There were times when I could see the waves in the lake from shortstop, which was never a good sign. Baseball, being a mostly stationary sport(there have been plenty of games where I nearly froze my fingers off because I barely moved),makes it hard to keep warm. Unlike football–where there’s constant movement for about 2/3 of a 53-man NFL roster–some players on the baseball diamond aren’t involved in one play during the course of an entire game. That lake effect is represented by that damn wind. The wind that earned Chicago the nickname “Windy City”(actually, it’s more because of politics, but I’ll blog about that another time)or, more recently, “The City of Wind”. It bites. It pierces. It pinches, and sometimes, I think it punches. It’s not really the Chicago temperatures in winter that are frightening, it’s the wind chill factor. The temperature outside may be 37 degrees, but the wind chill factor can make it feel like it’s only 7 degrees, which is disturbingly cold. Truth be told, the winters in Chicago are a bitch. Getting dressed as a kid is a hassle, because your parents know that pneumonia and frostbite are easy to find if your not properly covered up. It affects the mood as well. Chicago is such a great city, but who really wants to go outside for any reason when it feels like it’s 4 degrees? People in residential areas go crazy. Fighting ensues over parking spots, and drivers skid across streets and crash into each other. Policemen aren’t very eager to answer calls, and the petty crime in some areas increases because of it. Shoveling is more than a chore, especially when you’re the only one in your house that is willing to get up early enough to do it. There is no chilling on the porch in the winter. There are no late-night trips to The Point, or walks down Michigan Avenue in the middle of January. Winter solstice comes on December 21, wraps her sold, spiny, ugly fingers around my city and doesn’t let go until March 21. You’re one cold ass bitch, Winter Solstice. And people wonder why I respond with, ‘Word?’ when people tell me that they love the winter…  P.S. I miss Karen!!! P.P.S. #shoutout to all of my people who don’t have to worry about the cold…

I cop, you cop, we all cop…right?

So Talib Kweli was on Twitter a little earlier, complaining about our generation’s sense of entitlement when it comes to rap/hip-hop. He stated that he thinks we expect to get everything for free. WRONG. NEGATIVE. I wish Talib knew that MY generation made mcs like him. Not that the 25-32 group didn’t help, but MY age demographic spent MANY a day at Coconuts, Sam Goody, Virgin, Best Buy, Target, Walmart, F.Y.E., et cetera, to support our favorite mcs. What changed, Talib? You all started to make mediocre, fluff music. CD prices increased steadily. It became more about promoting a single or video than an entire album. Point, blank, peri-ahd: MCs fell off!!! Why would I pay $17.63 for a CD with a handful of nice tracks? So I can hear a single that’s been WORN THE HELL OUT ON THE RADIO, OR, *gulp* BET, while the rest are a waste of my ears’ attention? Talib, get a grip! I copped Jay’s Kingdom Come AND American Gangster. I think I REALLY liked maybe 8, 9 tracks off of the 2 albums, period. Yet, instead of getting my $30, $35 back, I had to eat it. Jay’s supposed to be the benchmark, and he dropped wackness, just to make a buck! Wayne had people SALIVATING for years, and dropped an album that wasn’t even worth my trip to the mall to cop it! Rap/hip-hop has become shallow, my dude. Honestly, I don’t think the average mc is concerned about the lack of CD sales because they think the love of the music is gone. I don’t feel that the average mc is worried that there is no integrity and dignity amongst us rap/hip-hop fans. I sincerely feel that mcs are mad because my generation has wised up to the fact that, in a fucked up economy, we’re paying WAY TOO MUCH to hear mediocre, so-so, average, alright, okay, “eh” music. You want my $15??? Drop something worthwhile… P.S. I miss Karen! P.P.S. Who loves ya, baby? #shoutout to Tiara in her tiara, the artist formerly known as Miss DJ, and hydroponic…