March 08, 2003

Sitting here in the Pittsburgh Airport, going thru post 911 security checks I can’t help but wonder how INTERDOPE RECORDS prez JIMMY IODINE sleeps at night. With the latest 50 CENTGET RICH OR DIE TRYING” phenomenon sweeping the nation, again I’m amazed at the selling power of black death and the masters who pimp it. There’s a lot of blood in IODINE’S bank just as BRYAN TURNIP, formerly of CALIFORNIA RAISIN, launched gangsta turned PRIORITIZE RECORDS wayyy back in the 90s, courtesy of the west coast. I actually dug 50 CENTS’ original take on ‘fake gangstas’ and the idea of bringing some cats down to the reality of the harshness of the ‘real streets’ instead of studio imagery. As I dug NWA’s early rebellious take on how a brother couldn’t get ahead in society. But in the case of the swirl around 50 I can’t even say its entirely his fault, that his take on the road to rap is along the BIGGIE “Born to die” steez.

It’s the usual suspects that cash in at the end, that resonate the statement of the amazing profit of black death. There are glaring facts about this contribution to this millennium cointelpro of the rap game. From DJ SCOTT LAROCK to JAMMASTER JAY and everyone KILLED in between there hasn’t been a murderer found yet. Number two, in the case of TUPAC selling 5 million records while living and at least 30 million in his death. The case of the white exec hiring and doing business with the negro so he can create, recreate, cultivate, endorse then sell niggers doin ‘niggativity’ has never been more apparent. These execs would never do business with a ‘black man’, whereas a black man would draw a line on what would be said about his people. A man would tell another man that he couldn’t compromise a people for the sake of some false god named ‘profit’ and his son named ‘bottom line’.

The charge to the top of suspicious chart is paralleled at the same time by R KELLY who again has found love from peeps. The picture drawn here is that anything can be said and done against black people, and the damage that appears to be self inflicted is none the less assisted by cats lurking in the shadows. The blood banks are spilling over at this time as it’s the easy way out to cover the fact that 50 has already been shot at point blank range, so that’s the story that INTERDOPE’S marketing team sharply rolls and promotes their head to. Now everywhere he goes it’s covered the fact that he sleeps in a bulletproof vest and there are ample heapings of bodyguards in surround sound.

It brings to question... what makes a cat hate another brother who looks and talks just like him whereas they never even met? Radio, hype and video talk to all folks on behalf of the perceived and conceived opinion of black people, masterminded by the thought of ‘the streets’. Problem is that this NY-LA pimp biz mentality didn’t ask ALL the streets, they’re telling and programming them. At the tail end of those same streets are the businesses of jail and death. They could care less about the streets in betwixt. The one sided control of sepia images the past 10 years has the masses Pavlov- trained into actually thinking there’s little wrong with being abused, like the wife who gets repeatedly beat down by the man she still loves more with every ass whipping. The slave who proudly places his master’s last name on his first after being whipped to say it, while not being able to spell it. Trained to love the level and status of nigger granted by his master’s ideology while daring all to challenge that love. Whereas the first 12 years of recorded rap reflected the love of hip hop, the artists rhymed love, spread love like BOB MARLEY and thus got love from the peeps.

Rap was a passport to visit other hoods representing love in the words thus reconnecting the thought of ‘FAM’ aka family. Now the family for rappers is the corporate pimped pseudo-record companies they spit for. Many no longer rhyme for the people they cointelpro against the folk. The radio stations and Viacom help pour the verbal sewage of self hate back at us, thus endorsing little option for 50 CENT to take. The fact is not whether his guns are bigger than little BOW WOW, but the fact of it can be pointed directly at someone in his family. I don¹t want that cat to be a bigger target than he claims to be. Lets hope that 50 has a long career and a greatest hits record while he’s living, rhyming about ‘birthdays instead of death daze’, and his black self doesn’t add more red and green to JIMMY IODINE’s notorious skull and bones INTERDOPE blood bank.

A real black man in this record biz would tell his staff and artists no when it comes to drawing a line regarding the same hood that they come from. The sellout hidden punks in this business shouldn’t have been allowed to enter in the first place. Now the rap game at that level means diminishing returns. It’s an opportunity for smart cats to get in the game now. Whenever you stoop to the lowest common denominator for the sake of just money, you’re bound to run into probs. Again you really can’t measure a people’s soul in a bottle. Our culture has to be weighed by the quality as well as the quantity, as well as the cost on getting there. I believe ALPO sells 2 million cans of dog food a month, you don’t see the owner wearing a platinum dog food chain around his neck do you? And if you ain’t got a dog… what the hell do the numbers mean to you?

People, we’re in an economic recession on the edge of a war and possible depression. But I swear there are more people flocking to the movies than ever. Just peeped DAREDEVIL and the script had to be written by an 8th grader.

Called BUSTA RHYMES after some cats had shot up VIOLATOR MGMT offices and pumped 8 bullets into his unattended truck. He assured me he was cool and was being leery of all around him. When good cats like BUS get caught in the mix you know it’s time to clean up. The truth is that real thugs are serving lengthy sentences, and those roaming the streets obviously don’t know what’s in store for them the rest of this decade. Jails are bigger businesses than ever, morphing into the new slavery and sweatshop systems. Convicted thugs will be making US products in house at a penitentiary near you.

Well again I say I dig JAY Z’s ability, but as a 30 plus man sometimes I’m baffled by him. The fact of having the half white MID SOUTH COLISEUM in MEMPHIS crowd yell ‘my nigga’ nationally on SHOWTIME a few miles from where DR MARTIN LUTHER KING was killed in 1968 while comparing himself to him can be confusing, but again read what I just wrote and judge for yourself. The cat is much smarter than that.

EMpTy V was at it again sending out false alarms to rappers across the nation to participate in a battle to see who would be the MTV MC. A disaster waiting to happen as it was designed in some boardroom up there. I ran into peeps that used their own money to fly in, sleeping on the streets etc. This amerikkkan idle sh*t has to stop fooling ‘the masses into them asses’. People take this seriously so it must be done right. It reminded me of the MOTOWN Talent search a few years back by ANDRE HORRAY where thousands of peeps actually thought they had a chance to be a star. In these times everyone wants to get ‘put on’, but with increasingly less information about this hustle people have little idea what they’re actually getting put on to. I request that this shady biz, as well as comprehension to other media and communication gets thoroughly taught and offered to 12th graders, but in the words of LENNON maybe I’m a dreamer.

FLAV, HANK SHOCKLEE, DOCTOR ANDRE BROWN DRE and myself were at the APOLLO uptown. PE received an award for revolutionary innovation, and that night I was also surprised to run into the legend himself, DJ EDDIE CHEBA. I was mind blown. This cat was an early influence for many, definitely myself. He came to see me speak. Damn. He was the one that sparked the whole thought of a rap record existing in the first place, promoting the thought of putting one out throughout the summer of 1979. To me it was inconceivable as I heard him rock cuts like GOOD TIMES by CHIC and GQ. It was the idea that was followed up by KING TIM 3RD of THE FATBACK BAND in July 79, and SUGARHILL and then KURTIS BLOW. In fact the MERCURY RECORDS team had been on the quest of signing CHEBA but thought BLOW was the more marketable cat. It was a mindblower as I heard he was in FRANCE for years and he confirmed the rumor as we were sitting in the seats of the historic APOLLO.

Writer TOURE has a lot of nerve calling MIKE JAX a clown on national TV. Once again proving that the media will always draft one of us in sellout suit mode to dis. Again I ask where do cats like this get their qualifications to do such damage? After all this is the same guy who was telling folks he ruined PE with his scathing ROLLING STONES album review of MUSE. I can take it but I couldn’t stand to see a cat that’s never made music, or win a Pulitzer, say MIKE JAX music is wack. I peeped it, thanks to harsh reality for the heads up.

I also didn’t dig hearing NEW YORK jockshockstress WENDY WILLAIMS rake WHITNEY HOUSTON over the coals. The world of sports is put in check when the journalists and athletes get outta wack. Why would somebody even visit the fact of getting hit by WENDY WRECK? Simple, ARISTA’s greed says WW got 2 million of her potential fans, and now she’s got to get on the air to clear the air and promote yet another record. That’s some dumbsh*t. I’d tell Whitney don’t even go anywhere near it, but if you took so much of the companies upfront cash, you might have no choice. Being a celebrity and being a great singer/musician is two different things. When you measure “better” by capitalistic consumer quantity as opposed to quality then your subject to deal head to head with the bulls*it. Still I felt bad for WHIT and BOBBY... biz dragged into the street is never good.

God sent a message to SON OF A BUSH and his agenda on PRESIDENTS DAY by spitting a blizzard that paralyzed the northeast especially the DC area. This cat continues his real life video game of ‘GRAND THEFT OIL’.

At the EMI post Grammy party I ran into one of the few black ‘MEN’ in the business BIG JOHN PLATT. He’s one of the most clearest, honest and sincere individuals in the game. Now his innovations in publishing have crossed over into the urban music area where we are bound to see him shine. I also saw DIANA ROSS there and hugged my hero ISSAC HAYES. I was happy to see the BLUE NOTE team celebrate NORAH JONES and shook hands with DJ PREMIER and GURU of GANG STARR who held the party down. PREMO and I are smoothing out our rough edges like men from the 10 Crack Commandments thing. I respect him for that.

The PE machine did the ROCK THE VOTE concert after I received my award from gorgeous MS INDIA ARIE. Backstage she expressed dour feelings on the GRAMMYS not broadcasting the black music live rather preempting it. Myself and BOOTSY COLLINS assured her that she was necessary to be present and her omitting herself from future awards shows was not the best idea. FLAV is back, and doing a concert is real easy with him because he’s a born performer. I’m just trying to get him to record more.

Congratulations to another super-bad sista, Felicia ‘THE POETESS’ Morris for ten years in the radio game. I can’t say enough for her support throughout the years, helping to make the west coast rap scene the power it is today.

I thought diamonds were a girl’s best friend? I swear if I see another so called producer-rapper-record exec-ballplayer -dude with a diamond in BOTH ears, as well as a mink coat I might vomit on it. And what’s up with these cats taking the bass out of their voice when they talk to the public? It seems like women today carry more BALLS than these male imposters. The undercover BS I don't understand, especially if given jurisdiction over an entire music category and peeps. The two earring thing is so cornball.

The lecture circuit was fire this February with just one regret, missing the VANDERBILT lecture last week because of a tix mix up - absolutely wack that it never happened. Plus the northeast blizzard knocked out HOLLINS U and TOWSON ST but they got make up dates coming real soon this month. However ST JOHNS, TRENTON, BOWLING GREEN, PITT, GUILFORD, MUSEUM OF CHICAGO, RADFORD, HOWARD and the CALIFORNIA University of PENNSYLVANIA were enjoyable within the shadow of the impending war talk.

I can’t understand how a big fighting dude like JOHN RUIZ actually thought he could outbox ROY JONES JR?

My highlight was Feb 7th at RADIO CITY in NYC where the FINE ARTS MILITIA and myself participated in an incredible concert that will be a film later this year headed by MARTIN SCORSECE. It was a common. The photo shoot was stellar RUTH BROWN, BB KING, THE NEVILLES and THE METERS, DR JOHN, ODETTA, MAVIS STAPLES, the great SOLOMON BURKE, LIGHTNING HOPKINS, BUDDY GUY, AEROSMITH, BONNIE RAITT as well as new cats KEB MO, ANGIE STONE, INDIA ARIE, MOS DEF, JON SPENCER BLUES EXPLOSION and many others. My expansion ideas involve placing rap music and hip hop alongside the borders of other genres. I think it’s an important niche vehicle for a slew of new artists to explore. In FINE ARTS MILITIA we hope to do that.

Also ran into HERBIE HANCOCK who visited the PE locker room after the ROCK THE VOTE gig where we were also visited by BOOTSY COLLINS, who also came on stage when we performed COSMIC SLOP. YUP, IT WAS THE BOMB AND expect more collabos with legends. Right now we’re talking to MAVIS STAPLES about recording something for the official opening of the STAX Museum in MEMPHIS on MAY 1st, as well as doing something with SOLOMON BURKE very soon. At the radio city concert FAM did a rendition of JOHN LEE HOOKER’S ‘BOOM BOOM’ that we turned into an anti war rant called ‘NO BOOM BOOMS’.

Again BOB LAW is putting the heat on, as well as myself, rolling with the theme of DEAD PREZ’ ‘TURN OFF THE RADIO’. Why, because increasingly the airwaves are a joke in their censoring positive images. There is a lot of momentum here and many people wonder who is in control of what. It reminds me of the fairy tale, the PIED PIPER, whereas all the kids were hypnotized to follow. This 2003 we’re gonna set it off.

Oh yeah, with rappers seemingly running out of things to say and ballplayers mindlessly counting their stats while money comes out of nowhere, a young caucasian woman basketball player/student who chooses not to be a robot and protests against the current hypocrisy in the US flag. She also chooses to eloquently hold her ground and state her case. My question is what are the reasons that black athletes and entertainers continue to salute the flag without figuring how they fit into the grand scheme? I would just like to know the reasons, so I can be clear on how this latest propaganda parallels the harmful influences of the past....