April 22 1999
IN THIS ISSUE OF THE FNV NEWSLETTER 4-22-99
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In case you don't know by now, Hip Hop took another strange turn in what is turning out to be a turbulent year. Two years after the slaying of the Notorious BIG, LAPD has cited Death Row CEO Suge Knight as a possible suspect. They issued warrants and searched various locations that were either owned or connected to Suge. In the end they turned up a purple Cheverlot Impala which was initially described as the car driven by Biggie's killer.
What makes this story so bizarre is that it comes two years after the fact. Why is that? When Biggie was killed suspicion immediately centered on Suge due to the high profile rivalry between Death Row and Biggie's label Bad Boy. The feeling was that with Biggie and Puffy so visibility hanging out in LA it taken as an affront to Suge who was in jail at the time. When Biggie got killed outside Soul Train Music Award after party, people immediately concluded that Suge ordered the hit from jail.
If people on the streets were thinking that, one would suspect that the LAPD would've derive the same conclusion. You would think that a police department which has one of the best and most technologically advanced homicide departments in the country would've checked every possible angle to see if there was even a remote chance of that happening. I'm not a police officer, but I do have to question why after two years they are looking at Suge Knight? Something smells fishy up in here.. We'll keep you posted as things further develop.
While the hip hop industry is reeling over this new development, Bad Boy artist Mase has announced his retirement from the world of hip hop. According to his management [Magic Johnson], he has turned his life over to God and is basically 'Born Again'. This means Mase will no longer record any new music nor perform unless it is a spoken word engagement. Mase's decision goes into effect immediately.
What makes this interesting is the fact that Mase will still be promoting his album entitled Double Up which is due out in June. I'm not sure if his new album contains explicit material that will go against his Christian beliefs, but if so, how will he reconcile this offensive material with his commitment to God? Isn't that his whole point for retiring? If he's not going to perform or record music why is he going to be out and about promoting his album? Let us hope this isn't a cheap marketing ploy. In any case, we wish Mase much success and we're happy to see this self proclaimed thug turn a new leaf in life.
MC Hammer should be re-entering the Hip Hop arena real soon. We reported a couple of months back that he was gonna be dropping a new album. Now it's official. Apparently he will be releasing the songs he recorded with 2Pac when he was signed to Death Row.. [Y'all remember when Hammer was with Death Row?]. What will be interesting is which of the songs he recorded with Pac will he allow out. He recorded this one cut with 2Pac and Big Daddy Kane which was the absolute bomb. Folks was set to start playing it when Hammer reclaimed the dats and CDs he had issued. At the time, he said he felt the subject matter was foul and contradictory to his religious beliefs. In the song they rap about how they could seduce another man's woman. I remember asking Hammer if I could have a personal copy just to listen to but he remained steadfast in his decision. He did not want the material out. It wasn't too long afterwards that he recorded his double gospel album 'Family Affair'. He also founded our station's World Hit Gospel Show. We'll keep you updated on the return of Hammer and I'll try and get and answer to this question should he release the Big Daddy Kane and 2Pac cut.
Yesterday, Dwayne Wiggins of Tony Toni Tone held a press conference with the ACLU as he filed a one million dollar claim against the City of Oakland for police choking him a few weeks ago. From the looks of things Wiggins was definitely a victim of racial profiling. In the press conference he noted that it wasn't the money that's so important as compared to him getting the word out and taking a stance on behalf of all those non celebrity who have fallen victim to police abuse. He also has a new song that talks about his experience. In the song TTT re-sing a hook made famous by blues legend Billy Holiday where she talks about strange fruit and blood on the roots. The 'strange fruit' she referred to was the thousands of Black men who were lynched around the turn of the century. Wiggins also plans to attend the Millions For Mumia Rally being held in SF this weekend. The other thing that was brought out in the press conference was the fact that Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown and his city manager had a meeting with New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani about the 'impressive' way he managed to clean up crime in the Big Apple. I guess New York is on it's way to Oakland. Can anyone from New York tell me.. Have things gotten better under Mayor Giuliani and his approach toward reducing crime? Hit me back at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Also this Sunday morning we're gonna do a special show on racial profiling and Driving While Black. Last week we had the Rev Al Sharpton in the studios.. This week we're gonna have the two of the Bay Area top police Chiefs to talk about all the drama.. That includes San Jose's William Lansdown Police Chief who has agreed to collect racial data on police stops. We will also have Oakland's outgoing Police Chief Joe Samuels.. You can catch the live broadcast at http://www.106kmel.com or tune into 106.1 FM Sunday morning at 9am Pacific Standard Time.. Also don't forget to catch the Friday Nite Vibe Hip Hop Show live on the net at http://www.daveyd.com Show times starts at Friday at 12 midnight PST.
QUESTION OF THE DAY..
Do you think Puffy took a few giant steps backwards for his part in the recent beat down of fellow record executive Steve Stoute? How does one go from raising a million dollars for the Christopher Wallace Foundation in the name of bringing about peace and ending violence, to knocking another brother upside the head? Let's say at the worst case scenario, Nas' manager intentionally went out of his way to dis Puffy. Don't you think a lawsuit targeting him and the deep pockets of Nas' label Columbia records would've been better? Couldn't Puff have called and worked it out like Nas suggested in a recent interview? It just amazes me we have brotha attacking brotha and none of them own the major outlets involved? Puffy even with his Bad Boy label is under Arista records. He doesn't own that.. Nas' video material is owned by Sony/Columbia records. He doesn't own that. Neither one of these guys owns MTV which aired the video.
You don't see Arista owner Clive Davis rolling up and handing out beat downs to Sony/Columbia President Tommy Mottola over a disagreement. So why do we continuously engage in such activities? If I was a 'shot caller, big baller' I would've sued the hell out of Sony/Columbia records which is ultimately responsible for what gets released by their artist. I would've held a press conference, sued the record company and gave the money to charity. Now that would've been sending a message and good public relations move.
All these selective Black on Black beat downs going on within the record industry brings me back to the points I raised a few weeks back when I questioned the reasons 'We keep running in our videos'? Lets just say the person who released the video to MTV was John Gotti as opposed to Steve Stoute, would a beat down have occurred? Let's say it was Tommy Mottola, would Puffy have bumrushed the offices and beat him down? I don't think so.
Did Puffy gather up his boys and beat down Arista owner Clive Davis after Clive ripped him in the press when Forbes Magazine put Puffy on the cover? Hell no! So why the public beating of this guy who is trying to blow up in the biz like himself? Would there have been a beat down if it was Suge Knight releasing the video? People are speculating this whole thing was a way for Puff to regain street credibility. Let's hope not. Heck if that's the case, let Puff take some aggressive stances against the police who shot Diallo. Bring the Puffy Beat Down crew to guys who fired 41 shots. Let him show up at the Millions For Mumia Rally in Philadelphia and lead the crowd in ways to 'Beat Down' an oppressive system that believes in building more prisons than schools. That'll get you credibility. There's always ways for us to work out differences and resolve problems other then highly publicized selective beat downs. Don't you think? mailto:email@example.com
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The FNV Newsletter
written by Davey D
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