Image by Ion One, used courtesy of Ion One
Music and Culture Page
1. Hip-Hop Music & Culture
Check out my book, Spectacular Vernaculars: Hip-Hop and the Politics of Postmodernism.
Drop by my old R&R page for a peep at my "Roots 'n' Rap" column during its years with HardC.O.R.E./Headz Up!, including my interview with Chuck D and articles on Gil Scott-Heron, the Meters, Prince Buster, and Calypso. You can also read an old article about my "Roots 'n' Rap" radio show on WMHB in Waterville, Maine, which ran from 1993 to 1995.
For hip-hop reviews and info on the 'net, Charles Isbell -- a.k.a. 'The Homeboy from Hell' -- is the man. His New Jack Reviews set the standard for online music criticism.
Graffiti on the Web can't be washed off or spray-painted over -- check out the original Art Crimes page at its new location.
Public Enemy's Chuck D has set the standard for online hip-hop with his site, Rapstation.com.
Hip-hop is also part of the transatlantic continuum of black music; for a sense of how funky the diaspora can get, drop by the AfroMix pages in France (parlez-vous Franglais, l'homme-boy?)
If you want to check out the latest news from The Coup, to my mind the most politically savvy and lyrically fluent group out there, drop by the Coup Home Page.
Meanwhile, Public Enemy is still hangin' in there, still takin' out suckas -- Chuck D has just announced that he's going to take it to the next level by releasing an entire new album of songs as downloadable MP3's. For news about this release, as well as an advance peep at PE's payback single "Swindler's Lust," drop by the Public Enemy Homepage.
Lastly, just for
reference, knowledgeable headz know where to go for lyrical flow:
Original Hip-Hop Lyrics Archive.
2. jazz, blues, reggae, ska, folk ...
The Red Hot Jazz Archive has a small yet solid selection of online bios, discographies, and timelines, with a few music samples thrown in for good measure.
To my mind the greatest Ska singer/producer of all time, the legendary Prince Buster is still out there. There's not enough about him on the web these days -- but here's one site and here's another. Earthquake on Orange Street!
Speaking of Ska, I recently discovered a great online Ska Lyrics Archive.
For Reggae lyrics and discographies, I recommend the Reggae Lyrics Archive in Denmark.
Long before Kraftwerk, there were some incredible electronic artists in Europe who set the stage for everything to come. One of my favorites is Popol Vuh, who recorded a half-dozen stunning albums in the 70's and then vanished from the radar. Here's an online Popol Vuh Discography to get you started.
Waa-ay back in the day -- I mean in the 1960's -- the rhythms of revolution were being played, not on turntables, but on (gasp!) guitars. One the greats, all too often forgotten, was Phil Ochs. Thirty years later, we're lucky enough to have a great online Phil Ochs Website.
Speaking of guitars, back in 1979-1981 I got my start in the music biz with two self-titled LP's, "Volume I: A stone's Throw," and "Volume II: Neither Here Nor There." They were released on my own label, Black Snake Records, and sold well before going out of print in the mid-'80's. Now, thanks to the miracle of MP3's, these recordings are now available online, or as burned CD's -- go to the Lost Sessions website to have a listen.
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