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After a 9 month hiatus, PPF House‘s first signee, LEO37 has returned with a brand new self-produced single just in time for his upcoming North American tour (more on that later).
With a little help from fellow labelmates the WPBE, LEO37 gets smooth with it. Watch the vid then click the link.
HHHToday’s your day,
THE PPF NEIGHBORHOOD
With only one day left until the Canadian Government stops matching private donations in the Haiti Earthquake Relief Effort, I ask you, loyal HHHT readers and lovers to please head on over to the PPF Neighborhood and donate now. This project, in conjunction with MSF (a.k.a. Doctors without Borders) and support from the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) is a 14-track album featuring artists from around the world playing everything from Underground Hip-Hop to Latin Jazz, Ambient Electronica to Folk. Accompanying the audio is also a 13-page PDF booklet featuring art from award winning painters, illustrators, animators and designers.
You’re not just helping a country in distress…please watch.
For more information on the project: THE PPF NEIGHBORHOOD
This past week we honored the passing of 2 of Hip-Hop’s greats and in commemoration, Cookin Soul and 2 Dope Boyz put together this mixtape celebrating their absolute awesomeness:
SHOTS AT THE THRONE
As a follow-up to their hugely entertaining 10-pages of Jay-Z disses, Complex Mag, also responsible for those awesome soundboards as well as getting Keri Hilson to take those wonderful pics brings you 7 pages of emcees dissing Jay-Z back. Everyone from Nas to Prodigy, Fat Joe to Jim Jones, it’s allll there. Click the image below for the whole shebangabang.
And finally, as an added bonus, a treat from one of the illest to ever do it.
Be well world.
HHHTurn it UP!
It’s been a long time coming, but I present to you part 2 of the Give the Drummer Some series.
I don’t know that I really have anymore to say about this guy that isn’t already known. Through his unorthodox lyrics, unrelenting cadences and undying love for sampling your favorite Saturday morning cartoon theme songs, he’s managed to stay in peoples ears and mouths for so long and so consistently that he is to hip-hop what the hum of the refrigerator is to your daily white noise intake — I hope that makes sense. In other words, hip-hop without DOOM would just be down right weird.
Now DOOMposter scandal aside, he’s managed to consistently release quality records at a feverish pace and even when some fans (myself included) were starting to get sick of the formula, he came and hit back with ‘Born Like This’ which on the surface seemed like standard DOOM, but somehow managed to be far meatier than anything he’d released in quite some time — at least that’s how I felt. Now, with another brand new release entitled ‘Unexpected Guests’, DOOM’s back and DOOM’ish as ever. Check the album teaser above, and check the MPFree below. Regardless of who you are or where you’re from, there’s bound to be one DOOM song somewhere out there that you love. I know it.
DOOM – BELLS OF DOOM (Direct Link)
I am, and have always been a huge fan of RJ.
From the time I heard Final Frontier w/ Blueprint back in ’02 (off Deadringer) to getting my heart broken by ‘Making Days Longer’ in ’04 (off Since We Last Spoke) to the jarring direction he took with the entire ‘The Third Hand’ album in ’07, I’ve been happy with what RJ has provided me as a fan.
He’s somehow managed the extremely difficult task of taking himself out of the box that he was so quickly thrown in after Deadringer’s unexpected success and, although may not be as popular as he was when he first dropped, has continued to work very hard at reinventing himself every time he resurfaces, even if that means pissing off the same people that pay his mortgage.
Now, after a 3 year hiatus, the ex-Def Jukie and ex-XL recording artist is back with his own label and preparing the release of his 4th full-length studio album entitled ‘The Colossus’. HHHT is proud to bring you the first leak off the record and I must say, I enjoy it quite a bit. Whaddyou think?
Sunclef is one of the best producers you’ve never heard of.
Beginning with Cello lessons at 3, chamber groups at 11, then bass at 13, Sunclef is not your average hip-hop producer. A man who is generally light with words, but extremely heavy with mood and vibe, the bio on his website says it all: ‘A wise man once said “Less bunk, more funk.”‘ And really, that’s him in a nutshell. But even beyond that, what he brings to the table that most other hip-hop producers don’t (but really should) is musicianship. An understanding of music spanning genres and eras that only lend to his ability of being able to adapt, adjust and create something original while still being familiar. That, coupled with an almost detrimental necessity for improvement and you have PPF House‘s resident monster.
Having had the opportunity to work with him first hand, I can tell you that few people hear the way he does or has as good a natural instinct. On top of being a dope producer, he’s also a talented studio engineer, graphic designer and just a generally dope guy to be around. He’s currently working on several projects with several different artists from all genres and 2010 promises to be an eventful year for this studio rat.
Combining elements of DJ Quik’s funk, Dilla’s mid 90’s jazz sensibilities and a love of all things that bounce, ladies and gentlemen, I give you….Sunclef.
Check out his most recent release from earlier this year as well as his MySpace that has a small collection of old and new.
It’s Friday people…..go get it.
HHHThat’s my homie,
No matter what anyone tells you, we live in a world based almost entirely on co-signs.
Whether you’re looking for a job at a grocery store, shopping for a record deal, or getting into the mob, someone needs to vouch for you. Someone always needs to be there co-signing you as you try and claw your way up the elevator shaft to the Penthouse. And although it’s unfortunate, it’s life as we know it and it’s something we have to learn to work like any other tool or utensil.
So today, I’d like to demonstrate the power of the co-sign.
Toronto-based vocalist Ayah has come up quick in her time. At the eager age of 22, she has already started to create waves through Canada with a string of mixtapes and guestspots that have garnered her a budding and loyal following. However, despite her smooth voice and well intentioned collaborations, nothing has been more important to her growth in Canada than her success in the Southern half of North America.
Having caught the ear of Touch of Jazz founder, the legendary DJ Jazzy Jeff, her brand new album, 4:15 is now not only completely executive produced by the Hip-Hop Icon, but also the launching pad from which she is poised to do some serious damage for the home team.
Here’s the first single entitled ‘In my Lifetime’.
MOS THOUGHT & BLACK DEF.
Okay, so truthfully, neither of these dudes need co-signs. Both are supremely talented, have cred and co-signs coming out the A, and are arguably in the all-time TOP 5. That being said, it’s always cool to get your hip-hop nerd on and see a genuine co-signing moment.
Brought to you by the same people who gave you the Def & DOOM footage, I give you the Mighty Mos Def and the incomparable Black Thought.
HEART OF THE HOUSE
This last example of co-signage is one I hold close to my heart.
As some of you may or may not know, I’m the head of the Music Division over at PPF House as well as an artist on the Toronto-based independent label. We’ve technically been around for 10 years but I didn’t really start contributing until about the Winter of 2004 and our Music Division was only recently launched this past February. Before then, it was held together by the work of two brothers, Tim and Howie Shia. Both established artists in their own fields (Audio and Visual respectively), if one were to compile a list of (what would be considered MAJOR) accolades from these two, they would have something comparable to one of those new compact phone books they’ve been sending out.
Well now, to add to that phonebook (you can check out more from that list by clicking the image above) Howie, who just recently finished doing a video for Mush Recording Artist, Deru (of Avatar fame — the cartoon not the James Cameron film) recently caught the eye of none other than the Louis Vutton Don himself, Kanye West. And although it was just a blog, I appreciate the love cause based off recent events, it would seem that Mr. West is quite passionate about his videos.
Anyway, here’s the flick:
BLAKROC EPISODE #4 ft. RZA
I’m losing my mind. This is gonna be RIDICULOUS!
Be well world.
HHHTap your feet and clap your hands,
**Before I begin this blog, please note that the ‘Drummer’ I’m referring to in the title of this blog will hereby be known as the ‘Producer’ and that the man known as the ‘Producer’, definitely deserves ‘some’ as the title suggests.**
Back in the day (let’s say early-mid ’80’s and before), to know a producer’s name either meant you: a) were in the industry, or b) were a huge music geek. To get that coveted information you’d actually have to spend time sitting down with the album liner notes and research the music you liked. “F’REALS?” Yep, f’reals. And even then, there was no method of looking up homie’s discography to see what else he/she had done cause well, the interweb was still some ways away and libraries just didn’t generally carry that info.
Well since then, things’ve changed. We have the internet, which has spawned numerous cult followings (and a million other things). We have filmmakers dedicating their time to exposing the underbelly of the music creation process and allowing us to really see who’s in charge, but most importantly we have overblown ego’s and insecure men in Hip-hop who generally take their name, turn it into some obnoxious sample and run it at the beginning and end of all their tracks so we know exactly who they are and so they don’t feel inadequate at the end of the day (that being said, I’m a fan of some of those obnoxious samples…JUST BLAAAAZE!)
So, in honor of the Producers of today who’re still secure enough to not throw their name over every ounce of their beat and let their work speak for themselves, I present to you a new HHHT SERIES entitled (you guessed it) Give the Drummer some.
That’s right! That’s who I’m starting with. The one, the only, Ski-Beatz. If you know who he is, we might be friends. If you don’t know who he is, that’s exactly why I’m writing this.
Ski is a legend. Period. Ever since he started up with the Bizzie Boyz in the ’80’s as Will-Ski (that’s for the SERIOUS heads) he’s been making that real Hip-Hop. Discovered early on by the equally as legendary DJ Clark Kent (who just ran a train on Taipeezy — Shouts to M.A. and the fam.) Ski was always able to get a quality out of his beats that, whether people realize it or not, helped to shape that mid ’90’s East Coast sound.
Now, the homie has put out a bunch of sub-par material. There’s no denying that. But, dammit when he hit, he HIT. Camp Lo‘s: Luchini (This is it), Swing, Coolie High — Jay-Z‘s: Dead Presidents, 22 Two’s, Politics as Usual and Feelin’ It! Dammit….even if those’re the only 7 songs he’ll ever be known for. Those are 7 incredible songs.
Well, he’s back. Still rockin with the Lo. And we got a couple for you. Check it.
If you don’t live in Southern Ontario or the American East Coast, you’ve probably never heard of GIGZ. But that’s not to say you shouldn’t.
Someone who I’ve seen first hand grow from a relatively decent producer to someone who has truly mastered the art of the headnod and fist pump. GIGZ is a problem. Winner of countless beat battles all over North America including the coveted Battle of the Beatmakers in New York (Grimy Beat Champion @ BOTB IV) he is slowly but surely expanding outward like his Hulk’ish physique and poised to do big things in the coming years. Having just released a brand new collaborative album entitled ‘Top Rankin’ with long-time friend and PPF House member, The Abyss, ’09 and ’10 are looking rather prosperous for the new Gang Starr of the Toronto scene.
Check the chunes:
YEEZY & SPIKE
And finally, word leaked about this months ago and it sounded interesting.
Well, it’s interesting and quite dope (plus a little creepy) imo.
We’re bout that GOOD good.
The squad is thick. Understand that.
Today is all about clapping. Whether it be AK’s or appendages is up to you, just make sure it’s out of joy.
LIFE IS BETTER
After finally releasing the super duper illness known as Kamaal the Abstract. The man Kamaal Fareed, better known as Q-Tip, has just released a new single (and arguably my favorite tune off his previous album this year the Renaissance) entitled Life is Better. Although on paper the content may seem a bit ‘been there, done that’ish, Q-Tip, accompanied by one of the most soothing vocal qualities of the past quarter-century, Norah Jones, somehow still manage to make it feel fresh. Or maybe that’s just my opinion.
Either way, this tune is bomb.
Following along the same content lines are 2 underground legends: Del the Funky Homosapien and Tame One (who are also Ice Cube’s and Redman’s cousins respectively) who are gearing up for their upcoming duo album, Parallel Uni-Verses . The song isn’t near as compelling as it could be, but Del is still a monster.
Del the Funky Homosapien & Tame One – Flashback
First you heard it. Now you get to see it.
The ‘Swagga Like Us‘ of 2009. I give you Drizzy Drake, Lil Weezy Wee, Kanyeezy and Em. Fresh off the More Than A Game Soundtrack, Forever.
For those paying close attention to the last verse, aside from Eminem sounding like he might be back to his old form, you may’ve also noticed 4 characters that’ve been frequenting the HHHT blog for the past little while standing behind him. Yes, that was Slaughterhouse and yes, rumor has it they’re slated to be the next artists on Shady Records. Now I have no idea whether or not this is actually going to go through, but with a machine like Shady/Aftermath behind these four extremely talented spitters, it may mark the beginning of a new era in the mainstream game. A ‘return to form’ so to speak. Anyway, here’s a brand new tune from former Aftermath signee, and the best Latino role model since Big Pun…
Toronto-based artists LEO37 + Sunclef have been busy boys. First separately touring Canada and the States as a part of the WPBE and Zaki Ibrahim‘s crew respectively, then uniting to conquer a 15-date Canadian tour with fellow PPF Housemates, MAGNOLIUS. All self-booked and self-produced, their inaugural run has been so great that, to show their appreciation for the love they’ve received, PPF House has decided to officially release their new single for FREE.
Click below to see the promo vid and click under that for preview and DL.
That’s the word people.
Get it poppin.
Throughout the history of music there’ve been an abundance of amazing duos. From Eric B. & Rakim to Simon & Garfunkel to Rick James & Eddie Murphy (CLAAASSIC!) it seems that the nature of pairing 2 equally skilled artists together can have an incredibly positive and progressive effect on the quality of the end product. Whether it be because of some intangible chemistry or simply because both artists are doing their best not to be outshone by the other, at very least, duos always give us something to talk about. Well, to continue and contribute to this pattern, here’s a post about a few more new and old classic pairings.
DEF & DOOM
What do you get when you take 2 of Hip-Hop’s most beloved and influential lyricists, both of whom were at one time themselves part of other classic pairings (Black Star & KMD respectively) and you put’em together?
Well…I don’t actually know. But I assume it’d be madness.
Just recently leaked was this youtube footage of Mos Def and what sounds like DOOM behind the camera spitting some potentially new co-written material. As of now, these 2 have never officially released any songs together, but after seeing this, it might be okay to start getting your hopes up.
And if you didn’t see the initial video, this is Mos speaking on the dopeness of DOOM and touching on the genius of De La.
Ghostface has been part of his share of classic pairings. Whether it be himself and the aforementioned DOOM, or with long time Clan member, Raekwon (who he’ll be releasing an album with alongside the rejuvenated Method Man — if you didn’t cop Blackout!2, you need to.), Ghost rarely, if ever, falters on a verse and any rap fan who breathes oxygen knows this.
Well although this isn’t actually a pairing, here’s a clip of Ghost talking about the late-O.D.B. and just what he meant when he said ‘Oooh Baby I like it RAAAW!’
UTTER THE SUN
And last but definitely not least, the HHHT World Premiere of Toronto-based duo MAGNOLIUS‘ brand new video – Utter the Sun.
These guys are a problem. Stay tuned.
That’s the jam.
HHHThree in the mornin’,
Apologies for the lack of updates. I’ve been caught in a whirlwind of promo for my upcoming TOUR (15 cities cross Canada! Come see us!!!) and haven’t really had time to keep you up with all the happenings of recent.
Well, in the past little bit, I’ve seen such an incredible slew of videos (good, bad and WTF?!) that I thought I’d just post a few of’em each day for the next little while until I get some time to really pump some ish out. Those who’re regular on the blog circuit might notice that some of these are a few weeks old but for those who haven’t, enjoy.
The Roots – How I Got Over (sorry wasn’t able to embed. Twitvid is being a b.i. Click pic)
The Bad (as in M.J. Bad)
Jay-Z – D.O.A.
Hurricane Chris – Halle Berry (Live for the Louisiana House of Representatives)
And as a BONUS MPFREE, some new Sa-Ra featuring the lovely miss Erykah Badu. – click pic.
Be well world.
Let me begin by stating that today is a good day.
Why? We’ll get to that in a second, but first, let me rattle off a few goodies for you.
I don’t really know anything about this dude.
From what I’ve been able to gather, he’s a producer from Japan who sometimes goes by Swing-O. He has a new record coming out called ‘Revenge of Soul’ on Japanese imprint ‘Origami Records’ and he’s been featured on more than 100 Japanese albums as a producer, composer and/or pianist.
This track I’m givin you isn’t mindblowing but dammit if it isn’t endearing as hell. He even went and got himself Stephanie McKay which is never a bad look. Lemme know what you think.
The West Coast must be amped right now.
Nipsey Hussle is gettin plenty of acclaim. Dr. Dre seems to be showing up everywhere again. The Game hasn’t opened his mouth in a while. And dammit if Kurupt & Quik getting together doesn’t just make incredible sense.
This tune isn’t as crazy as 9x outta 10, but it’s classic West Coast Funk through and through. Just check the title.
King For Hire – the reason for my excitement.
These guys are ill.
Shan Vincent de Paul and Derek DaCosta, better known as MAGNOLIUS, are preparing to release their sophomore set ‘MARY MUSTH’ this fall and will be headed out on tour with fellow PPF Housemates LEO37 and Sunclef on a Canadian tour spanning over 20 dates coast to coast this summer. With an impressive touring resume completely without label support that have seen them hit 11 countries, these guys have subtly positioned themselves in a unique niche within the hip-hop realm and show no signs of slowing.
If you haven’t heard (or seen) them yet….they’re quite the spectacle.
And for all the Canadians out there, you can check tour dates HERE.
MAG & LEO37 in Asia.
That’s Monday Folk. Burn’em if you got’em.
First off, apologies from the crew for being away this past week. The CAPtain‘s been marinating in some birthday love, M.A. continues his quest to Waakao the world and I’ve been sewing up some of the final details for the PPF House ‘Slow Claps’ Tour which will see us hit 20 cities nationwide this summer (So, all my Canadian homies, keep your eyes peeled cause we’ll be in your neck of the woods very soon).
Secondly, in regards to the blog title…cot damn!! if there weren’t a crazy amount of treats offered up on the blog circuit this week. I won’t be able to get to’em all today, but I’ll do my best to give you the highlights.
SA-RA Creative Partners
I’m a large fan of these guys.
Even though their debut effort sounded less like an album and more like a compilation thrown together a week before deadline, these L.A. maestros somehow managed to flex their musical muscles and avoid being overshadowed beneath a ridiculous cast of guest spots that included: Dilla, Kurupt, Q-Tip, Kweli and Pharoahe Monch…just to name a few..and show people that, in the illustrious words of Robert Diggs, Sa-Ra ‘ain’t nuttin’ to F*!# wit‘.
Now prepping to drop their Sophomore set Nuclear Evolution: The Age of Love, I give you some sneak peek material that I can only hope dwarfs their previous effort.
Even though Hip-Hop has designated a Golden Age period for the sake of its cultural timeline, I don’t think I’m wrong in saying that for each serious listener and lover of music, we all go through our own renditions of a Golden Age.
Black Star was an integral part of mine.
Now I can’t really explain why these 2 very afrocentric lyricists are so beloved by Asian kids everywhere, or why Okayplayer shows seem to always be 50% my kin, but they are. I’d like to think that my reasons behind my fandom are unique, but chances are they aren’t. And well…as I try to find ways to separate myself from the pack, the bottom line is, when these 2 get together, it’s nuts. Whether you’re referencing: Know That (Black on Both Sides), Joy (Quality), Supreme Supreme (Right About Now), Little Brother (Hurricane OST) or the whole Self-Titled Black Star album, these guys have that intangible ish. And well, they’re back again for Mos’ upcoming effort, Ecstatic and I’m happy bout it.
I generally write enough about Dilla on this blog. No more writing.
Watch and DL.
It’s Friday Folk…scrap it up.
Be well World