Category Archives: Hip-hop

The #NationHood Mixtape

I just dropped a new project: The #NationHood Mixtape on SoundCloud and RPM.fm…really happy with how this one came out.

With a 90s NWA-style cover and a kick-ass lineup of Indigenous and allied hip-hop artists from around the world who got down with contributing music to make it happen, it’s been amazing to compile, it’s re-ignited my love for hip-hop as a global language for liberation, and it’s been amazing to see the response so far. Respect to everyone who’s supported and been involved.

Download listen share and enjoy: 

#NationHood-Cover

Also, RPM is back online! Support #Revolution2 and the return of Revolutions Per Minute—the only Indigenous music site of its kind.

And for your listening pleasure, here’s the previous mixtape I compiled for the Indigenous Leadership Forum last spring—the #ILF2013 Mixtape. It’s maxed out on SoundCloud downloads, but you can still stream it below:

Show and Prove: The Tensions, Contradictions, and Possibilities of Hip-Hop Studies in Practice

Show and Prove: The Tensions, Contradictions, and Possibilities of Hip Hop Studies in Practice: a two-day event featuring panels, films and discussions featuring new work in the “burgeoning field of Hip Hop Studies”. The event is free and open to the public, and will contain many thought-provoking talks by scholars, authors and participants in hip hop music and the study of hip hop culture. The symposium was held September 18-19, 2010 @ NYU.

I was offline all summer and missed this completely, but I would love to hear more about it. If you attended or know more about it please drop me some comments or hit me w/ email.

Hip-Hop scholarship is advancing at a rapid rate — and I’m glad to see that there are now quality investigations into its possibilities and limitations as an area of academic interest.  As an ambivalent academic and passionate rap addict, I’m immersed in the paradoxical pursuit of hip-hop praxis within the world of graduate studies and there are indeed many tensions as well as exciting areas of opportunity.  So I hope there are more opportunities like Show & Prove to bring together scholars, artists, activists, and community members to dialogue and exchange ideas about where hip-hop is headed and how the work we do up in the Ivory Tower can remain relevant to the streets — wherever and however you live.

Redux Deluxe: Early 90s Hip-Hop Classics

From the Department of True Classics…

Big ups to @shappy, The Aesthetic Poetic, and James Chutter.

Keep it movin’, y’all.

Gang Starr – “Mass Appeal”

Lords of the Underground – “Chief Rocka”



Das EFX – “Real Hip-Hop”

Common – “Resurrection”

The East Flatbush Project – “Tried by 12”

Keep reading! More bangers after the break

Continue reading

The Best ‘Best of’ Lists of 2007

Without further ado, here’s a quick compilation of some of the most interesting ‘Best of 2007′ lists I’ve come across during the frantic media recap of ‘What Was in 07’, before the manic, mad dash to xmas seasonal insanity, and the consequent post-holiday crash into 2008:

  1. Best of 2007 Lists (the definitive meta-list by Fimoculous)
  2. Master List of Online “Best of 2007” Music Lists (a meta-music list by LargeheartedBoy)
  3. Updates to the Master List of Online “Best of 2007” Music Lists (updates to #2 by LargeheartedBoy)
  4. 40 Best Raps of 2007 (top hip-hop tracks by CocaineBlunts)
  5. 15 Best Candies of 2007 (delish sugar treats by CandyAddict)
  6. 50 Best Websites of 2007 (multiple categories list by Time & – oh look – who’s a top news site?)
  7. 30 Best Albums of 2007 (top rated by the critics and aggregated by Metacritic)
  8. 25 Best Careers of 2007 (so choose wisely, my friends, by BizTech)
  9. Most Hated Companies of 2007 (the most widely & heavily criticized, by BloggingStocks)
  10. 100 Best Products of 2007 (because there can never be enough products, a list by PC World)
  11. 22 Best Music Videos (some silly choices by MusicForKidsWhoCan’tReadGood)
  12. 25 Best Books of the Year (fiction, non-fiction and more by Publishers Weekly)
  13. 100 Best Films of 2007 (a mix of new and re-releases by TimesOnline)
  14. 18 Best American Hospitals of 2007 (a incredibly paradoxical list by USNews)
  15. Best Global Brands of 2007 (aka the biggest brands in the world, by Interbrand)
  16. Best of NYC 2007 (best of the Big Apple, by the VillageVoice)
  17. Best Biblical Books of 2007 (a “completely objective” book list by BiblicalFoundations)
  18. America’s Best Restroom of 2007 (congrats to Jungle Jim’s, by ABR)
  19. Best Parks of 2007 (for the adventure seekers, by National Geographic)
  20. Best Industrial Design Products of 2007 (with slick imagery by RedDot)
  21. Top 10 Depression Blogs of 2007 (a useful, if sombre, list by PsychCentral)
  22. 2007 China Best Call Centre (the best operators ‘who will be with you shortly’ by CallCentres)
  23. Top 100 Luxury Blogs of 2007 (an elite assortment by International Listings)
  24. Best of What’s New in 2007 (products, inventions, and gadgetry compiled by PopularScience)
  25. Top 60 Japanese Buzzwords of 2007 (vernacular awesomeness by PinkTentacle)

For additional comments and posts also check out: NowPublic.com

Remix the Mashup: the future of music and film

Today I am posting a call for contributors that has just been sent out to everyone involved with AssignmentZero, as I think it offers the most current and concise summary of what we’ll be covering for AZ’s film and music pages. Have a read and get in touch if you’re interested in contributing.

In 1987, a pair of young producers/radio DJs, known as Coldcut, stormed the UK dance music scene with a pioneering, sample-based style that featured a barrage of reworked rhythms and sound collages, set to a live accompaniment of synchronized film and video clips.

Who could have anticipated that, twenty years later, this hybridized aesthetic would give rise to a cultural movement in remixed music, mashed-up film, and crowdsourced art?

From online remix/mashup music communities like SpliceMusic.com, to collaborative film productions like A Swarm of Angels, the art of making art has been radically transformed by the crowd. Songs are being written collaboratively by musicians located around the globe, and films are being funded using crowdsourced donations and created through public participation in every stage of production. Artists are increasingly embracing the ethos of open-source, and joining Coldcut with a call to: “Let the data be free!”

These are the new forces driving open-source culture: projects that cultivate “participatory experience” by allowing public access to art, artists, and creative processes; projects that enable creative collaboration between people regardless of location; and projects that can be downloaded, remixed, mashed-up, and shared.

What kinds of songs are being written collaboratively? What kinds of films are being crowdsourced? What are the benefits of creating art in this way?

AssignmentZero is interested in examining how the languages of sound and cinema are being transformed by crowdsourcing. If music and film are your passions and you can volunteer between 5-10 hours over the next three weeks, please join me in looking at the future of free music and art.

How to get involved:

* Choose your focus. Music? Film? Or both?

* Sign up to the right team. If it’s music, visit AZ’s crowdsourced music homepage and click on ‘join team,’ or write me back and put “music” in the subject line. If it’s film, go to the film homepage and chose ‘join team,’ or write me back and put “film” in the subject line.

If you’ve got some spare time today, check out the assignments on the topic homepages and get started. Or send an email to me, the editor, introducing yourself: jarrett.newassignment@gmail.com

Over the course of the next month, those who sign up will be working closely with me and our film and music teams. I am particularly passionate about these topics, as my background is in media and arts production, and I am a producer, editor, cultural critic, media host, and musician based in Montreal, Canada.

Together our group will work toward producing several pieces that will be submitted to Wired.com for publication on June 5.

If music and film are your passions and you can volunteer between 5-10 hours over the next three weeks, please join us to explore the future of the collaborative arts.