Yes, there was a time when Larry “KRS-1″ Parker (and thus Boogie Down Productions) had the rap game on positive smash. When he stepped out of the Jeep rocking the Black and Cement Grey Air Jordan IIIs (0:48 mark) in the “My Philosophy video (directed by Fab 5 Freddy)… Official streetwear before there was “streetwear.” Fresh, for ’88.
Anyway, Cope2 and Shepard Fairey (who is in town prepping an exhibition at Deitch Projects) connected to drop a mural in the Boogie Down that combines both of the renowned artists’ aesthetics. Must go see this for myself sooner than later. More pics after the video of this event below (by EWOK 5MH via Animal NY) and the break. [Checked at Hypebeast]
I was in the 6th grade, standing at the bus stop on the corner of 174th Street & Longfellow Ave., waiting for the BX36 to take me from my South Bronx hood to what was then CS 102 in Parkchester.
It was while waiting for that sure to be too crowded bus in the a..m. where I saw a high school aged dude with a high-top fade rocking the above kicks; Air Jordan IIIs. At that point in time I had no clue what the shoes were. They were bright white, with illy snakeskin—no Nike check, but aha…the Air bubble. Those had to be the latest Js.
Seeing Kid ‘N Play rock them in their “Gettin’ Funky” video on Video Music Box (below), and Mars Blackmon (above), made me fiend for a pair just as much as Michael Jordan’s feats on the basketball court. But being that I wasn’t anywhere near a child of privilege, I didn’t even bother asking mom dukes for a pair. Knowing they were a buck ($100) plus at retail, i had to make due with my lo-top Air Trainers (about 60 to 70 beans at Dr. Jays on 3rd Ave, sale).
When the Air Jordan III’s get a retro-release sometime this year—Nice Kicks says they’ll be part of a Slam Dunk pack (MJ won the ’88 Slam Dunk contest in them)—they will get copped (two pairs), off g.p.
“We keep it hot like matches and on lock like latches/Wack MCs get they microphone snatched like Lee patches.”—Talib Kweli “Twice Inna Lifetime”
The video above, posted by Street Etiquette, is a timeline documenting the Lee brand from its inception in 1889 to the 1970’s. In 1946 Lee debuted the “twitch” patch. Only reason I’m noting this invention is because I vividly remember being in my 1st grade class and hearing the principle come over the loudspeaker to adamantly inform us, and all the small time thugs who made it to school that day, that despite the rumors, Lee was not offering free jeans to people with a certain amount of Lee patches.
In the hood, young b-boys were getting their Lee patches snatched off, most times while they were still wearing their jeans. It was either that or face getting lumped up. The Bronx was so gully, and beautiful at the same time. [Spotted at Hypebeast]
“Sons of Bronx slang…”—Sonny Cheeba
“Son of the Boogie Bang…”—Geechie Suede
That’s means The Bronx, and you should already know.
Camp Lo: Fever Pitch [AllHipHop]
Camp Lo Feat. Styles P – “OnSMASH/Crime Of ‘89″ Video [The Smoking Section]
This iPod Boombox courtesy of Lasonic definitely brings back memories. The contraption lets you plug in just about any iPod and is available at Honeyee (which is in Japanese, so good luck with that.) It sports a built-in FM tuner and the 12 Watt speakers delivers respectable sound but the ol’ skool ghetto blasters of the day delivered way more power. Still, not bad for about $170.
Growing up in The Bronx in the 80’s meant that hearing a ghetto blaster at all times of the day and night was a way of life. Great for me and my fast developing devotion to the sounds of BDP and PE. Not so much for the older heads requesting that infernal racket be lowered.
The question no one asks, though: How much did Duracell/Energizer/etc. make off of selling all those D batteries? Word to Radio Raheem.
While in college I snatched the old JVC my dad managed to keep in working condition. Like most radios of that time it featured a phono input which allowed me to plug in my mixer and get my skills up on the turntables. Still can’t believe I forgot to take it with me when I graduated and returned to NYC. [Spotted at Hypebeast]
So that kid Cory Gunz can rhyme with the best of them, as seen in the clip above. However, what grabbed my attention was in the interview portion (below) where Peter Gunz’s progeny said he intended to drop a mixtape using nothing but the late, great Big Pun’s beats.
Normally such intentions are cause enough to gorilla slap a precocious rapper—especially those that need to put the mic down and get a damn job. Luckily Cory is talented enough to do those tracks some justice. The XXL Freshmen Class alum also knew Pun (pic on the left, the shortie in the center), which is an added bonus in his favor.
Cory also speaks on his God-Daddy Shaq O’Neal and that fateful “Kobe, how does my ass taste?” incident/freestyle/hilarity. To think, this Bronx repper doesn’t even have a deal right now.
Cory Gunz XXL Freestyle [via The Smoking Section]
Cory Gunz Mixtape Daily Interview [via Rap Radar]
I’ve been blessed to work with the homie Tee Smif—who directed the above Cory Gunz video (spotted at Nah Right)—for the past few months on BET’s The Deal. The brother is a highly underrated director and did his thing with this clip from The Bronx MC. Shout out to the Kings County Cinema Company.
I distinctly remember Cory’s pops—Peter Gunz, hopefully you knew that—grabbing the mic and killing the block parties on Vyse Ave (I grew up on 174th & Longfellow) back in the day. That said, I still feel a ways that Lord Tariq & Peter Gunz couldn’t get to shoot the video for “Deja Vu (Uptown Baby)” in the old Yankee Stadium (location: The Boogie Down) so instead used the late Shea Stadium (location: Queens). Not a good look.
The good Jake Paine asked me to connect with Grandmaster Flash for a feature on HipHopDX and I readily obliged. It’s not often you can speak to a rap godfather, something Flash no doubt is. Even if there were DJ’s before him.
I remember picking up this November 1993 issue of The Source (pic above) around my way and greedily reading it cover to cover. I wasn’t too pressed about particular bylines back then but looking back, this issue was just sick. You got Herc, Flash and Bambaataa on the cover of The Source being interviewed by the legendary Nelson George no less. The first few reviews alone broadcast The Source’s weight: Black Moon’s Enta Da Stage (written by Cheo H. Coker), Casual’s Fear Itself (written by the homie Brett Johnson) and Leaders of the New School’s T.I.M.E. (written by dream hampton) all received 4 mic ratings (as did KRS-1’s Return of the Boom Bap).
Not sure how this issue sold when it was released, but any editor pitching the idea of placing these legends on a mainstream magazine cover would be considered a lunatic. The reality is that a greater respect for Hip-Hop’s elders and the culture’s history are sorely lacking in many of today’s fans and artists. Sad, really.
Without question, COPE2…ahem, “King” COPE2 ran what I saw of the graffiti world coming up in the BX (Tracy 168 was sick too). I lived by the 2 & 5 train and also found myself plenty of times on the 4 line and spotting new COPE throw ups and burners was a great way to lose time while riding the iron horse. COPE’s infamy—you can even spot his throw ups in Grand Theft Auto IV—surely had him on the NYPD vandal squad’s hit list, so it’s more than a little bit interesting that COPE and Po Po are going to be sitting on the same panel at the powerHouse Arena in DUMBO this Thursday.
What’s the panel about? To discuss Vandal Squad: Inside the New York City Transit Police Department, 1984-2004. The book’s title speaks for itself but the kicker is that it’s written by Joe Rivera—dubbed “Joe Blow” by COPE—a former transit cop.
Needless to say, many in the writer set—notably KET, founder of the sorely missed STRESS Magazine—are not too keen on someone who made a living locking up graf writers profiting from their art. KET is on the panel too, and in his blog is clear on his the intent of calling out Jake on their duplicity. I may have to make the trek out to Brooklyn to peep this sure to be intense discussion. [spotted at Gothamist]
So They Meet Again: Vandals and Former Vandal Squad [via Gothamist]