Music News

Friday Rap-Up: Out Tha Box TV, Green Lantern, Common, 50 Cent

LOCALS ONLY The online Colorado hip-hop show Out Tha Box TV will celebrate two years on air next month and they’re beginning their third year with a bang. The online show will be heading to television sets on May 14 on the ION Network at 3 p.m. “We were looking for a station that was on the move, and a company that we could grow with,” said the show’s director and producer, Rob G. “ION (which was previously PAX) was recently purchased by NBC/Universal , and they are in a growth process, so we figured we could help them and they can help us... It's a great fit! We were in talks with other stations but ION is much better suited to our audience because they have a broadcast signal as well as cable and satellite feeds.”

For those unfamiliar, Out Tha Box TV is an online show that not only features local hip-hop artists and music but also interviews with national artists coming through Denver. Host Sid Fly hangs out with the artist, occasionally smoking a blunt or two them, and gets the lowdown on their new projects and behind the scenes stories of their tours. Of course some of the show will be toned down for television, but uncut versions will be online.

“The show will air every other Wednesday at 3 p.m.,” Rob continued. “That’s right at the same time as [BET’s] Rap Shitty (sic), so we aiming at the big dogs right ‘out tha box.’ We’re bringing the locals, with the biggest stars, with the most basement underground artist. And we still gonna do our underground shows from other cities! Ain’t nothing changed except at 3 p.m. on Wednesdays after [MTV’s] Direct Effect go off you’re gonna turn on ION network to watch Out tha Box TV instead of watching The Hills. Plus we’re bringing a new segment call ‘Good in tha Hood’ where we’re gonna cover people we see helping out the community in Colorado. So we’re repping what Sid Fly now calls the "Mile Fly City"- like no one else can! We love the fact we can spread Colorado to the masses.”

The show’s premiere on Wednesday will feature Kool Herc, Mistah F.A.B, Lil Jon, Bun-B, Willy Northpole, Layzie Bone, Michael "5000" Watts, Young Dro, Young Buck, Supernat, Grandmaster Caz, Melle Mel, Cassidy, K.D. Audert (Donna from Friday After Next), Chingo Bling and more. And after each show, you can head to the show's website anddownload that show’s mixtape from DJ Phyre plus you can catch on past episodes that featured Redman, Guru, Too Short, RZA, Ghostface and local emcees like Dez, Interstate Ike, On Point, Black Pegasus and others.

DJ Green Lantern organizing Million DJ March In the hip-hop world nowadays, rappers are the only ones to get all the respect. But now DJ Green Lantern and A. Shaw, a Justo Mixtape Awards sponsor, are trying to change that. The duo is teaming up to launch the Million DJ March in Washington D.C. from August 28-30. The DJs will be calling for better compensation, security, recognition for contributions to the music industry and an organized union for professional DJs.

"DJ's do not get fully recognized for the work they do," Shaw said in a statement. "Label and major businesses who reap the rewards of default publicity need to pay attention and give more recognition and financial compensation to DJs for the promotion they provide, without which music sales would surely suffer. [DJs are] often harassed and legally penalized for their promotional efforts even when those efforts have been solicited directly by the labels and artists themselves: an arrangement that is known about throughout the industry but kept 'on the low," the press release reads. I am calling upon the industry to show support for an event to unify deejays and help create future economic safety for those that have chosen this art form as a career."

The DJs plan to march from the Capitol Building to the Washington Monument. Afterwards there will be performances and speeches by founding DJs and music industry execs.

Common to appear in upcoming Terminator flick Common continues to make strides in Hollywood. After cool performances in American Gangster and the upcoming film Wanted with Angelina Jolie, he scored a role in the film Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins. The film stars Christian Bale as John Connor and focuses on the human race battling the machines from the Terminator world. Common will play a freedom fighter who fights next to Connor. The film will hit theatres in 2009 while Common’s new album, Invincible Summer will arrive in July.

50 Cent gets his chain snatched in Africa If you haven’t heard by now, 50 Cent and his G-Unit crew were in Angola last weekend doing a show as part of the International Peace Festival. During the group’s set, a man climbed on staged and appeared to snatch 50 Cent’s chain and run into the crowd. 50 and the rest of G-Unit followed him into the crowd, while the rest of the concert-goers ran for the exits. Apparently 50 and his boys reigned punches down on the dude and 50 got his chain back.

Angolan authorities arrested Bruno Carvalho a few days later for the chain snatching after his parents turned him in. He is expected to face criminal charges. But hey, if you’re rocking million dollar medallions in a third world country, you shouldn’t be surprised to get your ice snatched. Check out footage of chain-snatching here:


7L & Esoteric Esoteric vs. Japan Usually it’s when rap artists run out of ideas that they start doing albums like this. But this one works in Eso and 7L’s favor. The theme of the album is Japan and features Eso spitting over beats with Japanese-tinged sounds and strings plus samples from Godzilla movies. The album features appearances from Main Flow, Karma, Eddie Meeks, Will C., among others.

Various Artists Wu-Latino Presenta La Familia The Wu-Tang Latino record label has been trying to get off the ground for the last several years but it’s been a bit hard. It was announced when Reggaeton was the hot thing, but then came when the genre was no longer popular. Most of this album features just straight up Spanish hip-hop and R&B influenced by salsa, meringue and bachata by artists like Rameses, Boyz Del Barrio, Fly & Polzino and Dragon. Unfortunately, no Wu-Tang members make any appearances on the album.

Dizzee Rascal Maths + English It’s taking a minute for the U.S. to get down with the U.K.’s grime style hip-hop, but thanks to Dizzee Rascal, people are starting to catch on. This album was originally released in 2007 in the U.K, but this U.S. version features appearances from UGK (with Pimp C) and Lilly Allen with a remix from Def Jux’s El-P. Dizzee is a talented emcee spitting over some unorthodox, industrial style beats and if you were to get up with the grime scene, this is a good place to start.

-- Quibian Salazar-Moreno

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Sean Cronin