Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Devin The Dude Leaves Rap-A-Lot‏

(swiped from AllHipHop)

With a desire to purse other career options, rapper Devin the Dude is parting ways with his longtime recording home Rap-A-Lot Records.

The departure marks the end of a 15 year-plus relationship between Rap-A-Lot and the Texas rapper, who decided not to renew his contract.

According to Devin the Dude, there was no ill will behind the split.

"Rap-A-Lot has been my family for a long time and there's no bad blood at all," said the rapper, who carved a niche for himself after signing a deal with the Odd Squad on Rap-A-Lot in 1992.

“Change is a part of life and I feel like this is the time to make a change and focus more on the business side of my career,“ the rapper said. “I've had a nice run so I'd like to develop artists and give some of these other cats out here a platform to shine."

Before going solo, Devin the Dude encountered success as member of Odd Squad on the group’s 1994 album Fadanuf Fa Erybody.

The release captured the attention of revered Houston rapper Scarface, who invited Devin the Dude to join his collective Face Mob.

The alliance resulted in Face Mob’s 1996 offering The Other Side of the Law.

As a solo artist, Devin the Dude released his classic debut The Dude, an ode to wine, women and weed that featured the emcee's humorous brand of risqué funk over production from the Coughee Bros.

Other Rap-A-Lot albums that were recorded over the last 10 years by Devin the Dude included Just Trying 2 Live in 2002, 2004's 2 Tha Extreme, and Waiting to Inhale, which was released in March 2007.

The rapper's most notable guest appearance was on the song "F**k You" from Dr. Dre’s album 2001.

This past year saw Devin the Dude promoting the recently released independent album Waitin Our Turn while touring with his original Coughee Bros.

The rapper, who expressed a desire to make new music, is currently exploring options concerning over several offers from various record labels.

Public Enemy, Raekwon Do Classics for Don't Look Back

(Swiped from Pitchfork Media)

Yeah boyeeeee! Once May rolls around, Public Enemy will take their 1988 classic-among-classics It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back to a trio of UK stages as part of All Tomorrow's Parties' Don't Look Back. (As you already know, Don't Look Back is an ongoing series of live performances of classic albums in their entirety.)

In addition to all the cold lampin' and the noise bringin' from the mighty PE, each of the three Nation of Millions UK shows will be bolstered by supporting performances from Dr. Octagon (Kool Keith and Kutmasta Kurt), Edan and MC Dagha, and the reunited Anti-Pop Consortium.

What's more, Raekwon will follow in his Wu-Tang cohort GZA's footsteps in bringing a solo album to the stage as part of Don't Look Back. The Chef will take 1995's Only Built 4 Cuban Linx... to London's Koko on May 19. (And then my apartment, right?)

These new events join Sebadoh's performance of Bubble and Scrape (taking place May 7 at Koko) to round out the current schedule of UK Don't Look Backs.

And as you're well aware by now, ATP is doing big things with both Pitchfork and Explosions in the Sky in May as well.

It Takes a Nation of Millions, Dr. Octagon, Anti-Pop Consortium, Edan and MC Dagha:

05-23 London, England – Academy
05-26 Manchester, England – Academy
05-27 Glasgow, Scotland – ABC1

'King of the Congas' dies in Cuba

(Swiped from BBCNews)

Tata Guines, Cuba's most famous percussionist, has died of a kidney infection in Havana. He was 77.

Guines, whose real name was Federico Aristides Soto, died on Monday, Cuba's state media reported.

The "King of the Congas" shared the stage with some of the world's most renowned performers during a career spanning more than six decades.

In the US in the 1950s, he performed with the likes of Frank Sinatra, Josephine Baker and Dizzy Gillespie.

He had spent his formative years playing with some of the greats of 1930's and 40's Cuban music.

Despite his success in the United States, Guines returned to Cuba after Fidel Castro's communist revolution in 1959, saying he had never been able to get used to the racial segregation in the US at the time.

"Fame did not extend beyond the stage. Once you left the stage, it was like the signs said: 'Whites only'," he said in an interview published last year.

After spending years away from the public eye, he enjoyed renewed success in 2004 when he performed on the Grammy nominated hit album, Lagrimas Negras - Black Tears.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Pimp C Died From Accidental Cough-Medicine Overdose, Sleep Condition: Autopsy

(Swiped from MTVNews)

UGK member rapped about his affinity for codeine in Three 6 Mafia track.

UGK rapper Pimp C's death was the result of an overdose that was triggered by a large consumption of codeine medication combined with a pre-existing sleep condition, according to the Los Angeles County coroner's office.

The autopsy ruled that the rapper (real name: Chad Butler) died accidentally.

Pimp C was found dead December 4 in a Los Angeles hotel after headlining a few spot tour dates in California with Too Short. He was 33.

As one-half of UGK, along with rhyme partner Bun B — who reflected on his friend to MTV News shortly after his passing — Pimp C was instrumental in shaping the sound and influence of Southern rap, which dominates hip-hop today. On "Sippin' on Some Syrup," a track for which UGK collaborated with Three 6 Mafia, Pimp C boasted of his affinity for codeine. Cough medicine combined with a number of mixers is a popular beverage in some Southern regions.

"I got the red promethazine, thick orange and yellow 'Tuss," Pimp C rapped on the track.

According to the autopsy report, Pimp C had prescription promethazine/codeine in his system when he died. Initial reports at the time of his death suggested the rapper had over-the-counter codeine in his possession. Pimp C also suffered from sleep apnea, which causes blockage of the airways during sleep.

The assistant chief coroner in the L.A. County coroner's office, Ed Winter, reportedly said the effects of codeine when combined with a condition such as Butler's are deadly.

"Sleep apnea, you stop breathing," Winter told the Houston Chronicle. "Coupled with a medication that suppressed your respirator abilities, you end up with an accidental death."

For more on Pimp C's passing, read:

"UGK's Pimp C: An Underground Legend Who Defied The Mainstream"

"UGK's Pimp C, Remembered By Sway Calloway"

"Bun B, Outkast's Big Boi, Swizz Beatz Remember 'Real Honorable, Real Cool, Really Respected' Pimp C"

"Pimp C Is Given Uplifting, Heartfelt Farewell At Funeral"

Prodigy To Perform H.N.I.C. 2 Live and In It's Entirety

(Swiped from Pitchfork Media)

That Prodigy sure knows how to say goodbye in style. He's facing a three and a half year jail sentence for a 2006 gun charge, and his term begins February 13. The Mobb Deep rapper knows his days of freedom are, for the time being, numbered.

So on February 6, P will take a break from video blogging (dude is a regular Ron Paul with this internet game) to join a few friends at New York City's B.B. King Blues Club for a sendoff party. But not just any farewell: Prodigy will perform the entirety of his forthcoming H.N.I.C. 2 LP onstage at the event, and guests aplenty-- including a few of his G-Unit associates-- are expected to appear and pay tribute to P.

H.N.I.C. 2 is due March 25 from Infamous Music/Voxonic. Wired reports that Prodigy will employ the company's really sci-fi "Voxonic" speech-conversion software that will translate the album into up to 1,500 languages. (Indeed, H.N.I.C. 2's last track is a Spanish version of "ABC".) That's kind of like how Avril Lavigne made a bunch of "Girlfriend" translations.

Man, Avril and Prodigy, together at last.

H.N.I.C. 2:
01 Real Power Is People
02 The Life
03 Young Veterans
04 Illuminati
05 New Yitty
06 ABC
07 Click Clack (ft. Big Twinz)
08 Veteran's Memorial Pt. 2
09 Field Marshall P (ft. Un Pacino)
10 3 Stacks (ft. Un Pacino)
11 When I See You
12 Dirty New Yorker
13 I Want Out (ft. Havoc & Un Pacino)
14 ABC (Vox Spanish remix)