Hip Hop The Culture The Movement Is Still Alive

maxresdefault (1)Some of you may know that I am one of the  host’s of grind hard radio which airs on Tuesdays and Thursdays 8 p.m. Pacific Standard Time 10 p.m. Central Time and Eastern time is at 11 p.m.

On August 10th 2017 the topic was on hip hop culture. And I’ve decided that that would be an excellent blog post to discuss. I know there’s a lot of hip-hop heads out there who keep this ever-changing movement alive. Who stick to the Hip Hop code  of raw and authentic  -real experience – unapologetic- essence of Hip Hop; TRUE HIP HOP IS ALIVE.

Let’s talk about hip hop culture… It’s  a movement through music, art, expression, and experiences. It’s a way of life putting it in simple words.

The Realms of this ever-evolving culture stem from :

graffiti paintings that tell the  story  of reality  of the lives of so many.

 

images (77)Our dance expression from…

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pop locking, popping, breakdancing, on down to the B girls and B boys. The hip hop style can’t be duplicated but often failed to be replicated because it’s a way of life and it is our lifestyle.

Our  attitude bleeds Hip Hop.

When I think of Hip Hop I think of names like:

Cowboy Wiggins from Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five  one of many pioneers:

And Afrika Bambaataa from the Zulu Nation.

Keith “Cowboy” Wiggins, a member of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, has been credited with coining the term  in 1978 while teasing a friend who had just joined the US Army by scat singing the made-up words “hip/hop/hip/hop” in a way that mimicked the rhythmic cadence of marching soldiers. Cowboy later worked the “hip hop” cadence into his stage performance. The group frequently performed with disco artists who would refer to this new type of music by calling them “hip hoppers”. The name was originally meant as a sign of disrespect, but soon came to identify this new music and culture.

It’s funny how people don’t realize that the words through music – through anger – love – through hate or even happiness are all strong and play a part in the world OUR evolution.

A member of the Zulu Nation name Bee Stinger described Hip Hop as having six elements:

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1. Conscious awareness

2. Civil rights awareness

3. Activism awareness

4. Justice

5. Political awareness

And last but definitely the most essential is…

download (42)6. Community awareness

It has been noted and written in the history of hip-hop time that hip hop originated from English speaking blacks from Barbados who where in the South Bronx New York such as ;

Grandmaster Flash and

DJ Kool Herc

That’s the scratch of the surface in naming some of the founding fathers. These icons introduced salsa, afro conga, bongo drums, jazz, funk, ragtime, and disco by mixing samples and creating loops and breaks which later people like Grandmaster Flash , Kool Moe Dee, LL Cool J, Mc Lyte, Roxanne Shante and others would rhyme over these beats.

Herc created the blueprint for hip hop music and culture by building upon the Jamaican tradition of impromptu toasting, a spoken type of boastful poetry and speech over music.

DJs like DJ Kool herc would plug up on  1520 Sedgwick Avenue in South Bronx and play music for block parties; now this just wasn’t to have a party “Hip Hop” was created to break down the racial barriers between African Americans, Puerto Ricans, and other ethnic groups. Hip Hop is a movement of cultural and of unification. A testimony if one might say of life experiences be it your story or someone else’s story through the eyes of people in the trenches living and about that life.

The dominant focal point is that Hip Hop has moved many souls abroad. In our culture Hip Hop focuses on the issues ethnic Americans face and still continue to face today. Hip Hop took off and expanded because these very same testimonies can be related to across the globe. So the next time you’re listening to a song and you’re listening to your favorite artist that is a Hip Hop artist listen to the words…. close your eyes and then envision the story  that man or woman is trying to get across or bring to AWARENESS.

Some of the best songs our favorite songs stay timeless and revelant in our hearts and in the hearts of others because of the words Hip Hop cultivate. Hip Hop culture:  it’s a lifestyle it’s a mission and  a movement and it’s still alive.

Thanks for reading my love for Hip Hop

-MzChief Beatshop

Stop by Grind hard radio and listen to pass episodes and current episodes at http://www.grindhardradio.com where we keep hip hop alive every Tuesday and Thursday 8 p.m. Pacific Standard Time 10 p.m. central Time and 11 p.m. eastern time or you can call in at :    (323) 693-3043 press 1 to speak to team grind hard.

 

Usher sued for $10M by a second woman who claims singer exposed her to herpes

700056193ml00043-2017-nba-fThe price of unprotected sex is going up for R&B hitmaker Usher.

The “U Got It Bad” singer, after a $1.1 million settlement with a woman who claimed he infected her with herpes, now faces a $10 million lawsuit from a second woman making a similar allegation.

The woman first hooked up with the married Usher in her Atlanta home back on April 16, with the singer donning a condom before they had intercourse, according to TMZ.

The woman also acknowledged performing oral sex on Usher Raymond IV during their steamy session.

Usher’s ex-wife Tameka Foster says she’s ‘good’ amid herpes rumor

The couple reconnected 12 days later in New Orleans, where they had sex in a hotel room, according to her account.

The suit alleges the eight-time Grammy-winning singer never donned protection — and never warned her that he was carrying the herpes virus, TMZ reported.

While the woman never alleges in the lawsuit that she’s infected, the Jane Doe insists she would never have slept with Usher if she knew about his herpes.

Her lawsuit charges that she was entirely clueless about Usher’s sexually-transmitted disease until she recently read about his settlement with the other woman.

Usher paid $1M to woman he allegedly infected with herpes

She’s seeking damages for negligence, battery and emotional distress, TMZ reported.

Attorney Lisa Bloom, who recently won a revenge porn case fo Blac Chyna against ex Rob Kardashian, claimed on Twitter that women are reaching out to her about Usher.

“How much unprotected sex did Usher have after his herpes diagnosis? Women are reaching out to me,” she wrote. “How dare he endanger women’s health?”

RadarOnline broke the news Wednesday of the December 2012 settlement where Usher paid off a celebrity stylist who accused him of infecting her.

Usher ‘impressed the hell out of’ Sugar Ray Leonard

That suit alleged that Usher was diagnosed in 2009 or 2010, around the time he split with his first wife Tameka Foster.

Photos: Celebrities at Coachella 2015

Celebrity stylist Foster swore off the drama when fans started commenting on the scandal online last week.

“Do not come on my page discussing rumors or adult people that have NOTHING to do with me” she wrote on Instagram. “I have been divorced 8 years… Some issues are not my business… Not my circus, not my clowns.”

Court documents claimed Usher’s original accuser was afflicted with fevers and vaginal sores.

He was accused of “consciously and purposefully” hiding the infection from his lover.

The “Confessions” singer is now married to Grace Miguel, a former executive chef on “The Cosby Show.”

The couple wed seven years ago — two years before the first herpes case settlement.

Usher has not commented on the allegations.

 

FOX NETWORK BRINGS BACK COOKIE LYON (EMPIRE S4)

Empire_2_lgThe Lyons are coming back for a fourth season of drama and Cookie-isms.

download (21)Empire” has been renewed for Season 4, it was announced Wednesday at the Television Critics Association press tour by Fox Television Group Chairman and CEO Gary Newman. Alongside Newman, Fox exec David Madden said Season 4 will consist of 18 episodes.

The fourth season will return in the 2017-2018 television season. Currently on hiatus, “Empire” returns with the back-half of its third season this spring on Mar. 22.

 

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The renewal is hardly a surprise, as “Empire” is one of the biggest hits to come to network television in the past decade. In its third season, the primetime family soap ranks as the top broadcast drama among adults 18-49 — a title it has held through its entire run. Though its ratings dipped this year, “Empire” still finished out the first half of its third season with nearly 8 million overnight viewers for the midseason finale. For the 2016-2017 season, the show has averaged almost 16 million total viewers, becoming the show to nab Fox’s largest total multi-platform audience.

images (61)“Empire” has received numerous Emmy, Grammy and Golden Globe nominations through its three seasons, including a Golden Globe win for star Taraji P. Henson, who has received back-to-back Emmy nods.

Along with Henson — who plays the breakout character Cookie — “Empire” stars Terrence Howard, Jussie Smollett, Bryshere “Yazz” Gray, Trai Byers, Grace Byers, Gabourey Sidibe, Ta’Rhonda Jones, Serayah, Bre-Z, Xzibit and Morocco Omari. The series is known for bringing on notable guest stars, including Mariah Carey, Taye Diggs, Phylicia Rashad, Chris Rock, Alicia Keys, Marisa Tomei, Naomi Campbell, Ludacris, Adam Rodriguez, Rosie O’ Donnell and Andre Royo.

Taraji-P-Henson-Terrence-Howard-Fight-Instagram-Video“Empire” was co-created by Lee Daniels and Danny Strong. Ilene Chaiken serves as showrunner. Executive producers are Daniels, Strong, Chaiken, Brian Grazer, Francie Calfo and Sanaa Hamri. Imagine Television produces with 20th Century Fox Television.

Also worth mentioning is the fact that “Empire” had its fair share of celebrity appearances like Mariah Carey appearing as a guest star and stars like Taye Diggs and Phylicia Rashad had recurring appearances on the series. It has also been speculated that Rumer Willis will show up in multiple episodes of “Empire” season 4.

Watch “Empire” in Australia on Fox8 channel. The show can also be streamed online on Channel Ten.

 

“Empire” has over time proved to a critical hit with multiple Emmy Awards to its name. It is also Fox’s largest total multiplatform traffic magnet with an average of 16 million total viewers for the 2016-17 broadcast session, according to a Deadline report.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, “Empire” season 4 will consist of 18 episodes, much like the previous two seasons. The show is currently under a three-month pause, as music drama “Star” has taken over the time slot, which prevents “Empire” from returning until March 2017.

The THR further reports that NBC’s debut family drama, “This Is Us” could prove to be a competition for the show. “Empire’s” ratings fell to a 2.5 low during the early phase of the last season before making a rebound in the final episodes.

Congratulations!empire-season-2-cast-2015-billboard-650

Voting Selfies Are Now Legal in Tennessee, Thanks to Justin Timberlake

 by Lauren Tom


Remember way back in October when Justin Timberlake caused a media frenzy during election time by posting a selfie from his Memphis voting booth? Well, according to Tennessee law, that was an illegal act that could lead to a $50 fine and up to 30 days in jail. Wife Jessica Biel even chimed in during the whole fiasco and totally poked fun at her “SexyBack” husband about the potential jail time.

Well, it turns out Timberlake is officially in the clear: Tennessee lawmakers have ruled that photography and other videotaping devices are now allowed to capture a filled-out ballot as of last week, according to the Knoxville News Sentinel.

The Tennessee lawmakers made it official by passing a bill to allow selfie taking in voting poll stations, with the exceptions of the acts of committing voter intimidation, fraud or selling a vote — clearly all thanks to Timberlake’s innocent blunder.

The “Can’t Stop the Feeling” singer had only good intentions when he took that since-deleted Instagram picture with his ballot, which might have prompted officials to change the law in the first place. Hopefully this new law can encourage citizens to go out and vote in the next election — just as Justin intended.

Kendrick Lamar Replaces Himself at No. 1 on Billboard + Twitter Top Tracks Chart 4/7/2017 by Trevor Anderson

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Kendrick Lamar scores his fifth No. 1 on Billboard + Twitter Top Tracks as “Humble” storms in atop the chart dated April 15, knocking his own “The Heart Part 4” from the summit. With the new No. 1, he becomes the fourth act to succeed himself at the top, following Zayn (who completed the feat twice), Justin Bieber and Ed Sheeran.

In addition to “Heart,” Lamar previously reigned on Top Tracks with “I” (one week in 2014) and his featured turns on Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood” (three weeks in 2015) and Maroon 5’s “Don’t Wanna Know” (one week in 2016).

Billboard + Twitter Top Tracks is a weekly ranking of the most shared and/or mentioned songs on Twitter in the U.S., ranked by the volume of shares over a seven-day period (Monday to Sunday).

“Humble” and its accompanying music video premiered on March 30, and the clip has soared to more than 33.1 million global views on YouTube through April 4.

The release of two new tracks within the past two weeks had lead to speculation over an impending new album from the rapper. He ended “Heart” with the prophetic line – “Y’all got ’til April the 7th to get y’all sh*t together,” which some interpreted as a possible release date for his fourth studio set. However, on Apr. 6, an iTunes page for a new Kendrick album — titled, at least tentatively, as ALBUM — appeared, with Apr. 14 listed as the expected release date.

One last note on “Heart”: Though the song departs the Top Tracks peak, dipping 1-16, it arrives on other Billboard surveys, including a No. 11 start on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and a No. 22 debut on the Billboard Hot 100.

Also in the top five on Top Tracks, Cheat Codes makes its chart debut as “No Promises,” featuring Demi Lovato, arrives at No. 4. With the debut, Lovato earns her seventh top 10 hit and the first since “Body Say” last August. Cheat Codes posted the song’s official audio clip to their YouTube channel on March 30; the clip has climbed to 465,000 global clicks.

Joining the above cuts in the top 10 is The Chainsmokers‘ “The One,” which zooms to a No. 10 debut. The duo posted the song — the first track on their first-full length album Memories: Do Not Open, arriving April 7 — on Facebook on March 27. The clip has 1.9 million views on Facebook, and more than 10.5 million global plays on Spotify through April 6.

“The One” is the fifth top 10 hit for the EDM pair on the Top Tracks chart, following “Closer,” featuring Halsey (No. 1 for one week), “All We Know,” featuring Phoebe Ryan (No. 4), “Paris” (No. 5) and “Something Just Like This,” with Coldplay (No. 10).

Just underneath “The One,” Selena Gomez sprints to a No. 11 entrance on Top Tracks with “Only You,” from the soundtrack to the Netflix series 13 Reasons Why, which she co-executive produced. The tune is a cover of Yaz’s 1982 song, which reached No. 67 on the Hot 100.

Gomez’s official YouTube audio for “You,” released March 30, has clocked more than 4.2 million global plays. “You” continues a busy week on the charts for the pop singer, as her collaboration with Kygo on “It Ain’t Me” jumps 19-14 on Top Tracks and completes an identical five-spot rise (from 20-15) on the Hot 100.

A Year After Prince’s Death, Many Questions Remain: Report 4/7/2017 by Gil Kaufman

prince-conga-room-performance-2009-billboard-650-1548

It’s been almost a year since the Apr. 21 opiod-related overdose death of Prince, but despite intense scrutiny, according to a New York Times probe many questions remain about the cause of the Rock Hall of Fame musician’s demise. And, given the series of dead ends investigators have encountered so far, it’s possible the true story may never be known.

The basic facts remain: the 57-year-old musician known for living a clean marijuana- and alcohol-avoiding, vegetarian lifestyle suffered from chronic hip pain for many years. But investigators still don’t know how he came into possession of the powerful opioid fentanyl, which has been the cause of a rash of overdoses and death over the past few years. We also know that six days before his death Prince’s chartered jet had to make an emergency landing after he overdosed on the way home from a concert and he had to be revived.

There have been no arrests to date of anyone who might have supplied Prince with fentanyl, despite sweeps of the usual suspects. The Carver County Sheriff’s Office is running point on the probe along with the Drug Enforcement Administration, with the findings eventually going on to the U.S. attorney’s office, which will determine if any prosecution is warranted.

READ MORE

Mayte Garcia Opens Up About Child She Lost With Prince: ‘I Don’t Think He Ever Got Over It’

In these kinds of joint investigations the agencies typically focus on doctors and pharmacies, according to the Times, to see if painkillers were “improperly or illegally distributed to an individual.” So far, the sheriff’s office has talked to people who were at Paisley Park that day and, as of February, the inquiry was still active. The bad news is that if Prince’s fentanyl came from the black market — which appears to be the case — it will be difficult, if not impossible to track down the source without a paper trail.

The two initial focuses of the probe were Dr. Michael Schulenberg — who treated Prince before his death and was at his home the day he died with some test results — and Dr. Howard Kornfeld, a California opioid addiction specialist. Schulenberg had prescribed undisclosed medications to Prince and Kornfeld’s son, Andrew, arrived at Paisley Park after Prince died with a small dose of Suboxone, an anti-addiction agent used to revive overdose victims; he was reportedly not legally authorized to administer that treatment.

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Prince’s ‘Sign O’ the Times’ Turns 30: All the Songs Ranked

Neither doctor, nor Andrew Kornfeld, appears to be the focus of the ongoing investigation according to the Times. Schulenberg — who left his job at the North Memorial Health Care in the days after Prince’s death — has not said what medication he prescribed for Prince and there’s no indication that investigators think it was an opiate. His lawyer told the paper that Schulenberg has “fully cooperated” with the investigation and has not been questioned further by police since his voluntary interview on Apr. 21, 2016.

Dr. Kornfeld continues to run a treatment center in California and his son is applying to medical schools, according to the paper.

“Prince’s death has raised the profile of the opioid crisis even further,” said Dr. Chris Johnson, chairman of the Minnesota Department of Human Services Opioid Prescribing Work Group. The singer’s demise came after fentanyl — which is as much as 50 times more powerful, and cheaper to produce than heroin and often disguised as more expensive prescription pain pills — had not been seen on the local black market in the Minneapolis area, but experienced a sudden surge around the time of his death.

In the meantime, the questions persist and the answers appear further away than before. To read the full Times story, click here.

Thanks, Stevie Wonder: Radio Industry’s Bill Velez Responds to Icon’s Open Letter, Calls for ‘Courage’ in Licensing Reformby Bill Velez

Bill Velez is Executive Director of the Radio Music License Committee [RMLC], a non-profit that represents the U.S. commercial radio industry (some 10,000 stations) with regard to music licensing matters involving agencies such as ASCAP, BMI and SESAC.  Prior to joining the RMLC, Velez spent a combined 35 years as an employee of ASCAP, BMI and SESAC.

I recently read a Billboard editorial by Stevie Wonder and, lo and behold, his article made me recall that the two of us have something in common.  (Yes, I have a good singing voice, but that’s not it.) I’ve always admired Stevie Wonder’s artistic gifts and I actually worked for him during my tenure as an ASCAP executive. But, just like he diversified and added ownership of radio station KJLH to his music career profile, I traded years of championing songwriter causes as an executive of ASCAP, BMI and SESAC for the opportunity to move to the other side of the table, and join the Radio Music License Committee on the front line of negotiating music licenses with the performing right organizations (PROs) on behalf of the radio industry.

Perhaps not surprisingly, because it does get down to common sense at some level, I find myself in complete agreement with Wonder on the following points:

1.  The music licensing landscape related to the proliferation of PROs in the U.S. has indeed escalated to a level of whack-a-mole proportion that is out of control and which is rapidly threatening to upend a system that has served the interests of creators and music users alike for over a century now.

2.  It is unfair that we have two PROs in the U.S. whose rate-setting processes are subject to regulation via consent decrees with the U.S. Department of Justice [DOJ], Antitrust Division, and two PROs that are permitted to operate without an equivalent level of regulation.



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Stevie Wonder Makes Case for Fair Treatment of Independent Radio Station Owners: Exclusive

Now, Wonder and I may disagree that the ultimate fix resides outside of a legal or legislative remedy. Regrettably, the facts do not lie. History has evidenced that, if you allow a PRO to aggregate important copyrights and to couple that with the legal “club” of copyright infringement (unless a music user submits to paying supra-competitive licensing fees), the PRO will inevitably engage in anti-competitive behavior that requires some form of antitrust remedy. I have great respect for my friends and former colleagues at the PROs, but I’m afraid that this axiom is as much a fact of life as death and taxes. Therefore, I don’t think that you are going to be able to get all of the parties in a room and reach a Kumbaya moment without some form of leverage being exerted as a catalyst.

Whether the leverage takes the form of new Congressional legislation or the DOJ stepping up to ensure a level, regulated playing field between competing PROs, there is no easy way out of this quagmire. While I concur with Wonder’s sentiment that it would be nice to avoid infinite legal entanglements that entail mightily-priced lawyers and economists, this may be difficult to avoid without a Herculean level of good will being exerted by both sides [and I suppose that this is exactly what Stevie Wonder is encouraging as a path to progress].

Here’s food for thought. While I am not authorized to speak on behalf of the radio industry in this regard, I personally believe that there is an economic value that can be ascribed to a major league overhaul and simplification of the existing music licensing morass

Neither side will like what I have in mind.  

For music users, it may entail a tick up in license fee payments in exchange for the ability to achieve a single pay structure for issuing one check to one agency, and then leaving it to the various PROs to allocate that payment amongst them. Of course, this scenario would also force the PROs to cede some control of their existing licensing fiefdoms in order to reap the potential for a greater, aggregated single license fee payment.  Like the quote that Wonder cites: “Any negotiation where everyone is just a little bit unhappy means the outcome was fair.”

Contrary to the character of Mordred in the Lerner & Lowe musical Camelot, who criticizes courage as a virtue that can get one killed, I would argue that it is one of the most admirable of human qualities. By virtue of his public stand on this issue, Stevie Wonder has opened himself up to some backlash from a music industry that seems to be intent upon wringing additional revenues from music users, even if it means driving them out of business. Wonder recognizes that this approach serves neither side’s interests. His concern should spur a call to action to all of us that it’s time to put hardened, unreasonable positions to the side and, instead, redouble our efforts aimed at developing music licensing fixes that create a “win-win.”  

My gut tells me that, once we get past our hardened agendas, the solutions may actually turn out to be easier than we imagine. What do you say we round up some reasonable folks from both sides and lock them in a room until they reach some sensible solutions?