hip hop

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: Freddie Gibbs

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Freddie Gibbs

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Photo:Jessse Thorn

Rapper Freddie Gibbs on Bandana, his new album with the legendary producer Madlib.

Before Freddie Gibbs ever dreamed of becoming a rapper, he was working at a shoe store in his hometown of Gary, Indiana. It's a rust belt town, an hour outside of Chicago. It also happens to be the home of Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5.

Gary's a rough place these days. Over the last 6 decades it's hemorrhaged residents, shut down schools, fought a growing crime rate and poverty. Freddie was, like a lot of kids at that time, faced with a future that seemed bleak, searching for an escape. His outlet was in athletics. He was quite good. But like a lot of kids in his neighborhood, he had a hard time staying out of the streets.

Music would become another escape hatch. Gibbs found out a couple of his friends had started making records, they even had a studio in town. So Freddie started hanging out there and pretty soon he wanted to be a part of it even though he wasn't exactly sure what that would look like. Would he become a producer? A DJ? Maybe a manager? Being an MC literally never occurred to him.

It wasn't until Freddie was a grown man that he learned he had a gift for rhyming, a sense of rhythm, and a voice that commands your attention. Freddie raps about the streets. About the time he spent there, about the friends he knows who still are. About the friends he lost. If there's a guiding theme in Gibbs' music - it's pain.

A few years back, his career took an interesting turn: he started collaborating with Madlib, a producer and MC from California. A guy who makes impressionistic, kind of strange beats known more for working with artsier, weirder MC's like MF Doom or Talib Kweli.

The result was Piñata, a record where two very different artists thrive in their own element. It probably shouldn't work, but it does. The music's strange, kind of beautiful. Freddie still raps about the streets. There's still that same pain there. It just hits you harder.

The pair have a new album called Bandana, and it's really great.

Freddie x Madlib BANDANA from Kenny Greene Jr on Vimeo.

Gibbs joins Bullseye and reflects on his upbringing, molding his rhyming style with Madlib's more eclectic beats, making music while on "daddy duty" and why he starts off every live show with a prayer backstage. He also talks to us about a very trying time in his life. Plus, Jesse and Gibbs talk Scarface. The rapper, not the 1980s Al Pacino remake.

Check out Freddie Gibbs on tour throughout Europe this fall.

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: The Egyptian Lover

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
The Egyptian Lover

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in Apple Podcasts or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.

Photo: Jesse Thorn

The Egyptian Lover on the early days of LA hip hop and electro

Greg Broussard better known as Egyptian Lover got his start as a DJ for Uncle Jamm's Army, a hip-hop crew based in Los Angeles.

In 1984, Uncle Jamm's Army released a 12 inch single via Freak Beat Records. On Side A of that single was: Dial A Freak and Side B was : Yes Yes Yes. Both tracks were produced by Egyptian Lover. The tracks received a lot of local play at huge parties thrown by Uncle Jamm's Army. At one point the venues they were filling up included the Hollywood Palladium and the Los Angeles Sports Arena. As a solo artist Egyptian Lover has released 10 albums, mixing Kraftwerk, Prince, a little bit of G-Funk every now and then, too.

In 2015, he released 1984 on his label Egyptian Empire Records. The official music video for the track Killin' It is insane. Egyptian Lover transports us to his version of the '80s – a total throwback to the aesthetic of the decade, with glossy computer graphics, rectangular prisms, polished sports cars and all! It reminds us of that Simpsons: Treehouse of Horror episode where Homer gets sucked into the 3rd dimension.

Jesse talks with the Egyptian Lover about the most iconic instrument in hip-hop: the Roland TR 808, and the early days of LA hip hop and electro. Plus what a 10,000 person dance party looks like, and how he bonded with his future wife over a Kraftwerk record. The ultimate meet cute!

Egyptian Lover has embarked on a huge summer tour. For tour dates click here. His latest album 1985 is available now.

Click here to listen to Egyptian Lover's interview on YouTube!

This interview originally aired in January of 2018.

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: E-40, Bay Area rap legend

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
E-40

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in iTunes or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.


Photo: Ezra Shaw / Getty Images

E-40 on his new record Practice Makes Paper and growing up in the Bay area

When it comes to Bay Area hip-hop, this week's guest is quite possibly the greatest of all time. He goes by many names: Forty Fonzarelli, Charlie Hustle, 40-Water or maybe you know him as the Ambassador of the Bay Area. We couldn't be more excited to share this conversation with the one and only E-40.

He was born and raised in the small town of Vallejo, and he has brought the culture of the Bay Area to the world. His distinctive style is overflowing with language — bars stuffed to the gills with words both real and imagined. He's hip-hop's king of slang and a stylist without peer.

He’s spent his career at the forefront of independent music, building a rap empire that changed the way music was recorded and sold, in hip-hop and beyond. He is both an artist and a movement.

His distinctiveness has kept him relevant for three decades now, from mob music in the 1990's to hyphy slaps in the aughts to new music today.

The themes are simple: hustling, street life, a bit of wisdom and a lot of money making. But even now, in his early 50's he tries to stay humble about his success.

E-40 joins us to talk about his new record. We'll pull up some deep cuts from R&B singer Saint Charles, who 40 knows as his Uncle Chuckie. Chuckie was a huge inspiration for E-40. E will also take us to the root of his passion for music. Plus, he'll talk about his college days at Grambling State University. Did he win the school's talent show? Only one way to find out. Listen up!

E-40's latest record "Practice Makes Paper" is out now.

Inside Pop Ep. 139- Movie Trailers: An Insider’s Guide to How They’re Made

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Show: 
Inside Pop
Guests: 
Nati Braunstein

Have you ever wondered how a movie trailer is created? Have you ever questioned why you see a shot in a trailer that doesn't exist in the film or fretted over the amount of plot detail a trailer reveals? Well wonder no more! This week, we speak to Nati Braunstein, Co-President and Creative Director at the Creative Advertising agency, Aspect, and get a look inside the process of making memorable movie trailers.

Nati discusses the collaborative effort behind the production of trailers and reveals some inside info about the trailers and TV spots for the highly anticipated Aquaman and Mary Poppins Returns.

Plus, in the Big Sell, Sean reviews the new Riz MC single, "Mogambo" and sells Amita on an article about Stan Lee after his passing.

Aspect Website

Aspect on Twitter

Aspect Instagram

If you enjoyed this episode check out:

Our conversation with the Music Supervisor of The Florida Project and Tangerine

Our conversation with the Cinematographer of 20 Feet From Stardom and Won't You Be My Neighbor?

Follow us on Twitter & Instagram @PopInsiders

Like us on Facebook

Heal And Learn It Up! (Brene Brown, Daring Greatly, Austin Bombings, Cynthia Nixon, National School Walkout)

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Show: 
Minority Korner

Is Nasty Nubbin a good nick name? Couple of discoveries at the start of the show: James' beat boxing skills, and Nnekay has bars! Are the wonder twins good at these respective skills? Jury is out. Next up- Miranda is running for New York Governor?! That's right Cynthia Nixon best known as Miranda from Sex In The City is running for Governor of New York. Let's unpack it! Nnekay gives a boots on the grown account of the National School Walkout at her job. James and Nnekay are both in awe and look forward to the March For Our Lives coming up. In James' korner- he is so excited to share the information he learned from Brene Brown's book Daring Greatly- which covers tactics on overcoming shame through debunking myths on being vulnerable and a few takeaways to live your life fully. In Nnekay's korner- she addresses the package bombs that have been terrorizing Texas Capital, Austin. Why they haven't been in the news media, who they are effecting, how the victims and suspect have been portrayed, and what it means to actually be a domestic terrorist. Don't forget to tune in to Maximum Fun Shows during April 2nd when MaxFunDrive kicks off!!

Links!

https://www.amazon.com/Daring-Greatly-Courage-Vulnerable-Transforms/dp/1...

http://time.com/5205181/austin-bombings/

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/19/us/austin-bombings-explosion.html

https://www.colorlines.com/articles/congressional-black-caucus-members-w...

https://splinternews.com/austin-bombing-suspect-has-died-after-blowing-h...

Watch the Black Panther Red Carpet Coverage with co-host James:

http://marvel.com/blackpantherlive

Minority Korner Store: https://teespring.com/minority-korner-t-shirt#pid=369&cid=6513&sid=front

Twitter: @minoritykorner
Email: minoritykorner@gmail.com
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Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: Natasha Leggero and Riki Lindhome of 'Another Period' & The Egyptian Lover

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Natasha Leggero
Guests: 
Riki Lindhome
Guests: 
Greg Broussard aka Egyptian Lover

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in Apple Podcasts or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.

Photo Courtesy of Comedy Central

Natasha Leggero and Riki Lindhome on their Comedy Central television show 'Another Period'

"Another Period" returns to Comedy Central this week. The show is set in Newport, Rhode Island and follows the lives of the Bellacourt sisters at the turn of the 20th century. The format of the show follows the familiar and popular structure of reality tv. It's sort of like "Keeping up with the Kardashians" meets "Downton Abbey." They do what a lot of aristocrats did back then, which is nothing, basically.

The show was co-created by Natasha Leggero and Riki Lindhome, they play Lillian and Beatrice Bellacourt respectively. The sisters have a particular obsession with fame and go to great lengths to stir drama and obtain as much stardom as one could in the gilded age. "Real-life" characters often get tangled in the Bellacourts lives like Sigmund Freud and Mark Twain. In one episode, they enlist the help of Harriet Tubman for a lesson on marketing their image. Another episode, sees the sisters get in a literal fist fight with Helen Keller. The show is over the top, subversive, weird and chock full of absinthe references!

Jesse sat down with Natasha Leggero and Riki Lindhome to talk about embedding history into the show, the guilty pleasures of reality tv, and the time they were guests on the Today Show with a very drunk Celine Dion.

Click here to listen to Natasha Leggero and Riki Lindhome's interview on YouTube!

Photo: Jesse Thorn

The Egyptian Lover on the early days of LA hip hop and electro

Greg Broussard better known as Egyptian Lover got his start as a DJ for Uncle Jamm's Army, a hip-hop crew based in Los Angeles. In 1984, Uncle Jamm's Army released a 12 inch single via Freak Beat Records. On Side A of that single was: "Dial A Freak." and Side B was : "Yes Yes Yes." Both tracks were produced by Egyptian Lover. The tracks received a lot of local play at huge parties thrown by Uncle Jamm's Army. At one point the venues they were filling up included the Hollywood Palladium and the Los Angeles Sports Arena.

As a solo artist Egyptian Lover has released nine albums, mixing Kraftwerk, Prince, a little bit of G-Funk every now and then, too. His latest, "1984" was released in 2015 on his label Egyptian Empire Records "1984." The official music video for the track "Killin' It" is insane. It reminds us of that Treehouse of Horror episode where Homer gets sucked into the 3rd dimension, and he says everything looks like the movie Tron. But instead Egyptian Lover transports us to his version the 80s -- a total throwback to the aesthetic of the decade, with glossy computer graphics, rectangular prisms, polished sports cars and all!

Jesse talks with the Egyptian Lover about the most iconic instrument in hip-hop: the Roland TR 808, and how the group Kraftwerk helped him meet his wife.

For Egyptian Lover's Spring tour dates click here.

Click here to listen to Egyptian Lover's interview on YouTube!


The Outshot: Detectorists

Finally, for this week's Outshot: television show "Detectorists." It's about a pair of guys with metal detectors, wandering through the English countryside looking for gold. While they don't exactly find the treasures they're looking for they do find out something more meaningful about themselves in the process.

Click here to listen to Jesse's Outshot on YouTube!

Heat Rocks EP16: Bahamadia on the Kay-Gee's "Keep On Bumpin' & Masterplan" (1974)

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Show: 
Heat Rocks
Guests: 
Bahamadia

The album: The Kay-Gee's: Keep On Bumpin' & Masterplan (Gang, 1974)

 

We invited Philly hip-hop star Bahamadia to join us and she kept things tri-state by picking the 1974 debut album by New Jersey's The Kay-Gee's, originally an off-shoot of Kool and the Gang. The Kay-Gee's may not be household names in the same manner as Kool and the Gang or the Ohio Players but especially on this debut, they cooked up an impressively diverse and surprisingly eclectic set of tracks that defy simple expectation. What other band ends their album with their own "greatest hits montage"?

More on the Kay-Gee's Keep On Bumpin' & Masterplan

More on Bahamadia

Show Tracklisting (all songs from Keep On Bumpin' & Masterplan unless indicated otherwise):

  • “Who’s the Man (With The Master Plan)”
  • Bahamadia: Kollage “Wordplay”
  • The Trammps: Disco Inferno “Disco Inferno”
  • MFSB: Love Is The Message“Love Is The Message”
  • James Brown: Getting’ Down To It“Cold Sweat”
  • Charles Wright & the Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band:Express Yourself “Express Yourself”
  • Parliament: Funkentelechy Vs. the Placebo Syndrome “Flashlight”
  • “Wondering”
  • “My Favorite Song”
  • The Floaters: Float On “Float On”
  • Cameo: We All Know Who We Are “Why Have I Lost You”
  • “Aint No Time (pt 1)”
  • You’ve Got To Keep on Bumpin”
  • “Who’s The Man (With The Master Plan)”
  • Madlib and J-Dilla: Champion Sound Jaylib (The Official)
  • Tom Browne: Funkin For Jamaica “Funkin for Jamaica”
  • “Get Down”
  • “Anthology”
  • Double Dee and Stein: Lesson 3“History of Hip-Hop Mix”
  • “Hustle with Every Muscle”

If you're not already subscribed to Heat Rocks in Apple Podcasts, do it here!

Bullseye with Jesse Thorn: Judd Apatow & Romesh Ranganathan

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Show: 
Bullseye
Guests: 
Judd Apatow
Guests: 
Romesh Ranganathan

New to Bullseye? Subscribe to our podcast in Apple Podcasts or with your favorite podcatcher to make sure you automatically get the newest episode every week.

Judd Apatow on returning to stand-up comedy after more than 20 years

Judd Apatow is responsible for some of the funniest films and television shows of the past two decades. He got his start in Hollywood mostly by working behind the scenes - he was a writer on “The Larry Sanders Show,” a showrunner on “The Ben Stiller Show” and served as an executive producer on the short-lived NBC cult classic “Freaks and Geeks.”

Apatow has also produced movies like “Bridesmaids” and “Superbad,” and has written and directed plenty of features too, including, “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” “Funny People,” “This Is 40,” and “Knocked Up.”

One of Judd’s true passions is stand-up comedy. When he was a teenager he worked at the East Side Comedy Club in Long Island. Back then he brushed shoulders with comics like Eddie Murphy and Rosie O’Donnell. In 1992, he was featured on HBO’s “Young Comedians Special.” In it, he shares the stage with Ray Romano and Andy Kindler.

Judd Apatow’s new Netflix stand-up special is appropriately called “Judd Apatow: The Return,” it marks his return to stand-up after more than 20 years. His material is sincere and relatable just like many of his films. In the special, he reads terrible poetry he wrote as a teenage to get the crowd going, he jokes about the disastrous time he threw the first pitch for the New York Mets, and he imagines what would happened if he ever decided to smoke pot with his kids. Need we say more!

Jesse talks with Judd about the new comedy special, and why it’s important to him to consciously choose to make his projects more inclusive and diverse.

Click here to listen to Judd Apatow's interview on YouTube!

Photo: Rory James/Flickr

Romesh Ranganathan on how his family's immigrant history informed his comedy

You might not know Romesh Ranganathan yet, but in the UK he’s a big celebrity best known for his stand-up comedy. He’s been a regular on spin offs of “The Great British Bake Off” and “The Apprentice.”

Romesh also hosts a travel show on the BBC called “Asian Provocateur.” In it, he travels around the world reconnecting with his parents’ home country of Sri Lanka. In the second season, Romesh travels to various locations in North America to meet more of his relatives, and his mother, Shanthi, tags along for his adventure.

The highlights of the show often feature Shanthi. She will stop at nothing to chide Romesh whenever she gets a chance. It’s really funny -- dare we say his mom is funnier than him. And Romesh knows this -- his relationship with his hilarious mother often drives much of his stand-up routine.

With hopes of making it big in the states; Romesh just moved to America with his wife, kids, and of course, his mother. He has an upcoming performance at the Greek Theater on Thursday December, 21, and tickets are still available. Romesh’s new comedy special, “Irrational,” was recorded at London's Hammersmith Apollo, and is available now. He hosts a podcast called "Hip Hop Saved My Life."

Jesse talks with Romesh about his love of hip-hop, and what it's like going from crying once a month in a corporate bathroom stall to selling out concert halls in London.

Click here to listen to Romesh Ranganathan's interview on YouTube!

The Outshot: 30 Rock’s Dr. Spaceman

Finally, for this week's Outshot: Dr. Spaceman. 30 Rock was a show with a thousand nearly perfect jokes. But there was only one most perfect joke among all those nearly perfect jokes. Jesse talks about what makes Chris Parnell’s portrayal Dr. Spaceman a very good bad doctor.

Click here to listen to Jesse's Outshot on YouTube!

Heat Rocks, EP4: Shea Serrano on DMX's "It's Dark and Hell Is Hot" (1998)

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Show: 
Heat Rocks
Guests: 
Shea Serrano

The album: DMX: It's Dark and Hell Is Hot (Def Jam, 1998)

This week, we are joined by Shea Serrano, contributor at TheRinger.com, author of both The Rap Yearbook and the brand new Basketball (And Other Things). For his heat rock, he choose DMX's smash debut LP, It's Dark and Hell Is Hot. *woof*

During our conversation, we learned how it was Shea's grandmother, of all people, who introduced him to DMX and how that album became the formative soundtrack for him as a teenager. Shea drops wisdom nuggets on the nature of pain in DMX's persona and how this album marked a repudiation of the direction hip-hop was headed in during the jiggy era.

More on DMX and It's Dark and Hell Is Hot:

More on Shea Serrano:

Show Tracklisting:

  • DMX: "Get At Me Dog" It's Dark and Hell Is Hot
  • Mase: "Feel So Good" Money Talks
  • DMX: "Fucking With My Dogs" It's Dark and Hell Is Hot
  • DMX: "Catching The Same Hell"
  • DMX: "Look Thru My Eyes" It's Dark and Hell Is Hot
  • DMX: "Ruff Ryders Anthem" It's Dark and Hell Is Hot
  • DMX: "Prayer" It's Dark and Hell Is Hot
  • DMX Feat. Eve "Dog Match" Let There Be Eve...Ruff Ryders First Lady
  • DMX "Crime Story" It's Dark and Hell Is Hot
  • DMX "For My Dogs" It's Dark and Hell Is Hot
  • 50 Cent "Wanksta"
  • Mase "24 Hours To Live" Harlem World
  • DMX "How's It Goin Down" It's Dark and Hell Is Hot

If you're not already subscribed to Heat Rocks in Apple Podcasts, do it here!


11-2-17 Update!

In our episode, I (Oliver) credited the album for helping introduce Swizz Beats to the wider world. That's true insofar as "The Ruff Ryders Anthem" was one of Swizz's first big hits. However, it's the only song on the entire album that Swizz worked on. Most of the album was produced by Dame Grease and P.K. and in my haste, I didn't do my proper discographic research to give credit where it was properly due.

Inside Pop Ep. 82 - Jay-Z’s 4:44, Best TV of 2017 (So Far), Bishop Briggs

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Show: 
Inside Pop

This week, Inside Pop dives into Jay-Z's new album 4:44- we discuss some of the personal issues he revealed in his lyrics along with his evolution from his first album to now. We then discuss other artists who have bared their soul through music and some of the confessional - like songs with which we have connected - including Beyonce, Lauryn Hill, Prince, Mary J. Blige and more.

Then, we revel in the abundance of programming that Peak TV has given us in 2017 with our Best of TV picks of the last 6 months. Find out which shows made our individual lists and which shows we shared our undying affection for.

Plus, Sean gives his Big Sell review and rating of last week's suggestion from Amita- the singer/songwriter, Bishop Briggs. Then, he shares his Big Sell which comes from one of the series on his Best of TV (So Far) list.

Follow Inside Pop on Twitter and Instagram @PopInsiders

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