May 19, 2011
The definitive word on rap's movers and shakers.
1. Common - Common's lambasting last week at the hands of the Fox News LOL crew gave him the single biggest boost in street cred in rap history. One moment he's granola-munching hippie spoken word artist and Queen Latifah's love interest in Just Wright; the next he's too gangsta for the White House? Time for a new album with a lead-off single collaboration with Rick Ross! *hhunngh*
2. Killer Mike Pl3dge - Despite the amazing singles ("Burn" and "Ready, Set, Go"), I had my doubts about Pl3dge after seeing a video of Mike sporting a non-stop shit-eating grin while recording in the studio. But then I listened. My bad, Mike. This collection of focused, smart and powerful calls to arms is one of your best yet.
3. The Rapture - Oaktown is in the house! The O.G. (Oldest Grandpa) behind those helpful and omnipresent warnings about Judgement Day's arrival on May 21 is based right here in Oakland. I'm hoping our close proximity means Jesus accidentally raptures my heathen ass too.
4. The Bold & the Beautiful - All the conniving got put on hold while Thomas and Brooke were eating poison berries and sharing the same hallucinations. But now they're back and everyone's either keeping a secret or trying to get their forbidden freakiness on.
5. Luther Campbell for Miami Mayor! - Luke has been jawing on Twitter about his mayoral for awhile now, but I laughed it off until I saw a recent poll showing him in third place. Not only that, but the top two are steady hatin' and shutting him out of Spanish-language debates. Aw HAIL NAW. Vote for Luke! www.luke4mayor.com
6. DJ Quik The Book of David - It's a DJ Quik album - of course it's great. Beyond that, Quik attempts to resurrect some music careers that were buried long ago: Suga Free (yes!), Bizzy Bone (eh) and Jon B. (LOL)
7. Danger Mouse & Daniele Luppi Rome - You say Danger Mouse, I roll my eyes. But then this fool goes out and collaborates with Italian composer Daniele Luppi to create a Spaghetti Western soundtrack - the undisputed best film genre ever. Bravo!
8. Arnold Schwarzenegger - Do you think Maria Shriver and her kids are ditching Arnold for his infidelity and lies, or for his taste in mistresses?
9. R&B - I know, I know - this is a rap rankings list, how dare I mention R&B? But let's venture outside rap just for a moment to appreciate the great stuff coming out lately: Charles Bradley's No Time for Dreaming (Actually, there is time for dreaming, as I slept on this January release.), Raphael Saadiq's Stone Rollin' and this new song by Sleepy Brown.
10. Jerome R. Corsi, Ph. D - This guy's book was just published Tuesday. Whoops.
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