Archive for the ‘West Coast’ Category

It’s no secret, to be successful in life employing strategy is imperative. More than proving to be a formidable tool against those inevitable obstacles, it offers organization amidst the ever-present chaos. For context, let’s consider the discipline of a chess strategist/player. The absence of emotion veils the calculations of the mind; that strategic design that is ultimately disclosed upon the surface of a mere checkered pattern with monarchical pieces. For all intents and purposes, the game of chess is life’s simulator. By way of opponent intent and the assessment of it, your willingness to enforce strategy supports self-sustainability, and if executed correctly, triumph over your worthy adversary. Just ask Maurice Ashley – chess strategist/aficionado and the first African American to receive the “Grandmaster” title from the World Chess Federation, FIDE (Fédération Internationale des Échecs).

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On this episode of TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio, D.D. Turner, C. Stats, and DJ Jay St. Paul kick it with chess Grandmaster, Maurice Ashley. With him, the crew discusses his journey towards becoming a world renowned chess player, his effort to continue to increase the game’s exposure, and why everyone should consider the game and its inherent strategies as a tool to help navigate life’s obstacles.
And as usual, DJ Jay St. Paul entertains us with a mix that effectively highlights the game of chess’ reference in Hip Hop music. Click below to listen.

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On this episode of TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio, D.D. Turner and C.Stats welcome back to the show, Masta Ace. This time, the conversation provides an in-depth look at the making and intent of Masta Ace’s latest album release, The Falling Season; a concept album that offers fans/listeners access to Masta Ace’s formative years as a teen growing up [in the early 80’s] in Brooklyn, NYC. Hip Hop heads…This is an episode that you don’t want to miss!

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And regarding the playlist? Let’s just say that DJ Jay St. Paul blesses us with a mix that reminds us of Masta Ace’s dynamic career and why he is appropriately regarded as a legend.

Click below to hear the episode.

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Are you an avid Shark Tank watcher? Do you recall season 6 – episode 11? An extremely poised Lydia Evans and her SWAG Essentials Company positioned a product before the Sharks and viewing audience that addressed the skin care and grooming concerns of countless men; that would be the dreaded affliction of Pseudofolliculitis (Razor Bumps). Since this episode, Lydia and her Swag Essentials brand have grown tremendously by offering a range of products that address the grooming healthfulness and sensibilities of an array of people, all while experiencing a revenue growth of more than 250%.

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On this episode of TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio, D.D. Turner and C. Stats kick it with Lydia Evans to discuss her life and journey towards entrepreneurship, her Shark Tank experience, and the future of SWAG Essentials.

And as usual, the #TCOHHL Team takes you on a journey of #HipHop’s glorious history, past and present, by way of the strategically constructed playlist.

Click below to hear this episode!

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On the most recent episode of TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio, D.D. Turner and C. Stats kick it Dr. Melina Abdullah, Professor and Chair of Pan-African Studies at California State University – Los Angeles and Organizer of the Black Lives Matter movement. During our time spent with Dr. Abdullah, we discuss her formative years in Oakland, education, her involvement in the Black Lives Matter movement as an Organizer, and her support of Jasmine Abdullah – The #BlackLivesMatter Organizer [and Founder of Black Lives Matter – Pasadena] that was falsely convicted and incarcerated [for Felony Lynching] after coming to the aid of a fellow peaceful protester that was being arrested by Police.

Felony Lynching – “A rarely used statute in California law… Under California’s penal code, “felony lynching” was defined as attempting to take a person out of police custody. Jasmine was arrested and charged with felony lynching last September, after police accused her of trying to de-arrest someone during a peace march at La Pintoresca Park in Pasadena on August 29, 2015.”  Democracy Now, 2016

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As usual, the TCOHHL Team takes you on a journey of Hip Hop’s glorious history; past and present all the while bringing recognition to the noble efforts and courageousness of Dr. Melina Abdullah, Jasmine Abdullah, Nana Gyamfi, and the countless others that work tirelessly for Black liberation and equality. Click the link below to listen to the episode.

 

 

 

 

 

Since the beginning, Hip Hop culture has always rested firmly upon the premise of education and the need thereof.  Submitting to the idea of education serving as the basis of honing a discipline was always integral to the success of Breakers, Graffiti Artists, Lyricists, and DJs/Producers/Beat Makers alike. The idea was simple – without a devotion to learning the craft, one would likely be considered a fraud; a Half-Stepper according to the assertion of the legendary Big Daddy Kane.

But as Hip Hop progressed, these skilled and educated Hip Hop Artists began to gain more monetary success for their talents, creating some extremely comfortable lifestyles in the process. But when the money comes in fast and regularly, the pace of the financial education needed to act responsibly with it is often not commensurate.

As minorities, we generally lack education in personal finance.  From Vehicles to Homes, we often make purchase decisions using the desires of the heart and ego and not the pragmatism and rationale of the mind, thereby resulting in the stress heavy experience of living beyond our means; a problem that also confronts our White counterparts but often goes undiscussed and unconsidered within the confines of Black and Brown communities. And why should it? The responsibility of rectifying instances of educational and financial disparities should never rest with those that cause the disparity, but instead, those that are disparaged, for the purpose of fulfilling the desire to be better and tapping into the inherent greatness that resides within begins with introspection and self-initiative, resulting in self-betterment or perhaps even, the realization of self-purpose.

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So, being devoted to Hip Hop and also having a genuine concern for the education of our people, we found it necessary to leverage the culture’s 5th and perhaps most unexplored element of ‘Knowledge/Education’ as a tool to impart some enlightenment on the matter of Personal Finance. To facilitate this, on our next episode of TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio, we’ll be speaking with the wonderful, LaShonda Johnson of the Houston Housewives of Finance; a national organization [with a growing list of chapters] that successfully empowers individuals with the tools necessary to arrive at a place of effective financial literacy. From credit cards to the dreadful Student loan(s) to the selection of the appropriate life insurance policy, LaShonda graciously schools us on various aspects of personal finance while dispelling some of the long-standing misconceptions and circumstances of financial miseducation that so many of us have fell victim to – like my severely misguided and uninformed decision to purchase a $600.00 leather Avirex jacket [back in 1997] while being a full time College Student with part-time employment.

Taking notes while listening to this episode is recommended – Class will be in session!

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By: D.D. Turner, Founder/Executive Producer/Host
TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio
Twitter: @TCOHHL_Radio/@HipHops_Wizard
Instagram: @HipHops_Wizard
Tcohhl.bandcamp.com

On this episode of TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio, D.D. Turner and C. Stats kick it with the King of Content, James ‘Kraze’ Billings. During our conversation we discuss his Long Island – New York roots, his journey towards becoming the King of Content, his past projects with FUBU and Audi, his Industry Muscle website and brand, his upcoming projects [including a documentaries on Hip Hop lyrical legends, Rakim Allah and Biz Markie] and a truly riveting discussion on Hip Hop’s cultural appropriation.

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And regarding the playlist? Not only do we open the show with a gap-bridging event, we satisfy your appetite with a pure and authentic Hip Hop experience.

On this episode of TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio, D.D. Turner and C. Stats kick it with the creators of the Tuskegee Heirs animated series, Greg Burnham and Marcus Williams. During our conversation, we discuss their respective roots, the artistry of animation, their amazing animated series, and the unparalleled history and courageousness of the Tuskegee Airmen.

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Also, to celebrate the life, legacy, and genius of the legendary musician, Prince, we open up the show with a self-authored poem by TCOHHL Radio co-founder, Ishmael Street, followed by a review of why Prince will forever be regarded as an icon. And don’t worry, you appetite for a pure and authentic Hip Hop experience will be thoroughly satisfied.

Imagine the revered 80’s Autobot leader, Optimus Prime, serving as a symbol of American pride and patriotism. What about a rather large, pixelated image of the classic video game persona, Dig-Dug, emblazoned across a shirt with arrows drawn? Does this evoke a sentiment of nostalgia yet? At its core, this is what 80U looks to accomplish; apparel that represents the fond memories of youthful indulgence without the compromise of quality and style. Additionally, with its contemporary creative iteration of classic themes/entertainment, 80U looks to become the preeminent brand that successfully bridges the generational gap.

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For its maiden voyage, 80U released the Brooklyn Pack; a colorful and stylish pairing of his and her shirts that brandish the celebrated lyrics of Brooklyn’s home town hero, Notorious BIG and his voluptuous Protegé, Lil Kim. These items are currently available for purchase at weare80u.com at a comparable industry price point. For an additional discount, use coupon code: SPRINGCLEANUP.

Very simply, 80s University’s long term goal is to become a brand that provides quality and stylish novelty fashion options for the consumer that is looking to revert back to an era where some of their life’s most fond memories were created. And in doing so, bring awareness to those themes that were seemingly lost in time.

So consider this a first class boarding pass onto the 80U train. Our destination? An unexplored location within the fashion universe that grants one wish; an opportunity to, Brand New Your Retro.

For more information on the history of 80’s University, click on the image below. Also, to hear our interview with the Founders of 80U, click on the mixcloud link below.

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Youthful expression in Hip Hop has always been fundamental to the culture. After all, the youth collectively are and have always been responsible for the long-term sustainability and progressiveness of the culture. In a recent conversation, I went on record saying that Hip Hop and I are twins; there are very few recollected moments in my life in which Hip Hop hasn’t been a major fixture.

In this regard, DJ Kool Flash and I are similar. Where we differ however is DJ Kool Flash’s ability to profess her support of the culture [at her present age] in a way that is extremely passionate, expressive, and masterful.

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This week on TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio (4/20/2016), D.D. Turner and C. Stats kick it with the talented future legend, DJ Kool Flash. During our time spent with DJ Kool Flash, we discuss her Hip Hop roots, her favorite Hip Hop artists, and equally as exciting and riveting, her introduction and ongoing skill development as a Turntablist. And regarding the playlist? Let’s just say it bridges the musical gap and effectively celebrates those Hip Hop artists that started out young…Like DJ Kool Flash.

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By: D.D. Turner, Founder/Executive Producer/Host
TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio
Twitter: @TCOHHL_Radio/@HipHops_Wizard
Instagram: @HipHops_Wizard
Chroniclesofahiphoplegend.bandcamp.com

**You know the drill! Don’t be a #Turdbird! Visit mixcloud.com/tcohhl_radio to listen to our show archives. And while there, subscribe to our station to stay updated on our latest show releases.**

 

“…these are the words that I manifest. I Manifest.” – Gang Starr, Manifest (No More Mr. Nice Guy, 1989 – Wild Pitch Records/EMI Records)

Peace, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis

With sincerity, I submit this manifesto of gratitude and appreciation for your concern. More to the point and specific to this document’s intent, I thank you for your candor; your willingness to acknowledge the plight of Black people [through your dialogue invoking joint, White Privilege II] and the origination of what has proven to be an insurmountable social obstacle against the system of White Privilege. Your efforts are commendable, and brave to boot. Your public observance of what has been an issue for nearly 500 years is regarded as sincerely empathetic and not trivial, for it suggests that you understand the proper way in which to address and impart reasoning unto your cultural peers for the purpose of contextualizing the very real idea of white privilege, cultural appropriation, and cultural subjugation. However, while your song content and approach are unique and brim with quality, I’d be remiss if I failed to mention that the intent and goal aren’t. As I am sure you are aware, Hip Hop has always served as the initiate for social change, highlighting the adverse circumstances under which we were, are, and continue to be placed, per the ubiquitous nature of white privilege/supremacy.

Over the years, many of our beloved and legendary Emcees have worked to bring awareness to the problem while bolstering the richness and righteousness that is contained within us, the original man – “The maker, the owner, the cream of the planet Earth, Father of civilization, God of the Universe.” Legendary Emcees such as: KRS One – You Must Learn; PRT (Poor Righteous Teachers) – Shakiyla; X-Clan – Funkin’ Lesson; Lakim Shabazz – Black is Back; King Sun – Be Black; Big Daddy Kane – Young, Gifted, and Black ; Brand Nubians – Wake Up; Public Enemy – Fight The Power; Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five – The Message; Fearless Four – Problems of The World Today; Gang Starr – Royalty; Black Star (Mos Def & Talib Kweli) – Brown Skin Lady; Rakim – The Mystery; Nas – I Can, and a host of others that go unnamed but are equally recognized. Unfortunately, the gracious offerings of these artists wouldn’t surpass exposure beyond cultural relevance; the exception perhaps being those White brothers and sisters that were and continue to be avid Hip Hop supporters and/or historians.

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Macklemore and Ryan, the point of the aforementioned is not to convey nor pose opposition to your song, but, to simply acknowledge those that have come before you [as you’ve most notably done on DownTown feat. Kool Moe Dee, Grandmaster Caz, and Grandmaster Melle Mel]and have leveraged the platform of Hip Hop culture as a means of effectuating social change, or in the least, spark the flame of cultural consideration amongst  White folks.

Regarding this matter, I found myself compelled to express my perspective. Not because I felt it necessary to align with the wayward backlash that you guys are being met with, but instead, to provide an articulate and respectful explanation of how we as Black folks potentially feel about your song, albeit gracious. On another note, I have to admit that I was somewhat indifferent about your career; I’d concur that your lyrical prowess is mostly enjoyable and your content/topics were interesting and sometimes even poignant but your songs never quite resonated with me. In fact, if I can be honest, I initially considered you to be just another White rapper using the benefit of implicit privilege, supremacy, carefree themes, flow patterns, suitable vocal inflections, and vocabulary to drive a career. A shift in my belief has since occurred causing me to depart from this perspective and see that in fact, White people can genuinely care about and be invested in the long-term sustainability of Black culture. The two of you have proven this through your public sincerity and gratitude for the incomparable contributions that Black culture has imparted unto the world.  You guys have possibly set the stage for change amongst White people and it is now time to execute.

Below are some recommendations of how you can further facilitate an understanding amongst your ethnic peers regarding the social dynamic between Black and White people and how it is impacted by the system of White Privilege.  Some recommended group talking points amongst White people are as follows:

  • Don’t be threatened by the assertion of Black [and Brown] Pride
  • Seek opportunities that support/reinforce empathy for the Black [and Brown] experience
  • Similarities between the Black and White racial/social experience is virtually non-existent
  • Understand that the statement, “Black Lives Matter” is not suggestive of racism or a disregard for White lives
  • Gentrification is a result of White Privilege and is a real and proven concept that forces cultural displacement
  • White flight is a result of White Privilege and is a real and proven concept that erodes the cultural diversity in a neighborhood, thereby, causing the inevitability of poverty as a result of ethnic stereotyping
  • Amongst Black people, Rioting is never a result of animalistic and/or apathetic manifestations. Instead, it is the result of hopelessness in the face of racial adversity, inequality, and injustice
  • Effectively, Black [and Brown] people can’t reasonably be regarded as racist amidst the looming shadows of systematic White Privilege/Supremacy

Again, I thank you [prospective Hip Hop Legends] for your willingness to create the basis upon which healthy dialogue regarding the issue of ethnic privilege will perhaps come to thrive. It is my hope that the perspective shared in this manifesto has merely served as additional context and has imparted suggestive instructions that look to contribute to a foundation of better understanding the Black experience.

Thank you in advance for the engagement. Looking forward to hearing back from you.

One,

D.D. Turner, Enforcer of Negritude

TCOHHL (The Chronicles of a Hip Hop Legend) Radio

@TCOHHL_Radio

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tcohhl.wordpress.com

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