Wassup in Hollyhood

By RYCH McCAIN

MUSIC:

Dallas, Texas is prepping to become the next major city to explode rap/hip-hop wise. Dallas rap star B Hamp, who is a member of Texxxas Made and the 20 20 Clique, recently met with Rickey Booker, CEO of CKB Entertainment, who signed him to a record deal.

CKB themselves just signed a major distribution deal with Malaco Records, headed by industry heavyweight Lionel Ridenour. Singer songwriter and Harvard grad David Berkeley will be teaming up with Micah Dalton, Ryan Horne, Jon Black and Kym Taylor for the “All The Lads and A Lady” tour in support of his third CD, Strange Light, which will be released May 26, 2009 via the Thirty Tigers label.

CHILD ACTORS:

Look for teen actress Tiffani Alston playing the role of “Chevell” in the yet unreleased independent movie Toe To Toe from Pureland Pictures. Young Scotty Noyd, Jr. booked a national McDonald’s commercial for the upcoming movie Night at the Museum 2. Noyd will also appear on Disney’s Hanna Montana this week and on House MD, Monday, March 23.

MOVIES:

This Is The Life; starring the Good Life regulars, Rebels of Rhythm, Unity Committee, Freestyle Fellowship, Pigeon John, Abstract Rude, Chillin Villain Empire, Rifleman Ellay Khule, Volume 10, Medusa, Figures of Speech, OMD, Spoon Lodine, Ganjah K and Fat Jack. Written, Produced and Directed by Ava DuVernay. Produced by Ellene Miles, Spencer Averick, Issac Klotz and Omid Walizadeh.

This is a “must see” documentary for anyone who claims to be any type of authority on the early stages and development of rap and hip-hop, especially on the West Coast. Many of the rap styles that came out of the metro Los Angeles areas of South Central, Watts and Compton etc., had their origins from a select group of true master “raptioners” who met on a weekly basis at a health food restaurant and store called “The Good Life” on the corner of Crenshaw Blvd. and Exposition in South Central L.A.

The store was owned and operated by a now deceased couple named Omar and Ife Sade. They featured live jazz and R&B. In 1989, a community activist named Bea Hall and her son Rod approached the Good Life about having a night to feature live hip-hop. It was set up for every Thursday from 8-10 p.m. as a positive environment with a no-cursing, no gangsta, no misogynistic lyrics policy. If your rap was wack, the crowd hollered “Please Pass the Mic” and the MC immediately ended the performance and took the mic.

The MCs who honed their craft during those Thursday sessions drew city and nationwide attention. Major rap stars such as Ice Cube, Snoop Dogg, will.i.am, Common, Macy Grey and Lenny Kravitz would slide in to observe. Once Fat Joe got up and was booed off stage because he didn’t meet the high standards of the house. The Good Life was no joke.

Major label rappers came and stole from the styling, phasing, timing and other techniques that the Good Life masters laid down and their influence has been heard via copycats on records and on stages all over the world.

If you want to know from where some of your favourite rappers got their style and methods, you must see this documentary. It will blow you away – guaranteed! Go to www.gooodlifelove.com to secure your copy. I highly recommend that you watch it with a group and discuss it afterward.

Hit me up at feedbackrych@sbcglobal.net.

So da aiki
(Love and work)
Rych

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