Category Archives: I’m more Wu than you

Can I get a suuuuuuu (e)

Ghosty’s being sued by a cranky old man playing the Iron Man card 11 years down the road (I believe the name Jack Urbont says it all – he’s a jerk, I can just tell. And he smells bad). Mr. Urbont has discovered that musical performers like to reference and pay tribute to the characters of fiction that have inspired them, so of course a lawsuit is the next logical step here. Apt. 680 was brought to its knees by this news for a minute. Nothing bad should ever befall Ghost, and nobody round here wants words exchanged between grown-ups — unless it’s me v. Rawss, or Reggie Miller v. the Knicks (ESPN reruns! An enjoyable summer tradition), because those kind of conflicts are entertaining. Copyright-infringement anything is not entertaining, however, and this whole suit is baseless, your honor. Who can say what’s right or wrong when it comes to proper boundaries between showing love for something that’s inspired you, and outright idea-jacking? Who wants to get into a discussion of the differences among appropriation, endorsement, and reification? Nobody! Stop it! The whole suit makes me worry about Ghost’s finances, because I don’t want him to get taken, and those are just useless, fretting thoughts that wear me out. I don’t need anything deflating my euphoria balloon when I’m out driving and “Hii Power” comes on, with that melancholy beat that makes every scene in the neighborhood, the dog-walkers and stroller-pushers, look extra dramatic and meaningful. I also like when that Rihanna song about murder guilt comes on; it’s fun to make the case that it’s like her “Bohemian Rhapsody,” except her version’s got notes that I can hit since her vocal range is somewhat limited.

There were the fretting moments that seemed that they’d never end. But I’ve realized that this thing will die down. I promise. Urbont’s just looking for attention and this is the best he can do without a blog, a Leica, a bikini collection, and a bunch of F-words to emphasize his love/hate relationship with Power 106’s playlist. And luckily, nobody buys rap albums anymore, so other composers won’t be similarly inspired by his greed quest. Are the Goo Goo Dolls gonna sue Lil B and Clams for denying them profits reaped from SoundCloud? (No. They are not. Because there can’t be profits when the shit’s free). Shouldn’t have legally fucked with RZA, though, Ghost! I had to bring it up! Sorry, buddy. It’s my understanding that the world is round because whatever you throw out will come back in time, but with the heat of speed gathered along its journey so it’ll be extra painful when it gets back to you. Probably it’ll hit the back of your neck, too, where the skin’s really sensitive. I’ve heard older folksy types caution against spitting in the wind, and they talk about how the things that come around are usually the same things that go around. For better articulation of this, I turned to my adjunct English professor at Baller U and language jedi master I keep on retainer; when reached for comment about litigious rappers who get theirs a couple years down the road, karmically speaking, E-40 said, “I think it goes: you live by the dirt, you die by the shovel.”


Don’t start nothing, it won’t be nothing/You wanna start something, it’s gon be somethin (Scrappin: variations on a theme).

Mac Premo, Number Two, He Doesn’t Have the Pants, 2008,
mixed-media assemblage with animation, 19 ½” x 18 ½” x 9 ½”

1. A photo of Mr. Premo’s work was in the Paris Review I was reading last night in apt. 680, in between taking tasteful erotic photographs of myself to send to Lil B, baking a pie, and peeking out of my blinds to see when Lil B’s going to come walking up the stairs to my door. It’s the spring 2011 edition, and Édouard Levé’s piece is great. It’s really really good, you guys (“I do not consider myself handsome just because a woman thinks so. I prefer desire to pleasure. My death will change nothing”) and not just because it’s titled, beautifully, When I Look at a Strawberry, I Think of a Tongue.

Even though the only (visual) art worth my time is Kruger’s stuff and Baldessari and oh Pettibone I suppose and THAT FUCKING RAMMELLZEE ROOM AT MOCA (an experience from which I still have not recovered), I like Mac Premo’s work, and I like the fact that “Mac Premo” sounds like the name of the producer of Jeru’s next album (he’s Premier’s cousin).

2. Hindi is how you say “NO” in Tagalog. Now we all know what to scream at our televisions during Pacquiao’s walk to the ring while accompanied by a corrections officer.

The fuck/whyyyyyy/NO/hindi.

If I were in charge, things would be different; Rawss would not exist of course, but let’s say I was feeling generous and allowed him both to continue living and to escort a boxer into the ring prior to a huge televised match. I would insist that Rawss escort the other guy–not Pacquiao. Ricky Rose Hey should definitely be walking next to “Sugar” Shane just based on pure similiarity, as they have both co-opted the names of historically successful individuals in order to enhance their own myths/reputations. This is a lazy, sorry move, the kind that bitchy dudes make. Boxing is so lame, I’ve addressed that fact and provided supporting evidence on this blog before – unless we’re talking about the boxer Zab Judah, which is a really fucking dope name for a human.

3. Does anyone recognize that sweatsuited side-leg?

No? What if I said “Renegades, Escalades, all fly ladies in shades/Get the best of me, bless me on stage”? IT’S RAE! IT’S RAE AND HE’S IN MY TOWN ON THIS NIGHT.

If I were going to the show and could somehow get backstage without using sex, I would look him square in the face and say, First of all: nice warm-ups on that promo flyer. They weren’t Champion, but still. Very nice.

Then I’d get down to business. Hey, remember when you or one of your colleagues blacked-out Budden’s eye socket? I blogged about it like crazy that week, as did everyone else with a computer and an opinion! I was so happy it happened! Thank you! I heard Joe said you asked for an apology, and he obliged – “only because he was outnumbered”! What a fuckin dummy! Why’d you have to make up with him, though? There’s not enough beef in 2011 rap. And how did you and Randy Spelling meet?*

* Rae’s working with Randy Spelling, a thing that has been added to 2011’s Mysteries List. “How did Rae link with Spelling’s kid” is now in there, right at the top, along with “Why does everyone like The Weeknd,” “Who keeps downloading Rawss’ shit and making him successful,” and “How come the first sip of iced coffee is always the best.”

Rae also has a rapper in his stable named “Polite,” a person from whom I am telling you right now I will never buy or download product.

4. “Tattoo Artist Who Owns Mike Tyson’s Face Sues The Hangover Studio for Copyright Infringement” (Gawker). Click the link and you’ll find a story about some loser who has trademarked the sorta-ethnic-but-not-sure-which-part-of-Samoa-it’s-from “tribal” design on Tyson’s face. That loser is suing the losers who made The Hangover, an unfunny major-studio production that everyone loved because everyone’s an idiot.

Tribal anything on your flesh is ridiculous; I come from a coastal city in Southern California so I am a certified expert in this matter. (I also know about chain wallets, putting huge tires on your white Chevy truck, and yelling at your girlfriend in public). But in a post about pugilism you know Tyson’s gonna show up so I had to include this story. These days everyone loves soft, repentant Mike – playing with his birds, taking his kids to the park. Dullsville Mike, in other words. The Mike who gets glorified in apt. 680 is the Mike who said, “I don’t try to intimidate anybody before a fight. That’s nonsense. I intimidate people by hitting them.” Mike Tyson, Brooklyn-bred unsubtle face-hitter ALL DAY.

5. Yes yes of course the Lakers need to come stronger in this next series, I don’t wanna talk about it but yes they really need to perform as more of a cohesive unit, 110%, fewer mistakes, hard in the paint, Pau needs to show up, lalalalaaaa yeah yeah. I don’t want to talk about Nowitski or Butler or Terry. I don’t wanna discuss what we are going to do about my Moscato addiction, or when I will stop stripping and settle down, etc. I just want to talk about how great Chappelle’s Show reruns are, always coming on at just the right time. I was still pouty this week because every skinny white girl in the world except me was doing some bikini-clad cooking in Lil B’s audience in the desert a little while ago but they were doing it wrong, 94% of white girls do it wrong. Then good ol’ Comedy Central comes through in the clutch, showing some TV perfection from 2004.

Random Tribute: DMX’s jabs and left hook between 1:11 and 1:18. DMX was terrific in his prime and I loved him; people think I’m kidding when I say that because how could I like DMX, that’s crazy!, since I like little girls in glasses and I’m polite and soft-spoken, but I’m not kidding. That voice, dragged through gravel! That cadence! I’m not-a. nice. person/I mean, I’d smack the shit out you twice dog, and that’s before I start cursin. (I also really like the name Spider Loc and people think I’m kidding about that too. Um, I’m not kidding. They all think it’s a game. They think it’s a fuckinnnn gaaaaame.) To put the performance below in context and remind you of the levels of perfection: this ep also had Negrodamus, the Niggar Family, and WacArnold’s. Fucking perfection, I said.

Directly-related additional Random Tributes: 1. that “UH OH” just erupting outta DMX when “What’s My Name” starts. The smile, the genuine excitement. So sweet. 2. Swizz Beatz in ’98/9 and ’03/4: the party-starter. Those beats/z he crafted made me want to be a boy and throw a punch, kinda; I settled for car-dancing ferociously whenever somebody put It’s Dark and Hell is Hot in the car’s CD changer. Grand Champ was, um, grand when it emanated from the stereos of Japanese compacts as well. GITITONTHEFLOOR, git it git it on the floor! Who didn’t want to get it on the floor when DMX yelled it over those drums? Alas, he has softened with age, which is typical of producers. It’s 2011 and things aren’t the same. Now he’s got the terrible beats of an old and feeble man, and let’s not forget the Shep Fairey tattoo. OH SWIZZY.

Judgement Day – “Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out (Training Song).”


DMX – “What’s My Name.” What y’all really wannnnnnt, what y’all really wannnnnt, etc.



Look at this sorry ridiculous dumb bastard who will never ever see me naked NICE SHOES, sir!

Sour mash surgeon, heavy glass up at the Wally bash.

“A reveler takes a sip of bourbon as he sits next to a sleeping man on a couch during the Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club parade on St. Charles Avenue in New Orleans on Mardi Gras Day March 8.” (Patrick Semansky/Associated Press – The Big Picture)

Yo Gotti & 8Ball – “Walkin in Memphis” (Wally Sparks mix). Because I needed a Wally something or other to complete the post, of course, but also because Memphis meant “city of white walls” in ancient Egypt. And because the Civic has stock rims and nearly-bald tires, but this song is always on the playlist during hot sunny days driving around LA and it feels so good I’d swear I have gangster whites.



Messy-haired pink-nailed fabulous white ladies waitin round for GZA with blank expressions who are not named Logan.

Which record label? CHESS, of course.

Bo Diddley – “Shut Up, Woman.” Don’t you say a word, ‘cause you might get me excited.


Eddie Bo – “Check Your Bucket.” 00:04 – 00:06. It’s that sound that describes you about to go in for a neck kiss because you’ve been looking at me and I am so delicious you can’t hardly stand it.


Bo Diddley – “Bo Diddley.” Because it’s Bo, and it’s meta, and because PATTIN JUBA, and because just like how you should have a pretty dope “Shook Ones” freestyle if you’re an MC, you should be able to lay something down on top of this if you are any good at singing. (Or rapping.)



Then came the worst date, May 21st/2:19, that’s when my mama water burst.

Obviously MCs are mythologized in my head and they kind of talk to me as I make my way through each day, giving me pep talks and inspiring me with joyful and creative wordplay. Yancy Thigpen couldn’t catch me sleepin; On my feet is venom/see I’m dressed to kill (I always wear heels to work), blah blah. Their births, therefore, must be celebrated. It just so happens that Biggie’s birthday falls on this particular Spring day in which so much is irritating and sad. Sorry, Chris.

Oil-covered animals are washing up ashore, I hate HAAATE that dash in The-Dream’s name, Arizona, Texas, and Kentucky are in a 3-way battle for Evil Supremacy within these United States (the “Atlantic Triangular Trade,” fucking hell), and Christopher Wallace is gone and he’s never coming back (never, not EVER). Then there’s this “6 Unexpected Ways to Turn Him On” story today, pushed hard by Yahoo (I refuse to put the exclamation point; I’m an adult). I knew I’d have to make fun of it before I read one word in the body, as “turn him on” is so comical, like something from Cosmo in ’86. This feature is part of the larger body of Internet theme pieces that compile alluring qualities of people of each gender – a theme that is annoying and stupid, but that I wish I had thought of because people really seem to love it, as evidenced by their enthusiastic comments and such. People get riled up when you tell them to do this, and not to do that, if you want someone to love you.

This particular list is BS, I’m afraid, as there are no statements of requirements related to sex, a girl maintaining a nice weight even after babies, voting appropriately, and possessing the good sense to be quiet when she knows that talking would just ruin the moment. Even I look for these qualities in girls and I’m not even looking to date a girl. It’s just human decency.

1. She Appreciates “Nontraditional” Beauty
. I love feedback – the squealing sound produced by guitars held close to amps. Feedback sounds like a rusty door, a dying cat, or a pack of whales crying in the ocean. When I share the ultimate feedback song, Smashing Pumpkins’ “Drown,” with a girl, she usually refers to the feedback-laden ending as “senseless noise.” But in my opinion, it’s a carefully orchestrated, creative way to use a sonic element of the guitar.

I’m not sure why I can’t just walk away from this one instead of dignifying it with a response, but I must take the bait and address that “dying cat” reference. Girls don’t like to be reminded that animals die (please refer to the second paragraph of this post) – especially if they are sweet and furry animals like kitties. Further, JIMI is the feedback don; his version of the Star-Spangled Banner is the song you must play in order to gauge a lady’s sensitivity to the mating call of the guitar. Additionally, there is an annoying band from Los Angeles called the Silversun Pickups that bite the sound of Billy Corgan & co. like it’s ’94 all over again (which, of course, it is, but only when it comes to rap music). Basically, I’m just leading up to this: I wish one of my favorite rappers would do an “Ava Adore” freestyle.

2. She Faces Reality. People avoid reading about bad things that happen in the world, but it’s important to have perspective and realize the world is good – and bad.

Is this even true? I only give my body and time and energy to someone who is brilliant and strong, appreciative of my smarts, affectionate, and can give a rough estimate of when Rawkus started to go downhill. Therefore, I simply don’t know what most mortal human boys like and need. So is this one true or not? Realize the world is bad? I thought a sunshiny outlook was best. Do boys like a girl who watches CNN and then discusses world issues, frowny-faced and with a heavy heart? Is the art of escapism not appreciated among you? Please inform. (FYI, she should be watching BBC World News instead.)

3. She Doesn’t Do What Everyone Else Does. The media embraces certain things, and many people follow. But, to most guys, followers are boring, and independent thinkers are sexy. Set trends on your own and buck established ones.

This one is just disingenuous, since “independently thinking” is probably only acceptable inasmuch as it does not interfere with a girl’s commitment to shaving her legs and taking her birth control. I should’ve ignored this one on sheer principle, since “The media embraces certain things” is a poorly constructed sentence opener that just makes no sense and now I’m complicit in its promotion on the Internet. Nice, Logan.

4. She’s Tuned in to the World. A few weeks ago, I read about a disease wiping out entire colonies of bats along the East Coast. The article confirmed my worst fears: As the bats disappear, the insect populations they feed on will explode. When I relay this story to most women I meet they say, “Why should I care?” There seems to be a dearth of people who have a passion about the world.

Science is the greatest and any girl worth marrying knows that, but 1) fuck a bat, and 2) all bugs should die because it scares me when I see one unexpectedly. And, really, who isn’t tuned into the world? Are we not assuming that all girls read the paper and watch Rachel Maddow every day? Because we should assume that, as this is the standard to which we should be holding our girls. Anyway, we’re spending too much time on this. Let’s tune in to some world events. There’s new Oddisee to discuss and obsess over. And pull your head out of your ass, because Texas is trying its hardest to get back into the Confederacy.

5. She Can Tell a Good Story. Storytelling is a gift that requires a sense of timing and an understanding of an audience. A good storyteller is intriguing but hard to find.

It’s the birthday of Biggie Smalls, the fourth-best storyteller after Aesop, Slick Rick, and Captain Koons in Pulp Fiction, and any lady worth dating is obviously going to know that. I can’t really tell a story for shit (I mix up my metaphors and get nervous from the pressure), but goddammit if I can’t hand you a list of 100 microphone kings with great narrative ability. This would make me wife material if it weren’t for the fact that I refuse to participate in the institution of marriage until it’s legal for my beloved gays to do the same – in every state. So, for now, you and I will just sleep together and go record shopping together, but part ways after that and return to our own apartments for quiet time, personal time. It’s rough, I know.

6. She Can Talk About “Boy Stuff.” Sometimes, I spout off “boy stuff” (read: sports) and unfairly expect a girl to keep up, but I do talk about my fair share of “girl stuff” – cooking, fashion, hair – to deserve a few conversations about serial killers and horror movies.

Cronenberg and Argento, obviously. But the serial killers thing? Is that true? I feel so lost.

I know about Gacy and the clowns, and I guess there’s something cool and outlaw-ish about those guys as a whole if you sort of detach yourself from the emotion -the taking of human life and evading the law, pretty G – but a whole conversation about serial killers is off-putting to me and the rest of my ladies, all the chickenheads from Pasadena to Medina. Boy stuff, if you must mark it as such and place it over on that side of the room (away from girl stuff), should maybe be reserved for talk between you and your boys. Not every girl cares about basketball and funny old pictures of KG at the high school prom, even though in a perfect world every girl would because that’s some of the best stuff in life. Also, why are your gender attitudes cribbed from Father Knows Best?

I wish Big were here, but I’m OK. (I say this because I want to be). Devin the Dude still makes albums, I’m loving the delicious LeBron-Delonte dramaticals, plus I found out that me and Rizz use the same technology portal!

Being the proud owner of a trusty Toshiba laptop makes a girl feel alluring and classy, like a tall, lanky, and spectacular music producer with kung-fu, chess, and comic book fetishes. Once again, Robert saves the day. WU-TANG, UBER ALLES.

DJ Anthony – “Brooklyn Bomb.”



Ghostface’s birthday: notes on a theme.

I’ll never fully come to terms with the fact that rappers actually age like mortals, but at least I can throw together a humble tribute to one of the greats in my humble corner of the Internet. Ghosty turns 40 today; here’s a dispatch from my emotional landscape:

• The Pill, too, was born on this day (in 1960). Without being too crass, let’s just say that the birth and subsequent music of Ghosty has given me sexual freedom in a way only equaled by oral contraceptives.

• The Taurean man is known to be affable and friendly, but in such need of stability that he can become possessive and stubborn. He’s also prone to brooding and dark moods. I think we all remember the “I’m just a lonely old man and people don’t know that” incident of 2007. I was a wreck for almost a week, you’ll recall, worrying and saving up money for a plane ticket to NY so I could hug him.

Bruno Spoerri – “Hymn of Taurus.”


• Sexually depraved lyrics. Having recorded with El-P, Mobb Deep, Doom, Styles P., Kool G Rap. Songs about white women in knee high boots and bracelets. The high-pitched, breathless flow. The way I feel totally out of the loop sometimes when I listen to the slang and can’t keep the fuck up, yet I just want more and more. Keeping it weird.
(just an unorganized collection of things I love about him)

• Back-in-time pretend time: on 9 May 1970, “American Woman” and “Turn Back the Hands of Time,” noted displays of bassline prowess, were riding high on the charts. Psychedelic Shack just came out (March), “Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin)” was on the radio. Funkadelic came out. Wilson Pickett, “Get Me Back on Time, Engine #9.”; The Spinners, “It’s a Shame”; Stevie’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered,” with that joyous collision of bassline and tambourine as an opener–all of ’em were new and were immediate classics. The Derek & the Dominoes album with “Layla” on it came out. Next month, in June 1970, Band of Gypsys will come out. In the fall, Paranoid by Black Sabbath will come out. Obviously baby Dennis Coles was destined for musical greatness, being born in this musical climate. Meanwhile, the only groundbreaking musical thing that happened in apartment 15 last week was Gucci leaving So Icey.

Just the sheer craftsmanship of this song. Grab your headphones and indulge me, please.

And with today being what it is, I’m pulling out the old “Ghostface and your mom have a lot in common” post from last year.

This tall, handsome man from New York who has the face of a ghost could absolutely come over to your house for some coffee and lovely conversation with your mom, over there in the breakfast nook. Ragu and nutmeg, Camay, scales of fish, Betty Crocker: mothers understand these references in Toney’s breathless high pitch. Plus you got all those mentions of actresses, American presidents, kings, emperors, French-Canadian chanteuses, a bunch of athletes (tennis, football, boxing, wrasslin’), Colombian businessmen, game show hosts, ’60 and ’70s soul singers, ’80s pop stars, messiahs, ex-“Today Show” hosts, Rat Pack-ers, Ronnie, Bobby, Ricky and Mike (sorry)it’s really so obvious that Toney and the moms of the world could chat about pop culture for an extended period of time. (Hi Ego Trip, it’s me again. I’m really disappointed in you for not seeing this first.)

It weakens my argument to have to omit certain lines because not everybody’s mom would catch the references that mine would, but there’s still enough convincing material here. For example, I feel that I can be honest and admit that I had to leave out that Sonny Carson mention from “Murda Goons”; as fresh as my own mom is, she is unfamiliar with Sonny. However, I’m proud to say that I could include any verses mentioning Slick Rick, since my mom is quite familiar and could even pick him out in some sort of group Def Jam photo if asked (you would too if you had me for a daughter). Similarly, I included the Brian Urlacher and Jay Cutler stuff in case your mom watches football like mine. PS, the only Jaime Summers in a middle-aged mom’s world should be Lindsay Wagner, and my mom doesn’t understand the verb “to train” the way it’s used by Ghost* and I’m fine with that. Ssshhhh.

Puppy love, gorgeous face, amazed by lip gloss
Cherry scent, when the princess spoke yo it bounced off
Mole like Marilyn Monroe, threw a rose in her mouth
Wherever God go will be Mrs. Coke

Child’s Play

Wu-Tang Clan spark the wicks and
However, I master the trick just like Nixon

Bring Da Ruckus

I ran the Dark Ages, Constantine and great Henry the Eighth
Built with Genghis Khan, the red suede Wally Don

4th Chamber

Blow backs in, flip raps like forty-eight bundles
Dinner plates, deadly front gates, celeb Bryant Gumbel

We Made It

With starwriters like I fucked Celine Dion
Stuck everything that’s the god’s honest beyond

9 Milli Bros.

Thanks to the revolver, Ramik had the leap from the heat
Like he was Frogger, bang monster King Arthur
Guns older than Bob Barker, graze comin out the nose barrel
Trouble maybe, then we from Harvard

Who Are We

Sho nuff, hit the bank and thrust
Cool Nauticas, *Jamie Summers got trained on the tour bus

Iron Maiden

I know this chick from the hood named Courtney Cox
And her brain is easy to pick like faulty locks

– “Josephine

That’s how the God do, Motown twenty-five
My orals like Smokey’s voice, little moist, but choice

Stay True

Kiss the pyramid experiment with high explosive
I slapbox with Jesus, lick shots at Joseph

Daytona 500

Burgundy minks, whips with sinks in em
Broccoli blown, illa disease breath, elephant skin
Meet the black Boy George, dusted on my honeymoon

Stroke of Death

That’s the same kid that cut his wrists, talkin bout the cuffs did it
He ran away, frontin majorly, eyes like Sammy Davis jr.


The Grain. Pretty much his whole verse. (Queen Elizabeth, Vanna White, the Pope.)

Slinging the backs of five Cleopatras
A cocaine chef, I stretch money like elastic
My raps is bigger, dynamics with the muscle advantage
Jay Cutler on dust, when I blam shit

Rec-Room Therapy

Fly shit like Curtis Mayfield and his intro
Throw this in your whip, convent, your tens blow

Ghost Showers

As I stroll the globe and terrorize the planet
With a Bill Clinton mask and them Playskool hens

The Mask

I give a order to my peeps across the water
To go and snatch up props all around the border
And get far like a shootin star
‘Cause who I are, is dim in the light of Pablo Escobar

Protect Ya Neck

You two-faces, scum of the slum, I got your whole body numb
Blowin like Shalamar in eighty-one
Sound convincin, thousand dollar court by convention
Hands, like Sonny Liston, get fly permission


Laying n—as like ceramic tile
I’m like Urlacher, beasting at the top of the pile

New Wu

Chop the O, sprinkle a lil’ snow inside a Optimo
Swing the John McEnroe, rap rock’n’roll.

Aiyyo spiced out Calvin Coolidge, loungin with 7 duelers
The Great Adventures of Slick, lickin with 6 rugers.


The Betty Crocker, marvel cake stakes admissor
wax janitor, black Jack Mulligan from Canada

– “Bells of War


Communications 306: Images of Hip-Hop in Popular Media

1. Dance, monkey, dance! Such is the woeful life of every performer who wears a mask to shelter all the tiny, vulnerable parts inside himself.

Sofia, Bulgaria. A clown prepares backstage before his performance at Circus Balkanski. [Stoyan Nenov / Reuters]

Madvillain – “Fancy Clown.” The one where Doom tries to get over his broken heart by vigorously entering the soft, curvy bodies of his former lady’s acquaintances.



Islamabad, Pakistan. Laborers work in a foundry, 04/30/10. [Farooq Naeem / Getty]

I wasn’t really ever a big fan, but I’m wise enough to see that if he hadn’t died young, the apprentice would have taken over for the teacher probably sooner than the teacher would’ve been comfortable with. Sorry, Joe. Additionally, Pun gets a place on my Great Rap Voices list.

3. “A man looks at a sculpture called ‘Also Heroes Have Bad Days’ in front of the Jewish Museum in Berlin, May 4, 2010. The sculpture is part of the exhibition ‘Heroes, Freaks, and Superrabbis: the Jewish Dimension of the Comic’.”

[Gero Breloer / AP]

Johnny Guitar Watson – “Superman Lover.” Surprise, motherfucker; Starky Love got breakfast.


Don’t nobody is more hiphop than Gil! (Sometimes you guys forget and I have to remind you.)

4. I have a Bachelor’s in Literature and I still lack the capacity to accurately put my feelings for this photograph into words that my fellow English speakers can understand.

Labourers work as their children sleep at a brick factory on the outskirts of Jammu May 1, 2010. [REUTERS/Mukesh Gupta]

You know who never went to college but who’s still a better wordsmith than me just because of going through life as a theatrical protagonist in his own narrative epic? Oh, just RAE, that’s who.

“10 Bricks.” This song marks the first time I ever heard the c-word used as a verb. Although my sense of feminism requires me to oppose this down to my core, the lyrics fan in me wonders how come nobody ever thought of doing that before because it’s pretty sharp.


Threw Kool-Aid rubies in a lemonade bezzle/When I was 12 in the church, I started packing that metal. Say it out loud; it just feels good in your mouth, doesn’t it?

5. OH SHIT, it’s dark and hell is hot.

Shepard Fairey at the opening of his May Day show at Deitch Projects, 05/01/10. [Sam Horine, The Village Voice]

OK. This.

I believe at last year’s convention we decided to retire the term hater, but I’m dusting it off just this one last glorious time because THIS PICTURE! THIS GUY!! Shep and his dogs stop, drop, shut em down, coordinate their black tees to display only the trillest of ’70s bands, then open up shop. (No, that’s not Rawss. But imagine the possibilities if it were! So much vitriol I could sift through, then write a post about!)

Me and my self-indulgent writing style insist that Earl Woods is like a Shakespearean figure, a little bit beautiful and very, very doomed, like Hamlet but from Yonkers. All I know is pain/All I feel is rage. The unironic emotional display of an American black man is a pretty intimate thing to behold. Dr. Drew, save X, but not so much that he goes completely over to the other side and eschews late-’90s G stuff like pitbulls and getting the crowd to lose its mind through the power of a gruff voice. AH!, also, in less serious news: I forgot to add X to my list of Great Rap Voices.

DMX – “Get At Me, Dog.”


6. Dios mio, I just got back from taking the Bandwagon Express to heaven–which, tonight, was US Airways Center because the worlds of professional sports and left-leaning politics were overlapping.

[Ross Franklin / AP]

De La Soul. El-P. Uno, dos, tres, it’s on.

Kanye and a thousand viral marketing campaigns have made me suspect that everything done publicly is done solely for the purpose of moving units. I can’t believe that the increase of revenue isn’t the main goal here. But still. Even if solidarity with Los Suns means that owner Robert Sarver will sell a hundred thousand jerseys, he seems like a stand-up guy and the means justify the ends. I also was unaware that Steve Nash was the first athlete to go on record against the Iraq war back in ’03! Get ’em, Canada! That said, should the Suns advance, the conference finals van a ser un masacre gigante porque Los Lakers son campeones del mundo.


Venezuelan army in vocal support of Hugo Chavez, 05/02/10. [Juan Barreto / Getty]

I just really miss The Coup and dead prez.

8. Make um say testicular fortitude. The hubris is strong with this one.

Mike Brown’s going to hell someday. If it were ’05 I’d add “real talk” for emphasis.

Great balls of fire/Guess who just crawled out the mud, the mire. Viktor Vaughn – “Saliva.”