There’s no excuse for this

Posted in fashion, Humor, Questionable, Rumors, Trends with tags , , , , on April 15, 2009 by thestateofhiphop
Fruit of the Loom Gang

Fruit of the Loom Gang

I know this picture came out a few weeks ago…but I’m still without words for it. It would be nice to know what you all think.

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Flowers & Kain – 2009 Update…

Posted in Connecticut, Trends, Video with tags , , , , , on April 8, 2009 by thestateofhiphop

I’ve been meaning to write this article for the past few days, but due to a hangover, homework, and exams I couldn’t get around to it ’til today…and just as I began to crack my knuckles, I got an email from this guy who really wanted to get me to listen to Chris Webby who’s also from Connecticut.

flowers & kainI immediately got this feeling like CT is the spot right now for hip hop.  The fact that it’s close (but not too close) to New York and Boston works in it’s favor.  Not to knock anyone’s hood or nothin’, but the dope thing about CT Hip Hop is that it’s so varied.  For traditional hip hop heads you have more traditional MC’s like J. River and Apathy, but then you also got Chris Webby for the young college crowd, and Flowers & Kain?…  Well, they got rock (and the accompanying white girls) held down. 

This past Saturday (just after the UConn Men’s Basketball team showed off their free throw skills in the Final Four…congratulations lady Huskies) my girlfriend Vanessa and I went to see a Flowers & Kain show in Stash’s in New London.  I spoke with Bobby (B-Flow) and Ryan (Killah Kain) for a bit before their set and congratulated them on their continued success.    We talked a bit about the first time we saw them open up for Ne-Yo and how there aren’t any more rappers like 2pac anymore. 

I mean…maybe hip-hop today doesn’t want anymore 2pac’s.   Nah…I don’t buy that..but one thing’s for sure, hip-hop is waaaaay different than it was in ‘Pac’s day.  What would ‘Pac think about Kid Sister?  What would he think about Mickey AvalonSoulja Boy Tell ‘Em?!

I’m not trying to police hip-hop…I see change as innevitable.  Hip-Hop will change and branch out and I encourage you to embrace it, because when done properly, you get groups like Flowers & Kain.  All you aspiring MC’s out there…you can learn a lot about rocking a show from these cats…and you can learn it just as much from Ryan (lead guitar) as from Bobby Flow.

Every show I’ve ever seen, the club ends up kicking everyone out because these guys play to about a minute til closing time…but that’s only cuz the crowd demands it.  And they’re approachable.  They like their fans and their fans love them. 

I really recommend you all catch one of their shows this Spring/Summer.  Below are some of their upcoming show dates…the crowd is always cool…check them out.   You’ll have a good time, I promise.   Big shouts to F&K!

  • Flowers & Kain UPCOMING SHOW DATES

April 26, 2009     —   8:00 pm – Fat Baby’s (New York, NY)

May 2, 2009 — 9:00 pm – Up or On The Rocks (Hartford, CT)

May 10, 2009 — 5:00 pm – Hannafin’s w/ Colin Monroe (New London)

August 2, 2009 — 1:00 pm – 7th Annual Chanawongse Scholarship Run (Waterford, CT)

Armageddon makes a good point about new MC’s

Posted in How To Rap with tags , , , , , on October 24, 2008 by thestateofhiphop

In a recent interview with Armageddon (formerly of the Terror Squad) I asked him the question:

What is one of the things you’ve noticed struggling MC’s have the most trouble with?

Armageddon is interviewed by The State of Hip Hop

Armageddon talks with TheStateofHipHop.com

His answer was:

“Either staying on topic or not varying their verses enough. If you choose a topic your verses need to be consistent with eachother and the overall topic. But that doesnt mean each verse has to be an imitation of the last. you can vary the verses and still stick to the topic.”

I agree fully with that asessment.  Often times young hip hop heads grow up admiring Eminem, Canibus, and other admirable wordsmiths, and they get wrapped up in their lyrical ability and nothing else.

Though, yes, lyrical ability is something that should  be admired and understood if one is to improve as an MC, it is not all there is to rhyming, much less to making an actual song.

In fact, its often the best lyricists who can’t seem to put a decent song together.  Canibus, for example, is technically perhaps one of the best lyricists ever, but look at his song catalog and it you’ll find yourself listening to what sounds like skillfully intricate, yet out of place freestyle verses.  Its almost as if you can interchange verses between a good number of his songs without anyone noticing.  Not coincidentally, Canibus is not a household name (though that also may be due in part to LL Cool J blacklisting him from the game after Canibus destroyed him lyrically on “Second Round K.O.”).

Anyhow, I just thought I’d bring that to the attention of you TSOHH blog watchers out there…be sure to check out TSOHH’s Armageddon interview in it’s entirety below for more insights into the world of MCing.

Check out The State of Hip Hop’s full interview with Armageddon here.

My Trip to Machu Picchu

Posted in Carlos, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on September 19, 2008 by thestateofhiphop
Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu

I just thought I’d write a short post announcing my return from a vacation to Peru (where I’m from). Of all the places I went (Ica, where the huge earthquake struck last year, Lima, etc.) I was most interested in revisiting Machu Picchu (recently designated as a “Wonder of the World”). If you’ve never heard of it do a Google Search…it’s magnificent, for real.

I felt a little like Ernesto “Che” Guevarra in The Motorcycle Diaries except with a thousand tourists around me. I must say that even under those conditions, the fact that I was able to escape the reaches of a T-Wayne song somehow made the entire trip seem that much more distant.

Another thing that told me I was no longer in the U.S. was the police officer I saw get bribed for $3 and the homeless family who vigorously ate up cold leftovers from a restaurant we handed to them at a traffic light. The 7-year old selling candy alone at 2:00 am was nothing new and neither were the countless families that I saw living in mud/straw houses, yet they always help to remind you of your privilege. Do you really got the gulliest hood? You sure?

In Peru the name, “Tupac Amaru” does not bring with it memories of a slain rapper. Instead it brings to mind legends of a slain Peruvian revolutionary of Incan blood who around the time of the American Revolution had already freed African-Peruvian slaves (well before Abraham Lincoln) so they could fight alongside the Indians against the Spanish. When the revolution finally failed Tupac Amaru’s four limbs were tied to four horses who were whipped until the great grandson of the last Incan king was dismembered.

The reason for this post is simple. I needed a break from hip-hop…and now that I’m back I got a whole fresh new perspective on the game. I probably have enough song concepts in my head to fill an entire album (if I was inclined to do so). I imagine it might also help a lot of you out there with writer’s block (or laziness) to take an occasional break from the game even if it just means changing your radio station now and then.

I’m finally back in the U.S. where Tupac is Tupac and T-Wayne floods the radiowaves. Ahhhh….back to work!

Til next time,

-Carlos Bonett
Author & Site Administrator
TheStateofHipHop.com
RapFundamentals.com

Mosh Jelton vs. Jonny Storm (MC Battle Part 1 & 2)

Posted in Battles, Humor, Video with tags , , , , , , on July 7, 2008 by thestateofhiphop

This battle went down last month in Orlando, FL and I thought I’d share it with everyone.  It’s good to see there’s still dope battles going down across the country.  Some people will argue that the battle was mostly written but there was clearly some improvisation and plus, there’s almost always some “written” element in battles nowadays…what can you do?

I gotta give this one to Jonny Storm only because Mosh relied too heavily on racist attacks.  Some of them were definitely funny but it seemed like he had nothing else to throw at the dude…props to both of these cats.

Check it out!

Ice-T Appologizes to Soulja Boy (and then clowns him)

Posted in Beef, Humor, Video with tags , , , , , on June 29, 2008 by thestateofhiphop

Ice-T wraps up his so-called “beef” with Soulja Boy by responding to Soulja Boy’s comeback diss.  Check it out.

…and here’s Soulja Boy’s original diss back to Ice-T where he basically calls him old and outdated and (I must admit) clowns him somewhat harshly. 

Rap Fundamentals Announces Giveaway For Aspiring MC’s

Posted in Contests/Giveaways, How To Rap with tags , , , , , , , , on May 3, 2008 by thestateofhiphop

Rap Fundamentals Grand PrizeTo celebrate the release of the Rap Fundamentals E-Book, (The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Writing, Recording, and Promoting Rap Music) during June 1st through June 7th, 2008, seventeen lucky people will be selected to win one or more prizes useful to aspiring MC’s.

To qualify you must be subscribed to the Rap Fundamentals Newsletter.

Once subscribed you’ll be redirected to a page with a link to a free download of the first chapter of the Rap Fundamentals e-book as well as more details about the giveaway.

Over $500 worth of prizes are guaranteed to be given out in the first week! 

TSOHH is proud to be a part of what we strongly believe to be the best MC Improvement course of its kind.  This is sure to be a win-win for everyone involved. 

You have a good chance of winning either a complete audio recording set-up, handheld mics, CD’s, iTunes gift cards or one or more of the other prizes being given away…but no matter what, at the very least you will learn to rap better, record a demo, or promote your music in ways you never thought possible.  All the while you’ll be helping TSOHH and RapFundamentals.com grow so that we can continue to provide better resources for aspiring emcees.

I hope all of you can participate.  Click here to sign up!