‘NY Loves Dilla’ at Inaugural Event Hosted by Ma Dukes

dilla

Words by Korby Benoit

Since my earliest experiences listening to acts like Run DMC, The Fat Boys and UTFO the sound of hip-hop always made sense to me.  No one had to explain it to me or tell me that this was the “cool” music to listen to. Hip-hop has provided my musical foundation and my entry into the world of the arts.

In the spring of 1996, I was a high school student attending the High School of Telecommunication Arts and Technology in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. By that time, I was a hip-hop geek who took great pride in his TDK and Maxell cassette collection of rap radio shows. I used to record Stretch Armstrong & Bobbito, The Underground Railroad with Jay Smooth, and DJ Evil Dee on Hot 97. Nevertheless, it was another Hot 97 show that introduced me to James Dewitt Yancey a.k.a. Jay Dee the artist later known as J Dilla. Future Flavors was the show and it was hosted by two of the genre’s most important and influential producers, Marley Marl and Pete Rock.

As I recall, at some point during their mix, Marley and Pete got on the mic to announce they were about to play a remix by Jay Dee. While I don’t remember if this was a remix for De La Soul, Busta Rhymes or Keith Murray, I do remember the level of excitement in the voices of the two hosts. I remember enjoying the song and like hip-hop itself, the sound just spoke to me. Yet this time in a way that was a little different; The sound was more melodic and the bass groove was simply groovier than anything I’d ever heard. At the time, it sounded like hip-hop from the future. Later I learned that Dilla was also responsible for Pharcyde’s “Runnin,” which was already one of my favorite songs in their catalog. It was evident that the producer had emerged with a new sound that rap luminaries and fans loved and longed for.

Read the rest after the jump

Brooklyn Goes Hard with DJ Grandmaster Flash Rocking #Offline Weekly

 

flash

by Lisa Russell

If you’re in the know, you know that #Offline’s Wednesday night party featuring live sets with Tribe Called Quest‘s front man Q-Tip and Natasha Diggs plus special guests is a party not to be missed. And if you’re really in the know, you know that #Offline was the place to be last night to witness legendary Grandmaster Flash kill it on the decks, proving he is the definitive master of the ones and twos.

Old school hip hop bodes well at the Brooklyn-based venue Output where its dress code is “Brooklyn is the new black.” The venue, with two dance floors, two full bars, and a dope outdoor space is the first dance club in Williamsburg and it prides itself on being as real as it gets. There is no bottle service and you won’t find a barrage of cameras as distractions. Instead you’ll witness a communal space where love of music and intimacy with the resident and guest DJs supersedes love of hype. The venue is so real that in the small chance you leave behind one of your valuables, you can write their lost and found at ilostmyshit (at) outputclub.com.

Read the rest after the jump

Throwback Thursday: Jamiroquai US Debut Show @ Supper Club – Nov 4, 1993

 

*(2013)_19931104

For this week’s Throwback Thursday, Giant Step President/CEO Maurice Bernstein takes it back to Jamiroquai’s US debut! We know you’ve got some Jamiroquai memories – serve ‘em up!

This was Jamiroquai’s US debut. We first became familiar with them in the very early 90s when they released the “Too Young To Die” single on Acid Jazz. Very quickly, they were signed to a major deal on Sony in the UK. This was first artist we worked with from the “acid jazz” scene that really garnered major label interest. You had the Brand New Heavies before that, but this was huge – it was a massive, massive deal.

The album came out in the UK; it was a double album called Emergency On Planet Earth and it went straight to number one – #1 in Europe, #1 in Japan – massive. Keep in mind that before this all happened, the type of music we were all promoting was underground and not mainstream at all – but this was total mainstream.

With that said, it was then time for Jamiroquai to come to the US. Leading up to the show, the band came out to the states a few times to do bits of promo, and each time they’d come to the club and hang out with us; we got to get to know the guys pretty well.

Read the rest after the jump