Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Phat Root Radio Episode #15 Tracklist


1. Bush Babies – The love song feat. Mos Def

2. Camp Lo – Sparkle

3. Blu & Exile – Blue Colar worker

4. Lowdown Suite – Moka Only

5. Onyx – Slam

6. Cymarshall Law & Mr. Joeker – love sex or what

7. Bush Babies – 3 MC’s

8. Surreal and Dj Balance – Rebirth of Skill

9. T&E – Little Young

10. Big Pun – The Dream Shatterer

11. DITC - Lyrical Threat

12. Looptroop - Long Arm of the Law

13. Nas – Memory Lane

14. Hydroponic Groove Sessions – In Hale


Segment 1 (Make Up Babie Makin’ Music):

01. Bluebird – Oneself


02. Jean Grae – Love Thirst

03. Common – Come Closer ft. Q-tip & Erykah Badu

04. Musiq Soulchild – Stop Playin

Segment 2 (General Heat):

05. Meth, Ghost, & Rae – Dangerous

06. Rhymefest – Letter

07. Pastor Troy – Then I Got Change

Segment 3 (Funky Dr. Dre Tribute):

08. Dr. Dre – Juice

09. Dr. Dre – He’s Bionic

10. Dr. Dre – House Calls

11. Dr. Dre – Another ‘G’ Thing

Segment 4 (More Music For The Purpose Of Procreation):

12. Zo! – Holding You, Loving You

13. Anthony Hamilton – Soul’s On Fire

14. Musiq Soulchild – Millionaire

15. Noel Gourdin – You’re The One


Saturday, March 27, 2010

Sampling As An Artform Dying In Today's Hip Hop World?


Simple beats and Auto-Tuned vocals form the foundation of 808s & Heartbreak, Kanye West’s latest release. As the title implies, it’s a breakup album. But perhaps the split is deeper than even West realizes. His new sound is a bold departure from his previous efforts, but also a challenge to the parameters of what many listeners would consider hip-hop. 808s & Heartbreak doesn’t rely on an element once pervasive in the genre: samples. The album doesn’t contain any prominent samples, while West’s previous release, Graduation, featured them on 10 of its 13 tracks. He is not alone in this change: Young Jeezy’s last album, The Recession, boasts just three samples, and T.I.’s latest, Paper Trail, features only four.

The staple of hip-hop’s beatmakers for nearly 30 years, sample-based production has slowly eroded over the past decade, due to rising costs and rampant litigation. Today the average base price to clear a sample is $10,000, and the threat of lawsuits over copyright infringement looms heavy over artists and labels. High-profile rappers have become legal targets for music publishing companies, while independent MCs struggle to compete. With no standardized pricing, the prohibitive cost of samples has altered the creative approach of many hip-hop producers. The trend toward purely electronic production — synthesizers, drum machines, Auto-Tune — has injected major stylistic changes into the genre, with producers like the Neptunes, Timbaland, and T-Pain at the forefront.

“The art form of hip-hop — the sound that attracted us to it — is diminishing,” says RZA, Wu-Tang Clan producer and MC. “It’s becoming just another form of pop music.”

Up until the early ’90s, artists sampled liberally from other musicians. But a case brought against Biz Markie in 1991 changed the rules of hip-hop and sample-based music as a whole. That year, the rapper appeared in a U.S. District Court in New York accused of copyright infringement for sampling portions of a 1972 Gilbert O’Sullivan song, “Alone Again (Naturally),” for a track on his album I Need a Haircut. Though he initially sought permission to use O’Sullivan’s original composition, Markie never received it and included the sample anyway. The rapper’s actions incited a stern response from presiding Judge Kevin Thomas Duffy.

“‘Thou shalt not steal’ has been an admonition followed since the dawn of civilization,” Duffy told Markie. He then issued an injunction against Cold Chillin’/Warner Bros. Records for the distribution of the album and song. “People talk about the Biz case as a turning point,” says Hope Carr, president of Clearance 13′-8″, an agency specializing in sample clearance and risk assessment. “It was enormously frustrating, because the decision didn’t really decide any actual law; the only citation was the Bible. But it certainly got a lot of people’s attention.”

Clearance agencies like Carr’s began sprouting up in the early ’90s to facilitate the proper licensing of samples and broker deals on a case-by-case basis. While there is no set formula, the length and prominence of a sample plays a major role in determining price. It also matters who is being sampled (e.g., Barry White is expensive; Stax Records artists like Wilson Pickett are more reasonable). One response to rising prices has been the increased use of interpolation, the practice of having a musician rerecord a sample to help reduce costs.

“Take the temperature of mainstream hip-hop and it’s obvious that sampling just isn’t a large part of it anymore,” says indie rapper El-P, also label chief at Definitive Jux. “And the people that do sample [are the ones who] can afford to.” The practice is, in many ways, a millionaire’s game, populated by artists like Jay-Z or (until recently) West, who can pay to play — and who can lean on fame as a bargaining chip. “When [Kanye] sampled Ray Charles for ‘Gold Digger,’ everybody was like, ‘It’s not going to get cleared,’ ” says A-Trak, West’s former DJ. “But then he called whoever’s in charge of [Charles'] estate, and it eventually got cleared.”

“In the old days, samples were $2,500 or $1,500,” says RZA. “I paid $2,000 for a Gladys Knight sample for ‘Can It Be All So Simple’ off Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers). That was a big intro, and the hook was repetitious. Something like that nowadays would cost $10,000.” The problem, RZA says, is that high prices are discouraging producers like him from using samples, which in turn impacts all parties’ ability to make money.

“For Gladys Knight, even though [that sample] only cost $2,000, that was an advance,” he says. “Enter the Wu-Tang went on to sell millions of copies. She probably made about $50,000 [from publishing]. The master owner probably made a good amount of money, too.”

A sample must be cleared with two camps: those who own the master recording (typically the record company that released the song or whoever purchased the catalog) and those who own the publishing rights (usually the songwriter). “Generally, one side is going to cost about as much as the other,” says Eothen Alapatt, general manager at Stones Throw Records. Sampling a major artist like James Brown would cost about $20,000 — $10,000 for the master recording side and $10,000 for the publishing — a figure that rivals the entire budget for an album released on Stones Throw. But to not clear the samples on an album poses a high risk. Though he wouldn’t get specific, Alapatt says that Stones Throw has paid $25,000 to $35,000 to have samples cleared after the release of an album.

For a time, many producers believed that obscure artists — one-hit wonders and lesser-known jazz and soul musicians — were the gateway to cheaper samples. But as Alapatt explains, that wasn’t to be. “That was false hope in a lot of ways, because you’d be surprised who’s out there Googling themselves,” he says. “People are using the Internet to search out information that my generation thought was only possible through a secret handshake.”

Countless lawsuits over the past ten years have proven that music catalogs’ owners spend substantial resources researching and litigating against unauthorized use of their music — a process sometimes referred to as “trolling” or “sample chasing.” Bridgeport Music, a publishing company that owns the rights to the music of such groups as Parliament/ Funkadelic and the Ohio Players, has filed hundreds of copyright infringement suits. While about half of these cases were either dismissed or settled, Bridgeport scored two important victories in the past few years. In a 2004 case that focused on N.W.A’s use of a Parliament guitar sample, a judge mandated that the use of any unauthorized sample, no matter how obscured the source material, can be considered copyright infringement. And in 2006, Bridgeport and Westbound Records won $4.2 million in damages after a court ruled to stop all sales of Notorious B.I.G.’s Ready to Die album because it contained an unauthorized sample of the Ohio Players’ “Singing in the Morning.”

Some majors do appear to be embracing unauthorized sampling. Take Gregg Gillis (a.k.a. Girl Talk), whose latest album, Feed the animals, contains more than 300 uncleared samples. “We’ve had no issues on a copyright level so far,” says Gillis, who began selling his album in June as a pay-what-you-wish download. “People from major labels have been interested in having me collaborate [on remixes]. I think they’re starting to realize, ‘Why fight when we can work with it and make something cool?’ ”

RZA believes sampling needs to be regulated, starting with standardized fees and government oversight. Producers often have to give 50 to 100 percent of any publishing revenue to the original artist they’re sampling. RZA would like to see a new system where the publishing is equally split between the new producer and original artist, and in which session players from the initial recording even get paid again. “All this publishing was taken away from the artists,” he says, “and that kind of raped the hip- hop industry.” But not everyone in the industry shares his opinion.

“Not all samples are equal,” says Monica Corton, a vice president at Next Decade Entertainment. Corton, whose company represents catalogs from soul and R&B artists like Millie Jackson and Joe Simon, has licensed samples to Young Jeezy, Redman, and Pharoahe Monch. “Some people put the sampled work so out front that it dominates the song,” she says, “while others use a small portion that is not as evident.”

But according to Carr, dwindling profits across the industry have label executives searching for ways to maximize existing revenue sources. “Some of the majors have realized if they want to collect money on smaller things, they need to quote smaller figures [for samples],” she says. Lots of artists want to be honest about what they’re sampling, “but they can’t afford it.”

But until some sort of universal decision is made, more and more hip-hop artists will likely go the Kanye route and continue to blur the lines of traditional hip-hop by relying on electronic production. “Right now, without sampling in hip-hop,” RZA says, “it’s really a soggy-ass form of music.”

Via Spin

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Phat Root Radio - March 25 Wu tang, Dilated Peoples, EPMD


-Dope Commentary by your hosts 5th Sequence and DJ Icepick

-Begin WUTANG tribute

1. C.R.E.A.M - Wutang Wu vs. Beatles

2. Back in the Game - Wu vs. Beatles

3. All Flowers (ft. Raekwon and Methodman)

4. John 3:16 (ft. Methodman)

5. The Movement - (off Wu vs. Beatles)

6. Run - Wu vs. Beatles)

7. Severe Punishment - Wutang forever

8. Triumph - Wutang forever

-End Wutang Tribute

- More incredible dope hip hop commentary -

-Begin Eric Sermon/EPMD Tribute

9. Art of War (intro to out of business)

10. Right now

11. Hold Me Down

12. Symphony 2000

13. K.I.M ft Keith Murray

-End EPMD tribute

-Mo' Soopa tight commentary

-Begin Kev Brown Tribute

14. Beats n' Rhymes ft. Phonte & Oddisee

15. Hennessy pt. 1 ft. Kenn Starr

16. The Hennessy joint ft. Kenn Starr, Wayna & Rahee

-End 5th Hour

The Ice Hour (Dilated Peoples Extra Thumpin’ Tribute) Tracklist:

01. Dilated Peoples – Pay Attention

02. Dilated Peoples – Nightlife ft. Defari

03. Dilated Peoples – Poisonous ft. Devin The Dude

04. Dilated Peoples – Service

05. Dilated Peoples – Panic

06. Dilated Peoples – World On Wheels

07. Dilated Peoples – Dilated Junkies

08. Dilated Peoples – This Way ft. Kanye West

09. Dilated Peoples – No Retreat

10. Dilated Peoples – Marathon

11. Dilated Peoples – Live On Stage

12. Dilated Peoples – The Platform (Erick Sermon Remix)

13. Dilated Peoples – Big Business

14. Dilated Peoples – Closed Session ft. Defari & Phil The Agony

15. Dilated Peoples – Hard Hitters ft. Black Thought

16. Dilated Peoples – Neighborhood Watch Instrumental


Saturday, March 20, 2010

What does "PEACE" mean to you?

not in the sense of "peace out", but rather "peace on earth". Dope video, I like it.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Phat Root Radio Episode 13 Special Leprechaun Edition:


-- Commentary - various st. patricks day related BS. haha! --

1. Othello - Let's Just (ft. M-Phazes)

2. Gangstarr & MOP - War Goin On Outside

3. Nas - Represent

4. Median - How Big Is Your World

5. J-Live - Red Light Green Light

-- more sweet leprechaun related commentary --

6. Oddisee - Musik Lounge

7. DJ Honda ft. Keith Murray & 50 Grand) - Hai!

8. Blu & Exile - The World Is

9. A Tribe Called Quest - Midnight

10. People Under The Stairs - San Francisco Knights

11. Moka Only - Finally Throo

-- Ridiculous Leprechaun jokes and commentary --

12. Brotherman - Heart Of Dem

13. Superstition - Soul Control (ft. Illmind)

14. Heiroglyphics - Fantasy Island

15. Pete Rock & 9th Wonder - Oh Yeah (ft. Phonte, Grap Luva)

16. People Under The Stairs - The Breakdown



01. Common – The People (Original Version)

02. Saigon – Slap Niggas ft. Talib Kweli

03. Mos Def – Body Rock ft. Q-tip & Tash

04. Shai – I Don’t Wanna Be Alone ft. Jay-Z

05. Brother Ali – Life Sentence


06. Royce Da 5’9” – Over Freestyle

07. NOE – Stress

08. Evidence – Line Of Scrimmage ft. Slugg

09. Joell Ortiz – Red Rum ft. Big Pun

10. Rah Digga – Warning Shots


11. Scarface – Burn ft. Z-ro

12. Rakim – Man Above ft. Tracey Horton

13. MC Eiht – Livin’ Like Gangstaz

SEGMENT 4 (Baby Makin’ Music)

14. Alicia Keys – Sleeping With A Broken Heart

15. Mario – She Was Her

16. Jaheim – Bed Is Listening

Thursday, March 11, 2010


1. Lina - Fly support her here!
2. Lauren Hill - That thing
3. Jill Scott - Golden
4. India Irie - Video

Interview w/ Julie Johnson [Forever Glamorous, PDX] & Nefthaly Cisnero (but you can call her Taly) [Cisne & Mayback ]

5. Music Soul Child - Just friends
6. Erykah Badu - Certainly
7. Queen Latifa - U.N.I.T.Y
8. Apani B - Spot Me
9. Bahamadia - Uknowhowedo

Mo phatroot awesomeness. click HERE for PSU womens resource center. Basement of the montgomery building! GO THERE!

10. PIECE (SHE'S FROM PORTLAND, SUPPORT HER HERE)- spoken word, track 5 off her CD
11. Floetry - Floetic (Dilla remix)
12. ATCQ - Against the World

HIDDEN SECRET! will update playlist here, but it's a secret for now

13. Moka Only - Oh Gina
14. ? will update soon
15. Crustation - Purple- atcq edit
16. ? Will update soon- I Never
17. Macy Gray ft. common - I try (dilla remix)
18. PIECE (again? YEAH, AGAIN!) - more spoken word, track 9 off her CD
19. Lina
20. Polyrythym Addicts (apani )- Not Your ordinary

Phatroot PIECE out

21. Bob Marley - Is this love

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

This for all my hot steppas!

This is just tight... Fully Phat Root Endorsed.... Classic Hip Hop!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Ever Wonder What Makes A Song "Good"?

Well Nahmean TV attempts to answer just that... Take A Look...


Thursday, March 4, 2010

Phat Root Radio Episode 11 (March 4th) Tracklist

5TH HOUR (10pm-11pm):

01. Intro

02. EPMD - K.I.M ft Keith Murray and Redman

03. Nas - The Life We Chose (DJ Eli Remix)

04. Rasco - Hip Hop

05. Little Brother - The Way You Do It

06. Eric Sermon ft. Marvin Gaye - Just Like Music

07. Masta Ace & Edo G - Round and Round

08. A Tribe Called Quest - Jam

09. MF Doom - Doomsday

10. Planet Asia - Handlin Business

11. Blu & Exile - Dancing In The Rain

12. Grand Agent - Every 5 Minutes

13. EPMD - Right Now

14. Diverse - Aint Right

15. Mya & Wyclef ft. Wutang - Ghetto Superstar

16. Madlib - J Dilla Money Remix

17. 5th-2-Ice Pass Off -

ICE HOUR (11pm-12am):

SEGMENT 1: Introduction To Ice:

01. El Prez – Animal Style

02. J. Rawls ft. Invizible Handz – Know You

SEGMENT 2: Warming Up The Tables:

03. Termanology ft. Reks – Hardcore (So You Wanna Be)

04. Voo Da Teach – Get’em

05. Masta Ace ft. Big Noyd – Do It Man

06. Busta Rhymes – Dillagence

07. Big Pun ft. N.O.R.E. & Common - Verbal Murder

08. Marco Polo ft. Sadat X & Ju Ju – Rollin’

SEGMENT 3: Homage To XXL's Freshman 10:

09. XV – X.plosi.V.e

10. J. Cole ft. Brandon Hines – Dreams

11. Nipsey Hussle ft. IYAZ – Return of the Mack

12. Cunninlyguists ft. Freddie Gibbs – Imperial

13. Fashawn ft. Evidence – Our Way

14. Shawn Chrystopher – Ode To My Fans

SEGMENT 4: Babie Making Music:

15. CL Smooth – It’s A Love Thing

16. John Legend – Hello, It’s Me

17. Jovi Rockwell – Keep It Real

18. Case ft. Joe – Faded Pictures

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

George Carlin: Social Stratification, Religion, Consumerism

Great videos here, George Carlin once again making progressive points.

Social Stratification - Part 1

Religion & Consumerism - Part 2

If you agree with these points, drop a comment below to let us know!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Guys, this is dope. I hope you watch the whole thing. Excellent points made here throughout, classic Bill Maher commentary. WATCH IT! COMMENT! what do you think?

Anyone remember a cypher?

Just a sick freestyle cypher over at (PH)at Beats in New York... This is where real Hip Hop happens!