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rza – you can’t stop me now June 23, 2008

Posted by KG in hip-hop, media, music.
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another great ?uestlove interview April 23, 2008

Posted by KG in arts/culture, comedy, design, hip-hop, interviews, legal, marketing, media, music, news, radio.
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onsmash:

With less than a week till the release of their 8th (!) masterpiece, Rising Down, OnSMASH linked up with The Roots mouthpiece and unofficial leader ?uestlove to talk about his legendary crew and the state of this art we call hip-hop.

I want to talk about Rising Down right now. From what I’ve been hearing, with the exception of one song [“Birthday Girl”], this record sounds very, very serious, very aggressive, and kind of dark. The last Roots record, I got that kind feeling from like that, was Illadelph Half Life. What was the intent behind this record?

Hip-hop is about as apolitical as it’s ever been. I guess there’s some sort of unsaid science to how we made this record. In order not to come off like we’re on our soapbox we knew that musically this album had to be bangin’. But of course the 2008 definition of bangin’ definitely varies from the 1996 definition of bangin’, but that’s the standard with which we feel most comfortable. So there’s this sort of boom bap element [on the album]. At the very most today when you get a hip-hop record you can only hope for that one cut that has that “boom bap element”, similar to how what the one radio cut was back in the day, like Brand Nubian’s “Tried To Do Me” or Diamond D “I’m So Confused” song. One token radio cut on a hip-hop record now turned into one Primo cut on a commercial record [in 2008].

Very true

We just wanted to put out an album of bangers because we kind of knew we had to sort of offset the heavy message. I guess if anything probably the hardest thing to do on this record was to put everything in first person perspective. Because normally whenever we did touch something political it was always from a very safe arm’s length third person perspective.

(more…)

talib kweli and strong arm steady – rap city freestyle April 7, 2008

Posted by KG in hip-hop, media, music, television.
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nusrat fateh ali khan – mast mast April 6, 2008

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updated: the user who posted the video to youtube disabled embedding, so here are the direct links… part 1: http://youtube.com/watch?v=zqs3DkcKUB0 and part 2: http://youtube.com/watch?v=VDzJRsmzbTg

nice work if you can get it March 23, 2008

Posted by KG in arts/culture, immigration, international, interviews, media, news, politics, radio.
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i found act 4 pretty moving…

3/21/08 this american life:

Act Four. Just One Thing Missing.

Reporter Douglas McGray interviews a college student in California with good grades, an excellent work ethic, but no possible way to get a legal job. She’s lived in the U.S. since she was little, but her parents are undocumented; and she is, too. Most of her friends and teachers don’t even know. Douglas McGray is a fellow at the New America Foundation.

in blog news… March 9, 2008

Posted by KG in media, misc, news, politics.
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matt-yglesias.jpg

nytimes photo

nytimes article about matt yglesias’s blogging “flophouse”:

This was an election night party and a blogger party at what residents and friends call the Flophouse, a creaky row house with sea-foam-color floors, where Mr. Yglesias lives with four other roommates, all young bloggers.

Group living in the nation’s capital is nothing new. In Washington, the work-life balance often seems less balance and more all-consuming overlap. After all, it is well known that even senators like Charles E. Schumer share housing with other politicians.

In that sense, the presence of a blogger house reflects the increasing number of online pundits in the capital. The Flophouse bloggers may not be part of the traditional mainstream news media, but they are certainly part of the mainstream blogosphere that is helping drive discourse in the city and the country. Mr. Yglesias said his site attracted about two million page views last month.

“Groups of similar-minded people congregating together and publishing their thoughts used to be called a magazine,” Andrew Sullivan, the former editor of The New Republic who now blogs for The Atlantic, wrote in an e-mail message. “This is just a 21st-century version of an 18th-century innovation.”

(more…)

swifter, higher, crueler March 1, 2008

Posted by KG in econ, environment, international, media, news, politics, religion.
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 beijing-2008.jpg

photo by flickr user H@r@ld used under a creative commons license

joshua kurlantzick of the new republic reports (pdf 1/pdf 2 or jpg 1/jpg 2) on the regression of human rights and increased censorship in china pre-Olympics:

Given China’s promises, over the past five years politicians, activists, and many reporters have created a meta-narrative for the Beijing Olympics: With prestige on the line, and the international press descending on Beijing, China simply would have to improve. The Olympics offers China “an enormous opportunity to change world perceptions and implement significant reforms,” said John Kerry after Beijing won the bid.

Yet, since obtaining the Games, China’s human rights record has actually regressed. Human Rights Watch recently concluded that “legal reforms [have] stalled,” Chinese officials have stepped up their censorship of online forums, and authorities have targeted the “network of lawyers, legal academics, rights activists, and journalists…which aims to pursue social justice and constitutional rights.” “Instead of pre-Olympic ‘Beijing spring’ of greater freedom and tolerance of dissent, we are seeing the gagging of dissidents, a crackdown on activists, and attempts to block independent media coverage,” announced Brad Adam, head of Human Rights Watch’s Asia division, a conclusion echoed by a recent Amnesty International assessment of China. Meanwhile, as a Financial Times report revealed, the Communist party has tightened its grip on Chinese politics by co-opting more entrepreneurs into the Party and taking over greater swathes of government bureaucracy.

Even the Olympic pledge of press freedom has not been met. Beijing has imposed a law restricting foreign news agencies working in China and also tightened control of the domestic press by launching a crackdown on “false” news and shuttering some 18,000 blogs and websites since April. Local journos who don’t get the message wind up in worse shape then Judith Miller: In August, Chinese reporters interviewing people in a province where a bridge collapsed were attacked by plainclothes thugs, who kicked and punched the journalists.

michael shermer @ google February 18, 2008

Posted by KG in books, cognitive science, econ, history, marketing, media, neuroscience, politics, psychology, science, speeches, talks, tech.
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michael shermer @ google discussing his new book – the mind of the market: compassionate apes, competitive humans, and other tales from evolutionary economics

discusses the ultimatum game @ 27min, the evolution of moral sense/trolley car experiment @ 33min & how hormones affect trust/cooperation @ 43min:

related: shermer speaking about debunking superstitions @ TED & “why people believe weird things about money

trees vs. solar energy February 12, 2008

Posted by AP in environment, media, news.
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apparently, trees are bad for the environment. npr reports:

Morning Edition, February 12, 2008 · One homeowner in San Francisco has asked his neighbor to chop down his redwood trees because their shadow is interfering with his solar panels. The neighbor refused. The feud has ended up in court, and the results could have ramifications statewide.

barack obama strongest in november versus mccain February 9, 2008

Posted by KG in 2008 Elections, media, news, politics, television.
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