Posts Tagged ‘hip hop’

My 10 Favorite Albums of the Decade

December 19, 2009

After abandoning this blog for more than four months, I decided it would be fun to get in on the “best of the decade” hoopla and post my own personal faves.

Here they are, roughly in the order that they were released:

  1. Figure 8 – Elliott Smith (2000) – This was the last album released before he died, but I didn’t really start listening until about 2002.
  2. BB Queen – Bahamadia (2000) – Why doesn’t this lady put out more albums?
  3. Amnesiac – Radiohead (2001) – It’s tough to pick a favorite Radiohead album, but “Pyramid Song” and “I Might Be Wrong” decided it for me.
  4. Blue Horse – The Be Good Tanyas (2001) – Not sure what it is about these gals that I like so much.
  5. The Listening – Little Brother (2003) – Amazing production by 9th Wonder, fascinating lyrics by Phonte and Big Pooh.
  6. Remember Who I Am – Girlyman (2003) – Some of the best times I’ve had with my best friends have been accompanied by these sweet harmonies.
  7. Grey Album – Danger Mouse (2004) – A bootleg mashup of Jay-Z’s Black Album and the Beatles’ White Album. Enough said.
  8. Arular – M.I.A. (2005) – Sadly, I didn’t start listening to M.I.A. until a couple years after this was released.
  9. Illionois – Sufjan Stevens (2005) – Epic pop.
  10. Jeanius – Jean Grae & 9th Wonder (2008, kinda) – This was actually leaked on the internet in 2004, so most fans have been listening to it for years.

Hmm, I notice that no albums released past 2005 have wormed their way into my heart quite yet.

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Ready for Summer?

June 1, 2009

One of my favorite things about NYC is the free summer concerts. Every spring, I make a list of about ten shows I want to see—but I usually only actually make it to one or two of them.

Little Brother in Fort Greene Park, BrooklynSome of the best (or at least most memorable) concerts I’ve been to have been the free ones: the Roots on Pier 54 in July 2005, one of the best nights of my first summer in New York; Little Brother in Fort Greene Park in 2006, where they said hello to me before the show on my way to the bathroom, but I was too shy to respond; Cafe Tacuba in Central Park in 2007, where I was knocked around in a humid, smelly, dusty mosh pit; Girlyman at Madison Square Park in 2007, when we took awkward pictures with Ty and found out that Doris used to be a camp counselor of someone my girlfriend knew from college; Lauryn Hill at Wingate Park in 2007, even though she showed up three hours late, looked and sounded almost unrecognizable (and, well, not that great); Jean Grae, 9th Wonder, and Talib Kweli at Fat Beats in 2008, where I stood five feet from the Jeanius herself.

Here are some I might make it to this summer:

Doggystyle forms a feminist

August 29, 2008

Latoya Peterson has a brilliant guest post this week over at Feministe about feminism, misogyny, and hip hop. She writes:

“Stupid,” he taunted me from across the room. “You need to stop looking all dumb and learn to start acting like a girl. You need to look like this!”

He walked over, and shoved the CD cover in my face.

Yes, the infamous Doggystyle cover.

The implication – that I was to emulate the sexualized bitch (literally!) depicted on the cover, reduced to a pair of shapely haunches for the pleasure of the males in my surrounding area – made me shake with disgust. To this day, I have never listened to Doggystyle in full, nor have I allowed a copy of the CD to stay in my line of sight.

Sometimes I wonder how different I would be today if my parents hadn’t shielded me so from pop culture images. (Really, I probably hadn’t ever seen that Doggystyle cover until a couple of years ago.)