Exponentially fresh.

This video gave me the munchies.

I have to head back to the D.C. area by the end of the month to handle some shit, and I think I’m gonna get ready for my trip by watching DMV spitter Phil Da Phuture’s latest video for “Get Bank.”

I escaped Brooklyn for the week to hide out down here in the DMV, but I guess I won’t be doing much hiding with stuff like this going on. If you’re around the way come out to these and say hello. I don’t show face much around here these days, so it’s always nice to connect with people.

First up, tonight is the album release party for Tabi Bonney’s The Summer Years. I’ve been told this is an open bar until 11pm. Venue is Recess, 727 15th St. NW. My only gripe about this is the flyer and its utter lack of essential information. What time does it start? Don’t know. What kind of liquor is gonna be at that open bar? No clue. What time does it end? Don’t know. Cover? I had to ask around, there’s no cover, and no RSVP. So please don’t ask me these things, because I really don’t know the answer.

Tomorrow brings a slightly more intellectualized version of Hip Hop fuckery to D.C., in the shape of the I Am Music panel discussion and artist showcase. Definitely looking forward to seeing Gods’Illa rock (do you have their mixtape yet? Shame on you if you don’t). The homie Langston provides the rundown on this event:

WASHINGTON, DC – (September 15, 2011) I AM MUSIC is part music festival with performances from emerging musicians and part music seminar with a discussion panel from leading musicindustry professional.  The goal of I AM MUSIC is to create a nurturing platform for artists to express their talents and to educate them in how to take their careers to the next level. Spotlight artists from the night will be selected by the industry panel to receive an one on one session with the J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League, a feature in Vibe Magazine and a complimentary recording session at Washington, DC’s renown House Studios.

Portions of the proceeds from I AM MUSIC will be donated to the MusiCares Foundation.  MusiCares provides a safety net of critical assistance for music people in times of need. MusiCares’ services and resources cover a wide range of financial, medical and personal emergencies, and each case is treated with integrity and confidentiality. MusiCares also focuses the resources and attention of the music industry on human service issues that directly impact the health and welfare of the music community.

This year’s discussion panel includes Grammy Award winning producers J.U.S.T.I.C.E League, VIBE Magazine Music Editor John F. Kennedy, MTV writer DL Chandler, FUZE Director of Marketing Dee Barmunido, WPGC 95.5’s DJ Heat and music video director Chris “Broadway” Romero.  The panel will cover topics ranging from how to make a hit record to how to get yourmusic heard by the right people. WKYS 93.3’s Pharoh Martin has been selected to moderate the discussions for the evening.

I AM MUSIC will feature performances by Tabi Bonney, Que Tha Future (formerly of Day26), Black Cobain, Gods’illa, Kingpen Slim, Uptown XO, Lyriciss, RatheMC and more.

I AM MUSIC Festival is sponsored by Rocksmith Tokyo, FUZE Beverage, I Got It For Free and Thr3e Rules.

I AM MUSIC Festival will be held in Washington, DC on Sept 21,2011 at  U ST Music Hall 1115 U St NW Washington DC. For more information on I AM MUSIC visit www.iammusicdc.com and follow I AM MUSIC on twitter www.twitter.com/iammusicfest

Be there.

Phil Ade rocked a show in Canada, filmed it, and turned the footage into his latest #PhilAdeFriday video. I know my readers seem to like this guy and I’m very happy about that! Kid is dope.

I released a track from this earlier, and now the entire project is up for grabs. Inner Loop Records presents Soulful!’s Mumbo Sauce and Drumbreaks. This is like half rap, half instrumental album, 100% a great glimpse into the D.C. area Hip Hop scene right now. Track list below, as well as a link to a stream and download of the album via Bandcamp.

1. Mumbo Sauce & Drumbreaks (intro) – f/ Muggsy Malone & D.O.E. C.I.G.A.P.O.M.
2. Bass & My Flute
3. Season Opener feat. D. Julien
4. One 4 XO
5. Some Other Ship
6. Soulful! – Welcome Back
7. Soulful! ft. Cortez & IhsAn Bilal – EverybodyPeace (Not Around at the end)
8. Soulful! – Ike Hayes
9. Soulful! – Love Thing snippet feat. D.O.E C.I.G.A.P.O.M
10. MosEL & Zoe Indigo – Take It Up
11. Soulful! – Idlewild
12. Soulful! – WoodroWilsonBridge-That Mellow
13. Soulful! – CuzAndra (One 4 Slim)
14. Soulful!. Ishan Bilal – IhsAn’s Perspective (Interlude) feat. IhsAn Bilal
15. Soulful! – Rock N’ SOUL
16. Soulful! – OutHERspace
17. Mind Right feat. XO
18. Laelo Hood – Laelo Hood Skit (Interlude)
19. Soulful! – Takin’ Over-Lazy Eye
20. Soulful! – One 4 Kenn Starr
21. Soulful! – BEyourSelf
22. Soulful! – Gone Till November

[DOWNLOAD] Soulful! - Mumbo Sauce and Drumbreaks

When it comes to the DMV rap scene, Phil Ade constantly catches my eye. Ever since I heard “Hollywood” he’s been steadily on my radar. I’ve been running into him randomly in Brooklyn a lot these days, and it’s refreshing to see the D.C. musical movement reach beyond the confines of the Mid-Atlantic.

[DOWNLOAD] Phil Ade – Ms. Temptation (produced by Sunny Norway)

It’s been eight months since I officially moved my residence from Northern Virginia to Brooklyn and I really haven’t taken much time to come back to the DMV since I left. You don’t really realize how much you’ve adapted to new surroundings until you take a trip to your old ones. I’m amazed by the weirdest things now, and certain habits I have don’t fit in down south. For instance…

I stop at all red lights, even when I want to turn right. I remember once upon a time when I first started driving in Brooklyn a few years ago, when a friend of mine freaked out because I turned right at a red light somewhere in Flatbush. I was like “what do you mean I can’t do this? There’s no sign that says I can’t!” I was so confused. Eventually I learned that was a big no-no in the five boroughs, and I embraced this rule so thoroughly that I’ve forgotten that you can do this anywhere else that isn’t NYC. Now when I come back to VA for a visit I catch myself stopping at a red light with my right turn signal on and a clear road ahead of me, and it usually takes the person behind me honking at me for me to realize what I’m doing. Oops.

I ignore speed limits. See, New York area traffic lights are synchronized very well, and if you go just a little bit too slow, you’ll catch a ton of reds. Maintain your speed though? Smooth sailing, green lights for a mile. And the other thing I quickly learned was that on elevated freeways like the BQE, there’s never a shoulder. Where will you get pulled over for speeding? Pretty much nowhere. So the way I drive in NYC is to go as fast as I can until something is in my way, be it a car, a red light, or ballsy pedestrians. And this works. I get where I need to be safely and efficiently. This is impossible in Virginia. We got every variety of fed or state trooper lurking behind every corner just waiting for you to go two MPH over the limit. And traffic lights are so spread apart that synchronicity doesn’t really happen. I caught myself going 65 on Rt. 236 one day just because I could…then I remembered where I was and slowed the roll back down to a healthy 45mph. Insane. I’m officially a speed demon.

I get the worst cravings for Dominican food. What do you mean I can’t get cuchifritos after going to Zanzibar? There’s no woman selling pastelitos out of a cart anywhere? I can’t have fried cheese for breakfast? The ABC stores don’t sell Brugal?! I miss Bushwick.

Suburbia amazes me. Wait, what is that, an electric stove? WOW. Oh my God Based God, you have  central air conditioning? CARPET?!?! But what about the bedbugs! No roaches? No mice? This must be heaven. Do you know what it feels like to feel fluffy carpet beneath your bare feet after you’ve gone six months without it? It’s euphoric I tell you. And as if that wasn’t enough…is that a reserved parking space I see? And you don’t have to pay hundreds a month for that? No wait, you have a driveway? A garage attached to your crib? No fucking way. And if I park my car I don’t have to move it for street cleaning? But…there’s no way…it makes no sense…it’s…wow.

Silence scares me. I’m so used to ambient noise such as the project hallway domestic dispute, the bachata music blaring from the bodega, car horns, or the J train tracks that when things are dead quiet it’s creepy. I stopped by VA for a bit in like August or September and something crazy happened to me…I was standing outside with some friends at like 3am and not only was there almost zero traffic on the street, but I heard crickets. A sound I had grown up with as a child but that suddenly became foreign to me when I moved to Brooklyn. I never even noticed that I had never seen a cricket in NY until I heard them all loud and clear back in VA. The sound was so pronounced that it stood out to me like a fire alarm. My friends thought I was crazy.

I’m starting to feel like an outsider in my own hometown. This is only the tip of the iceberg of little things (public transportation woes outside of NYC, how crappy other cities’ radio stations are, how early clubs close, the lack of awareness of Jewish holidays) that have now become a way of life for me. It all just makes me more glad that I got out of my surroundings and took that leap into a new place and realized how much the world has to offer. But for now I gotta get used to being down here because until all that snow melts I’m a little stuck…glad I skipped town when I did!

One day when I was on my way to the 9 to 5 last week, I did what I usually do: listen to the Cipha Sounds and Rosenberg morning show on Hot 97. I mean I won a $100 Best Buy gift card through their show once, and I’m a sucker for free shit, so you know I stay listening to them. For those not in the area or those who just never gave a fuck, the show goes like this: Cipha Sounds is the token Puerto Rican, Rosenberg is the token Hip Hop head Jew, and then there’s a girl, K Foxx, who tries to chime in with her two cents about shit but usually gets shut down by Rosenberg. It really is quite funny. Racist jokes are abundant, and hell, even their promotion (“A Black, a Puerto Rican, and a Jew” billboards lining the streets?) is racially slanted. But we all know it’s a joke. Hell, I even laugh at it half the time. Then again, I glued myself to this book for an hour after I bought it, so I obviously have no tact:

(In case you’re interested the book is great, and available at Amazon or currently for sale for $10 at the Powerhouse Arena at 37 Main St. in Brooklyn)

So it was only fitting that I’d laugh my ass off in my car when Cipha Sounds said this on air last week…

Oh, the classic Haiti and AIDS joke. We all know Haiti is fucked the fuck up, and this was the kind of quip that would be type offensive if you were Haitian…and the Haitian massive is strong out here in NYC. But let’s break this down a bit.

First of all, they make jokes like this all the time. About all sorts of races of people. It’s kinda their schtick. We all know it’s a joke. Second, it seems as if Cipha was a bit outdated in his joke anyway, as Haiti’s AIDS rate has been dropping and was estimated to be only a mere 2.2% in 2009, which leaves it with a lower rate than the District of Columbia during the same year. It probably would have stung more, statistically speaking, if Ciph had said he never messed with a D.C. girl.

What I’m saying is this push to get him fired all of a sudden, although I can understand the outrage from what he said, just seems a bit extra. If anything what this is doing is getting people like myself to look at the current situation surrounding the AIDS epidemic in Haiti, and abroad. Which isn’t exactly something at the forefront of the news. And now a lot of people are listening thanks to all the large Hip Hop media outlets picking up the story. If I were a Haitian offended by this comment, I’d be taking this opportunity to contact the press and get coverage on what the situation down there is really like right now, and spit out statistics to prove Ciph wrong. Turn the negative into a positive. At this point I’m sure he’s going to be thinking twice about what kind of jokes he cracks on air, and probably off the air as well. We all say stupid shit, is this really worth firing him over? Plus anyway, if I ever wake up early enough again to hear their show I don’t really need to hear K Foxx and Rosenberg bickering with each other all morning.