I meant to write about hip-hop this week, but mostly all I want to say is that it’s good and people should listen to more of it (like Blackalicious’s THE CRAFT, should you be wanting a recommendation, just check out this week’s podcast to taste its awesomeosity, yes that is a word) and conversely gather recommendations from you for hip-hop, but I was going to use a lot more words.
But why waste words, when there’s so many to read elsewhere? To wit: the World Question Center is one of the coolest things ever, one that I wish I gave the due it deserved. Each year, they gather the answers to a provocative but open question from lots of different smart people, and post the answers. Of late, they’ve also gathered them in book form, which I’m tempted to invest in because (apropos to the value of free that came up in a recent comments thread) I privilege the tangible and that which I spend money on. Though given the number of DVDs I own that I haven’t watched that privilege is clearly modest at best.
The question this year is What are you optimistic about? This is where I’m supposed to tell you about all the interesting things that people say in it and make some long circuitious connection to the music I’ve been obsessed about this week (for the record: “Innocent When You Dream” by Tom Waits, triggered by an item on Pitchfork about him suing a soundalike; “Ceremony” by New Order, triggered by seeing MARIE ANTOINETTE last month [which uses the song prominently] and being obsessed with this song when I was in 9th grade and then not hearing it for ten years and finally downloading it; “Bleeder” by Hot Water Music, an acoustic cover of an Alkaline Trio song that makes me miss the sensation of being crazy in love, triggered possibly also by the content of the scene in MARIE ANTOINETTE but also by digging out an old zine I did which is a long story in and of itself, but anyway, I was in the middle of a sentence), but the truth is, I just started looking at this year’s entries today and have been superbusy so I barely skimmed it. As it turns out, though, the very first answer informs Kilian’s blog from earlier this week. So it’s all topical. Also, Brian Eno provides an answer.
But anyway, to answer their question, I am optimistic about living in a world where this exists:
(This video is for Shorty’s “Coopie N’ Me”. Shorty is a precursor of US Maple. I have great love for US Maple, but know little about Shorty. I thought they were more straightahead than I now think they are after having seen this. I also never realized how much the singer looks like Bob Odenkirk. I know my answer to the question is tangential and poorly constructed and I will maybe try to answer it better sometime when I haven’t been editing reality tv for some stupidly large number of days in a row, but I have been.)
So, like I was saying, recommend me some of your favorite hip-hop!