Friday, February 23, 2007

XXL Featured, iTunes Listed, Record Label Dynamo By: Baba Brinkman

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Heads or Tales,

For those of you who take an interest in my activities because of their literary pedigree, consider this the hip-hop issue. It's 2007 and I'm on the same grind that I've been percolating for the past four years, travelling around rapping the Canterbury Tales and other stories, taking my message of poetical and cultural evolution to the world. It stays fresh because I keep pushing it into new frontiers, new incarnations. I will briefly tell you about some of them.

I just got home from Project Blowed, a weekly open-mic night near Crenshaw Blvd in Los Angeles. I got to perform directly after rap veteran and underground legend Aceyalone, who came with some of the livest live hip-hop I've ever heard. I freestyled with back-packin' L.A. rappers and performed my song "Symptom", and made some good connections with with the help of a magazine article.

Which article? XXL is either the top rap magazine or one of the top two, depending on who you ask, and the April issue currently on shelves features platinum N'awlins rapper Lil Wayne on the cover proclaiming "I Am Hip-Hop", and me on page forty four proclaiming that rap is poetry. I don't claim to be hip-hop in the article, (hardly an original statement from a rapper), but the author does describe my latest album as "straight hip-hop", saving me the trouble. This full page spread with photos in the top rap mag was my ghetto pass in L.A. tonight, not that the cypher was a hostile environment, and not that my lyrics weren't pass enough; it just made a hell of an ice-breaker. If you're interested in mainstream hip-hop's take on me, you can find XXL on any magazine stand in the industrialized world.

The other new development that has given me a boost recently is the appearance of all three of my albums on the iTunes Music Store, including The Rap Canterbury Tales and the recently pre-released "straight hip-hop" LP entitled "Lit-Hop". This gives anyone anywhere with an internet connection the ability to get my music instantly, but only if they already have an interest in it. The problem of accessibility is now elegantly solved, and all that remains is to spark everyone's interest everywhere. I'm working on it.

So go ahead, treat yourself to some passionately intricate lyricism, guaranteed to make you smarter while you listen. Be my viruses, write reviews, tell your friends: I've got mad style disease, infectin' a thousand MCs like spirochetes; I've got a sonically-transmitted disorder of rhyme all of the time.

Here's the link to iTunes: itunes Site

Next week I head up to Fresno for the Rogue Festival, then back to Vancouver to work on the first major release from my newly-founded record company, Lit Fuse Records Inc. Yes, on top of all this, I now own a limited corporation as well. And the beat goes on. The first release will not even be from me; it will be from a certain singer and next-big-thinger named Aaron Ross, with production by none other than Simon Kendall. If you want to hear Aaron's chops, check out the song "Oh No!" on my myspace page:Visit Baba’s Site

In April I'm returning to the UK for two months of touring and recording, including a stint in Canterbury, followed by the Montreal, Ottawa, and Toronto Fringe Festivals in June/July, followed by... something impressive-sounding, you can be sure of that. But I'll save it.

Spreading love and roguish behaviour,


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