Friday night, Ice-T's new hip-hop documentary The Art of Rap opened in theaters nationwide. I went and watched it at the AMC Studio 30 at Westheimer and Dunvale. Here are ten things from the movie that are interesting and one thing that will be picked over:
10. Grandmaster Caz Is Ruthlessly, Seaml ... More >>
The other day, Rocks Off was researching another blog, and we stumbled across Duran Duran's 1995 all-covers LP Thank You on Spotify. Then we listened to it all the way through, on purpose.
Recorded when the Birmingham-born band was at a post-"Ordinary World" fork in the road, Thank You wasn't the D ... More >>
Rap wasn't always like Lil Jon's yelling his famous "What!?" and "Okay!", or repeating your name over and over throughout the song like Houston's own Lil Flip.
Nowadays most see rap as lyrics telling a woman how to position herself or look for a man, rhymes about money and talk of toking up. But th ... More >>
It's Duran Duran Day in Houston, everybody. Word has it that fans are already lining up at Warehouse Live for the band's sold-out club show, and you can bet that it will be a hot evening inside the venue until the last strains of "Rio" echo out onto the street after the lights come up.
We h ... More >>
If you believe the bean counters at Forbes, rhyme still pays and the 2010 hip-hop cash kings (Jay-Z, Diddy, Eminem, etc.) are cashing major checks from their business ventures. But cashing in on rap commercialism is no cake walk. If you have no intention of ever making Forbes' Cash Kings list ... More >>
A kabillion rap songs out there celebrate ganja and booger sugar - case in point: Young Jeezy at the Arena Theatre this weekend - but anti-drug rap songs are insanely rare. You have a better chance of finding a mastered copy of Detox. Luckily for you, Rocks Off went digging and found 10 great ... More >>
Artists have many ways of expressing admiration for their peers. Name-dropping those who inspire them in liner notes and offering them groupies on the tour bus are just a couple of ways of showing respect. Covering one of their popular songs? Now that's the ultimate tip of the hat. That's an ... More >>
Some rappers happen to be thoughtful, intelligent people. Every Monday (that isn't a national holiday) Rocks Off will have some of them here discussing issues relevant to their culture.
Photo illustration by John Seaborn GrayHomosexuality in hip-hop is a polarizing talking point. So much so, in f ... More >>
Photos by Chris Gray
Alone among its pretty-boy peers in the early and mid-'80s, Duran Duran was the blackest band to regularly hit the pop charts from either side of the pond. Only the Aussies in INXS had anywhere near the same level of interest in funk and disco, and the chops to pull it off.
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