Mix Bag: An Exclusive With Aztek, A Night At The Electric Company And More Mixtapes Galore

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Man, what a weekend. We sat down and chopped it up with them Southeast Houston hip-hop veterans Sen and Lil Villain, and Kansas-raised artist Uno. They gave us a rundown of an entirely un-talked about dimension of Houston's hip-hop history. More on that in Wednesday's "Behind the Lyrics," if, and only if, we can get through the four hours of tape we recorded. If not, trust us that it's coming soon. We swear that Villain and Sen were relatives of ours in another life because it was a very comfortable vibe the entire interview and we felt like we had met them before, or maybe it was that fact that we were drinking straight liquor because we had no mixers in our refrigerator. Regardless, it was a real fun time and we're grateful for all the appreciation they showed towards this section of Rocks Off. They even gave us an opportunity to do a drop for a DVD they are producing, and we totally fucked that up, because despite the fact that our lifelong dream is to rap in a music video and we've practiced in front of the mirror for 20 years or so, we bombed. On to less embarrassing, extremely exciting news... we finally got a hold of Aztek Escobar and had one of the best interviews of our journalism career. As you know, Aztek is not only known for being a really good rapper, but he was the first artist signed to Jay-Z's Roc La Familia music label back in 2005. He graciously granted the Houston Press his first interview in three years. He's been virtually silent on the subject with lots of various speculations on discussion boards and on hip-hop sites on his departure from Roc, but Aztek set the record straight in our interview. We'll have more in next Wednesday's "Behind The Lyrics." Shout outs to Lee-Coc and Jessica Vazquez at Street Science for tapping into their networks to bombard Aztek with phone calls to make that happen. And another shout out to Lucky Luciano who has connected us with countless of our artists, saving us the time it takes to introduce ourselves and gain credibility with this group. Alright, so it turns out over the Valentine's Day weekend Rocks Off is in San Antonio at the same time Low-G, Carolyn Rodriguez and Amanda Perez are in for a show at the Electric Co. Our understanding is that it's a lesbian hangout and we have no problem with that, because two of the most important people in our lives are of the GLBT community and we got mad love for their struggle and perseverance, but in all honesty, it didn't make sense to us (at first). A hip-hop show at a gay bar? We had to check it out. We send Carolyn Rodriguez a text to let her know we are going to go check her out and she texts us that if we stand her up again, "I'll cut you." Did you read her story? Yes, we believed her. Let us just say this: homegirl can work a stage, and San Antonio absolutely loves her. There's no reason she can't be the next Amanda Perez with some major-label backing. Low-G was another one who was on the stage with Carolyn and the man's a legend in the city. When he threw out his signature hat, the men actually acted like girls and squealed at the chance of getting it. A guy in front of me actually jumped so high his heels were in my damn face. Juan Gotti was also in the house and was bombarded with photo requests by the hype-crowd. Let us just be forward with you. Dope House is alive and well in the Alamo City. It was a love fest, indeed. So then, Amanda Perez takes the stage and we did a double-take. She's really tom-boyed her look up, and we're not in the business of outing people, but she definitely has grown and evolved from the young girl with long hair who broke out and captured the hearts of young Latinos with her beautiful voice. Business wise, the GLBT community has a very high household income, so if she's going for that market, she'll probably rake it in. And we ain't gonna lie. We sang her shit out loud. "God send me an Angel, from the heavens above." Now for what we've all been waiting for... free music downloads. Dat Boi T and DJ Flea's "Bring It Back" mixtape series is alive and well. T tells us it has global buzz. The latest features a rapper from Russia, goddamn it. Download volumes one, two and three and get caught up. GT Garza released The Garza Files 2: It Takes Gears To Grind. We follow him on Twitter and he lives in the lab, so make sure to download it on the principle that the man lives his craft. DJ Noble sent us four really tight quality tracks. Download:

DJ Nawfy sent us his In the Mix project hosted by Lil C. Download it because all of this dude's mixtapes are good. It's got Pimp C, Dat Boi T, Lucky Luciano, Big Pokey, Lil Keke, Snoop - talk about a mixbag. Stunta's little brother Yung Kleva released The Preseason. If the saying is true that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, it'll jam. And finally, Houston rapper Felony reached out to us on Twitter and pitched us to do a story on him and although we concentrate on hip-hop artists of Latino descent, he tells us, "It's Black History Month." We're in PR by day and that's the definition of making yourself relevant. Real talk: we want to cover all hip-hop artists and encourage anyone who likes our work to reach out to us. We're going to leave you with a video to distract you from work and lower your productivity. Don't feel guilty. It's not a crime or a felony, but this is:

Rolando Rodriguez is the managing editor of www.redbrownandblue.com. Follow him on MySpace and Twitter.

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