Hot 16…Or More…”BEYOND THE SKY”

‘Yo, you’re a deep guy’ Are the words that my homie Sol-Leks told me after hearing the first incarnation of this song in his fabled Wet Paint studios. I heard this beat that he made from a sample of Sam Cooke‘s A Change Gon’ Come” a year before and pretty much ignored it until it stayed in my head after hearing it a bunch of other times visiting the lab. It eventually ended up on my computer and I decided to record something over it. I started to play with the words in the sample about elevation and what’s beyond our human visibility. Then I wanted to get metaphysical. The verses were broken down from pondering on space missions and what we really know about what astronauts actually do, to observations on what people do for religion while searching for God and what they believe to be a heaven above the clouds, and finallY, to ghosts based on two recent deaths of one of Sol-Lek’s boys and my homie J.D.‘s boy who lost his daughter.

I put that version on Myspace in 2007 and wasn’t pleased with it. My voice wasn’t right and the verses were wordy and made the heavy subject matter sound even more off-putting by sounding more complex and nerdy than it needed to be. I left it alone until I was about to put out the deluxe version of my Crazy 8’s mixtape. I realized that I didn’t have any guest features and wondered if I wanted to make that a conscious choice in the spirit of the first 8. But I knew I couldn’t attack this song without throwing my boy Moser on it. Mos is a really deep dude and all of our conversations around that time were about seeking truth and conspiracy theories. Since I had upgraded my approach to the song now, I was headed in a more succinct direction and I knew he’d hit a point that I wouldn’t. Plus, with Sol-Leks on the beat and me and Mos on the verses, it was a certified representation of my crew, The Balance – so their presence could be felt on the project.

Mos came up with 2 verses and wound up recording both, but I kept this one because I split my long verse into 2. It was one of my earliest recordings with my GemStars family. He chose to discuss the threat of an impending bill that would allow government intrusion upon what they deem as ‘homegrown terrorism and violent radicalization’ and question the mysticism of the alien/God idea and the Mayan’s predictions of the world’s end. I took this opportunity to question the roots of American racism, the transatlantic slave trade and it’s feasibility and the faulty cause that’s attributed to the AIDS epidemic. In the second verse I go deeper about my wariness over religion, the environment and ancient history. Deep shit. People love it. Even better when I perform it and start off with the actual Sam Cooke song.

Now for the breakdown…

Beyond The Sky

“Still, get on that other shit,

cause they love it when I spit that government,

– I heard the Ku Klux was just set up to keep us fucking with each other over race!

So that sheet over the face…

Ain’t the ONLY cover-up,

it gets,

deeper than a mutha – and can anyone show me a picture of a slaveship??!

Even the Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria get depicted in paintings!

While all we ever see is that same shit,

look like a diorama – tied up hands and feet – I wonder how I they lived,

on that transatlantic – hundreds of days spent,

how many slaves DIED up on the way compared to how many made it??!

And nowadays they give us this AIDS bit,

claiming African plainsmen fucking chimps and eating baboon brains man…

I’m all for evolution,

but how we went from being apes, to human beings

-wait!

Who eating apes??!  It’s confusing.

While we feuding over the word nigga – please!!

All the major cities finna drift to sea,

God if you listening…

Intervene…

(‘beyond the sky’)

I mean, lift us please…

(‘beyond the sky’)

Or at least…Send a beam”

(‘beyond the sky’)

 

VERSE 3

 

“It’s safe to say I’m a sinner,

cause your favorite religions,

got too much pagan shit in them,

for me to stay and it’s twisted…

Man made up them sentences

And ain’t it ridiculous homie?

When astrology’s the only thing making sense and it’s all based on the stars….

Exactly what I want to be,

but just the thing that scares me the most when the sky is sitting in front of me!

And since the gold is no longer backing the money – think the Federal Reserve got nerve,

look at your currency (word!)

Word to Number 5,

they just changed the number 5 on the fuckin’ $5 for like the hundredth time

-what’s the signs?!

When they start advertising shit on the moon?

And “going green” is now the cool thing to do…

After all the cancerous plastics and aerosols,

nuclear Arab wars,

smaller countries packing – we attack them,

what we asking for?

I don’t like those hieroglyphics,

undecided if I’m thinking ancient Egyptians was paying alien visits

-Since it’s the writing on the wall,

I been wrong before,

but I’m sure if I even believe in dinosaurs!

Sure it’s a great science of modern lies,

Greek shit on them dollar signs,

on my R. Kelly – I’m really believing I can fly…”

 

Hope you learned something…

 

To hear or download this song, click on the pic of the cover below

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New Chris Classic x Brandon Carter visuals + Chris Classic Mixtape!!

Young Carter hit me with these clips in an e-mail about a week ago in support of the 3rd installment of the homie Chris Classic‘s mixtape series Summer Classic.

This first one is footage of the 2 recording one of the tracks on the mixtape  in quite frankly, one of the swankiest studios I’ve ever seen an unsigned artist work out of. Nevermind the fact that it all looks like one big Coca Cola endorsement, pay attention to the process…

The second video is a commercial for the mixtape itself, featuring the wild homie Chicago Gee. It’s a take off of an original song by Brandon that he performed acoustic guitar at a show last year, only to have punk-ass Amanda Diva try to play him on stage. The most IMPORTANT thing in this commercial however, is the fact that Chris is changing the game by dropping his mixtape in true technologically advanced fashion, by making it directly uploadable to your smartphone, for free. DOPENESS

We’re probably all gonna be doing this soon…

Check out the link to download Chris’ Mixtape by clicking on the image of the cover below

Hot 16…Or More…4THEMILLIONTHTIME

Once again, a result of my original intention to make a mixtape themed as my version of Jay-Z‘s legendary In My Lifetime Volume 1 album. This track was apart of the back to back series of 3 mixtapes that I wrote between the fall of 2005 and January 2006, including both How To Make A Mixtape volumes, and Westside Til I Die. When it was slated for In My Lifetime, before it turned into How To Make A Mixtape vol. 1, this was the lead off track. And much like Jay-Z’s use of it as his lead off track, my version is filled with bravado. I decided to take it for much longer than he did and make it into one long verse to make my introductory statement. The punchlines are filled with 2006-ish references and New York-centric talk that would have worked so well in the midst of the Mixtape blitz that was flooding the market back then. Hence the Kay Slay mention. When the idea to revisit my original Crazy 8’s mixtape around it’s anniversary and add 8 more tracks to it came to me, I surveyed what material I had laying around. After recognizing how many Jay-Z instrumentals got used for How To Make A Mixtape volume 1, I just decided that this one would be more fitting as one of the new 8 tracks for the Crazy 8’s Deluxe version. And even more fitting, it’s the lead off track for that bunch.

So here it go…

 

4THEMILLIONTHTIME

“It’s not a big debate – cause all the weapons ya’ll claim,

reflect on ya’ll frame,

It ain’t that I’ve been hatin’ – I just reckon ya’ll lame!

It’s not the kind of gauge behind the tech – it’s ya’ll aim,

You 6-shot niggas disrespectin’ my name!

(M-16!)

But what more can I say?

You got songs,

but we all can’t get on Kay Slay.

And all these rappers get it wrong with them songs they say,

It’s like these niggas gettin’ forced into the roles they play,

and then they really start endorsin’, when they know they’re fake,

with that coka, they Al Roker

Couldn’t hold that weight.

But hold thatWait!

I can do you one better,

got a Al Roker line – I’m about to predict weather

Whether you die or live, cause if you think you’re kinda sick,

once you lie inside a ditch,

you’ll really be under the weather.

Your forecast reads that I’m the shit! Flush better,

before I let the silencer sneeze, God Bless ya!

Gesundheit, good night,

with that cheddar – I’m like Kraft, and my craft is only,

getting better…

Look,

I’m hot!

and ughk,

ya’ll not,

cause a million mufuckas got the same as you got!

The language you talk is chump change – Chump, change up your flow!

Maybe then, you’ll get a million sold.

My acapella shit is cold,

so you fellas better roll,

like in-line skaters,

keep this in mind haters;

You can chill or stand watch as,

I fill your man’s heart with,

a heavier feeling than the Million Man March did.

Til his chest is out like Dolly Parton,

pardon the blood and guts,

but that’s really all that brothers want.

And I should be the guy to try and lift my brothers up – but why?

The truth is I don’t really give a motherfuck!

So I chick-chick blam ’em and kill ’em off,

lyrically,

and pick which hand I’mma use to flick ’em off.

Then I flip the kickstand up and willie on,

the track,

you’ll get dropped quicker than Def Jam did Milian.

-Call me 16 million dollar man,

-16 is;

(A Million)

dollar man, really ya’ll…

I break the glass ceiling til it falls – have you healing scars for months,

peeling like dutches – I’m so Blunt!

So uhh…Don’t front,

you know I gotcha Opin – damn it closed,

so what?

You’re overly exposed like hammertoes.

So fuck the haters – they get choked up,

not (from) emotions, but from hands-on-throat!

And yeah, that broke Hammer flow,

will get you nowhere but broke and alone,

so get whatever helps you provoke – grams or blow,

or be lookin’ like a dick, like Joe Camel‘s nose!

Oh, and it goes…

Remind my church people to pray on, like ‘say grace’,

then I find some church people to prey on, like say Mase

(And) If I fuck the same girl you just ate,

that’s the only way that you can say that you got the, same taste…

Your murder rap’s written in crayon,

you ain’t thug potential,

nigga you color pencil,

til’ I erase!

Cause you ain’t seen the pain of slaughtered brothers,

you just finger-painted and water-colored – you’re good with your art!

But you’re bloodsucking off the hood, pa,

so you should,

push that last album that went wood,

thru your heart!

You vampire niggas spend alot,

on them lies you make,

but turn the tide and they confidin’ in jake.

These niggas can’t bear the grind so they hibernate,

keep the CareBears in mind – niggas shine then shake.

Writin’ rhymes by the fire-escape,

with window-guards, til they start, thinking they’re Shyne behind them gates!

But that’s not quite the case,

cause if you turn around you’ll find them same guys at the gay pride parade.

And that’s about all that I can take,

so I just chase Banks,

like I’m in a Tyra race.

So I’ll, tell you the difference between me and them,

I’m counting up these 1’s,

til I’m seeing M’s

– Blowe!”

 

Hope you learned something…

 

Click the Pic of the cover below to listen to and download this track

New Cesar Luciano Mixtape – “BLACK THURSDAY”

Ok, so it’s not quite the 22nd, and this is not quite the debut street album that I said would be dropping when I first introduced you all to the new break-out artist Cesar Luciano, but all good things take time. And because Ceez knows this, he thought it’d be nice to give you something to hold you over and let you know how serious things are. This mixtape was done in a week and gives you a better idea of who the kid is. For alot of you, this will be your first time hearing him. And quite naturally, before The Great Depression, there’s Black Thursday….

Click the pic of the tracklist below to download the mixtape

Oh, guess I should mention that I’m on it by the way

Here’s the video to my favorite track off the project

16’s Candles Presents; The Have-Knotz “Blue Valentine – The Aaliyah Mixtape”

Click the pic to download. Do you Feel the Love???

5 Days until we drop that New Aaliyah-inspired mixtape for V-Day!!

I’ve made you wait long enough.

It’s been a minute since I released any new “rappity rap” as my homegirl TDJ would say. I agree. Approximately, 4 months and counting.

And counting is exactly what we’re doing. All month long I’ve been counting down via your favorite social networking sites, the days before the release of Blue Valentine – The Aaliyah Mixtape. This time around, I’m bringing in the fellow members of my group, The Have-Knotz; Komp’L & Bobby. If you remember from my last tape, the 2 were featured heavily, so naturally this is a full effort from us as a group in preparation for our original music debut, coming this summer.

Inspired by the title of the Oscar-Buzz-worthy movie that just came out this winter, this project is a loosely conceptual one, surrounding the good bad and ugly of male-female relationships. And we figured that there’s not a more appropriate backdrop for these themes than the emotion-invoking sounds from the late Aaliyah‘s catalogue.

Not too many groups out there are getting topical, so we came to fill in the void. Plus, V-Day is one of the few holidays that I actually acknowledge. The timing is impeccable!

Speaking of timing, see us here in 5 days when the project drops and download it for free. Consider it a gift.

Now Blow!

Hot 16…Or More…”MY, NAME’s MALIK; I’MMA BLOW!!!”

This month, since it’s the month that begins everything and kicks off the year, I saw it fitting to set the first Hot 16…Or More… of the year off with the verse that kicked off the very first track on my very 1st mixtape, which began everything for me.

Like most of the material on the Crazy 8’s mixtape, I wrote this in the fall of 2003. I was in college and hungry to make my statement. I can still remember being in my homeboy’s dorm room laying this down. I had just finished with my earlier collection of songs from that summer and I was unhappy with the fact that I didn’t attack every song and that I never released it to the campus. So I set out to record a short set of tracks over industry beats to keep up with the rising trend of artists rhyming over whatever was hot at the moment and in order to reach a broader range of my peers. I also figured the low-risk move of rapping over other artist’s stuff was a good way for me to sharpen my skills and test new flows. And that I did.

The kid who’s dorm room I’d be in was a young rapper going by the name of Blaze, who I called myself taking under my wing. I liked his dedication to what he was doing. He made his own recording set-up at his desk and started putting a few sampled  beats together on his own to start pushing an album he began. He was a little younger than me, and because he lived in the same exact room that I had stayed in the year prior, I felt like it was all kismet  and my obligation to be his mentor on all things rap, dorm and girl related. What was funny is that Blaze is one of the most clever and independent young dudes I had encountered, so he never really needed me, tho he kinda took to the apprentice role at times. That relationship played into that dynamic here and there, when he would find himself asking me for advice, or credit me for putting him on to something. Needless to say, I was feeling myself during that time. My status on campus was that of an O.G. at that point, and new kids were looking to make their mark, bumping me out the way ever so slightly while showing respect. Blaze represented that. And because he was nice with it musically and enterprising, he actually inspired me and provided a kind of friendly competition. A little bit more than my usual partner in rhyme, Brandon Carter, because this was closer to home; 2 New York kids with similar rhyme sensibilities. Seeing the little following Blaze was gathering, coupled with the esteem that the younger cats were holding me to, motivated me to exceed whatever reputation I had built, but introduce myself properly since I had never officially released anything. I wanted to kill it on a high energy beat and showcase the flexibility of my flow. I thought Peedi Crakk‘s “Fallback” was a great choice because the pace matched that hunger. It sounded like something crashing in. Plus it wasn’t a beat that I had heard a million rappers over, but it was still current and garnered instant head-nod reaction. I wanted to sound technical but effortless. I wanted to start off A-typically. I wanted to impress new listeners and validate the beliefs of all the folks who had been looking at me as the man.

I wanted to make a statement. And this was it.

As you can see, the response was so good, that I thought it would still be the best possible intro 3 years later when The Crazy 8’s hit the world.

 

“My,

name’s Malik; I’mma Blow,

change the beat – I been so,

pa-tient-ly waiting for,

ways to lead off – I’m so…

Dynamic – you cannot Hammer the flow,

less the nail is in the coffin – the coffin is where you go!

So close the box,

I can go off the top,

I can blow off your top,

have you with your head in your hands – tell you hold your thought…

Better learn how to swim,

or be floatin’ pon de river – like you Elephant Man!

I put the river pon dem,

Niggas thug, til their Lifestyles go POP! Like them little condoms.

But my style stop, all them niggas flossin’,

Like ‘Lights Out!’ Pop! – got it gettin’ all dim…(hmmnnn…)

And I ain’t tryin’a set the mood,

cause half the time, these dudes homosexual

-but no, I don’t gaybash,

I stay grabbing their girls – bring ’em back; now that ho’s mo’ sexual

-aaanndddd…

I think, therefore Iam,

and cause I think about Pussy, niggas think Iam Pussy!

No young,

I’m a kid who thinks out the box,

Mighty Joe Young,

I Gorilla-Pimp out the box – and oh! uhmmm…

Your girl like the fact I write rhymes,

And when I call her crib, she call it the HOT line,

cause I’m good at spittin’ all of them layin’-the-pipe lines,

we did it in the kitchen – I fixed her pipelines!

With a 2 finger movement,

if she got a leak – bring a tool in, to fix the pipes,

I tie her tubes – get a kiss goodnight,

if it’s plumbing, I’m the Super Man! – No Kryptonite.

It’s no spliffs tonight…

cause I do not smoke,

I do not drink…

But I hope…

That ya’ll do not think…

Cause I don’t drink,

and I don’t smoke,

that I won’t put a piece by your throat!

The punishment’ll fit the crime I figure,

cause it’s obvious that Lik is not the grimiest nigga,

In this business of industry thugs,

no Malik isn’t a thug,

Lik ain’t no dealer of drugs,

Liky is ill – just because!

They say the flow is heaven sent,

so if you wanna test him it’s your death an’ I’ll make sure you’re Heaven-sent!

So keep on bringin’ that bull to me,

and you won’t need Red Bull to give you wings!!

 

Hope you learned something.

To heardownload this track, click on the image of the cover below