The Announcement

I started today off by heading out to Michael’s for some spray cans and Gesso. Afterwards, I was off to Target to pick up an album that I’ve been anticipating — Common’s ‘Universal Mind Control’. I’m currenty playing it loud on my speakers right now and enjoying every single track so far. Some of the tracks were leaked out a few weeks ago but I shunned away from listening to any of it just so I can experience the whole album with the excitement we all used to have before the .MP3 generation took over. Why? Because Common has been one of those artists who I’ve been a fan of for so many years, I wanted to have that ‘unwrapping a gift’ feel for everything he releases. I’ve skimmed through a lot of reviews for the album and none were all too good, but they were quick to dismiss him for ‘Electric Circus’ too, and I thought that album was very beautifully crafted.
I want to take a moment and throw in my two-cents on rap music as my public service for Common, and every artists who’ve stepped out of the realm of comfortability to do something different. Before we really judge what hip-hop music is, we really have to understand where it all came from. Rap music is the bastard child of rock & roll, pop, jazz, soul, and everything else that’s beautiful with music, so why is it that many have become so close-minded to rappers who chose to be experimental nowadays? It’s more than okay to love a certain style, but if your favorite artist repeatedly came out with the same things over and over again, you’d have to admit that it gets a bit boring. But the contradictory habits that we, as real people, tend to succumb to is the fact that we oppose anything ‘new’ to us because we’ve boxed our favorite artists in a confined space to keep us comfortable. With that being said, I have to say that ‘Universal Mind Control’ is nothing like ‘Like Water For Chocolate’ and is a far cry from being anything as mind-driven as ‘Ressurection’, but to say it’s a ‘bad’ album altogether is hypocritical in that it dares to be different — which is what rap music is solely about. Different. It’s unfortunate that a sound that was once labeled as ‘rebel’ music has become so washed out of its definition throughout the generations.
All in all, this album is a ‘party’ anthem which brings you back to the hey-days of Afrikka Bambatta, Sugar Hill Gang, and Grandmaster Flash with a twist of the Neptunes’ futuristic charisma. The whole point of this record, in my opinion, is to not dwell too much on everything life’s throwing at you, but to just relax and have a good time — something we are in dire need of with all the recessions going around. Have fun again. Pick up the “Universal Mind Control” and head over to Common’s new BLOG.

A sneak-peek of a skateboard I’m working on.

We have a lot of things for you to check out this coming Saturday at the ArtWalk so make sure you fit it in your weekend plans and I’ll see you there.



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December 2008
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