Archive for the ‘the roots’ Category

Kanye West Performs At The Common & Friends Concert

September 28, 2009

Written By: Victoria H. (Urban Editor)

Common held the second annual “Common & Friends” concert at the Hollywood Palladium on September 26th. The show benefits The Common Ground Foundation which is dedicated to empowering and developing America’s urban youth by providing support and education.

Guest performers included Nas, Ludacris, De La Soul, The Roots, Mos Def and Talib Kweli, but the biggest surprise was a performance by Kanye West.

Fans screamed in excitement as Kanye performed “Good Life”, “Flashing Lights”, “Get Em High” (with Common, Mos Def and Talib Kweli) and “Run This Town”.

For more information on The Common Ground Foundation, please visit:

VH1’s 2009 Hip Hop Honors

September 25, 2009

Written By: Victoria H. (Urban Editor)

VH1 will air the 2009 Hip Hop Honors on Tuesday, October 13th. The sixth annual honors show will have range of stars paying respect to Def Jam Records, as they celebrate 25 years as the premier label for hip hop. Tracy Morgan will host the show, with appearances and performances by Eminem, Mary J. Blige, Chris Rock, The Roots, Public Enemy and Kid Rock, just to name a few.

Def Jam was founded by Russell Simmons and Rick Rubin in 1984 in New York. The label made hip hop a worldwide phenomenon by introducing groundbreaking artists like RUN-DMC, The Beastie Boys, LL Cool J, Public Enemy and Kanye West. Def Jam has expanded into all aspects of our culture by branching into fashion, TV, film and videogames.

Lee Rolontz, EVP of Music Production at VH1 said that, “It is impossible to pay tribute to the best in hip hop without recognizing Def Jam Records. Throughout the years VH1 has honored numerous artists from the Def Jam label, but due to the magnificent impact that Def Jam as a company has made on not only hip hop culture but pop culture as a whole, we thought they definitely deserved the opportunity to be honored.”

The Roots – Rising Down

June 19, 2009

Label: Island/Def Jam
Rating: 3 Guns

Buy On:
The Roots

Rap is not known for bands- it’s not known for live instruments. If you are expecting convention from a hip-hop/rap album, then The Roots are not for you. Since their debut in 1993, The Roots have spoken out about social issues of race, drugs, politics and class.

A recorded conference between Black Thought and then label Geffen is the first track off the album. The rage you hear on “The Pow-Pow” lets you know that this is not a happy go lucky album.

An exception can be made for the track “Birthday Girl” with Fall Out Boy’s Patrick Stump. A reggae style pop song, great for a summer drive to the beach. This has been added as a bonus track as it did not fit the mood of the album.

75 Bars (Black Reconstruction) is a solo track by Black Thought that has no hook, just straight rapping. It is very interesting to hear him just going through a conscious stream of thought. So many rap songs are focused on hooks and really nothing of importance is said.

The title track says how they are going to “dominate the world like Oprah did”. The song is hope after hearing tracks like “Lost Desire” which speaks about senseless street violence.

This is just another solid album from The Roots and from hip-hop in general.