Hip Hop is how I define myself. Hip Hop did not start in the late 70's. It started long ago, undefined, from several points around the globe culminating into what we now call Hip Hop. Hip Hop is a way, a feeling, a thought. This blog reflects my Hip Hop.

Thank you for paying attention.

Friday, March 28, 2008

A mother and son reunited!

Tiffany and Kobe...great together. (photo taken before the abduction)

PLEASE take the time out to read this story about a mother who NEVER gave up searching for her kidnapped son. It's just the kind of story we need to read more of in this time of illegal wars, unnecessary killing of monks and nuns, 'racist' clergyman, horny politicians, jailed rappers, steroid enhanced athletes and busted economies.

I absolutely LOVE children. I absolutely love RESPONSIBLE parents too. The bravery put forth by Tiffany Rubin in finding her missing child is ripe for recognition and praise. I wish more parents would love their children like Tiffany Rubin. We'd be living in a joyous place.

I believe that.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Please excuse the oversight...

A few weeks ago I laced you with what I thought were some of the best, newest hip-hop albums recently released. Well...I missed one. Sacrifice by QN5 F@MM menber, SUBSTANTIAL, deserves to be listed among those other albums I listed. You don't have to kick me in the butt for not telling you. I've already kicked myself for missing it. Enjoy.

Oh, if you see Sub in the street, tell 'em I'm sorry. ;-)

Peace, Tonedeff. You dropped another bomb, son.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Never fear...Pete Ross is here!!

The problem is, he's not here to save the day. He's here to show the world how much of an ass he can truly be. For three or four seasons on Smallville, Pete Ross was THE best friend a man of steel could have. He lied. He created diversions. He committed crimes and got arrested for them. He accidentally and self-irradiated himself with meteor rock. Heck, he even died a couple of times if I recall correctly. Even if he didn't, I know I died more than once watching him bumble and fall his way through one of my favorite popcorn TV series of all time. He did all that for the (seemingly but not really) last son of Krypton and all he got for it was a butt-whuppin' and one way ticket out of Kansas.

After all he had done for Clark, Pete ended up hating himself for knowing Clark's secret. Some would call it jealousy. Others, envy. I just think deep down he wished he had never met Mr. Universe in the first place. He only hung out with Clark to get to Chloe anyway (oh, I remember that pilot episode very well, thank you very much). Not only was he 3 feet high and non-rising, he couldn't break that interracial wall of weird for all the meteor rock in the world.

Initially, I felt bad for young Ross. He was the object of a broken home but his mom was positive and tried hard to keep him out of trouble. She even became a judge or something unbelievable with regards to his storyline. I even demanded that the writers show him some respect. Mainly 'cause he was an Afro-Ameri...uhhh...Negro...uhh...Bla....you know, a colored fella trying to survive among aliens (I'm talking about the people of Kansas, not the Kryptonians). As the seasons rolled on though, I began to realize something. Pete Ross was an ass. Like, no really...an ass. How do you call the most powerful being in the world best friend and all you can think about is Chloe and acting a fool and living in his shadow? Dude, you're 3 feet. You live in most people's shadows. I didn't like the way Pete was dismissed from the show though so I've always wished for his return. But of course, you must always, always, ALWAYS watch what you wish for...'cause you just may get it.

Imagine how I felt this week after learning that Pete was actually returning for ONE WHOLE SHOW?! I mean, can it be?! Did he change? Did he conquer his mental inadequacies? Did he grow? To all of that, I sadly say no. Not only did Pete not learn from his former ways, he actually go worse. In this episode, he gets infected yet again by Kryptonite. In an over the top Stride gum advertisement, Pete chews some meteor rock-laced chewing gum and becomes Blastic Man with the ability to stretch a la The Elongated Man. Long story short, Pete ends up running around Smallville talking about how the world needs to know about his powers and in the process making the world safer for meteor freaks yadda, yadda, yadda. Three years gone and Clark ends up saving his corny ass...AGAIN.

Pete gets beat up. Again. Pete admits to being envious of Clark. Again. Pete apologizes for acting stupid. Again. Pete flirts with Chloe. Again. *Yawn* Then...vanishes! Bops off into the sunset as if he had something better to do. Riiiiight. I'd let Pete slide this time as it's good to see some consistencies in life. But he failed one test. He showcased his powers to Chloe by reaching across a room and grabbing a rose from a vase. I don't know about you, but if I felt for Chloe the way Pete felt for Chloe, I know how I would've showcased my talents to her if I could stretch like that.

In Search Of...$4,300 worth.

Nope! We'll have to keep looking, boys.

Cue the track!! "And I still...haven't found...what I'm looking for!!"

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Officer's Ridley death's...was his own fault.

At least, that's what a grand jury feels when they decided not to indict the four officers responsible for killing their follow officer. Help me to understand this a little:

Okay, I'm a cop, right? I see a disturbance going on. I run into a local government building. I request back-up...IN PERSON. I run back outside to break up the disturbance. My back-up arrives. I hear my back-up yell drop the weapon. BOOM!! Through my head...I'm dead.

Yeah, I can totally see how my death would be my fault.


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

New York's new Governor is a 'first'!!

David Paterson

Not only is New York's new governor Black, he's also the first legally blind Governor. I don't know if legally blind people should be proud...but the 'news' keeps mentioning it...like that's an accomplishment. Once upon a time, being Black was enough to make most 'first' lists. Apparently, now you need to share your melanin level with your handicap if you do something first. Heck, I think him being a native of Brooklyn is enough to scream about. :-)

Let's welcome the homeboy and see what he can do. We'll be watching, Gov. Paterson.

No pun(s) intended.

Bigg Russ (est. 1971)

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Ivan make basket!!

Once upon a time, Whoopie Goldberg starred in a movie called Eddie, about a NY Knicks fan who gets the opportunity to coach the team through Hollywood only-type circumstances.

In the movie, former NBA player Dwayne Schintzius, more famous for being on the wrong end of Shaq's backboard shattering events than actually playing basketball, portrays a Russian NBA player who isn't much on words. Dwayne's character had one line, "Ivan make basket." He was clear on what he did. He didn't block, he didn't steal. He didn't assist. He made basket.

Well...check out this inspiring story of Sasha Kaun, a real life Ivan, except with PLENTY more skill. I'm posting this because it's inspiring AND about basketball. I'm also posting this because the locals need to pay attention and realize what others go through to get where they, the locals, don't appreciate. You're not guaranteed anything. No one owes you a contract. Just because you're born here means nothing in the 21st century. Learn from your hardships and do better...don't hold yourself and others back. Never forget but don't live in the past.

Yes, it really is that simple.

Bigg Russ

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Keeping Hip Hop alive...

If you think you care/know/love hip hop, then you NEED to check out these new albums.

(artist - album title)

Black Spade - To Serve With Love

Remember what Common used to sound like? Black Spade is the 2nd coming m. When those 'best rap album of '08' conversations begin, To Serve... had better be in included.

Erykah Badu - New Amerykah, Pt. 1: 4th World War

A little known fact about Ms. Badu is that she's a rapper by nature. This album makes that fact crystal.

EMC - The Show

1/4th of EMC is Masta Ace. What more needs to be said? We Alright is THE feel good song of the year. Great job, fellas. GREAT job.

Gnarls Barkley - The Odd Couple

Better than the first album. Did you hear me? I said better. And yes, Gnarls is Hip Hop. You know this to be true.

And in case you missed it...

Pete Rock - NY's Finest

Click for my semi-detailed review.

Saturday, March 1, 2008


So, I'm walking through John F. Kennedy International Airport a few weeks ago and walking past the baggage claim area where I run upon a taller-than-me African-American/Negro/Black/Colored man. I'm just about 6'1" so I immediately think to myself, "NBA!!" Well, as coincidence or Murphy's Law or whatever would have it, I recognized the dude. And yes, he was NBA!! albeit former. It was none other than the Spider himself, John "Best Damn Sports Show Ever!" Salley.

I put my hand out on some 'ol hey, I'm black...you're black, let's do some soul clapping handshake!! kind of thing. He was tooling on his Crackberry so it either took him a minute to notice me or he was straight ignoring me. Either way, I didn't remove my hand until I knew he knew that I was recognizing his famousticitiy.

For those who don't know, John "The Spider" Salley (corny nickname, but he earned it) is the proud owner of four NBA Championship Rings - two earned via the Detroit Pistons before M.J. decided to shut them down forever and two ridin' the bench. He earned one with Shaq and Co. on the Lakers and another, ironically, watching from the Chicago Bulls bench as M.J.'s teammate. He's also been in Bad Boys I & II. You know...don't you remember the imprisoned computer geek? Didn't think so. He also co-hosts that show I mentioned in between his name earlier along side other more-famous-in-their-own-heads people such as Tom Arnold.

That being said, after he finally decided to shake my hand, almost on cue, he spun his head away from me as if someone called him or.....something. Pretty convenient. I suppose he didn't want any *ahem* fans recognizing him or anything. God forbid if I blew up his spot or anything. I didn't trip though. I took it in stride and kept on. I actually like John Salley. He's a nice guy and it was cool meeting him, even if it was really just me meeting him and him not really meeting me.

I didn't get five paces away from Mr. Spider, when I hear someone walk up behind me and say something. I didn't quite think this person was speaking to me so I didn't respond. The person then raised their voice to make sure I heard them. I then felt a touch on my elbow and heard a ladies voice say, "Excuse me, what NBA player was that?" Now...what made that question interesting to me is that w/o even mentioning NBA or sports at all, she KNEW he was in the NBA or had been at some point. Amused, I turned to see who this was. To my amazement, I see this vision loviness walking besides me:

My simple exit from JFK had now become a bona fide, very surreal WTF?! moment. Susan Sarandon - five time Oscar nominee, one time Oscar winner, political activist, grounded New Yorker and all around beautiful woman that she is - stopped me and asked me who John Salley was. Now, it wasn't the fact that she didn't know who John Salley was. I mean..he's not that famous. It was the whole famous person asking me who another (semi) famous person was that got me. I mean...I know Mrs. Sarandon (long time love of Tim Robbins) is just another human being in the grand scheme of things but isn't there a 'famous person' code written somewhere that says if you're famous, you're allowed to run up on other famous people and ask them who they are? I'm just sayin'.

Anyways, I open my mouth and the first thing I say is, "Well...you're Susan Sarandon," as if she didn't know already, "...and that was John Salley, former NBA player." She laughed at my answer for a second then said, "Oh..." I would've literally LOL'ed had I not still been semi-mesmerized that I was speaking with Susan fuckin' Sarandon. She became one of my favorite actors after seeing her in Lorenzo's Oil and Dead Man Walking. I'm respectful of celebrities' celebrityness so I didn't bother to ask for an autograph or anything like that. I just kept it moving.

Susan (I can call her that now) and I walked another 8/16 of a mile together just giggling ('cause right after she asked me, another woman ran up on her to ask her who 'that' guy was...until she realized she was asking Susan Sarandon which tripped her out). She was very sweet and humble and HUMAN. It was a GREAT moment to be in...especially after my brother gave me the cold shoulder. I won't read too much into it but the difference in how they both dealt with me was pretty amazing. The 2/4 champion acted as if I was disturbing him when in fact he should've been glad that someone who doesn't watch The Best Damn... recognized his corny ass at all. On the flipside, this seasoned, very accomplished, VERY FAMOUS entertainer was just as sweet and chill as could be.

If I were to ever reach that level of celebrity and want to be respected, I plan on handling it like a sexy, older white woman. Trust me.

One love....