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, August 31, 2012

R.I.P., Chris Lighty

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Untitled (...for Trayvon Martin)

So, a young adult - an openly gay, 21 year old Black man - admitted to me that he didn't know who Trayvon Martin was. He said, for lack of a better term, that he simply doesn't listen to or read the news because it's "all depressing" and "...why would I want to see that everyday?" After explaining to him what happened to Trayvon he did say that he heard of a kid getting killed in Florida but that was it. I explained to him that the news you RECEIVE must be filtered by YOU. I told him that it is simply unwise - in today's crazy world - to cut yourself from ALL news because you perceive it to be unattractive. I think he understood what I meant but at 21 years of age I don't expect him to get it well into his 30's.

My generation is in a very weird place because the struggle we just missed by a couple of years doesn't seem as real now. It was taught to us as history, something that happened 'back then' without fully grasping that some of us were actually products of that struggle. Many of us have nestled into a safe zone where our bank accounts have eased our fears, publicly, and our sense of accomplishment has outweighed our need to strengthen our self-worth. This truth has disabled our children. Some of us are doing so well or struggling against so many invisible adversaries that our children take it for granted. In this age of instant gratification, over-political correctness, and Matrix-like social interaction I feel we have collectively missed the point of being where we are in our lives. There are many exceptions to my feelings, of course. I know some children who are so in tune with their souls that they often reinforce my belief in reincarnation. On the back end, some of our children - and us - are so far off our center that we might as well be space debris floating randomly among the stars.

How can we solve this issue as well as our others? I don't know. There is so much one individual can do for so many. Although, I will always believe the best way we can handle a collective issue is by everyone doing the best they can - individually. We don't always need 'leaders' to help us find our way. Most of us know what's going on around us. Most of us have the wherewithal and power necessary to fight ... but we find that we don't want to be on the front line. We're consistently hoping that someone else will step up in our place to represent our problem. What we, as parents, fail to realize is that WE are supposed to represent our problems. We're not superheros but we have a responsibility to our children to feed them with as much knowledge as possible about who they are and what they can become.

The young man I mentioned earlier is my step-son. He knows who he is but I will not allow him to be uninformed and unprepared. At times, he can be naive about life, as most of us were at 21, but he's got a solid and at least open to hearing me when I rave and rant. Trayvon Martin's death was unfortunate and, by taking a look at George Zimmerman's profile, most likely unavoidable. The key to stopping this from happening again is knowledge. And I plan on sharing as much as I can...

Thanks for reading...

Bigg Russ

Wearing names that MATTER...

Buy it because you want to...not because you have to.


Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Color Purple: HD Edition 2012

I have a problem. It goes a little something like this: George Lucas shows up on The Daily Show with John Stewart to promote his new film, Red Tails. A film, George proclaims, has been a 23-year labor of love.  Okay, great. No problem. But then George does something that raised my eyebrow. Take a listen for yourself here.

Okay, so let me get this straight. George "Money Bags" Lucas personally finances a film that took 23 years to make, figuratively speaking.  Yet the film almost doesn't get released because 'Hollywood' wouldn't fund its distribution.

I call bull.

If George REALLY wanted to see this film get released, he wouldn't have had to go through normal distribution channels to get it done. He's GEORGE %#&#^% LUCAS. Translation: He *IS* Hollywood!!! George can get virtually anything he wants out of Hollywood. He would've phone half of Hollywood, "Hey, yeah...it's me. Your father. Yeah, the one who runs Industrial, Light & Magic. Yeah, you know...98.9% of all films in Hollywood get done with my company's resources whether you like it or not? Yeah, now you remember. Well, I need something done."With one simple interview, here is what the Lucasarts emperor accomplished and some random facts to consider:

1. If Red Tails fails, it's because it wasn't DISTRIBUTED or MARKETED correctly. Because, somehow Hollywood just has NO IDEA of how to market a 'Black' film. (Again, I call bull. If Meteor Man or B.A.P.S. can secure distribution...)

2. Black Americans are now -seemingly out of the blue - EMOTIONALLY interested in supporting something that 'Hollywood' wouldn't (or didn't know 'how' to) support. The Red Tails marketing onslaught began in the middle of 2011. TWENTY ELEVEN.  I heard about it. I saw the trailer. I was unmoved. Apparently so was everyone else.  I barely heard a peep from anyone of any race, color or creed about the film.

3. George made six movies about the future. A cast full of color. But only two Black people. Three if you count Jango Fett (Aborigine actor). And you already know the deal regarding Jar Jar Binks. Don't mistake George's interests as totally sincere. This is all about entertainment.

4. Red Tails is getting released on MLK weekend....a few weeks before Black History Month. Look at my face. Now look at what I typed. Now look at my face. Now look at what I typed. If you haven't gotten the message by now, just close your browser window and go back to sleep.

5. In a recent public message, Jon Bon Jovi said, "Last night I went to see a movie, it was explained not as Black History Film nor was it a Military History film, it was an American History Film. It is called RED TAILS and was made by the great George Lucas." Okay, everybody just calm down. Especially you, Jon. Hollywood wouldn't fund the film's distribution because of its 'all Black cast' but upon viewing the film one is to think that it's NOT a film about Black people?

"Ya know, Tyrone, I don't see you as Black. You're like... cool!" This madness must stop. Jon has basically given the 'go ahead' to anyone who thought this might be a 'Black' movie. "Oh, don't worry! You'll enjoy it! Yeah, they're Black...but it's not about *that*!" New Jersian, please.

I could go on but I think my point is clear. I am in no way, shape or form anti-Red Tails. Do I want to see the movie? No, not really. Will I see the movie? Eventually. It'll probably be a fun ride with those same four actors we see in every period piece about Blacks in the 40's-60's.
(That one guy with the square head, from The Great Debaters, just has an old classic look. It's like he was born for these rolls. It's simply amazing and not fair to people like Wesley Snipes!).

In the end, I just don't need George Lucas and the little marketing stormtroopers in his head trying to convince me that I should see it with subliminal messaging. And anyone getting caught up now waving a Red Tails flag after hearing George spit that nonsense should be ashamed of themselves for allowing themselves to be hoodwinked, bamboozled, and led astray...

Go see the film because YOU want to see it.

As usual, thanks for reading...

Bigg Russ