INVINCIBLE BULLY INC.: January 2008 Archive


Hip-Hop Vinyl Rips, Funny Videos, NBA Basketball

Thursday, January 31, 2008

on the radio we need to hear more local MC's

Guru - Jazzmatazz Vol. 1 [1993]

A1 Introduction (1:20)
A2 Loungin' (4:38)
A3 When You're Near (4:02)
A4 Transit Ride (3:58)
A5 No Time To Play (4:54)
A6 Down The Backstreets (4:47)
B1 Respectful Dedications (0:54)
B2 Take A Look (At Yourself) (3:59)
B3 Trust Me (4:27)
B4 Slicker Than Most (2:36)
B5 Le Bien, Le Mal (3:21)
B6 Sights In The City (5:10)


Guru - Jazzmatazz Volume II: The New Reality [1995]

1 Intro (Light It Up) Jazzalude I: New Reality Style (1:44)
Co-producer - Solsonics, The
2 Lifesaver (4:13)
Co-producer - Carlos Bess
Vocals - Baybe
3 Living In This World (4:29)
Co-producer - Nikke Nicole
Vocals - Sweet Sable
4 Looking Through Darkness (4:48)
Co-producer - True Master
Vocals - Mica Paris
5 Skit A (Interview): Watch What You Say (5:00)
Co-producer - DJ Premier
Featuring - Branford Marsalis
Vocals - Chaka Khan
6 Jazzalude II: Defining Purpose (1:02)
Co-producer - Solsonics, The
7 For You (4:10)
Featuring - Kenny Garrett
Vocals - Me'Shell NdegéOcello
8 Insert A (Mental Relaxation): Medicine (4:19)
Co-producer - Mark Sparks
Featuring - Donald Byrd
Scratches - DJ Red Handed
Vocals - Ini Kamoze , True Masters
9 Lost Souls (4:12)
Co-producer - Carlos Bess
Featuring - Stuart Zender , Wallace Collins
Scratches - Darren Galea
Vocals - Jay Kay
10 Insert B (The Real Deal): Nobody Knows (3:58)
Featuring - Jan Kincaid
Vocals - Shara Nelson
11 Jazzalude III: Hip Hop As A Way of Life (1:17)
Co-producer - Solsonics, The
12 Respect The Architect (4:51)
Featuring - Brian Holt , Ramsey Lewis
Scratches - DJ Scratch
Vocals - Bahamadia
13 Feel The Music (3:57)
Featuring - Paul Ferguson
Vocals - Baybe
14 Young Ladies (4:12)
Featuring - Brian Holt , Kenny Garrett , Reuben Wilson
Scratches - DJ Sean-Ski
Vocals - Big Shug , Kool Keith , Patra
15 The Traveler (4:01)
Co-producer - Donald Byrd
16 Jazzalude IV: Maintaining Focus (1:18)
17 Count Your Blessings (4:02)
Featuring - Bernard Purdie , Brian Holt
18 Choice Of Weapons (4:24)
Featuring - Courtney Pine
Keyboards - Dennis Mitchell
Vocals - Dee C. Lee , Gus Da Vigilante
19 Something In The Past (3:19)
Featuring - Freddie Hubbard
20 Skit B (Alot On My Mind): Revelation (4:35)
Co-producer - Ronny Jordan
Vocals - Bu


Guru - Jazzmatazz Vol. 3 (Streetsoul) [2000]

A1 Intro (1:06)
A2 Keep Your Worries (4:59)
Producer - DJ Scratch
Recorded By - David Hyman , Mark Mitchell (2)
Vocals [Featuring] - Angie Stone
A3 Hustlin' Daze (4:46)
Producer, Programmed By - DJ Premier
Recorded By [Assistant] - Dexter Thibou , Kevin Bergen
Recorded By, Mixed By - Eddie Sancho
Vocals [Featuring] - Donell Jones
A4 All I Said (4:07)
Flute - Najee
Producer - Neptunes, The
Vocals [Featuring] - Macy Gray
B1 Certified (4:39)
Producer - Jay Dee
Rap [Featuring] - Bilal
Recorded By - Drew Coleman*
Recorded By [Vocals] - Peter Karam*
B2 Plenty (4:38)
Bass - Bray Lon Lacy
Drums - Geno Iglheart
Keyboards - Shaun Martin
Mixed By - Tim Soares
Piano [Rhodes] - Dino Young
Recorded By - Chris Bell (2)
Vocals [Featuring], Producer - Erykah Badu
B3 Lift Your Fist (3:53)
Drums, Keyboards [Additional] - Ahmir '?uestlove' Thompson
Keyboards - James Poyser
Producer - Ahmir '?uestlove' Thompson , James Poyser , Roots, The
Recorded By, Mixed By - John Smeltz*
Vocals - Black Thought
B4 Guidance (4:02)
Recorded By - Orlando Bovell , Taurus Braxton-Harvey
Recorded By [Amel's Vocals] - Pat Viala
Saxophone - Donald Harrison
Vocals [Featuring] - Amel Larrieux
C1 Interlude (Brooklyn Skit) (0:51)
Edited By - Stephen George , Taurus Braxton-Harvey
Mixed By - Stephen George
Recorded By - Taurus Braxton-Harvey
C2 Supa Love (3:54)
Backing Vocals - Les Nubians , Tammy Lucas
Producer - Neptunes, The
Recorded By - Drew Coleman*
Recorded By [Vocals] - Pat Viala
Vocals [Featuring] - Kelis
C3 No More (4:03)
Keyboards - Dave Patterson
Programmed By [Drums] - Guru
Recorded By - Taurus Braxton-Harvey
Vocals [Featuring] - Craig David
C4 Where's My Ladies? (4:07)
Keyboards - Dave Patterson
Mixed By [Additional] - Eddie Sancho
Producer [Additional], Programmed By, Mixed By - DJ Premier
Rap [Featuring] - Big Shug
Recorded By - Taurus Braxton-Harvey
D1 Night Vision (3:33)
Producer, Programmed By [Drums], Recorded By - Victor Flowers
Vocals [Featuring] - Isaac Hayes
D2 Who's There? (4:05)
Recorded By [Guru's Vocals] - Caleb Lambert
Recorded By [Les Nubians Vocals] - Mitch Olivier*
Recorded By [Music] - Leo "Swift" Morris
Vocals [Featuring] - Les Nubians
D3 Mashin' Up Da World (5:20)
Edited By - Taurus Braxton-Harvey
Producer - Agallah
Recorded By - Leo "Swift" Morris
Vocals [Featuring] - Junior Reid , Prodigal Son*
D4 Timeless (4:15)
Bass - Dave Patterson
Keyboards [Featuring] - Herbie Hancock
Programmed By [Drums] - Guru
Recorded By [Music] - Taurus Braxton-Harvey
Recorded By [Vocals, Keyboards] - Ryan Dorn


Guru - Jazzmatazz Vol. 4: The Hip Hop Jazz Messenger: "Back To The Future" [2007]

1 Cuz I'm Jazzy
Rap [Featuring] - Slum Village
2 State Of Clarity
Featuring - Bob James
Rap [Featuring] - Common
3 Stand Up (Some Things'll Never Change)
Vocals [Featuring] - Damian "Jr Gong" Marley*
4 Look To The Sun
5 Connection
Vocals [Featuring] - Kem
6 Fine And Free
Vocals [Featuring] - Vivian Green
7 Wait On Me
Vocals [Featuring] - Raheem Devaughn
8 International
Vocals [Featuring] - Bobby Valentino (2)
9 This Is Art
Featuring - Ronnie Laws
10 Fly Magnetic
Vocals [Featuring] - Dionne Farris
11 The Jazz Style
Vocals [Featuring] - Omar
12 Follow The Signs
Vocals [Featuring] - Shelley Harland
13 Universal Struggle
Featuring - Brownman
14 Infinite
Featuring - Blackalicious
15 Kissed The World
Vocals [Featuring] - Caron Wheeler
16 Living Legend
Featuring - David Sanborn


Guru's Jazzmatazz - Back To The Future (The Mixtape) [2008]

1. Intro – Don Gurizzy
2. Knowledge feat. Lord Tariq
3.7 Grand Yall feat. Solar
4. For Ya Mind feat. Zion I
5. Peace! Feat. K-Born, Highpower & Solar
6. State Of Clarity (Solar Remix) feat. Common
7. Who Got It On Lock? Feat. Doo Wop
8. B-Boy Kamikaze feat. Tony Touch & Doo Wop (Diaz Brothers)
9. Too Slick feat. Yungun
10. So What It Do Now? Feat. Aceyalone
11. We Got That feat. Nature & Solar
12. Jazzy Wayz (7 Grand Exclusive)
13. Stand Up (Some Things’ll Never Change) (Reggae Mix) feat. Damian Marley
14. Hot Like That feat. Medinah
15. No Need For Stress feat. Mr. Lif
16. Back To The Future feat. Caron Wheeler & C.Knowledge (Digable Planets)
17. Assasino feat. Young Pablo
18. The Game Needs Me feat. Blue Scholars & Common Market
19. Feed The Hungry (Solar Remix
20. Can’t Stop The Movement (7 Grand)


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Sunday, January 20, 2008

Don't approach me wrong/Little kids call me Smokey-mon

3rd Bass - Brooklyn-Queens VLS [1990]

A1 Brooklyn-Queens (The U.K. Power Mix) (5:32)
Produced by Prime Minister Pete Nice & Prince Paul
A2 Brooklyn-Queens (Power Radio Edit) (4:25)
Produced by Prime Minister Pete Nice & Prince Paul
A3 Brooklyn-Queens (LP Version) (3:36)
Produced by Prime Minister Pete Nice & Prince Paul
B1 Triple Stage Darkness (4:09)
Produced by Prime Minister Pete Nice & Sam Server
B2 Brooklyn-Queens (Dub Mix) (5:09)
Produced by Prime Minister Pete Nice & Prince Paul
B3 Brooklyn-Queens (2nd Bass Mix) (3:56)
Produced by Prime Minister Pete Nice & Prince Paul


3rd Bass - Gladiator VLS [1992]

A1 Gladiator (Main Mix)
A2 Gladiator (Easy Mo Bee Remix)
Remix - Easy Mo Bee
A3 Gladiator (Main Mix Instrumental)
B1 Word To The Third (LP Mix)
B2 Gladiator (Easy Mo Bee Remix) (Instrumental)
Remix - Easy Mo Bee


MF DOOM - Since Last Week [bootleg as fuck]



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Friday, January 18, 2008

chic chic BAM...Let off a couple

Five Deez - Secret Agent Number 005 The E.P.

1 Generic B-Boy No. 5002 (3:33)
2 Dope (3:27)
3 Blue Light Special (4:36)
Rap [Featuring] - J. Sands
4 Wow (4:06)
5 B.E.A.T (5:09)
6 The Rock Rule (4:45)
Scratches - Mr. Dibbs
7 The Rock Rehab (3:03)


King Geedorah - Take Me To Your Leader

1 Fazers (3:17)
Co-producer - E. Mason
2 Fastlane (3:08)
Rap [Featuring] - Biolante
3 Krazy World (4:43)
Rap [Featuring] - Gigan
4 The Final Hour (0:49)
Rap [Featuring] - MF Doom
5 Monster Zero (5:15)
6 Next Levels (3:47)
Rap [Featuring] - ID 4 Winds , Lil' Sci , Stahhr
7 No Snakes Alive (3:32)
Rap [Featuring] - Jet-Jaguar , Rodan
8 Anti-Matter (3:26)
Rap [Featuring] - MF Doom , Mr. Fantastik
9 Take Me To Your Leader (2:08)
10 Lockjaw (1:03)
Rap [Featuring] - Trunks
11 I Wonder (3:38)
Rap [Featuring] - Hassan Chop
12 One Smart Nigger (2:39)
13 The Fine Print (4:29)


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Friday, January 11, 2008

I kick a hole in the speaker...

Shabaam Sahdeeq - Sound Clash b/w 5 Star Generals [1998]

A1 Sound Clash (Radio)
Producer - Nick Wiz
Scratches - DJ Slice
A2 Sound Clash (Instrumental)
Producer - Nick Wiz
Scratches - DJ Slice
A3 Pendilum (Radio)
Producer - Dr. Sato
B1 5 Star Generals (Street)
Producer - DJ Spinna
Rap [Featuring] - A.L. , Eminem , Kwest* , Skam (2)
B2 5 Star Generals (Radio)
Producer - DJ Spinna
Rap [Featuring] - A.L. , Eminem , Kwest* , Skam (2)
B3 5 Star Generals (Instrumental)
Producer - DJ Spinna


Apathy - That Ol' Boom Bap b/w Earth Girls Are Easy [2001]

A1 That Ol' Boom Bap (Celph Titled Mix / Radio)
Producer - Celph Titled
A2 That Ol' Boom Bap (Celph Titled Mix / Instrumental)
Producer - Celph Titled
A3 That Ol' Boom Bap (Apathy Mix / Radio)
Producer - Apathy
A4 That Ol' Boom Bap (Apathy Mix / Instrumental)
Producer - Apathy
B1 Earth Girls Are Easy (Dirty)
Producer - Apathy
B2 Earth Girls Are Easy (Radio)
Producer - Apathy
B3 Earth Girls Are Easy (Instrumental)
Producer - Apathy


Flying Puba feat. Natural Resource & Pumpkinhead - Can it [1998]

Flying Side
1. Can It ft. Ocean, What?What? & Pumpkinhead
Produced by DJ Yujiro
2. Can It (instrumental)
Produced by DJ Yujiro
3. Can It ft. Ocean, What?What? & Pumpkinhead (Acapella)
Produced by DJ Yujiro

Pupa Side
1. Can It ft. Ocean, What?What? & Pumpkinhead
Produced by DJ Ando
2. Can It (Bonus Beat)
Produced by DJ Ando


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Thursday, January 10, 2008

Baron Wolfgang Von Thes-One

Ammmmmmericaaaaa....fuck yeah!

Thes One and Music that Works
Thes One

David Ma spoke to Thes One about the history behind his debut instrumental album, Lifestyle Marketing. The producer for People Under the Stairs touches on specifics of the project, his thoughts on record collecting, updates fans on his work with partner Double K, and discusses a production trend he deems "painful."

Lifestyle Marketing is pretty dense compared to some of your other production. What are some of your favorite tracks off of it?

I think the second track, Get on the Phone. That one was the first big track I did. A lot of these were done in 2002 or 2003, and that one was one of the first ones done early on. It sort of set the tone for the rest of the project. I wanted to keep the idea of the commercial, keep the tagline intact and keep some of the structure intact. I also wanted to make a composition that went from point A to point C and not have it just be a beat record full of loops. That was important, because it was the starting point. The tracks actually almost appear in the order they were made.

You've said that you found Herb Pilhofer's Music That Works in '94. What took so long for this project to get off the ground?

Well, the project sort of just stopped in 2004, because I was busy with other stuff and, now it's seeing the light of day. Its been a weird start-and-stop project. It's cool that it's coming out, but I had originally made it for myself to challenge myself as a producer.

As you production career presses forward, you've built a pretty sizable body of work. Compare your beats on Lifestyle Marketing to your People Under the Stairs production.

I think they're different. With the PUTS stuff, I can pretty much sample anything as long as it fits into what Double K and I are doing as a group. But with this, I had a specific thing in mind I wanted to accomplish.

Was this a harder project for you to accomplish?

It was a lot harder working with ten seconds of music to sample. So I had to rethink what I was doing. I got to focus on the music and nothing more. I was able to do stuff in 3/4 time signature and other technical stuff without it being an issue.

What equipment was used to make the majority of Lifestyle Marketing?

I primarily used an MPC3000 for the sequencing. Before I put things into the 3000, I would run them through and SP-12 or SP1200. Other things went through a tape delay or different analog equipment. I filtered a lot of stuff too. I didn't use any Pro Tools or anything like that. So I had to create a few things to make the loops sound good because there was such a limited amount of samples to work with.

The process, from your discovery of Music That Works to releasing this project, took over ten years. Sum up the process.

Looking back on it now, and to see it as an album instead of a few things I did on my Zip disc, is very interesting. It was made over such a long period of time. It captures a certain production style of mine during that time period. Its just sort of fills a portion of my career, and I'm thankful for how it came about.

You've stated that you never intended to release these beats. What do you want people to get from this two-disc set now?

It's funny, because the record market is so bad currently. So I think it's okay to put this out right now. [laughs] When I was making it, I wasn't worried about the intent of how it'd be received. I just wanted to make the music and focused on that. But are people going to buy this? Maybe. It's a good snapshot of what you can do given a limited amount of music, and it's a good case study in production technique. If anything, I don't want anyone to get anything out of it besides them simply enjoying it.

Besides making beats, you're an avid vinyl collector. Touch briefly on record collecting and what you get from it.

I would say I drive around at least three days a week and waste gas. [laughs] I mean, it'd probably make more sense just shopping on eBay at this point, but I have this affinity for driving around L.A. and talking to people. I went to this store called Record Recycling yesterday, and I was there all day. And in retrospect, I knew I wasn't going to buy anything, but I probably just wanted to shoot the shit with Roy, a buddy of mine that works there. It's a part of the community of digging that's lost in the Internet world. I mean, I'll usually hear about Shadow diggin' and even run into Josh at some of my spots down here. But there simply aren't as many stores available anymore. Plus, it isn't as competitive as it was when I was like twenty-one years old. I mean, I used to hide records to get later if I couldn't afford it then and stuff like that. It was furiously competitive. I felt like the clock was always running. My view of record collecting now is a bit different than when I was younger.

Let's shift gears. What's People Under the Stairs currently up to?

We're chillin' right now. We spent most of last year on tour and we're back to making music. We have side projects we're working on, but theoretically, we're making another record. We're always working on something. I set aside beats for Double K all the time.

What do you want people to say about you as a producer after having done it for a while now? Especially with your debut instrumental album being released.

I would want people to view the stuff I've done and know that I wasn't influenced by the hot producer of the moment. I want people to hear my production and ask: "When did this come out?" I remember when people were copying Premier and Pete Rock real hard, so you'd have a gang of producers from a certain time frame sounding all alike. So I guess I'd like people to hear my stuff and not be able to tie it to anything that was happening at the time.

So you think there's an influx of unoriginality currently?

Definitely. Like right now, you got a ton of producers biting Dilla's style on Donuts. When I heard Donuts, I flipped out and thought it was incredible. But I hear CDs and new beats people got comin' out, and it's painful. l mean, people are reducing Dilla's legacy to biting. Just because a style is good doesn't mean it's up for grabs. And it's just one of his styles. I mean, Slum Village didn't sound like that — Dilla had many different styles throughout his career. And I think it's a disservice to his legacy that people are biting so hard.

clickity click

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Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Just in case you forgot....


Saturday, January 05, 2008

The Post More Bills & Invincible Bully Youtube Top 10 Vids

10. Silverman on Cheese.

9. MC Jelly Doughnut vs. Lady Sovereign.

8. Bodega

7. You Can't Tase This.

6. One Punch K.O.

5. Tay Zonday

4. Affion FUCKING Crockett.

3. My Loony Bun is Fine Benny Lava.

2. Hitlers Xbox is banned from Xbox Live. The end of his reign.

1.5. Dudes hump couch.

1. Iron Sheik. Period.

Medium Seen from POST MORE BILLS

Swann from Invincible Bully

Friday, January 04, 2008

Best of 2007

Best MC Performance of the Year (for me)

Track of the Year

Album of the Year

April 26th, 2007

Brother Ali burst onto the Minneapolis hip-hop scene in 2000, when he released his cassette-only demo Rites Of Passage. He soon signed to Twin Cities label Rhymesayers Entertainment, which has released his two acclaimed records, Shadows On The Sun and the Champion EP. It's been three long years since hip-hop fans heard from Brother Ali, and during that time, Ali divorced, became homeless, and fought for custody of his son. He addresses these and other topics on The Undisputed Truth, produced by Ant from the Minneapolis rap duo Atmosphere.

The A.V. Club: This album sounds a little more accessible than your others.

Brother Ali: We were really going for feeling first on this album, because of the topics we were dealing with. I was covering things like my divorce, and getting custody of my son, and kind of rebuilding my life, and things like that. I wasn't exactly sure how to approach those things. But I definitely wanted it to feel the way I feel about them, I wanted the music to feel that way. So rather than take a really heady approach to it, we really wanted to capture the mood above all else.

AVC: Was it a challenge, to find the right feeling for those themes?

BA: Not as much as I thought it would be. I did start out trying to think my way into them. A lot of people have divorce songs, and they're like, "Fuck you, bitch, I can't stand you, and I want you to die." But when you go through a breakup like that—I was married for 10 years—you only feel that way for the first two weeks. That's not the way that you live your life feeling. So I didn't want it to be like that. Ant had these pieces of music that would really remind me of the way I felt about things like my divorce, so when I heard that music, something clicked inside me, and I knew how to approach it based on the mood of the music. The song "Walking Away," I wrote in probably a half hour.

AVC: "Walking Away" is pretty generous to your ex-wife.

BA: Yeah. And there was a lot of things I could've… I had a lot of material, man. [Laughs.] I could have really made a terrible song about her. But you don't want to walk away hating someone, you want to just be like, "Man, this just didn't work with us, hopefully I was just seeing the worst in you." Even for her, I really do, I really hope that she's in a better situation, and that someday it can bring out the better side of her, and she'll be able to be happy. But it definitely was never gonna happen with me.

AVC: On Shadows On The Sun, you say you're "a cross between John Gotti and Mahatma Gandhi," and on The Undisputed Truth, you say, "I'm Howard Stern meets Howard Zinn." Do you work to get both those sides of you on each record?

BA: Not particularly. Ant has played a big role, both for me and in Atmosphere, in making sure that his rappers' personalities are really reflected in the music. That's important to all of us, but I think Ant sees it as his job. When you make music with one person, and you kind of grow together, you end up talking in the songs the way that I talk to him. I feel like I'm writing those songs for him, in a way.

AVC: Most of the press about you mentions that you're albino. Does that bother you?

BA: Early on, it bothered me. I didn't have any distribution for Shadows On The Sun, I just kind of went on tour, and that was my distribution. So I really wasn't prepared for press. I'd never really done it. It's different, if you have to write 115 stories about musicians, then you're looking for something to mix it up a little bit. So I guess I could see that. But there were stories where [being albino] was the whole story. And I was kind of concerned that it started to look like this was a gimmick I was trying to play up. I felt like I went out of my way to not do that. I wasn't gonna not mention it, but they made it sound like it was the key thing to everything I was doing, and it's not.

I will say this, though—when I first came into this and started touring and becoming friends with all these underground, independent rappers, I started being floored that there was an entire scene of mostly white rappers who had mostly white fans. And there was a lot of publications covering them that never talked about hip-hop and never cared about hip-hop until there were white artists making credible hip-hop. And it seems like that was the point where a lot of them got interested. They were kind of deifying these people, like they invented hip-hop. I think those guys are great, I have a lot of respect for them, but let's not get carried away. Where's the balance? If you're talking about these people, there's still an entire realm of amazing artists that's not being talked about. So I started wondering, is this an underlying weird racial thing? I'm albino, my family is white, but I was really raised, and taught my important life lessons, by the black community. It's weird to have these writers be like, "What race are you?" I'd be like, "Fuck you, why is that so important to you? Why did you ask me this?" But then, I'd just be like, "I don't want to talk about that." There was a time as a teenager when I was like, "I'm not white." Because being white is a religion that you either believe in or don't believe in. Of course, in the world, I'm white, I get white privilege and all that kind of stuff, so it's like, lately, I've been having to go on record. A lot of these guys aren't going to get it unless you make it that simple for them. So that really bothered me, and I think it's really tied to the albino thing, because if it weren't for that, that question would have never come up.

AVC: On "Lookin' At Me Sideways" on your new record, it sounds like you're laying it all out on the line, before people start asking you about it.

BA: Yeah. And that song "Daylight," I kind of went into it on that, too. It's a really difficult thing for people to understand, because race is such a polarizing thing for the majority of people. I think people accept it as a reality before they even question it… I think because of the situation that I grew up in, I had to question it almost every minute of my social life, that everybody I loved, and everybody that loved me, were black people. So I'm like, "How do I really explain that without [the press] getting it wrong?" So I'd just be like, "I'm not talking about this with you." They went ahead and wrote "Brother Ali, black albino Muslim from Minneapolis." And I've seen people argue on the Internet, people being like, "No, Brother Ali is black, and this is how I know." I don't want this person feeling like I lied to them, even though I've never lied about it. My whole life, I've never lied about it.

AVC: Honesty is the main thread on The Undisputed Truth. Were you writing songs with that theme in mind?

BA: This kind of transformation happened when I started touring with Shadows On The Sun. My entire life changed, and the way I looked at life changed. When music became my career, and Slug [from Atmosphere] started being so generous to me, it was giving me a lot of opportunities to get out, get exposure, and make some money. I wasn't concerned so much with just surviving. I did all these things believing that I could rebuild my life, that it would be the way I wanted it to be, and it was starting to happen. So I was like, "I have to make this as an album." I just could not think of any other album to make. "This has to be what this album is about. If it's anything else, then I'm cheating myself."

AVC: It does seem like you're making a definitive statement with this album.

BA: Yeah. "Freedom Ain't Free" was one of the first ones I wrote. Right when I wrote that, I was like, "[The Undisputed Truth] is the name of this album, and this is the focus of it, and we're gonna chronicle all the things that made this thing happen." Including the good ones.

AVC: And "Freedom Ain't Free" is the B-side for the first single, "Truth Is." That seemed like a conscious decision, having such strong statements be the first public look at the album.

BA: That was definitely a conscious decision. "Truth Is" is kind of my manifesto on what music should be, and has become. It's kind of the syllabus for the record.

AVC: In March, Rhymesayers signed a distribution deal with Warner Music's Independent Label Group. The Undisputed Truth is the first Rhymesayers record under this agreement. How will the new distribution deal affect your music? Do you think it will?

BA: The thing about it is that we were in a really good situation, because we—and when I say "we," I really mean Atmosphere, and Siddiq, who runs the label, and a lot of the staff—built the label on our own. There's nobody that can say that they made Rhymesayers, other than Rhymesayers. And we're happy, and we're succeeding, and we're growing. So we were in a good situation, where we weren't desperate to deal with any of these big companies. The number-one thing, especially the way I see it—and I really believe this is how everybody at Rhymesayers sees it—is the way we interact with the people who support us, the actual fans. That's what defines us, along with the way that we make music, and the way we work and tour…

When we tour, we play a lot of little cities regularly, and we love playing there. The most you're ever gonna get are 300 kids, but it's the shit. It's amazing. There's no Tower Records there, there's no Amoeba there. They basically get their music online, and if they can't get it online, they just have to wait until we come through on tour. So if we can figure out a situation where my new album is at Target for eight bucks, we get those kinds of tools if we need them. And this is our first time doing it, so we'll see. I'm feeling pretty good about it, I feel like they're just gonna get our stuff in more people's hands. The other thing is, [Warner Brothers] have no control whatsoever in the music we make, or how we interact with our supporters. That was the biggest deal.

AVC: Have you given any thought about whether, if you were given the opportunity, you would be on Warner, or another major label?

BA: Yeah, I've thought about it. A lot of those companies have let Rhymesayers know that that's an option, that they're open to talking about it. I don't know. Slug has been such a mentor to me. I'm not saying I would do exactly what he's doing, but I think that the beautiful thing about him is that he's always grown in a very natural way. Every step he's taken, he's kind of been busting at the seams and ready to take it. He's never grown more than he was ready to grow naturally. I think I really dig that. I mean, we had the opportunity with this record to put it out on Warner Brothers. Shadows On The Sun and Champion, they didn't go through any distribution. So I said, "Let's try it just using the distribution, and see what makes sense." I'm up for gaining something, but there are certain things I just can't give up. I can't give up the way that we actually interact with people. If I could add a bunch of idiot teenagers onto that, whatever. But I can't give up the fat dude from Baltimore who loves "Forrest Whitaker." I would really hate myself if that happened.

Interviewed by David Brusie

Best Youtube Video of the Year

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Hottest Bitch of the Year

Best Book of the Year

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Best Candy of 2007 [We know all them bootleg Year2000 snacks]

Best Comedian of 2007
Grab This
"First Love"
“Stay Off The Coke”

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