MinBane

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Dropping some side-notes on the 15 Years Anniversary of T.I.’s Trap Muzik!

Listen pops

Want to know a little more about rap?

First rule if it’s real

It ain’t just a record deal

It’s a trap” – T.I. – Trap Muzik (2003),

Today, its 15 years ago since the T.I. or Clifford Harris second album was released. That was on the date of 19th August 2003. This was the first album I heard from the rapper and lyricist. Before this, he had dropped an album on Arista, “I’m Serious” but that hadn’t been successful. This was the launch of his career and also, where people got to now of the Trap and the Grand Hustle. That was after he had a series of Mixtapes, which gave way to this album.

This was the album that really opened my eyes for him as an artist. I will take some of the notable lyrics from the album. As there was some bars, that if you haven’t heard is worth to remember. As the statement it made when it was released.

It’s a war going on and they killing for nothing

We were in denial all awhile they where flicking the buttons

I’d rather be dying for something instead of living for nothing

End of discussion” – T.I. – No More Talk (2003).

If that isn’t social commentary and worthy of a shout out nothing is. This is a proof, that the 22 year old rapper, even back then wrote social commentary and about the struggles of the community. Not just slanging dope over banging beats.

And the cars been parked but the rims keep moving

Sign pictures, buy an onion of good and throw the deuces

Cause I ain’t Hollywood, I come from the hood, I’m used to it” – T.I. – 24’s (2003).

If you ever heard a banging video game song for a car game. This song, the 24’s was made for that. The first car riding song. An it was a hit. This one really introduced to plenty a rims and the spinners. Not all of us knew about that cultural aspect from the Southern part of the United States.

“But why the rubber band?”

It representing the struggle man!” – T.I. – Rubberband Man (2003).

This single was the one that first got played on the music TV channels that I picked up. You really felt the beat and at the same time. I got to know David Banner. Therefore, this track alone. Has shown both of them to me. This was really the jam from the album.

I’m the king cause I said it and I mean that shit” – T.I. – Kingofdasouth (2003).

This song and the title of calling himself the King of the South. Which created lots of beef, one that spawn off with Lil Flip. Someone will remember that, someone will not. This was before the mixtape of Down with the King and the “Welcome Back” one. But that one is whole another story.

Now, I have taken my favorite bars and also briefly commented on this album from one of my favorite artists. T.I. or T.I.P. who is still relevant. It is strange to think that its already 15 years since this was released. Peace.

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You don’t won’t it with Push!

“How could you ever right these wrongs/ When you don’t even write your songs?/ But let us all play along/ We all know what niggas for real been waitin’ on/ Push”Pusha T on Infared (Daytona, 2018)

Man, this rap battle between Drake and Pusha T has shown more character and flair on wax, than in years. It is like revival of character and of disses. The down low and nice talk is over. Pusha T from the Clipse is showing class and higher altitude than the most. He is not afraid to go against Drake, the Cash Money, Young Money rapper, who’s been on top of the game for the last few years.

People and commentators was saying, waiting for a response after the Duppy Freestyle, that Pusha was over with and that Drake had won the thing. However, with the latest track, certainly Drake has to come with something really profound and deep. Not to be upset, but really angry. He has to show a vicious side he hasn’t shown before. And that is not him, Drake is a soft and mellow character, who bitch about woman who doesn’t text quickly enough. Drake isn’t a gangster or a hard-core persona. That isn’t him and he should live with that, just like Donald Glover aka Childish Gambino is doing. It is okay, but don’t try to front on someone like Pusha, he will call you out and he did on ‘The Story of Adidon’.

“I really shouldn’t have given you none of my time/’Cause you older than the nigga you runnin’ behind/Look, holla at me when you multi-million/I told you keep playin’ with my name and I’ma let it ring on you/Like Virginia Williams”Drake on ‘Duppy Freestyle’ (2018)

That the ‘Duppy Freestyle’ was a positive response to the ‘Infrared’ from the Daytona LP. However, Drake has to come something more unique and show other tools to take down the recent track. As the revelations and the stories are so shoddy, that the meekest turns into their dark-side.

Pusha T has the upper-hand, he has shown even with waiting for three days, that he could answer Drake. It was seemingly like the battles between Nelly and KRS-One, that the one with the biggest machinery would win, in this instance Drake, as he has the Cash Money and the giant fan-base compared to Pusha T and Good Music. However, now it seems like a open playing field. As the exposure and the title is exposing a naked truth that Drake doesn’t want out or has tried to hide. That is really going all out, but that was in response of mocking Pusha T’s fiancé. Clearly, that backfired. Backfired with all cylinders.

Because now you see the significant difference between them, as Pusha goes directly at Drake, he is not attacking Birdman or Lil Wayne, which is still done in passing. As the knowledge of the messed up practices between the artists and the label is well documented at this point. That is why Birdman has to answer all the litigations and the label-mates leaving because of the practices done there.

“We talkin’ character, let me keep with the facts/You are hiding a child, let that boy come home/Deadbeat mothafucka, playin’ border patrol, ooh/Adonis is your son/And he deserves more than an Adidas press run, that’s real/Love that baby, respect that girl/Forget she’s a pornstar, let her be your world, yuugh!”Pusha T on ‘Story of Adidon’ (2018).

Pusha T answered it all and fired back. This will hard to come back from and answer too. As the reality is the exposure and stories told on Adidon is showing a character side of Drake, that isn’t the heartthrob, but a dead-beat-dad and in this day and age. That is not a good look. It has never been a good look, especially when your supposed to be as wealthy and successful as Drake. That he cannot spend his time with his kid and acknowledge his seed. That is really hurting the pride of Drake and his camp should feel it. But that is because he mocked Pusha for being engaged to someone, like that was a bad thing. By the way, I don’t get why that is bad.

After this sort of affair, what did really ‘Duppy’ have? Right? Not much, other than hype, just like if you would read the bar for bar fight between KRS and Nelly from the early 2000s. It would feel like repeat. What Drake should have known, that Pusha will go all out and not stop at anything. He is no Meek Mill, he is a pure lyricists and that has been known for a long-long time. Proven by the recent joints.

So if he fires back, he has to go deep into the tool shed and really light a fire, but will Drake have it? I don’t know, but to go as hard as this, then your really digging deep. Sort of like Jay Z on ‘Super Ugly’ where he did say:

“Me and the boy A.I. got more in common than just balling and rhyming/Get it? More in Carmen/I came in your Bentley backseat, skeeted in your Jeep/Left condoms on your baby seat”Jay Z on ‘Super Ugly’ (December 2001).

That is the next level for Drake. However, will he go there and does he dare to go there? Because that is the next step, that is the upgrade from Duppy and to be able to counter Pusha at this point. Peace.

Ye’ is now a lost-one: Gone Full-MAGA, Co-Signing Trump on a song!

And I’ll never let my son have an ego

He’ll be nice to everyone, wherever we go

I mean I might even make him be Republican

So everybody know he love white people” – Kanye West from the ‘New Day’ off the ‘Watch the Throne’ (Released in 2011).

I really didn’t want to comment on Kanye West, because what is there to say. He swallowed the “red-pill” and taken it so hard. It is hard to say anything else. If it is marketing scheme or pure love of Republican values? Who knows at this point?

I do not know about his brotherly love, I knew he met with Donald Trump on the 13th December 2016 and has continued from there. Who knows what really went down, as he has since then collected memorabilia and become brothers. Whatever that means for Trump who always needs some loyal snooze-buttons to further his agenda. As long as they steal the spotlight or not praising the President’s massive ego. Because that hurts him and then he will throw that person under the bus. Right now Ye is on the Trump-Train. For whatever reason that might be.

However, it is hard to make sense out of it, I had a feeling when he returned to Twitter, and was poetical and trying to mystic. That he had some sort of marketing plan behind it. Not like he would drop a project without any sort of foreplay. That wouldn’t be Ye. He needs the whole machine behind him, the orchestras and the whole company delivering the needs to played on every radio, be on the screens and be in talks of the town.

Now he steering into controversy. That must be because the beat he created to the recent song with T.I. sucked. The beat was boring and pale. It will not turn into fine wine, let me tell you that. It was neither soul or the beats we recognized from the past. Maybe it general laziness or that the controversy supposed to overshadow the quality of the song.

When Ye drops line like this on the ‘Ye Versus the People’, which was released yesterday:

I feel a obligation to show people new ideas

And if you wanna hear ’em, there go two right here

Make America Great Again had a negative reception

I took it, wore it, rocked it, gave it a new direction

Added empathy, care and love and affection

And y’all simply questionin’ my methods” – Kanye West (Ye Versus the People, 27.04.2018).

It is hard to hear these bars, these lines and take it as nothing. Because the man in the past didn’t sound like this. We all change, like I have had a personal political journey with life. But I have my reasons for my changes. Its been from a liberal to more socialist view, because of the visions of benefits for society. I wonder what is his reasoning for rocking it? What did he do, other than the meeting? Did he say to Trump to hire Ben Carson for having a brother inside the Cabinet? Because there aren’t any or much positive political policies for Ye’ kind or African-American Community, either less and harder policies hurting these communities. If it is immigration wise or if it economical. These communities are hit hard, also the suspension of government funded programs and so-on. There aren’t much or anything Trump has done to make better for Ye.

Therefore, I have to take some bars from College Drop-Out that was released on 2004:

Now niggas can’t make it to ballots to choose leadership

But we can make it to Jacob’s and to the dealership

That’s why I hear new music and I just don’t be feelin’ it

Racism’s still alive, they just be concealin’ it” – Kanye West (Never Let Me Down from the College Drop-Out, Released 10.02.2004).

It’s hard to hear the same man praising Trump and his agenda. A man that has no scruples to misuse White Supremacy, Anti-Immigration Slogans and let the state misuse ICE-Agents against own citizens. To get the support and Co-Sign from Ye. That is not easy, that is hard. Especially, when Ye used spit like this. It is hard and weird. No matter what reasons, it is hard. He has changed and Trump gave him a reason to do so, I guess. But at this point in time, the Republican’s are concealing their racism. They are doing it with the Dreamers, Muslim-Ban and everything else they can hit on minorities.

Therefore, it is weird to have Ye on this side of the political spectrum. It is like he is blind, because the President is praising him for his efforts. Taking a cup of tea in the Twinkle Tower in Manhattan and sipping the Kool-Aid. Who knows, but is not intelligent.

Even some bars from the Late Registration:

Went from bein’ a broke man to bein’ a dopeman

To bein’ the President, look there’s hope man

This that inspiration for the Moes and the Folks man

Shorty come and see his momma straight overdosin’” – Kanye West (Crack Music from the Late Registration, 30.08.2005).

I don’t know if he plans to drop inspirational bars like in the future, because he switched to Luxury Rap and self-involved material long time ago. Just like Lil Wayne has to spit about Codein, Sex and Haters. That is just the game for these guys. However, there has been a social conscious side of Ye’, it is still there, but a dramatic shift in topics and defense.

See that’s the problem with this damn nation

All Blacks gotta be Democrats, man, we ain’t made it off the plantation” – Kanye West (Ye Versus the People, 27.04.2018).

It is the narrative that has shifted, the defense of his acts now. Instead of being social conscious, he is now taking a very ordinary defense of Trump. It is like if we don’t like him, we have to be democrats. But that hasn’t been the direct issue, if it was the older conservative party, it would still have cracks, but it would have made more sense. That is why Powell and Rice was in the Bush administration. An Administration Ye’ spoke ill about, which did far less damage to the African-Community, than the current one. Even if the Bush Administration didn’t care much, they didn’t stop vital programs for the inner-cities and the poorest communities, in the same fashion as Trump. So the issues are really something significantly changed within the artist and person, Kanye West. Which wasn’t there in the past.

He is not the guy I used to listen too. Ye is gone full-MAGA. He will soon have talks directly with Tomi Lahren, be on Diamond & Silk, Hannity and whatever else craziness. Maybe even be on Fox & Friends and also InfoWars. Because why not? The hat shouldn’t be enough. If that is all, then it was easy treat from the President, instead of giving Ye something good for the time and energy. He is giving low-cost attribution for the Co-Sign and only one losing Ye. A fair trade for the President, indeed. 

That is a victory for Trump in all of this, he get a Co-Sign and it cost him nothing. Not even 130k pay-off. Just barely minimum and a signature. Better then the rip-offs of Trump University. Ye took and shake his hand, thought he was brilliant and moved to become a supporter. If so. Kudos Ye, your not as socially conscious as I thought you were, your spirit wasn’t as enlighten as I thought. Because, the possibility of getting caught in the world-wind took you and now, you were let astray. Peace.

The State of current day Hip Hop and my take on it!

Let’s be clear at one point, I had all the information and new the releases. I listen to all hot mixtapes coming out. I was on point. I knew what was happening with Big K.R.I.T. and Yo Gotti. I knew about the possible releases from Cash Money. I could get the needed information of the artists signed to T.I. and the ones who was on Aftermath. Even the ones that was prospects on Bad Boy. Now, I know squat and living well. My Hip Hop blog ‘As Silent as the Pope’ (ASAP08) is history and ended suddenly in 2008. Now, my pages had since than had a different focus and scope. More worldly as you may, but still some rare post about music. Because music moves all of us, but just as my blogs changes, I have changed with time. I have evolved and so has my scopes and what I narrate, when I write. Therefore, the musical drama, the contracts, the newbies and the Hip Hop Industry doesn’t fetch the same dynamic within me. I still listen to the tunes, but is not as connected as back in the day. When I used lots of times, listen to interviews and was on.

Therefore, this post is to prove my view from the outside. After being a keen follower 10 years ago. Still listening to albums, but not as connected as before. Because I am more political after years of studies, a bachelor degree and becoming mature. That is just life catching up and Alfamega never got over the snitching paradigm and loss of Grand Hustle contract, I suppose.

When we are at this stage and the changes. As many are irrelevant and the approach to the art-form I love has changed. That is natural, just as I have evolved, the art-form does too. The Hip Hop landscape wouldn’t be same as I left it. There has always been artist living on hot beats and trashy talk with no common sense. Don’t tell me ‘A Tribe Called Quest’ was lyrical masterminds, even if Q-Tip has enough skills to kill me in one-bar. Still. On the same manner ‘Fat Boys’ wasn’t brilliant either, but they we’re entertaining. Therefore, when I say certain types of music isn’t good now. That might be true, they are entertaining today, but will you pick a LP by Lil Pump in 10 years time? I doubt it. It is cool now to be listening to ‘Gucci Gang’, but in a decades time, I doubt it will get better like fine wine.

The proof that a project is good is that you have a feeling you can listen to the LP years after it was released and still be relevant. The production might be dated, but the elements, the lyrical mastering and the topics is as relevant today as when it was released. That is for me an important matter. That I can pick up an older LP and it will still be banging. It will still move me and question my own thinking on the matter. Even see something new in it. Why I say this is the modern-day bashing of Tupac Shakur. The legend, the hero and the man who brought THUG LIFE to the forefront.

Because of everyone saying they are like Tupac. I started listening to his albums again, and especially ‘The Don Killuminati: The 3 Day Theory’ and its has the firepower that some of the current music today is missing. That Phryme has it place, its the old-school vibe and quality bars from Royce Da 5’9″ but not the political motivation. That is more Lupe Fiasco and he is trying. I am still listening to Lasers, the Cool and the Food and Liquor Part 2. However, the miles behind good and relevant albums are hard. Not that the Jadakiss & Fabolous project isn’t good, it is brilliant, but it hasn’t enough edge.

There are enough artists, but their tracks doesn’t shine through and some of the big men who has been big. Don’t need the center stage, they can rest on their past victories. If that is the Wu Tang Clan that dropped a project. Certain songs there was banging, but not the whole thing. The most consistent projects in while from Young Jeezy dropped, the Pressure LP, but without a ‘I Luv It’, the public is not picking up on it. That is how today is, you need the swagger jacking singles to matter. Even if the projects are good and are on point.

I don’t know if I will listen to Phryme 2 in 5 years, but I am listening still now and then to the first release of Phryme. I am still listening to previous LPs of Jadakiss and mixtapes from Fabolous. They are not far in my music-player. I am not even on Spotify or Tidal or whatever streaming-service. Because I like listening to whole projects. I am old-school like that.

Because I am old-school, I am not a fan of biting, imitation and taking inspiration is cool, paying homage to the ones before is cultural appreciation. Like I was amazed when Mackelmore and Ryan Lewis had features of Grandmaster Caz, Melle Mel and Kool Moe Dee on their single ‘Downtown’. I had goosebumps before putting it on the first time. They didn’t have to this, but they decided to do it. That is what we need to see, because the new generation of music listeners doesn’t care.

This will be the same ignorant story of the time when Nelly had beef with KRS One. Where they both was claiming their place in the game and that Nelly was relevant and KRS was trying to eat of his plate. However, the point wasn’t there, but that Nelly should respect what KRS did to the game. Now, I am sure that Nelly feels like funny feature for many, as he is on Georgia Flordia Line ‘Cruise’ and isn’t the Head Honcho anymore. Other people has taken his place and Drake singing hook has taken over. That is just the way it is.

But the biting is taking to far for me. That is why I have a hard time listening to Cardi B and her kind. That is why anyone T-Paining and Future sort-of-rappers are to much for me. I had a hard enough time listening to Method Man and Jadakiss with a minute or two on Autotune. There has to make sense, Desiigner and the likes. Will be daft in the dustbin, there is enough talented MCs awaiting their spot and to drop something significant and meaningful. Then I don’t mean Logic or G-Easy, no they doesn’t entertain me even.

I just wonder when Biting was acceptable, when the copying and pasting, the ghostwriting levels was okay. There has always been that, but more for producers becoming rappers like Dr. Dre and the likes. Not the supposed to be hottest hot like Cardi. They we’re supposed to drop the bars and be the rawest MC. Now, I am sure anyone can lyrically defeat Cardi, because her team handle her bars and she just market her songs. If that is enough for this generation. I am sorry, I am not jumping on the bandwagon. I am not, even if liked the ghostwriting for Dr. Dre, there is fine line between them.

Not that I am big Nicki Minaj or Remy Ma. Both of them can spit and write their own bars. Even if the previous Terror Squad LP only had like three or four good songs. While Nicki has long time between hard-core bars and been radio friendly, not for the hip-hop crowd. That is understandable as the label and herself want a bigger crowd for herself. But they are both better at the craft than Cardi. Even if Cardi is the thing now. I am still not following. Maybe, because I am old-school in my mid-30s.

That is why I am not on Datpiff or even on HipHopDX, buying XXL every month or even looking a the Source. That is why I loose out, and suddenly guys like 21 Savage and others suddenly pops-up on the scene without any notice. Not that I buy into it the stick, but if a song is good. I check out more. But many falls through, because they are feature artists in my eyes like French Montana. Tell me one whole project you have loved, through and through, where he a stand-out artist? No, I thought so, he is no Pusha T or Cyhi Da Prince.

Let’s be clear, this is my rambling, as someone a bit of bounds. That used to be into it and listening closely. When people was waving to get Pimp C out of jail, when Houston was taking over. When Miami had prospects, more than just Trick Daddy. That was the time I was in, when Dip Set was still relevant and Cam’ron wasn’t just trolling 50 Cent. And when 50 Cent was gangster and not a TV Producer. Well, that was the days. Those days are numbered. However. I am not, I still follow, but from a narrow scope and randomly picking up LPs that sounds good and might have hope.

There will come new talent that will catch my ear and take my breathe away, but that is harder than before. Because I don’t need no to buy no LP like Cassidy’s ‘Split Personality’, that was a whack CD from a promising talent. Another one, that had deserved more credit is Saigon, whose delivered good LP’s, but very few has cared. There will always be like this, why I haven’t mentioned Nas or Jay-Z, well, they both should retire, maybe even Scarface, even if I respect all three. But this is game for yungin’s, but they should pay respect to the ones that opened the door in for them. That is lacking in our time.

J.Cole who dropped a project I will listen more to in coming days, paid respect to Nas and Jay-Z on his projects in the past. Waka Flacka Flame even dropped respect to the ones before him. It would be nice to the newbies doing the same, but there is less of it. Not biting their lines, but saying, I am dropping trap music because of T.I. and Three 6 Mafia. Juicy J is the reason why I make songs for Stip-Clubs. Let’s be honest, that is the little token of credit that the other artists deserves, the ones that built a career, surely Nelly would like some credit today for his Mid-West Rap-Game. But I haven’t heard any give him anything. It is just like KRS-One felt back in the day.

Well, this was my musical rant of the month and year 2018. I am out of the loop and its cool. But I still know this thing. I don’t care of the newbies doesn’t, but they should check the records, should listen to old-school and understand the craft. Not just think they can do everything because it is easy to upload and get social media crowds. Because, the people like doesn’t eat out of their hands and doesn’t pay for their LPs, unless it hopefully gets better like wine. If it doesn’t I have no reason to pick it up and bump it. I will just download, have one listen and let it go. Like I did to many Gorilla Zoe Mixtapes back in the day. You got to drop quality and show your value. I don’t care what Lil B or whatever whats his face, even ‘Tyler the Creator’ has lost his shock value, just like Lana Del Rey did.

Unless, your as foolish and dumb like Taylor Swift to cover ‘September’ of Earth, Wind and Fire. Than, I won’t care, because usually people aren’t that insensitive. But there is some who will take it further and not think of the consequences and the reactions to their raps. That Cardi copied Kodak Black, wasn’t cool, even if he gave credit and she got hit. But for me, that isn’t my thing. She should have her own style, but she is mixing it up and is proud of it. That is a disgrace for the art-form. But that is just me…. Peace.

Pharrell and Thicke’s lines wasn’t ‘Blurred’ on “Blurred Lines” as the Court’s verdict awards Gaye’s Estate $4m in damages!

thicke-gaye

Well, Copyright infringement is a tricky thing, especially with something as soft as sound and audio. That musicians are taking each other’s vibes and play into their own creations isn’t new. The music is inspired and often in modern popular music they sample music that the composer together with producers pays for licencing. One of the most popular in my time we’re when Jay-Z and Dame Dash got the rights to use Annie Sample on Hard Knock Life:

“Jay-Z gained permission to use the “Hard Knock Life” sample by writing a letter to the musical’s composer Charles Strouse and lyricist Martin Charnin expounding on his childhood love of the show, having won a ticket to see it on Broadway as a prize in an essay-writing competition at his hard-knock Bedford-Stuyvesant school. The letter was, he later admitted, an “exaggeration”. In fact the rapper came across the hip-hop version, by producer Mark “the 45 King” James, at a rap show and bought it for a rumoured $10,000” (Ludovic Hunter-Tilney, 2015).

What was done in Jay-Z famous single for the ‘Hard Knock Life’ he got permission and also seek to gain permission to use the sample of the song in his own creation. Something that even wasn’t in mind between the parties in the litigation between Marvin Gaye’s estate and the Thicke Parties; as the Copyright infringement case that been running ever since the “Blurred Lines” became a hit in 2013. This was now a concluded case in the courts on the 22nd December 2016. Where the judgement and the jury came to a verdict where the Thicke Parties we’re at fault as per explained underneath. That both musical specialist and legal experts denies the claims of the Thicke’s as they does not see it as coincidence that “Blurred Lines” sounds so similar to “Give To Give It Up” by Marvin Gaye.

“In 1976, Motown legend Marvin Gaye composed and recorded in studio his #1 dance and funk hit “Got To Give It Up” (“Give”). ER2238. The song, dubbed by Oprah Winfrey the greatest dance song ever, has endured for the forty years since it was created. SER856. In early 2013, Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke discussed writing a new song. See SER856, SER858. In multiple public statements they were candid about the fact that Give and Marvin Gaye were at the top of their minds in creating their song “Blurred Lines” (“Blurred”)” (United States Court of Appeals, P: 17, 2016).

“The amicus brief strays far outside the record, makes unsupported generalization about the music at issue, and is apparently uninformed by the actual trial testimony, including the fact that Williams and Thicke disavowed the idea that they wished to create an “homage” to Marvin Gaye. It also bears mentioning that of the 212 signatories to that brief, several are not “songwriters, composers, musicians, [or] producers” at all, but rather music business executives such as talent managers, attorneys, and other representatives. In addition, more than half (by our count, based on public information) are either clients of the Thicke Parties’ trial counsel, have recorded or are credited on albums with Williams, or have another business relationship with one or more of the Thicke Parties. This web of connections is not disclosed in the amici’s statement of interest” (United States Court of Appeals, P: 22, 2016).

“Thicke made many similar statements in video and radio interviews, e.g., telling an interviewer that Give is “one of my favorite songs of all time, I went in [to the studio] and [said] ‘you know Pharrell I’d love to make something like this, you know feel like ‘Got to Give it Up’ and [Pharrell] started with the percussion you know trying to get that rhythm and then the song actually happened we did the whole record in about an hour.” (United States Court of Appeals, P: 27, 2016).

Songs similarities:

“Finell testified that nearly every one of the 130 bars of Blurred contains at least one of the elements of Give that appears in the lead sheet. ER666. The numerous common elements and the way they interrelated with each other created a “constellation” of similarities she found “stunning” and “highly unusual.” ER581–82. For example, the “heartbeat” of the song—the interlocking bass and keyboard—“drove each song.” ER559. She identified seven elements found in both Blurred and the lead sheet: the signature phrase, the hook, “Theme X,” the bass melody, the keyboard rhythms and chords, word painting, and the parlando/rap section” (United States Court of Appeals, P: 34, 2016). “[O]ut of the four notes from the Give hook and four notes from Blurred, three are identical in their scale degrees.” ER600-01. The hook of Give repeats 12 times within the lead sheet and the hook in Blurred repeats 14 times. ER602. The four-note hook melody in Give contains scale degrees 6- 1-2-1; the four-note hook melody in Blurred contains scale degrees 6-1-1-1. SER868-70. Finell also testified that the rhythmic placement is similar in that two of the notes are before and two are after the bar lines in each song“ (United States Court of Appeals, P: 36, 2016).

“In an attack on this testimony, ten musicologists have filed a brief that purports to start the analysis from scratch, with a very crabbed interpretation of the lead sheet and assertions unconstrained by the record or tested by any form of cross examination. App. Dkt. 20. To the extent it merits any consideration, this amicus brief at most shows that experts may regarding substantial similarity, creating a triable issue of fact” (United States Court of Appeals, P: 40, 2016).

Jury conclusion:

“We will not second-guess the jury’s application of the intrinsic test.” Three Boys, 212 F.3d at 485. Regardless, the trial record here more than adequately supports the District Court’s conclusion that it “cannot be found, that the jury’s conclusion that the two works have intrinsic similarity was against the clear weight of the evidence.” ER29” (United States Court of Appeal, P: 79, 2016).

Gaye’s estate get damages:

“The Gayes accepted the District Court’s remittitur of the jury’s award of $4 million in actual damages to $3,188,527.50 and its remittitur of the jury’s award of $1,610,455.31 in profits against Williams to $357,630.96” (United States Court of Appeal, P: 86 ,2016). “Based on her analysis applying industry custom and practice and her vast experience, Stern concluded the use of Give by Blurred would have resulted in a 50% licensing fee being granted to the Gayes if a license had been negotiated before release of Blurred” (United States Court of Appeal, P: 89, 2016).

T.I. also liable:

“It is undisputed that Harris and the Interscope Parties were part of the chain of distribution for Blurred. This includes Harris’s role as a owner of the copyright who authorized the distribution. It follows that if Blurred infringed the Gayes’ copyright, which the jury found it, Harris and the Interscope Parties were liable as a matter of law” (United States Court of Appeal, P: 95, 2016).

Jury award Gaye’s estate:

Here the jury’s award of actual damages and lost profits to the Gayes means the jury necessarily found that Blurred infringed the Gayes’ copyright. Only confusion as to which parties bore the responsibility for that infringement can explain its failure to find Harris and the Interscope Parties liable. The District Court reasonably concluded that failure to give an instruction clearly defining the scope of distributor liability caused the inconsistent verdicts, and that the verdicts could be corrected in a way that followed both the law and the jury’s intent” (United States Court of Appeal, P: 96,2016).

So one of the biggest producers of our times have got a verdict of copy infringement of used material in this case, use of a song from Marvin Gaye; which happen to create one of the biggest hits of 2013. Pharrell Williams as the Producer of the beat, Robin Thicke as the main singer and with feature of T.I. or Clifford Harris Jr. that we’re all part of the hit song. The one song that both Pharrell and Williams claimed to be inspired by Gaye, still the song after analysing and use of musical expertise show how similar the tracks are.

Later after the first litigations that lead to this and after first verdicts of copyright infringement he told the press this: “Thicke had a great answer for his GQ interview, telling the lawyer, “With all due respect, I was high and drunk every time I did an interview last year.” In fact, Thicke said, “Every day, I woke up, I would take a Vicodin to start the day and then I would fill up a water bottle with vodka and drink it before and during my interviews.” Robin says he’s now drug free, telling the Gaye family lawyer, “I’ve been sober for the last 2 months … When your wife leaves you, it gives you good reason to sober up.” (TMZ, 2014). So the musician now tries to deflect the facts of how they we’re inspired to make the track, now that the process we’re in action than he was a drinking and doped artist who didn’t know what he was saying. His lifestyle we’re blurry to take responsibility for the inspiration behind the blurred lines hit. Which is a beautiful feature, but doesn’t make the courts sing and dance; the evidence and the affidavits do.

So the verdict of the Ninth Circuit Court of California clearly followed the line of the musicians taking inspiration, we’re doing more than so and didn’t licence the rhymes and beat of the Marvin Gaye “Got To Give It Up” when making the “Blurred Lines”. If the guilty party who is under Thicke Parties had asked for permission and licenced by the Gaye’s estate like Recording Artist do all the time. They use their Recording Companies and their legal teams together with publishing agents who fix the use of a sample to create new songs. That shouldn’t be new for either party in the Thicke Party. Pharrell Williams, Robin Thicke and T.I. has all been on records that are sampled and has gotten permission to use parts of other tracks into making a new hit record.

The same could been done by the men behind “Blurred Lines” instead they tried to copy somebody else’s work without permission and without licence. If they had offered in advance 50% on royalty on sales the Recording of the hit song would been fine and fixed. Instead they wanted to legally battle the Gaye’s Estate. Something they righteously lost. Peace.

Reference:

UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT – ‘PHARRELLWILLIAMS, MOREWATER FROM NAZARETH PUBLISHING, INC. VS. FRANKIE CHRISTIAN GAYE, ET AL’ (22.12.2016) – Appeal From Judgment Of The United States District Court For The Central District Of California (Hon. John A. Kronstadt, Presiding).

Ludovic Hunter-Tilney – ‘The Life of a Song: ‘It’s the Hard Knock Life’ (10.04.2015) link: https://www.ft.com/content/fbf3bec4-ce64-11e4-86fc-00144feab7de

TMZ – ‘I WAS TOO WASTED ON VICODIN To Write ‘Blurred Lines’ (15.09.2014) link: http://www.tmz.com/2014/09/15/robin-thicke-drugs-blurred-lines-alcohol-vicodin-marvin-gaye/

Uganda: Legal Red Note on Wizkid after failed concert in Kampala (16.12.2016)

wizkid-case-uganda-16-12-2016-p1wizkid-case-uganda-16-12-2016-p2

Face TV Statement: “the Excitement aroud the Wizkid concert has been heart warming” but he was stuck in LA (02.12.2016)

wizkid-cancelled-concert

South Sudan music 2016 – We Are Hungry (Youtube-Clip)

What do Jay Z and President Museveni have in common? They don’t want to retire!

Jay Z Fade to Black

Yet again, I go all in. This is another one and not a DJ Khaled comment. This here is similarities between people or characters that usually are not in the same league. Here I am showing fist how Jay Z talked about retiring and then backing down a dropping a project or LP. This is a proof of that the gimmicks or promotional tools that we’re from the Def Jam and Roca-Fella Co-Founder and now millionaire artist.

It is these days that I am tired of the President Museveni and his system who just uses the state funds and institutions for own wealth than creating and developing society. President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni who has promised since taking the office with a brutal civil war in 1980s said he would step down. At each point, he has backtracked and given in. That means he has seeking more time in power and used more excuses to empower himself. Always if the Party wants him

2003 Jay Z after the ‘The Black Album’:

“It’s not like it was with Big and Pac” (…) “Hip-hop’s corny now” (…) “There’ll be no more full-length Jay-Z albums. I might do a soundtrack in a year or two. Maybe a collaboration. But only after a year. I want to let it alone for at least a year” (…) “Well, like Jordan said, ‘I’ve got to leave myself a window” (…) “If people take it back to when we were making hot albums and I’m just totally inspired and I’m like, I want in, then that could happen. But I don’t foresee it” (Toure, 2003).

2005 Jay Z Q&A in the XXL Magazine:

“Just from making albums. I still make songs. It bugs me when people say, “I thought you was retired.” I clearly said—and I also said that I’m human. So maybe one day if I’m on the corner and it’s calling me—I don’t wanna just box myself in where I can’t make another album—I’ll do it anyway. But it bothers me when people say, “I thought you was retired,” if I make a song or if I do a verse on somebody’s joint. I never said I wasn’t making anymore music. I should’ve shut up. That’s what I should’ve did. Me and my big mouth” (Bry, 2005).

2006 Jay Z with the ‘The Kingdom Come’:

“the worst retirement in history” (…) “”I believed it, yeah. I believed it for two years” (…) “Something, when you love it, is always tugging at you and itching, and I was putting it off and putting it off. I started fumbling around to see if it felt good” (…) “If I wake up one day and the best material has passed me by — and that’s going to happen, then it’s time to move on. I’ve said what I wanted to say” (CBC Arts, 2006).

2007 Jay Z with the ‘American Gangster’:

“LOS ANGELES, Sept. 19 — Jay-Z, the rap superstar and president of Def Jam Records, has quietly returned to the studio to record an album of new songs inspired by the forthcoming movie “American Gangster,” his first “concept” album and second CD in less than a year” (Halbfinger & Leeds, 2007).

And we know that Jay Z has released albums ever since and also features. So it is not like he ever retired only talked about it. The big bang with ‘The Black Album’ we’re just a fade that didn’t really go into Black as the artist went back into studio time and time again. Let’s take a look at President Museveni and his long time stay in the role of Executive.

Daily Monitor 1993

Museveni in 2002:

“When he took power in 1986, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni said he considered the idea of a Head of State clinging to office for “15 or more” years ill-advised. Although it is now 16 years since Museveni made this statement he is still comfortably lolling in office and has just embarked on his 17th year as Uganda’s Head of State. In last year’s filthy elections that he won by 69 per cent of the votes cast, Museveni took a high moral ground by claiming that had his votes not been stolen he could have garnered more than 75 per cent. However, his supporters were contented with 69 per cent, which they interpreted as a resounding endorsement for Museveni to rule for life” (…) “In his usual idiosyncratic meddling way and new role as Africa’s peacemaker, elder statesman and continental unifier, Col. Muammar Gadhafi, while attending Museveni’s inauguration, urged him to be a perpetual leader. While addressing a national conference of Museveni’s ruling National Resistance Movement on May 11, 2001, he urged Ugandans to allow Museveni to rule for “as long as possible.” “Revolutionary leaders should not have expiry dates, like tinned drinks. My brother Museveni was born a revolutionary. He should continue for as long as he has the ability to do so,” Gadhafi said. Despite this enormous pressure to rule forever, Museveni had the gall to promise, yet again, that he would not contest again after his new mandate expires. Determining the truth of this statement might not need the services of a clairvoyant” (Okumu, 2002).

Musveni in 2005:

“Mr Museveni, 62, said he was sure of victory at the election. He thanked MPs who voted overwhelmingly this year to scrap a presidential time limit that would have required him to step down. “That provision was not wise at all, because the problems Africa faces are not always time-bound,” he said” (Vasagar, 2005).

Museveni in 2006:

“I need the power of the state to solve the problems of our people” (…) “I don’t need power to live, by the way” (…) “My cows are waiting for me” (Savage, 2006).

Museveni in 2012:

“The term limits, which would have forced Museveni to stand down in 2006, were scrapped in a process that did not enjoy popular appeal and after MPs were offered inducements to support the move. Museveni, however, told CNN that debate on term limits and his longevity in office were not a priority. “What is important for Uganda,” he said, “is to deal with the country’s development bottlenecks and not who should be the president.” (HabariNetwork, 2012).

Museveni in 2014:

“Well, I don’t think Ugandans are as obsessed with my retirement as Ssemujju seems to be because when I go to ask them at the elections, five million say don’t go, you stay” (…) “You have heard them, singing tajakugenda tajakugenda (he won’t go). So if Ugandans really were like Ssemujju, I would be happy to retire because I am not lacking where to retire. I am a member of my party and I do what my party wants” (Okuda 2014).

What has Museveni said in the past (2014):

“There is nothing much to look forward to, about what the president is going to say on Thursday; I think the greatest thing I would want to hear from him is telling us when he’s going read his last State of the Nation Address,” the former bush war comrade told Chimpreports this morning” (…) “When I was in cabinet, Museveni said that Africa’s biggest problem was people who overstay in power. At one time he wanted to go and graze his cattle once he clocked 55,” recalled Mushega, who fought with Museveni in the liberation war that toppled the military junta of the Okellos in 1986” (ChimpReports, 2014).

PF-retirement_1666571c

There are clear indications of the same mentality between the men. They are both seeking to be honoured for their positions and don’t wanted to leave when they had left a legacy. Instead they are continuing to either be in office or drop LPs.

The proof that they both just wanted to earn on their place in society is proven. As Jay Z has for a long time said he would retire from Hip Hop, but on the next crossroad dropped a project. President Museveni has many times said he want to retire and be with his cows. Instead he runs again because in reality he wants to run the nation and control it all. Mzee have been pledging and promising to leave power after ten years when he came into office after the 1980s civil war. Now he is still there after 30 years. As seen he has promised to step down since then. The words of those statements are worthless. Therefore, don’t expect him to go out of office before his casket. Peace.

Reference:

Bry, David – ‘Jay Z, “Look At Me Now” (Originally Published August 2005)’ link: http://www.xxlmag.com/news/throwbacks/2013/07/jay-z-look-at-me-now-originally-published-august-2005/

CBC Arts – ‘Jay-Z ends “retirement” with new album’ (14.09.2006) link: http://www.cbc.ca/news/arts/jay-z-ends-retirement-with-new-album-1.583720

ChimpReports – ‘Mushega: Museveni Wanted To Retire At 55’ (02.07.2014) link: http://www.chimpreports.com/20658-mushega-museveni-wanted-to-retire-at-55/

HabariNetwork – ‘UGANDA’S PRESIDENT MUSEVENI HINTS AT RETIREMENT IN 2016’ (16.04.2012) link: http://www.thehabarinetwork.com/ugandas-president-museveni-hints-at-retirement-in-2016/2

Halbfinger, David M. & Leeds, Jeff – ‘For Jay-Z, Inspiration Arrives in a Movie’ (20.09.2007) link: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/20/arts/music/20jayz.html?_r=0

Okuda, Ivan – ‘Ugandans don’t want me to leave – Museveni’ (07.12.2014) link: http://mobile.monitor.co.ug/News/News/Ugandans-don-t-want-me-to-leave—Museveni/-/2466686/2547152/-/format/xhtml/-/uuwodw/-/index.html

Okumu, Wafula – ‘The Travails and Antics of Africa’s “Big Men” – How Power Has Corrupted African Leaders’ (11.04.2002) link: http://www.theperspective.org/africabigmen.html

Savage, Sam – ‘Back to my cows? Not yet, says Uganda’s Museveni’ (22.02.2006), Link: http://www.redorbit.com/news/international/401452/back_to_my_cows_not_yet_says_ugandas_museveni/#fbd7eO1Py393CEUh.99

Toure – ‘MUSIC; Superstardom Is Boring: Jay-Z Quits (Again)’ (16.11.2003) link: http://www.nytimes.com/2003/11/16/arts/music-superstardom-is-boring-jay-z-quits-again.html?pagewanted=all

Vasagar, Jeevan – ‘Museveni to stand for re-election after detention of his main rival’ (21.11.2005) link: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2005/nov/21/uganda.jeevanvasagar

Koffi kicked out: Congolese musician Koffi Olomide deported (Youtube-Clip)

“Congolese musician Koffi Olomide is awaiting deportation. This comes after he was arrested outside citizen studios last night. The events that raised an online uproar and the attempt by the musician to quieten the storm” (Kenya Citizen TV, 2016).

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