September 20, 2012 |
FIVE MONTHS before Terrance Williams, at age 18, murdered the man whose slaying has landed him on Pennsylvania's death row, he murdered another man. Between those murders, Williams pulled an armed robbery, court records show. Before that, at age 16, Williams broke into the Mount Airy home of an elderly couple on Christmas Eve. He woke them by pressing the muzzle of a rifle against the woman's neck, threatened to blow her head off, fired the gun three times above the couple and ransacked their home before fleeing with valuables, according to the District Attorney's Office.
September 19, 2012 |
NORTH PHILADELPHIA's Raheem Jefferson of Black Box Promotions has sued rappers Juelz Santana and Jim Jones and a publicist/booking agent named Lynn Hobson in Common Pleas Court. The suit alleges that the artists showed up late for an April 2010 concert at the Legendary Blue Horizon, drank Moet champagne backstage . . . and then never performed. Hobson's firm, HobbieCom, got a $12,500 deposit up front and additional money the day of the show, the complaint states.
September 15, 2012 |
Kendrick Lamar will not lose. At least, he'd better not. The 25-year-old Compton, Calif., rapper's first music video begins with a bold invocation of his muse Tupac Shakur, Lamar claiming the legendary rap martyr challenged him in a dream with the charge "Don't let me die. " The young scion opens his song's first verse with "visions of Martin Luther staring at me. " And on the corporeal plane, Dr. Dre has graced Lamar's forthcoming major-label debut...
September 12, 2012 |
AFTER FIRING two City Council staffers who were caught allegedly driving drunk while using city cars, Council President Darrell Clarke announced Monday that he's implementing tougher controls on Council's pool vehicles. "I'm going to lock the keys up," Clarke said during a news conference. Council receptionist Robin Jones, 50, was charged with DUI after she drove a city-owned 2008 Chevy Cobalt into a building at 13th and Hamilton streets about 2:30 a.m. on Saturday. While at the scene, she called sergeant-at-arms Rodney Williams, 42, who showed up "visibly intoxicated" in a city-owned 1997 Ford Explorer, police said.
September 7, 2012
OH, TO have been a fly on the wall at last weekend's Made in America Festival when Kim Kardashian crossed paths with Beyonce . They're feuding. A source told the New York Daily News , "Kim and Beyonce barely spoke to each other. " Complicating the matter is the fact that Kardashian's man of the moment, Kanye West , is a good friend of Beyonce's husband, Jay-Z . The paper's source also said, "They were on opposite sides of the stage. Beyonce didn't even acknowledge [Kardashian] was there until the concert was almost over.
August 24, 2012 |
Philadelphia audiences know rapper Meek Mill. Local hip-hop heads dig the North Philly native, 25, for his 14 self-made and -distributed mix tapes, to say nothing of his two most recent tapes for Maybach Music, MC/producer Rick Ross' label through Warner Bros. Area rap fans have seen Mill open for or appear with Drake, Diddy, Chris Brown, Lil Wayne, and Nicki Minaj. They've heard Mill do his street-oriented soliloquies on local radio stations. With mix-tape success behind and a golden future ahead, Mill is growing for the better.
August 13, 2012 |
Surrounded by gold and platinum records hanging on the wall, Beanie Sigel is leaning back in the Conshohocken offices of Ruffhouse Records, talking about his "Expensive Taste. " That's a song on This Time , the Philadelphia rapper's sixth album and the first release from the newly relaunched Ruffhouse, the hip-hop label that put out multimillion-selling CDs in the 1990s by Lauryn Hill, the Fugees, Cypress Hill, and bubble-gum rappers Kris Kross. This Time goes on sale Aug. 28. Fifteen days later, Sigel - the 38-year-old "Broad Street Bully" born Dwight Grant, who grew up near Sigel Street in South Philadelphia - will begin serving a two-year prison term.
August 8, 2012 |
When Chuck D, front man of the seminal hip-hop group Public Enemy, proclaimed that rap music "is CNN for black people," he spoke a truism of the time. By the late '80's, the Reagan years had stripped poor communities bare, crack cocaine had seeped in, police brutality ran rampant, and socially conscious groups like PE spit out the 'hood's hard-core truths with all of the delicacy of a sledgehammer. But try to find a CNN MC today. For every Mos Def or Talib Kweli, there's a surplus of Lil Wayne and Nicki Minaj wannabes - all puffed-up and profane style rather than socially charged substance.
August 7, 2012 |
On a steamy Friday, Pittsburgh co-headliners Wiz Khalifa and Mac Miller brought their stoner-centric Under the Influence of Music tour to Camden's Susquehanna Center. Along with Compton's Kendrick Lamar and Philly's Chiddy Bang, Khalifa and Miller sold out the joint and offered blank-faced attendees a warm place to faint and vomit while espousing their gospels of ganja green. No joke. Though the exact number of the barfing, swooning kids wasn't quantified, this reviewer hadn't witnessed vomiting like this since Bridesmaids . If retching and collapsing are the new applause meters, Khalifa was appreciated.
July 28, 2012 |
At a time when hip-hop is filled with slick, same-sounding production and Auto-Tuned Everything, it's a giddy pleasure to hear rap on the abstract tip, to hear left-field hip-hop that cares zip about convention. There's a small but serious (yet silly) battalion of abstract collage-hop practitioners, including Georgia Anne Muldrow, Shabazz Palaces, Danny Brown, THEESatisfaction, and Lushlife, whom you might call avant-garde rap, with creaky samples, sloppy beats, and zealous devotion to a contagiously melodic script.