A new man. Apologies for the rough sound.
Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Carl Roe's DJ Booth presence is building up with his new song "Nobody's Nobody" up on their site. Here's his bio, just in case you need a reminder of who he is:
You won’t need to hear a phone number (area code first) a thousand times to remember who Carl Roe is. Hailing from the Midwest, Roe makes his first appearance on DJBooth with the trigger quick,Nobody’s Nobody. Stepping onto the scene with a unqiue perspective as a former U.S. soldier who toured Iraq, Roe’s style immediately hits the eardrums on this promotional release. Flowing like a torpedo, Roe drops unexpected clauses throughout the track, making you raise an eyebrow as he draws attention to his word play. Spitting savage lines over a pop-centered kickdrum provided by highly-demanded producer Shane Eli, Nobody catches Carl in a raw state on every line. Although this song won’t be on his upcoming release, The Broken Time Machine EP, it certainly garnishes enough attention to look forward to more from this stand-up emcee. No date yet for the tape, but stay with the Booth and we’ll be sure to keep you posted!Just follow the link to listen and download.
Up and coming rapper Carl Roe has just released his new website. The design plays strongly on his military background, which involved a tour of duty in Iraq, complete with a camo background and aesthetic. Carl put "The Confidant" up as his title track on the website, illustrating a healthy tendency towards pop music sensibilities:
You can follow Carl Roe on Twitter here. Carl is grinding pretty hard and could use your feedback as much as possible.
His EP, The Broken Time Machine, should be available soon. To hold you over until then, go ahead and listen to the Blood Is One We're On Everything mixtape.
Sunday, August 28, 2011
Hello, I want to personally apologize to everyone involved, including our readers, for the delay in the We're On Everything mixtape release. I don't know why such a simple thing has taken so long and it is really strange to me. Our graphic designer had quite a bit happening in his life and took a while to deliver, while I myself have had some life altering experiences while visiting family on the small island of Guam.
Here it is finally in its entirety. I've busted my balls under weird circumstances to finally get it to you and I hope you enjoy it to death. Thank you to all of you.
Thursday, August 18, 2011
Fire, bars and heat from June G., one of Blood Is One's favorite upcoming rappers.
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
I love audio drama and once wrote an entire article on the subject for the music magazine Mstation. Marvel is doing a Daredevil audio drama, under the appropriate pretext of marketing towards blind fans of the character (appropriate because the character of Daredevil is himself blind):
Since his inception in 1964, Daredevil has stood out as a unique figure in comic books: A blind man able to leap through the air and battle evil thanks to a special radar enhancing his other senses. The Man Without Fear has been a Marvel stalwart for nearly 50 years as well as a representative of the visually-impaired in popular fiction, but up to this point, those deprived of sight themselves have had to rely on friends reading them copies of DAREDEVIL in order to experience Matt Murdock's adventures.
About a month ago, Marvel Senior Editor Steve Wacker came up with the idea to record an audio edition of DAREDEVIL #1 so that the visually-impaired could enjoy the dawn of a new era for DD, his friends and his enemies. Additionally, this special project provides those who can see with a new take on what's already being hailed as one of the best comics of 2011.
DAREDEVIL writer Mark Waid provides full panel descriptions directly from his script on this audio edition, while Marvel editors Tom Brennan, Ellie Pyle and Jordan D. White lent their voices to Daredevil/Matt Murdock, Kirsten McDuffie and Foggy Nelson, with White and Wacker also providing additional vocals. Marvel.com Video Editor Todd Wahnish recorded the piece, Marvel.com Associate Editor Ben Morse directed and Jordan White edited the final recording.
Enjoy the audio edition of DAREDEVIL #1, and if you've got a friend who'se visually-impaired, please share this with them.
And don't forget to pick up DAREDEVIL #2, on sale this week!
I want to apologize to anyone for delays on our website. Please believe that things are in order. We have several features coming to you in the future, including:
In addition, the We're On Everything mixtape will be dropped within weeks. Get ready.
- Kenan Bell will be regularly blogging for us, contributing with posts from his esoteric point of view. I'm pretty excited about this, especially as it means that Kenan will be showing his talent both as a commentator (check out his Twitter page) in addition to as a rapper and musician.
- As Carl Roe's career accelerates, we're going to be focussing on him more and more. That means a full on feature interview with the Iraq veteran about his influences, creative process and more!
In addition, the We're On Everything mixtape will be dropped within weeks. Get ready.
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Now this is a nice development. He did a show there as well, so can we assume Charlie Sheen is now part of the Detroit hip-hop scene?
This time last year, Charlie Sheen was preparing for the Emmys, but after his many “colorful” episodes, things are a little different for the actor.
This year, the former “Two and a Half Men” star made an appearance at the Gathering of the Juggalos, the three-day music festival for fans of the band Insane Clown Posse held in Cave-In-Rock, Illinois.
Sheen, 45, hosted Saturday night’s show, and he got mixed reactions from attendees.
Despite his tiger blood, the actor was alternately cheered and booed, according to two videos posted online Sunday. In a video posted on TMZ, the crowd chants his name, with enthusiastic fans shouting “winning!” But just when you think the warlock’s tamed the unruly crowd, a BuzzFeed video shows Sheen getting booed and heckled.
And that “Major League” training must’ve come in handy, because like Tila Tequila and Method Man before him, the actor was hit with objects thrown on stage. (Oh, those Juggalos! They’re incorrigible.)
Sheen’s next appearance should also garner an interesting reception; "The Comedy Central Roast of Charlie Sheen" tapes on September 10. The roast will premiere on Comedy Central on September 19 at 10/9c, the same day “Two and a Half Men” will debut Ashton Kutcher as the new "man" on the sitcom following Sheen's firing.
Sunday, August 14, 2011
Saturday, August 13, 2011
One of my favorite rappers and a potential explosive market for hip-hop listening military servicemen, and a friend, Carl Roe, is not only moving up fast but is moving up with the help of the larger hip-hop community. Here's an article that has popped up on him at Refined Hype:
Both through RefinedHype and the mothership I get approached by a lot of people looking to run music contests and I almost always say no. Why? Because you're forced to dig through so many Tiffany Green face worthy submissions to find that one hidden piece of dopeness it's barely worth it. But I've never seen a piece of unexpected dopeness like this.
Quick rewind: Shane Eli put out an instrumental version of his "I Can Do Better" album and invited emcees to rhyme over the beat of their choice. There was actually a fair amount of solid submissions, but Carl Roe's "We Own the Night" was hands down my favorite.
Seriously, how fucking ill is that? This isn't to take anything away from his rhymes, the man can legitimately rap, but this is about more than music. Or rather, it's about music's ability to convey emotions and moments that simply can't be carried by any other medium. The war in Iraq is, for most of us, a distant battle we watch unfold on CNN, but I can honestly say that this really made the war hit home for more.
So don't worry, I'll get back to booty and no fu**king sense rap lines in a sec, but if I can be allowed a moment of actual sincerity, huge respect to Carl Roe, both as a solider, a man and an artist.
Friday, August 12, 2011
Thursday, August 11, 2011
Saturday, August 6, 2011
Kenan Bell has released his second Summer Solstice mixtape, which is mixed down by none other than Blood Is One family Carl Roe. Some hard work was put into this one by two guys are not rolling in the dough or being served extraordinarily by today's economy. If you like it, be sure to support by buying some more of Kenan's music through our site.
Wednesday, August 3, 2011
Yelawolf has done some great cameos in his come up, with Slaughterhouse, Eminem and Raekwon, among others, but the best chemistry has been with Big K.R.I.T. The two are on a similar wavelength - K.R.I.T. from Mississippi while Yelawolf from Alabama. Both represent the south with heavy accents, a working class family oriented social disposition that makes them a bit tamer than the hustle-or-die rappers of Detroit, NYC or Compton.
This song has some great takeaway lines, especially from Yelawolf:
(Put 'em up) waffle house, 2Pac's rock song
You see I had to dig to find the hieroglyphics
My mama didn't know about Souls of Mischief
See the Bible Belt gave me that holy spirit
But didn't give me rap because I wasn't suppose to hear it
Through K.R.I.T., Yelawolf and similar artists like David Banner (see Banner's great verse on "Sookie Now"), we're introduced not just to a crop of southern rappers that know the reality of the southern United States, where racial division is rooted deeper than most of Mother Nature's plants. There's not as much rage as the urban hip-hop of yore, however, and the picture these guys present seems more like one of the blues.
You read that right, and it will star Cee Lo:
Given Cee Lo’s recent multi-platform stardom, not to mention his generally outsized personality, it’s not a surprise that he should be embarking upon an acting career beyond voice work and cameoing in Mystery Men. But for some reason, it still feels weird to hear that he’s playing the father of legendary Wu-Tang Clan rapper Raekwon in the upcoming biopic C.R.E.A.M. Maybe it’s the geographical discrepancy—Cee Lo is proudly southern, while Raekwon is definitively New York. Or maybe it’s the age discrepancy, considering that Raekwon is actually about four years older than Cee Lo. Or maybe it’s just that it’s bizarre that they’re making a movie about ‘Kwon at all, considering he’d have been maybe our fifth or sixth guess about which Wu member would be the most likely to be the first to get his own vanity picture. (How has there never been an ODB flick, anyway?)
Still, uh, we’re kind of excited to see this movie, which Rae insists is gonna be the real deal, and not some straight-to-DVD throwaway project. “We’re definitely going for the theaters,” he told XXL. “The people that are gonna be involved with it definitely feel like it’s a great picture, and there’s a definite possibility it’s a Lions Gate film.” Should have a kick-ass soundtrack, anyway.
Tuesday, August 2, 2011
In life, one thing that makes itself obvious is when something is genuine versus when it is nonsense. I can't help but feel the latter about the new idea of Marvel's Ultimate Spider-Man, at least based on what we're being told so far:
Pop culture history will be made tomorrow as Ultimate Comics Fallout #4 hits shelves and introduces readers to the all-new Ultimate Comics Spider-Man! That’s right, for the first time ever, someone other than Peter Parker will be Spider-Man! But, after the death of Peter Parker, who will rise up to defend the Ultimate Universe? Meet Miles Morales, a seemingly normal teenager from
who will soon discover that with great power comes great responsibility…and even greater danger! But just what are the secrets behind Miles’ shocking abilities? What’s his connection to the original Spider-Man? And just why does he wear that costume? Courtesy of superstars Brian Michael Bendis and Sara Pichelli, Ultimate Comics Fallout #4 begins the story that’ll have everyone talking for years to come!
Miles Morales? Seriously? That is almost offensive. He's black and Hispanic so of course we'll just juxtapose a common Hispanic surname with the name of a world renowned jazz musician.
This sounds alot like the creation of The Falcon character in the Captain America world. While Ed Brubaker, during his run, has approached The Falcon with respect and made him a multi-dimensional character of his own, The Falcon started off as a living stereotype of the blaxploitation era. His character was written as bursting frequently into anti-white conspiracies and Steve Rogers was written as a guilty white liberal who would sit and pretend to listen to The Falcon in a condescending manner. It was bad for everybody.
“When the opportunity arose to create a new Spider-Man, we knew it had to be a character that represents the diversity—in background and experience—of the twenty-first century,” said Axel Alonso, Marvel Editor in Chief. “Miles is a character who not only follows in the tradition of relatable characters like Peter Parker, but also shows why he’s a new, unique kind of Spider-Man—and worthy of that name.”
I'm all for what Axel Alonso is asking for here. We have a more diverse society, thanks to immigration, globalization and other factors. Comic book superheroes should reflect that. This sort of thing has to be done organically, however.
The best force for diversifying comic books has been guys like the late Dwayne McDuffie. McDuffie played an instrumental role in the development of John Stewart as the Green Lantern in the Justice League cartoon series. The diversity that the creators of the cartoon wanted was achieved and McDuffie helped develop a character that had some depth and meaning beyond skin pigment and ethnic background.
I want to read this new Ultimate Spider-Man. It could very well be good, but from the press release it sounds alot like Rawhide Kid. Rawhide Kid was a series that Marvel put out in 2004 that set out to revitalize the old western character as a covertly gay cowboy. The resulting series was pretty hilarious and poked fun at the overt homoeroticism of cowboy lore. However, it was still a joke that didn't really portray gay people as serious, well balanced or decent.
The character of Batwoman is an entirely different story. The writers were smart enough to make her lesbianism, a new plateau when it comes to popular comic books, a part of a multifaceted character. Here's some of a good interview with Greg Rucka, the brains behind Kathy Kane:
"We have been waiting to unlock her. It's long overdue," he said in an interview with the Comic Book Resources website. "Yes, she's a lesbian. She's also a redhead. It is an element of her character. It is not her character. If people are going to have problems with it, that's their issue. That's certainly not mine."
The news represents a significant cultural landmark for the gay rights movement, and follows a concerted effort by DC Comics to introduce more characters from ethnic and sexual minorities. However, Rucka hopes that the new titles, which are due to be released in June, will not be overshadowed by controversy about Kane's sexuality.
"I think there is going to be some media," he said. "I can't control it. You've got to remember, Wonder Woman got a haircut and that became news. So it will be what it is."
"My job is to write the best book I can, about a character that I think is exceptionally cool, that J.H. Williams [his co-writer and artist] thinks is exceptionally cool, that DC Comics thinks is exceptionally cool and worthy of being the lead player in Detective Comics," he added. "Frankly, she should be judged on her merits."
Rucka went the smarter route, the Dwayne McDuffie route, creating a lesbian superhero named Batwoman instead of putting that factor right out in the open as the only defining characteristic. The guys at Marvel should keep this in mind and remember that they're making a gamble here. If they mess up, having ethnically diverse characters will be avoided and readers of all colors will view attempts to do it with caution and rolling of eyes.
I want to be flat out and open about something.
I'm on a small island in the Pacific right now, called Guam. When I got here, I figured that checks from advertising that we were receiving on this website (which were growing) along with money for articles I've written would keep me afloat until I got a real job.
The checks from Mog Music Network have ceased to come and my e-mails to the staff have not really produced that much. I'm trying to call them additionally and I hope that I can get this nonsense solved. I naturally have a bit of anxiety disorder and I try to pace myself with a situation like this so that I don't freak out all over everyone around me.
I can survive. I'm not going to be on the streets. However, what is really pissing me off about this is the general nature of journalism today. The internet has allowed us untold tools of communication that printing presses and typewriters never could. However, all of a sudden, journalists are working pro-bono wherever we go. Even at big outlets like the Huffington Post, writers are being expected to work their ass off for "exposure."
This is ridiculous, and ties into a mentality about the internet that everything there is available for free. Back during the time of Life Magazine, before he hit the big time by publishing books like Slaughterhouse Five, Kurt Vonnegut was able to both gain exposure and feed himself by selling short stories to the most influential magazines. What about the internet makes it alright or fair for writers just as talented as Vonnegut to write online for magazines just as influential as Life and be expected to do it for free?
No other worker is treated in this manner, in which their work is given aesthetic value and they are told they are talented and creative but have no assured way of simply being able to make ends meet. Even musicians, who have had their sale of compact discs totally destroyed by the internet, at least can be reassured that they will make an income based on merchandising, concerts and appearances.
The cozier positions of newspaper staff is now a rare option - and one without the power that it may have once had. Newspapers that once had a Daily Planet like presence as part of their respective city's infrastructure are shells. Newspapers like the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, a perfect example of this, is now an internet only tabloid news source. We don't need to return to a print only past but we need to look at professional options as writers in really radical ways. Beyond just adopted entrepreneurial abilities, we need to start thinking like laborers. If writers and content providers were part of a union, we'd be able to put fear into places like Huffington Post, which certainly has revenue to share, that think it's alright to employ writers and not give them any reward for their hard work.
Why writers aren't making more of a fuss about this, I'm not sure. Unlike blue collar workers, we may be very comfortable working in our own minds, according to our own logic, and let the money problem fall to the floor while we please ourselves with words of praise and support from family and/or the government. Maybe it's just a hobby for many of us. Maybe we're privileged brats who have the luxury of writing while other people toil.
Nevertheless, writing and reporting was once a serious profession. Here in Guam, people still do purchase newspapers and read them daily, despite my presence as a professional writer with an Apple computer in hand making me look a bit like a space alien.
One friend of mine, who I will not mention the name of directly out of respect, went to one of the country's largest and most prestigious public universities. She is affiliated with several prestigious journalist organizations. She told me candidly in conversation that she "had no income." This is despite her having put in a level of work and effort that many people don't have the self-starting will to do on their own. My friend, like myself, figured out the process for proposing and publishing a book but never followed through. I'm not sure of her personal reasons for doing so, since the idea was a great one.
Nevertheless, when the money from journalism has gotten so tenuous and vindication mostly based on (once again) words of praise, comments and page counts, the act of jumping into the publishing world seems like trying to land a firecracker through a hole in a closet. How do you know this will actually work? There are always doubts in the business world but the doubts become even more pronounced in a writing world like the current one.
If you're reading this and thinking that I am calling it quits with Blood Is One, don't worry about that. Blood Is One will keep going. This is an act of love, a hobby that is actually productive and not just masturbatory. We intend to reach out strategically to audiences who will be both interested in Carl Roe and in Kenan Bell, with the intention of spreading their exposure as wide as possible. If things work out to their best, it will be like Vice Records, a magazine which stumbled upon its own record label and made the operation work.
However, online journalism as a whole is simply too much of a bizarre gamble - even years after its existence - to really seem like a real profession. I've heard prominent people with the Heritage Foundation and other organizations say that there "is no clear way of making money at it." The aforementioned friend of mine called the question of monetization "the million dollar question." If these people, who are in a position to know how to make a living out of this if there were actually a process to know, can't name how to do it, what on earth is the point of studying journalism? Will CUNY's new program of Entrepreneurial Journalism really actually help solve this Great Mystery or just focus journalism on focussing on the business side of an unknowable business model?
We do appreciate and need your support. The Blood Is One main page has links to items for sale on Amazon.com, which you can purchase at discounted rates and help us survive along the way. We also have our ads here by our various sponsors, which will only bring in revenue with your support. Our numbers have not ceased to go up since we started the website so I know all of you are out there.
Thank you, and have a wonderful week.
Monday, August 1, 2011
Wow, so I just found out about this series of comic books from DC, called the "Retro-Active" series. Each series apparently has new writers and artists going back and revisiting an era of DC Comics full on with the given aesthetic of the period.
Marvel Comics has done some similar stuff with their First Class series and the X-Factor Forever one shot but all the same, it never really went full throttle into bringing in the old visuals as well. To be able to accurately channel an artistic style that is not practiced any longer by any of your peers and that you have never used in your regular work takes alot of skill.
Comic books are certainly passed the environment horizon in which they once had to make each adaptation effectively for an audience that studios assumed didn't like comic books aesthetically or as a creative form. The X-Men: First Class film presented the X-Men as a superhero team in a period piece, without any apologies and even with the adoption of bright blue and yellow costumes. Perhaps we'll see some similar blasts from the past from DC's studios?