Tag Archive: chiddy bang

2011 Bonnaroo Line Up and Thoughts

April 5, 2011

The full line-up for the 2011 Bonnaroo Arts & Music Festival was announced 2 months ago… I’m just finally getting around to viewing it and making my plans. Last year I felt compelled to go because the line-up was just too damn good to miss.

I saw Stevie Wonder open up for Jay-Z. I don’t think I’ll ever have a chance to see something along those lines ever again. It was awesome. I squiggled my way up to about 10 rows back to get a first hand view of the spectacle.

I’m a fan of Jay-Z. Not a ginormous, insane, obsessed fan, but a fan none the less, and I can say without a doubt it that the Stevie Wonder/Jay-Z show was the best I’ve ever seen in my life. Both of them delivered hit after hit without much break in between. You couldn’t help but be a fan.

Also last year, I made it a note to see these bands because they are super incredible : Tenacious D, The Flaming Lips, Damian Marley and Nas, Phoenix, Michael Franti and Spearhead, The Avett Brothers, Kid Cudi, The Black Keys, Wale, The Dead Weather, Dave Matthews Band, and I’m sure i’m excluding others, but that was the main jist.

Aside from Wale getting booed off stage after showing up a half hour late and drunk, every artist had an incredible show. There is so much energy at that place, it’s awesome. You don’t even get enough time to check out everyone because there’s just so much going on.

But, that brings me to this year. The main MAIN headliner is Eminem? For reals?? I get that people like him, I get that he’s an amazing rapper, has been around for a long time, makes great music, yada yada, (and I’m not trying to sound like a damn hippie here) but what business does he have headlining Bonnaroo? Name me one positive song that doesn’t involve him talking about regrets and ‘gathering enough courage’ to do something. I don’t want to be floating around on hallucinogens and have to listen to you talking about slamming your daughter’s head into a car door or some shit. It’s depressing. You’re depressing. That’s not what I want when I go to Bonnaroo.

Some people make up for it though. The Black Keys are listed waaaaay higher up on the list now that they have such ‘huge hits’ under their belt. Not like they’ve been putting out albums for 10 years or anything…

Arcade Fire, great band. That makes perfect sense. Buffalo Springfield? Of course. My Morning Jacket, Widespread Panic, String Cheese Incident, The Strokes, Mumford & Sons, Primus… the hippies and scene kids are gonna have a field day!! Honestly though, of that list, the only bands I could truly fathom seeing with great desire would be The Strokes and Widespread. I dunno, I’m different then most people. I get that.

Some artists that aren’t getting so much love but I’d REALLY like to go see : Chiddy Bang, Big Boi, J.Cole, Wiz Khalifa (although I’m not sure how I feel about him anymore)

Lotta good hip hop though. I know I sound like a hypocrite when I’m bitching about Eminem and promoting other rappers, but at least they have happy songs!!

I’m sure there is also a huge amount of bands I’m missing, but I’m weighing my options on going there or not.

Also, I saw Jeffrey Ross perform last year, and then the next night I was catching Dave Matthews Band and he bumped into me… wearing the exact same clothes he was wearing the day before performing… TRUE STORY.

Lupe Fiasco – Lasers Album Review

March 15, 2011

Alright, so I’m trying something new. I have a pretty big opinion on what’s good in music, what’s horrible in music, and what’s a little over hyped. I want to add my opinion to an already over saturated sea of opinions. But, I think it’s worth it. ;)

So, with that… Lupe Fiasco’s L.A.S.E.R.S. I’ve had a week to listen to this, pretty much non stop, taking in every track I could. My friends encouraged me to listen to this multiple times to truly give the music time to sink in, and I believe it’s only fair, so I did. To be honest though, my initial opinion didn’t change much.

I want to start by saying it’s great. I love it. It’s an album from start to finish, with full complete songs from an “artist” who actually deserves the label. Most albums are 1-2 songs here and there, and that’s about how many months we spend actually paying attention to their career. This has great artistic thought placed on every track, and for that I praise it.

But, I don’t judge it simply on the rap standard anymore. I judge it on the Lupe Standard now. How does it fair against other Lupe albums, and artists who compete against him on his level? That is where I feel this album came up short. With the constant album release date push-backs, controversy of Lupe’s last album, and all the distractions that came along with the hype, the album looks unfinished. I immediately noticed it has less tracks than his 2 prior. Most of the tracks I’ve been hearing about in the months leading up are not included anymore, and are just on youtube or mixtapes. Songs I thought would help complete. Cut down to 12 tracks, it just seems unfinished. That’s a normal standard too, so I guess that’s more a compliment to his previous releases.

Also, there was nothing that really blew me away. I really just heard “same ol-Lupe” on new beats. He provides 20% of the hooks, give or take, so it’s really just relying (for him) on his verses and their delivery. Like I said, good as usual, but as usual. He’s choosing instrumentals that are modern, which is great, incorporating a lot of “thick” synth sounds, which is common for almost any beat you hear on the radio, but it’s not anything I haven’t heard someone do. People like Chiddy Bang were influenced by Lupe Fiasco, and now I think it’s a little bit of Lupe being influenced now. He emulates a lot of trendy rappers and their antics to get a little spotlight, even borrowing from some pop.

I want to stress that I still think it’s a great album, but every time Kanye West drops something, I’m dying to hear the new sounds and styles that get incorporated with his flow, and with this, I wasn’t thrown anything I haven’t seen. My complaint is that he didn’t reach the standard that is set too high, which is unfair, but when you’re an incredible MC like Lupe, you gotta just keep raising the bar.

Songs to listen to :

All Black Everything
Out of My Head featuring Trey Songz

Songs that Suck :

Beautiful Lasers

7/10