Sunday, June 26, 2011

All Talk: The Killing and Game of Thrones

 I'd Jaime Lannister her.
Jesse Ducker aka Spider Jerusalem (The Hedrush), joins me for a spoiler filled discussion on two of the most talked about cable channel shows; AMC's The Killing, and HBO's Game of Thrones.

This conversation was a little more free flowing than usual, so it runs a little longer than ones posted in the past. If you only want to hear discussion on one of the shows, you may use the timestamps below.

The Killing (0:00 - 16:45)
Game of Thrones (17:06 - 46:30)

After listening to our conversation, head over to The Hedrush, and subscribe to their podcast. The latest episode (#39), has Spider Jerusalem and JB d'Mullato playing (and discussing) classic L.A. gangsta tracks from the late 80s and early 90s.

*I meant to say Alan Sepinwall...seriously*


Friday, June 24, 2011

Glenn O'Brien - The Daily

I'm too poor to ball out like Mr. O'Brien, but I'm still a fan.

Sock Game Alert: 1:05 of video.

Video by Shalini Sharma and Jonathan Tortora

Socks available at Tails and the Unexpected: Link

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Toronto Raptors: 2011 NBA Draft

The experts have spoken.

More accurately, they have long speculated that this would be one of the weakest draft classes in past 10 years. Duke point guard Kyrie Irving, and Arizona forward Derrick Williams are projected to go one and two in the draft. Beyond these two, it's pretty much a crapshoot.

Being that I'm a Toronto resident, my main concern is the Toronto Raptors, and who they will draft with the #5 pick. I don't watch NCAA college basketball, or pay any attention to the international leagues, so I decided to gather** a panel of experts and ask simply --  Who do you want the Raptors to draft?  Who do you think they will get.

**gather = asking them all the same question on Twitter

Zack Cooper - Sportnet Radio Fan590 Toronto

"I like, and I think they can get Kawhi Leonard"

Tom Liston - Raptors Republic

"I'm with Zack. #Kawhi@5"

Architect Ed

"I say Kemba Walker if they keep the #5 pick. If  (Brandon)Knight falls, he's the pick"                                                                            

Kris Cuaresma - GamePoint

"Kemba is the sexy pick, but I think they end up with Biyombo; maybe both?


Both? That's interesting. You like both, or you think they'll end up with both? If so, who do you trade?

Kris Cuaresma

Possibly Milwaukee involving bargs? (Andrea Bargnani) I like both, and would like to pick up both. I think we'll be able to get a wing next year.

Hasan Tahir - Arbitrary Opinions

"Kemba is the best talent at 5 probably, but I wouldn't mind Kawhi"

Architect Ed 

Biyombo could get someone fired if picked in top 5. If Raptors could get in on Josh Smith, it's worth trading #5.


Kemba Walker (small player, big heart) is my pick, and seems to be the popular choice here, though I do believe everyone (myself included) was under the assumption that Brandon Knight would go either 3 or 4. Hoops Hype is now reporting differently. According to the reputable basketball blog, both Minnesota and Cleveland (with their second pick) are looking to draft big. That may leave the door open for Toronto to draft the second ranked point guard in this draft.

Brandon Knight
Could the letter T he's pointing to, be an omen?

This draft may lack future all-stars, but it definitely is not lacking in intrigue.

2011 NBA Draft: Link

Thursday, June 16, 2011

All Talk: E3 2011

Wii U

Megaton [meg-uh-ton]

1. In videogame folklore, an announcement that will "shake the foundations of gaming to its core".

Last week, Yameen took a break from music making and game development, to check out the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) at the Los Angeles Convention Center. During our chat, he discusses the latest products from Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony; Apple's effect on the portable gaming market; and a few games that caught his eye.

After listening to the conversation, try your hand at Yameen's 8-bit game Sifters in the Land of Fun.

Download: Link


Bastion: Trailer
Journey: Trailer
Street Fighter X Tekken: Trailer
Bioshock Infinite: Trailer 

Music Credits:

Fire (Featuring Casual & Georgia Anne Muldrow) - Yameen | iTunes

Monday, June 13, 2011

Unpopular Opinion: Casting For Django Unchained

Not exactly breaking news at this point, as I'm sure we've all heard about Quentin Tarantino's next project, Django Unchained. For those not knowing, it basically boils down to this:

"It’s a western whose lead character is a former slave who is in league with Waltz to save his wife from an evil plantation owner." *provided by Quentin's representatives.

Further information followed, with a plot description listed on the blog, Shadow and Act

“Django is a freed slave, who, under the tutelage of a German bounty hunter (played by Christopher Waltz the evil Nazi officer in Inglorious Basterds) becomes a bad-ass bounty hunter himself, and after assisting Waltz in taking down some bad guys for profit, is helped by Waltz in tracking down his slave wife and liberating her from an evil plantation owner. And that doesn’t even half begin to cover it! This film deals with racism as I’ve rarely seen it handled in a Hollywood film. While it’s 100 percent pure popcorn and revenge flick, it is pure genius in the way it takes on the evil slave owning south. Think of what he did with the Nazis in Inglorious and you’ll get a sense of what he’s doing with slave owners and slave overseers in this one.”

Almost immediately after this information leaked, the Internet began making pitches for their favorite Black actors, to step into the titular role of Django. As expected people start listing the same go-to black actors we've seen in films over the last 10 to 15 years. Don Cheadle, Chiwetel Ejifor, Michael Jai White, Tyrese (ha!), and Samuel Jackson.


I haven't gotten to my unpopular opinion yet.

Ready for it?

Here it comes.

Over the past few weeks, Idris Elba has been rumored to be a front runner, while Michael K. Williams has expressed interest in the role.


I know The Wire has sacred cow status for the pop culture elite (yes, it's a damn good show), but cherry picking from its cast just seems...i don't know...easy?  I understand the brothers need work, and they should have an opportunity to escape typecast, but I kinda think The Wire is still too fresh in our minds. It's one of the reasons I can't get with the Chalky White character on Boardwalk Empire.

I have an idea. How about casting an unknown? Can we not boost the profile of a relatively new actor, or attempt to make a new star? A number of films over the last few years have cast newcomers who garnered a lot of acclaim in breakout roles.

Perhaps the same can be done with this project.

Unless they really try to please the studios and stakeholders by casting Big Willie, I really don't think it matters much who they cast as Django. Why? Because the real star of the film is...

It's truly the only name that matters here. More so than Brad Pitt, Uma Thurman, John Travolta, or Leo Dicaprio.

Along the way he's helped to raise the profile of actors such as Steve Buscemi, Sam Jackson (ugh...), and Christoph Waltz. While he might be able to do the same for Elba, or Williams, I'm sure they'll be able to get roles in the foreseeable future based off of the their work on The Wire.

Quentin, for this project, I would like you to give 'Joe Blackman' a chance.


Thursday, June 2, 2011

And Now, A Message From J-Zone

I am very excited about this book, so I thought I would share this message sent out to those on his mailing list.


What it is,

If you're getting this e-mail, there's a 98% chance it's because you posted a comment on the J-Zone blog on Dante Ross' website a few years back and left your e-mail. (If you want to be removed from this mailing list, just tell me – I hate mass e-mails too.) After garnering a cool and loyal following (due to your support), the blog croaked. I'll attribute 50% of that to the “real world” kickin' my a*s and 50% of that to the fact that blogging consistently nowadays is humanly impossible if you work 4 jobs and you're writing 2000-3000 word articles about specific sh*t like I was trying to do.

Rather than letting that blog to slip into "let me post a You Tube clip and write one line about it just to keep content flowing" territory, the energy went into writing my first book, Root for the Villain: Rap, Bullshit and a Celebration of Failure, instead. The book will be released this fall. The blog has also resurfaced (albeit with posts going up a bit less frequently) over at, home of Ego Trip NYC (the minds behind the VH1 TV shows Miss Rap Supreme and The White Rapper Show and the books The Book of Rap Lists and The Book of Racism). As for the book, those who dug my grumpy old man tirades and general lampoonery from years past might enjoy this collection of curmudgeonly rants, hip-hop-inspired memoirs, humorous outlooks on failure, and think pieces on the general stupidity of the world at large in 2011.

If you:
  • are over 30
  • are a native New Yorker (If you don't know who David Dinkins is, you don't count.)
  • often wonder if men are the new women
  • feel it’s perfectly acceptable to wear a clip-on tie with Master P’s face on it to a corporate job interview
  • have a college degree that got you two choices in the real world: the broom or the mop
  • had the opportunity to work with the legendary musical heroes of your childhood, then your broke a*s got sued by one of them for copyright infringement
  • stuck a fork in dating in America and are now looking into blow-up dolls due to their low maintenance, low noise level, and low cost (an air body beats an airhead)
  • were robbed for a fake gold chain in the early '90s
  • are an artist whose career went kaput, so you were forced to get a “real” job and fall back into “real world” protocol. It was then you learned that the hip-hop 401k does not exist
  • are sick of “couple accounts” on Facebook (Fellas, if you allow your girl to create one page for the both of you, her d*ck is bigger than yours. Furthermore, anyone over the age of 21 trying to “poke” me will be attacked with a Wiffle ball bat.)
  • still use a Walkman and collect records
  • live with your hostile 87-year-old grandmother who passes gas 24/7, leaves her dentures on your bathroom sink, and disrupts pimpin' at the house
  • were a hip-hop kid of the '90s and/or enjoy nostalgic music business stories from that era
  • plan on entering the music business and want to read true accounts of how utterly dysfunctional and useless most of the people in it are
  • are sick of hearing all this bourgeois “Eat, Pray, Love” sh*t on dates. I want NYC's crime rate to return to the 1990 statistics for a week; then you'll really be praying to travel someplace expensive to “find yourself”. Shut the f*ck up and stop whining.
  • hate incessant texting, emoticons, internet lingo you have to be 18 years old to understand (ROTFL, OMG), “Gadget Hoes”, “Flash Hoes”, and “Cosmo Hoes”. (Note: If you come to the club solely to text all night or to ask me to take a picture of you and your raggedy a*s friends at the bar holding drinks, those last three terms apply to you.)
  • are a curmudgeon with an allergy to bullsh*t
  • don’t stand a chance in life doing anything that doesn’t involve purchasing a Mister Softee ice cream truck, but truly believe that one day you will run for mayor and win…
This book is for you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Root for the Villain is for 0.02% of the world's population and will probably sell like it. It's my first attempt at publishing a book after having my work published in bits and pieces over the years, so pardon me while I figure this out on the fly. More info coming soon!

New website, Ego Trip affiliation is my new website and it’s under construction (official launch later this month), but links to all of my social network crap are on the site now (Facebook, Twitter, Ego Trip page, etc.) Or, find links to the aforementioned social network crap at the bottom of this email to be kept abreast of developments if the book interests you. Chapters from it will be posted on my Ego Trip page starting in about three weeks, for a sneak peek.

In the meantime, check out my analysis on why the rumored remake of the movie Juice (feat. Soulja Boy) can't happen in's impossible! (Click here to read)

Also, check out this super duper rare and extremely early Wu-Tang Clan footage that I taped off of public access TV in 1991 and ripped to You Tube. (Click here to see and read). 

Some of my older articles are on my Ego Trip page as well. I'll periodically be posting articles that aren't in the book, so check back in every so often.

Stay tuned and thanks for your past support,

P.S. - F*ck an iPod.