Sunday, June 29, 2008

No Child Left Behind (aka Ode To Wesley)

Ode To Wesley (a.k.a. "Ode To The No Child Left Behind Act")

As the 8th period bell sounds off one half Bronx block away,
The fearless group leader approaches the lawless, chaotic world of afterschool activity
anticipating the pouts, the rolled eyes and the sucked teeth which accompany denied requests for an extra snack.
No, you may not have another juice;
No, you may not run down the hall and get me in trouble with my supervisor.
Sit down, you little fuck; no, you may not write on the board.
What you may do, is get me angry enough to tell you what every adult really thinks about you.
Hey Wesley, by 13 years old, you've built up enough self-esteem and security to withstand a little bit of constructive criticism, right?
Besides, it's not all your fault,
Given the name Wesley, you were destined to be the asshole most Wesley's are.
If I wasn't dependent on my extreme tolerance to pay my mortgage, I would tell you this to your pleasantly degenerate little face,
But seeing as how you aren't the most literate creature there Wesley,
I doubt you'd even be able to read my lips.
You and all the other miscreants who've made after-school the Devil's Playground-
Your whinin', your screamin', your beggin', your cursin', your stupidity,
never listening, always talking-
You test my will to be merciful.
No Child Left Behind my ass (pause)
Your poor, poor mother must curse all 12 gods of Mount Olympus every waking day that she bore a child like you, Wesley.
If children are indeed the future, the future must be one big cocksuckin' mistake.
When you're in that jail cell next year, hoping that they're just joshing when they say you might be tried as an adult,
Think back to when your president, George W. Bush, tried to save you-
Tried to save you, Wesley!-
by legislating the No Child Left Behind Act.
And then try to pinpoint the exact moment, this After School Group Leader said,
"Aw, f-ck him! Let's leave this child as far behind as possible."
Happy Trails, Wesley

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

One Monkey Don't Stop No Show

In this case, the monkey is graduate school. I've let it take me away from my beloved blog, and all of the other tomfoolery I like to engage in. No longer will I be so neglectful; I will try to update every day. I can tell you now that I'll miss a coupla days, but I won't go a week without giving you an electrifying conclusion.

Soooo...what's been goin' on since we last talked? I see the great George Carlin has passed away. I discovered George the same way I discovered Garry Shandling, through a brilliant, short-lived, self-titled Fox sitcom in the '90s. I remember being a kid, feeling like I was being treated to a half-hour of no b.s. comedy (well, some b.s., it was network television). Before then, I had never noticed this walking middle-finger. If there is any one entity who totally represents what I have been about as a rap artist and as a writer, it is George Carlin. The counter-culture hero's smart, cranky, profane, crude, on-the-money observations inform a lot of my music. He was funny up until the very last HBO special I saw him in.

Electrifying conclusion: Did you know George won 4 Grammy's?! Well deserved I'm sure; he might have been the first person to make me understand that common sense isn't so common. I don't get to sentimental over many celebrity deaths, but I'm kinda sad about this one. Hopefully though, he lived a great, fulfilling life. R.I.P. George - you will be sorely missed.

Met's pulled the trigger on the whole Willie Randolph thing finally. Did it real dirty too, after a win, all the way across the country. Fired him in the wee hours of the morning. Heard they aint like his lack of fire (so overrated in a manager/coach, in my opinion), and that Latino players tuned him out a while ago, preferring to give respect to Tony Bernazard. They fired him and the one staff member he was allowed to bring in.

Electrifying conclusion: Man listen, Willie had one of the best runs in Met history. He never stood a chance. I don't think ownership ever wanted him, especially since he's a Yankee institution. They ran with the whole melting pot thing when he started, but they never really wanted him, Omar did. Then you know what happened - the Latin realized it was him or the Black dude, as far as the white ownership was concerned. Can't blame Omar. He said it was his decision. Mighta been his decision, but he aint have a choice, not one that woulda kept him in his position. Believe that.

Kanye West is still wildin' out. Apparently he held up the Bonnaroo Festival b/c he wanted his Glow In The Dark set to have maximum effect. Meaning he went on at like 4am, hours late. The crowd threw dirt on his name, and threw shit on the stage.

Electrifying conclusion: 'Ye said that the organizers were treatin' him like a stepchild from jumpstreet, and he was waitin' for Pearl Jam to clean up their act before he went on. He said that his payday is cut in half b/c of his show, and his shows put much physical strain on him. He's tryin' to say that he gives his all. Too bad he's known for givin' all of his ego. No one's gonna feel sorry for him. The guy MTV crowned the #1 rapper (I happen to agree, all things considered) is also the #1 a-hole. Whether or not that's really him, that's the image he's manufactured; sometimes it works for him, other times, it ends up like this.

Folks are overreacting to some dumb shit Dumb Imus said recently. Al Sharpton's fool ass jumped all over it too...According to Forbes, there are now 10 million millionaires in the world, for the first time ever. Legal millionaires....Heard about the frog that can sprout claws like Wolverine? - You gotta be crazy to support this -brainwave binoculars - Rose goes #1 tomorrow? Or Beasley?...My neighbor definitely thinks I'm cute. I definitely think she knows of what she speaks...We'll talk later. Me and you, not me and my neighbor.

I'm StarPower, and I approve this message.

p.s. - What ever happened to Bobby Hurley?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

"What I'm Happy About? Bitch, I Just Bought A New Gun!

In the midst of us going to our little trendy lounges and putting on cool shows and arts events and wearing our colorful sneakers and having our little discourse about whatever political topic or film or album or whatever, I want y'all to remember how real it is out here. Some of y'all don't even know, some of y'all forgot, some of y'all want to forget. Some of y'all don't believe it, or think it doesn't really affect you. This short 7-minute video is about the notorious Cabrini Green Housing Projects (so bad that they had to put up gates all the way up the buildings, where there used to be open walkways b/c folks kept gettin' thrown off; so bad that cops got tight when niggas started using those gates as sniper cover; so bad that trash once piled up the garbage chute to the 15th floor of a building, and set on fire; so bad that 9-year old "Girl X" was raped, choked, had her throat stomped on, Roach Killer sprayed in her mouth, and left for dead, ending up paralyzed, blind, unable to talk - the rapist was lucky cops got him before the Gangster Disciples did).

Don't think that New York doesn't have it's Cabrini Greens. Please don't think niggas aint on this same shit just blocks from your loft, a train stop from your favorite bar, and around the corner from where you did your photoshoot. Don't let terms like "SoBro," "SoHa," "Brooklyn Renaissance," "Urban Renewal," "Ratner City," "New Stadiums," and all that put you to sleep. I'm not trying to scare anyone, but just as much as you hear about all the good shit goin' on in New York, and the (fake-ass) historic drops in crime rates, you don't hear about how crazy it is around here also. Maybe you should take some time and Youtube "new york crips" or "new york bloods" or "new york gangs" or "cocaine city" or just use your imagination. To get the whole picture, not just the one you like. Better to be aware and a little on edge, than to be lulled into a false sense of security and have your world destroyed when something happens. A li'l fear, a li'l apprehension, just a li'l bit, is a survival trait. God-given. The N.Y. guys might seem a li'l more "Do this for tv" but don't get it twisted, that's N.Y. mentality, to be flashy. They are no less dangerous. Peep when he lifts his shirt up to show the (shit?)bag attached to his abdomen. At least he tells the kids that this aint the shit (no pun intended) and tells the kids that "every dollar aint a good dollar" and that they should get into a "Higher Power" and respect life. If you have time, you might wanna peep some of the "Related Videos." I was looked for the Bronx shit, and though I understood how niggas get down, I really didn't realize how they've been gettin' it in just blocks from places I've lived. Even back on my old block in Washington Heights, where I spent most of my life, shit is wild, wild, west.

Monday, June 16, 2008

The Femcon

Who the hell uses female condoms?! Seriously. What kinda sissy-boy is out there using a female condom? I would (almost) rather not get any. Condoms are a necessary evil, female condoms are plain unnecessary. First of all, if a guy even posseses one, I'd be suspicious. Why would he have one of those, instead of, like, 500 normal condoms? Is he planning to have sex with a girl who's gonna say "You know what, let's use a female condom today. Normally your 4-inch semi-flaccid penis and premature ejacuation, and my vaginal dryness, is disappointing enough, but today I don't want to experience a second of physical sensation either." I don't think anyone enjoys using those polyurethane anti-awesome devices. And if a chick owns one, she's probably a sex educator who stole it from work, or a sadist who was just waiting for the day you didn't have a normal condom and had to either settle for the femcon or become Jack Mehoff. Those things are not cool.

Friday, June 13, 2008

R. Kelly Not Guilty - Wow

Kells was found not guilty? Really? Shiiiiiiit. You tellin' me that wasn't him?! Fuck was it then? Who the fuck took time to create a computer-generated Kells? I just feel in my heart that this nigga is a flagrant pedophile, and he's gonna get what's coming to him even though he didn't get convicted. Maybe karma has struck him and taken away all of his talent, b/c that "Hair Braider" shit is a fucking musical abomination. And this guy had once-in-a-lifetime talent. Fucking Chester.

Hulk Hurtin', Overrated Angelina, & Wayne-mania

Aint no leg-dropppin' out of this one for the Hulkster. Hulk Hogan's son Nick is in jail for causing a car crash that left his good friend in a permanent vegetative state. Damn. Nick is 17; think he got 8 months. He's suffering in there, and Hulk came to lift his spirits a bit. But apparently, the conversation was made public, and the content of that convo, would be very embarassing for the 6-time WWE/6-time WCW/2-Time AWA World Heavyweight Champion. They talk about showing up to court in the "jumpsuit" instead of regular clothes for the "sympathy factor," Hulk tells Nick not to talk to his mom b/c she might show up with divorce lawyers and all that, you hear Nick sniffling crying sayin he'd "do anything to get out of this room," Nick and Hulk talkin' about "God laying some heavy shit on the kid" who is now a vegetable b/c he was so negative, discussing doing a reality show when he gets out and doing it "where he'll make the most money," even coming up with the title and pitch. Here's one of the Youtube clips:

Electrifying conclusion: Hulk was on Larry King saying that he was just telling Nick anything to get him through his situation. I actually feel that. Although no one deserves what his friend is going through now, being in a vegetative state, maybe he was a real fucked up person. Doesn't mean God crashed the car he was in b/c of it. From what I hear, Hulk was real fucked up during his wrestling career, keeping other wrestlers down and screwing people over for money; you could make the argument that God's paying him back right now, especially since he always wore a cross and was supposedly a Christian. The family's in shambles with Brooke accusing Hulk of smashing her friend (really her 34-year old assistant, and Hulk admits to beating it), and Linda Hogan is out and about with a 19-year old former classmate of Nick and Brookes!

Angelina Jolie is the kind of celebrity that people fawn over so much, and tries so hard to not show that she thinks she's as cool as everyone else does, that she eventually becomes boring. And overrated. I've been tired of every girl saying "if I did screw a girl, it would be Angelina Jolie, I think she's hot." Shut the fuck up. Yeah, she's hot, but you're no hotter for admitting that you've thought about screwing a girl, and that it would be Angelina. It only makes sense that it would be Angelina. Furthermore, I don't believe you; if you wanna prove to me that you'd screw another girl, you gotta do it in front of me. Not 'cause I like that kinda thing, but strictly b/c I think it's wrong for you to be going around pretending to have lesbian tendencies when there are real lesbians with lesbian tendencies walking around. You're just taking attention away from them, and giving girl-on-girl action a bad name.

Electrifying conclusion: First off, she never really makes any dope movies. There I said it. How many classics is she in? Joints that folks can quote and instantly name when they talk about kick-ass flicks? None. Plus, she has 6 kids, has made Brad Pitt into a home-plenty, and she kissed her brother passionately in front of cameras. Ewww. I mean, we get it, you guys are richer, beautifuller, more talented, and more ethical than we are. And way more annoying. And Brad, who has an awesome track record, stopped making kick-ass films once he got with her. The last one was "Ocean's Twelve," ("Thirteen" wasn't a good film, so much as it was Brad and George posturing, but in a cool way, for 2 hours). I don't count "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" b/c it just reminds me of the birth of yet another conjoined celebrity couple (you know, Brangelina, Bennifer, Jayonce, etc.). Fuck "Babel," too high-brow of a title for me to even consider watching it. Actually, Brad made almost all of his kick-ass films in the 1990 - 2000 - "Kalifornia," "True Romance," "Interview With The Vampire," "Se7en," "Fight Club," "Snatch," all that. Beyond "Girl Interrupted," "Original Sin," and "Gia," ("Taking Lives" was i-ight too) Angelina's films have kicked very little ass, but I guess those unique lips (which she only shares with about a couple billion black and latina chicks) and faux-sultry looks she gives with her eyes are enough to captivate and mesmerize the public.

Slow down Weezy, you're killin' em! According to, Li'l Wayne is entering very rare territory for a rapper. We're talkin' about another (fifth) week at #1 for "Lollipop," SEVEN songs as a lead or guest artist on the Top 100, and projected sales of 900,000 for his first week. This may be the most impressive campaign in hip-hop history, rivaled only by Eminem who went over 1 million in a week 2x. Yes, Kanye did 960,000 last year his first week, but that was due to a gimmicky rivalry with 50 Cent. Em did his numbers at a time when Backstreet Boys, N Sync, and Britney were becoming the first artists to do a million in the first week (Garth Brooks was actually first in 1998). That list is still very exclusive, adding folks like Usher, Limp Bizkit, Norah Jones, and 50.

Electrifying conclusion: He may not set a record, but for Weezy to do what he's doing in this horrible climate for selling records, when 300,000 is a huge success, is super-impressive, especially since it's a hip-hop album, and rap has taken the biggest hit. It also goes to show how popular rap is. The last 3 mega-selling first weeks have been for rap albums. That reflects youth from all walks of life buying these records. No other form of music generates the same excitement, and Wayne is the beneficiary of a perfect storm of circumstances.

Make sure you don't miss this FREE Show/BBQ/Awesomefest - I, StarPower, aka The Dguout Power Hitter, got some new songs and The Dugout and Friends got the hottest first day of summer event, for the people. We wanna see ALL OF YOU! Peace.

I'm StarPower, and I approve this message.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Pssst...This Is Gonna Be Grand - BE THERE!

"The Electrifying Conclusion" takes a break for this very important public service announcement:
This is the event y'all been waiting for. We're talking about The Dugout and Friends shutting down a whole block in Williamsburg on the first day of summer as part of Make Music New York. Free performances of all types will be going on all around the city on the first day of summer, but no one is doing it as big as The Dugout and all of the spectactular artists you see below! Free barbecue, business sponsors, live audio and video streaming, d.j.s, live bands, dancers, rappers, poets, artists. This is the place to be on June 21st; and it will culminate with an UNFORGETTABLE, OUTRAGEOUS Dugout set in the early evening. This block party follows the lead of Dave Chappelle's landmark event by taking Brooklyn by storm. Come eat, listen,dance, celebrate, and be merry as we Take Over Brooklyn, the Brooklyn way, this first day of summer as part of NYC's citywide Make Music New York festival!
*Featured Acts*
Sankofa Presents...
Nova Clutch
Caktuz Tree..?13 of Wheatbread Radio
The Real Live Show
The Dugout
The Antidote
*Also Featuring*DJs Silva Sir Fa, DJs Stimulus & Dhundee of The Brooklyn Bounce, DJ Parlerand DJ K-Black of The Urban Go Green Tour
Smart Water/Vitamin Water
Honest TeaWheat
Bread Radio

*Contact Cavalier ( if you are interested in a unique sponsorship/promotional opportunity at a great location on a busy Saturday, the first day of summer.*

Event will also be streamed globally via internet radio on WheatBread radioof the PNC Network. Event will also air the following week on LocalTelevision on NROtv. There will also be a virtual concert in Second Life'svirtual Skybar, Cak'z Oasiz.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Hollywood 50, Janet Flippin' the Script, and Skillz Sonnin' Li'l Wayne

Lots of wacky hip-hop news. First off, 50 Cent bought Val Kilmer a $130,000 Impala. Mad random. Apparently, they've become cool while filming, and share a love for whips. *GAG* Fif is real fucking Hollywood son. He knows his days of being a mega-selling artist are over. Think about it, he and Kanye came out on the same day. 'Ye is still dropping videos, world-touring on some of the biggest bills around, and spreading lots of awesome around. As far as Fif, what's his latest single? How many top 10's has he had this time around? This is the same guy who constantly talks about how he writes hits, and no one else knows how. He knows that music isn't gonna keep him relevant. He has to transform into one of those rappers who may not break records anymore, but will still make steady hits, and be popular enough that he doesn't have to sell tons of records. Snoop and Jay are such artists. That may sound crazy, but Snoop really only has one mega-selling album, his debut, and the rest have given him solid platinum plaques. Jay's mega-seller was "Vol. 2," and though he always has monster first weeks and garners a good double- or triple-platinum plaque, he's never the year's top selling rapper (unless he drops multiple albums). Double and triple is great of course (even though that doesn't really exist for rappers anymore, with a coupla exceptions - look at 'Ye's number right now, low considering he sold almost a million the first week), but Jay is universally hailed as the greatest, most popular, most consistent, best rapper of the last 10 years. He has a line where he says "the only dudes movin' units - Em, Pimp Juice, and Us." Well, while Jay was puttin' up respectable triples, Em was putting up a coupla almost-diamond albums, and a quadruple that was a disappointment! Nelly (Pimp Juice), who is actually on the decline, put out an almost-diamond, a sextuple, and 2 on the same day, which each went multi-platinum. Even DMX was outselling Jay in both of their sales-heydays. Snoop's number are usually half of Jay's, but rappers like Snoop and Jay are so respected for being great rappers, and so prolific, that they will always sell a good amount, whereas a rapper like Nelly can seem one or two corny albums away from irrelevance as an artist, and Eminem/DMX can seem one breakdown away from temporary obscurity. Jay and Snoop also make tons of headlines, and garner positive press, for ventures outside of rap. Plus, they are looked at as trailblazers, inventors of a cool, unique style that no one has been able to imitate. Em, X, and 50 have lots of Pac in their dna. If you like them, you can get a fix by listening to some 'Pac if they don't have anything out. But Snoop is too original, and Jay too sharp, for you to feel satisfied by anything but their music when you need to hear it.

Electrifying conlusion: I think 50 will remain relevant b/c he is very talented, makes dope songs, and he's very rich, which gives him lots of respect by the mainstream. As long as he stays rich, he'll be fine. Yeah, I know. Easier said than done.

Janet Jackson remixed a Plies track. I would be outraged, but her songs have been just as bad as his lately, so it makes sense. In a li'l bit of role-reversal, she added singing to "Buss It Baby, Part 2," the song I hate the most right now, unjustly giving it some measure of artistic validity. I have nothing against Plies, I actually liked "Shorty," but I think he needs to step up his lyrical game a bit, and improve his flow. He does have an authentic swagger though, and that's rare nowadays, so I'll give him that.

Electrifying conclusion: Remix had to be JD's idea. I'll let him live for now, b/c he killed that "Fallin'" track off of "American Gangsta," but that deferment will wear off soon if he doesn't make up for this debacle.

Please tell me y'all feel this. Please do. This is Skillz completely, and maturely, putting Li'l Wayne (who is one of my very favorite rappers) in his place for his "fuck d.j.s" comment:

Iiight so fuck the dj? For real? Wow! First lemme say I dont get alot of radio/club play, sometimes my record dont apply & I can understand that but I dont care if I had no spins on my record I would never say fuck a dj. No DJ at all, I wouldnt say fuck a DJ that I dont know!! lol It just baffles me how the hottest artist out right now can say Fuck the dj’s!! Where would he be without the DJ tho? Real talk, I hear his records and its always a dj playing it. Be it on the radio, in the club or on a cd. If you hot then DJ’s gon fuck with you but they are part of the reason you hot, its a tag team kinda combo. You rap on everyone’s song (whether they want you to or not) you jump on cats tracks and send em out to the world, wouldn’t you want someone to think its hot enuf to play? So then I heard him on Drama and he said ” Fuck them dj’s”! Niggas takin my music and puttin out CD’s that aint official. Nigga? You rapped on 70 songs that wasn’t official! Alot of these DJ’s are branding you. They making you hot! If a kid grabs a best of cd from the barbershop he bought that for some of your new shit, If I asked him what CD he got he’s gon say yours, not DJ (insert name here) presents you! You gave DJ’s the option to play whatever you made…YOU gave them the option, you rapped on everything. Its crazy how cats do DJ’s after they get to the point that they want to get to. No single, you been rapping over everyone else’s shit for more than a year , you even book shows and do mixtape songs for over a year and right before your album drops its FUCK THE DJ??!?! You said it aint about the money so why would you care if they make a little change on a mixtape or attempt to keep thier name up by formatting and sequencing some of the music that you put out for FREE?? Some of these cats work at a radio station and clock in for two hours a day if that! They gotta hustle( clubs, weddings, parties, mix cds) just like you for the bread but now its fuck them? I’d go rap at a DJ’s daughter’s 8th birthday party ( and do drops while I was there) to make sure I’m in good standing with him/her, cuz as long as I make records Im always going to need them. Even when he called in to clear the shit up he still didnt really. Wow..yall made him the hottest rapper out and he said fuck yall & then said fuck yall again? See how these cats do you? Yall really need to support the artists that support you. Yall have the power to change this shit. I have a new record and album coming out and if I asked a dj if he had my record he could look me in my face and say he doesnt have 1 Skillz record in his Serato & I wouldnt say fuck him! Im scared of what would happen to my career if I did that. But my question is how can you make rap music and say fuck the dj and have a career, thats what the fuck I wanna know.

Speak Skillz.

Monday, June 9, 2008

"Did You Ever Realize, That You Were A Champion...In Their Eyes?"

Yes I did...

But this aint about me, I forgot to tell y'all about this last week. I was on the 4 train, and a cute, young hipsterette blankita (w/no bra, enticingly small perkies, hard nipples, and a thin spaghetti-strap shirt) walks onto the train. She then proceeds to remove a box from her bag on this not so empty train, and pulls out what looks like a dildo. It didn't look like your classic dildo, so I just figured it was a massager of some sort, and others probably did also. She then starts looking it over, smiling a bit, reading some sort of manual. She then sits right below where I was leaning against the car door. As I peer down into the manual, I realize, yup, it's a dildo. It said something about how you should lubricate the first time, and all that good stuff. Mind you, there were a lot of folks on this train. That was gangsta. She had to have gotten off on that. And she knew I was all up in her toy and it's manual as she sat below me. She gave me some interesting glances as she left the train, too. Yeah, I'm awesome, but her - she wins. A champion in my eyes.

I'm StarPower, and I approve this message.

Random Encounter Series Part 2

Yesterday I participated in an awesome event. Brooklyn's best up-and-coming artists/activists/entreprenuers were invited to participate in a recreation of "A Great Day In Harlem," the famous picture of all the jazz artists gathered on one stoop uptown. (Shut up about me being from Harlem/Wash. Heights, and about all of the members of my group who were present being from uptown, and me living in the Bronx; The Dugout is still pretty much Brooklyn-based b/c we got started in Brooklyn, most of our shows are in Brooklyn, and I've worked in Brooklyn for a while. I'm even typing this in Brooklyn.) "A Great Day In Brooklyn" was shot by the talented Jamel Shabazz in front of the Brooklyn Museum. It was very hot and very early, but very ill. I saw a bunch of folks I've come across performing here and there, and met a few new folks who I hope to come across again. I didn't expect to see a few well-known Brooklynites who came to support this historic event. While layin' in the cut like peroxide, trying to stay outta the sun, a brother pulls up in a chauffered Chrysler, jumps out and starts skateboarding. I thought it was a little odd, but just chalked it up to it being some Brooklyn-type shit. Turns out, it was Mos Def. As I entered the area where everyone was preparing for the photograph, I look around and see Jeru the Damaja, Charles Barron, Kevin Powell. Shit was bananas. A few minutes later I see Rock and Top Dog from the Boot Camp Click. I'm a fan of all of these folks. But one person in particular made me feel like a straight fanboy. I saw Devone Little, aka Omar from "The Wire." One of the most menacing men to ever get in front of a camera, he could not be more non-threatening in person. At least under the circumstances we were in. I'm sure the perfection to which he played Omar is based in some sort of real-life reference material. I gave him a pound, and he even smiled when I told him my name was StarPower. He didn't pull out a shotgun. He smiled. Gangsta.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

The Last Ones Left – Chapter 1: "Hello Brooklyn!"

I once spit a line that went like this:

"Young man, don’t let ignorance stand in ya way/ Why hate Nas just ‘cuz you’re a fan of Jay?/ You can like both/ But in this Titanic rap shit, which one do you think would put you in his lifeboat?..."

I was commenting on the ignorant and stupid way people choose shallow reasons to rep someone or something, even if it’s not to their own benefit. Or people who diss one thing, just because they choose to rep something else. Sometimes, we don’t even have to choose, but we’re led to believe that not choosing or not repping makes us less cool. I don’t rep many things because I don’t choose to attach myself to something that doesn’t love me as much as I love it, but I do rep people in general; I’m a fan of humanity, and a proponent of the human experience. I’m about the everyday truths that make up life outside of all the glitz and glamour that cloud our minds. Don’t get me wrong, I’m up for the glitz and glamour at times because I like my fun to happen in every way possible, but for the most part, I rep the have-nots, and the haves who struggle just to achieve some semblance of peace and happiness. This is what I’m from, and what I deal with every day. This is why I don’t rep New York like many of my peers do. I won't rep a New York that I soon won't be able to afford, a New York that wants me, and those like me, gone. I don’t rep the “Sex and the City,” “Friends,” trendy, aren’t-we-so-fabulous?-version of New York that even cats who claimed to be about the gritty struggle a few moons ago, now rep hard. This isn’t to say that I don’t enjoy a fabulous night out a few times a month, but it doesn’t define me, and it doesn’t distort my image of the gross class division that exists in New York.

Sometimes I think that even my associates forget that among all of the happening events, boutiques, and lounges, there are folks in Brownsville, Mott Haven, Jamaica, Harlem, Melrose, and other hoods that are barely eating. Not on some “I’m bumming meals off of my artist friends, and I can’t afford a car, but still I have money for weed, and cool t-shirts” shit. I’m talkin’ about folks who can’t get their kids on the bus in the morning b/c they can’t afford half-fare, and folks who will have no television to watch for a while when all the tvs go digital next year and families who may look normal but are very close to living on the street. This is in New York, not Africa or Indonesia or South America, so stop rapping about these other fucking places, and indigenous people, and human rights violations; you got enough material right here in the Apple. These things are happening even in your trendy neighborhood. For example, I’ve been to a coupla nice, hipster parties in Bushwick. Cool lofts and all that. But I also toured the neighborhood while apartment shopping, and I was introduced to blocks that look like 1970s South Bronx. The standoffish Hasidic Jew landlord, not much older than 22, acted like he was doing me a favor by showing me his hellhole apartments. I saw potential tenants walk up to the building, and leave before he arrived. This is also the neighborhood that "AM New York" wrote an article about eating the least vegetables in New York. Funny, I thought trendy people who live in cool (read: false sense of security, lots of young white people) neighborhoods pride themselves on eating lots of veggies, not much meat? Isn’t that an indicator, along with vintage t-shirts, bar/lounges, and too much scarf-wearing, of how good and cool a neighborhood is in New York? (Is this the point where a knowledgeable Brooklynite trys to tell me that I’m describing what is probably East New York, not his/her beloved Bush-burgh neighborhood?). My point is not to disparage Bushwick, my point is that the folks not eating veggies, or anything organic, healthy, and expensive, are probably the ones with money for kool-aid, Little Debbie snacks, and generic cereals, but not much else. They are right alongside, and under the noses of, the trendy New Yorkers so proud of their nabe. Actually, they won’t be alongside them soon as gentrification pushes them out; but I digress. I eat my veggies and whole foods and all that shit, but I rep for the folks who eat what they can afford, who live like they can afford to live. They are the ones who need a voice, who need representation. To that end, I have been inspired to start this series, called “The Last Ones Left,” about a place I have come to love, a place I wasn’t born at, and used to hate when I was younger – The Bronx.

I have been accused of being anti-Brooklyn. If you know me, and you know how to read between the lines, and not just above and below, you would know that that’s ridiculous. I had my heart set on moving to BK last year b/c I’d already lived in multiple locations in the Bronx and Manhattan. I wanted to try out BK, b/c I perform there often, I’ve worked there for the past coupla years, I love some of the energy, many of my friends live there, and it would make things easier for me as far as networking goes. Calling me anti-Brklyn is really just a clever way of saying that I shouldn’t bring up any rational, factual, contrary information when someone I know (almost always a Brooklynite since I’m a young black artist, and if you know N.Y. you know that most similar types live in BK) talks bad about (almost always with ignorance) the Bronx. I’ve heard folks talk about they won't eat Bronx food, that they won’t drink the water, that the girls are young, stupid, with babies, every place is dirty, no one eats healthy, etc. Funny, I drink the water every day, along with some quite healthy food, I’ve lived in very clean spaces, I’m quite healthy, and I know lots of young, dumb, baby-having chicks in other boroughs. Most of the time, my point is not to defend the Bronx, but as you guys know, I hate ‘experts,’ and when someone talks about a place I live and do a lot of things at, like they know of what they speak, I just correct them. Often the easiest way to show them their error is to make a comparison, usually to BK, in my experiences. I’ve heard “everyone’s killing everyone” in the Bronx. My life has only been threatened outside of the Bronx. I've heard blacks and hispanics, a bad stretch away from being a have-not themselves, talk so dirty about other blacks and hispanics, and families, and hardworking people who live in the Bronx. It's sad that various media influences have led some people to believe that they are truly superior to their own bredren. It's sad and it's pitiful.

I really think that trashing the Bronx is just a convenient way for people to feel good about themselves by trashing those who are seemingly less fortunate. That’s really, really corny. These people know that the Bronx is not the only place with problems, but it’s the easiest, quickest way to sound snarky while trying to pump themselves up. The Bronx does have a lot of problems, some problems that don’t exist in other areas of the city. But a lot of what people think are myths. My Bronx includes a wonderful state park, a break from all the fake-ass people, beautiful families, lots of green space, good restaurants. And as far as just feeling real to me – Bronxites are the last ones left. The Bronx aint full of transplanted out-of-towners (they’re scared, of course), and too-cool-for-school artists with stars in their eyes. The Bronx doesn’t make me gag looking at people trying way too hard to be cool. Yeah, we might have a higher concentration of have-nots, but that’s fine. Because we want what we can keep, what's real, what’s valuable. We don’t want to be defined by folks outside of our culture. The part that kills me that most is that I know rappers who talk much shit about the Bronx (where hip-hop started, no?), and will give you tons of pseudo-intelligent or so-called cleverly ignorant reasons why they are right to feel like they do. These are rappers who consider themselves hip-hop heads, true rappers, who do it for love and love the culture. Bullshit. Hip-hop will always be intertwined with struggle. Struggle, and being a have-not, is what bore hip-hop. I don’t even think many of these people know what they are rapping about. They need to re-evaluate their lyrics, and see if it matches their lives, and real life. That’s all I’m gonna say about Bronx-haters. The rest of this series will be devoted to positive energy, and love for the Bronx. And love doesn’t mean everything will be painted in an adoring light. But I point out flaws b/c I got love, and I hope things will change one day. I’ll always have love. Even if I move to Brooklyn next year, which is very possible. As far as The Boogie, like ‘Pac said in “Life Goes On” –“my niggas, we the last ones left!”

I'm StarPower, and I approve this message.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

"Wait'll They Get A Load Of Me" (A-Ha, I Said "A Load Of Me")

It's funny and cool 'cause it's a movie quote (and quoting movies is one of the fooliest {funny+cool=fooly} things a guy can do, right), but it's also like one of those double entendres. Like, a 'load,' like a portion of sperm. Released from my testicles. That can be used to impregnate a woman. Through her vagina. But the blog isn't about sex. The title just happened to bring that to mind.

That's why it's funny...You know?

You're not gonna read this blog now, are you. Anywaaaaay....

So I've come to the realization, and I finally have total acceptance of the fact, that it is me. Not them. It's my personality that incites polarizing feelings. Everyone around me isn't an idiot (sheep maybe, but not idiots), they're just different from me, and they don't understand me. So we must learn to co-exist, I deduce. It's my actions that cause the problems, not their reactions. Happy? I said it.

What usually happens is, I "use my words," and I am not tolerant of shit I don't feel. And people rarely see me angry. So this means that I can calmly express how full of shit a person or situation is, or I don't hide that fact that I could care less about some particular nonsense, and people get emotional because I won't front. Or, I don't use my words, I hold shit in, I feel crappy, and people think they can go on thinking they know me, know what I am about, make judgements accordingly, and end up annoying me to the point where I don't like them anymore. Or they annoy me to the point where I do use my words, and I do what I just wrote in the 2nd sentence of this paragraph.

Crazy thing is, I'm very easy-going, and I hardly ever get into altercations, confrontations, disagreements, fights, arguments, etc. But when I do - oh buoy. I don't even realize what's happening most of the time! See, apparently, my I-don't-give-a-fuckness is reaching epic levels. Most people still support me, and feel me for keeping it funky, especially since I never mean any harm (or at least they act like they feel me, who knows?). But there is a fervent minority who always feel wronged or offended, or superior, and that minority annoys me to no end. They wanna make me think that my I-don't-give-a-fuckness is wrong. Wrong because I don't express myself like most people they know. Well fuck them, and everyone who looks anything like them. I'm not wrong. I'm different. I'll accept the fact that I'm the one with the issue, if that makes you feel better, but your reaction shows that you have an issue to.

Electrifying conclusion: I'm not gonna change. No, I take that back. I am gonna change. I'm gonna cut to the chase, and not give a fuck all of the time, so you have no misconceptions about who I am. My problem has been not giving a fuck a lot of the time, and caring too much about other peoples' feelings the rest of the time. I'll be more consistent. You won't understand me, but at least you'll know me, because hardly anyone really knows me now. That's mostly my faulty. I'll be the same 'me' more often, instead of different versions of me depending on my mood and situation. That way, we can know where we stand from jump. Agreed?

I'm StarPower, and I reserve the right to take back all of the shit I just said.

Oh, and I approve this message.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Mr. Rod Is Leaving Maxwell :(

My kids @ Maxwell H.S. surprised me with a li'l artwork. Touched me, I can't front (yeah, a nigga got feelings, and what?!)

Mariah Refuses To Grow Up, Unemployment Refuses To Go Down

Why doesn’t she just start painting on all of her clothes? Seriously. What the hell is she wearing? Pushin’ 40 and walkin’ around in beach clothes? Hard to respect a chick like that. It’s like she’s advertisin’ the goods. Why should I think about anything else or treat her like anything besides a vag, a rack, and mouth that hits high notes? I mean, how can anyone be a fan of Mariah Carey’s? Not a fan of her tits, a fan of a song or two, or a fan of her voice, but a fan of the public persona we know as Mariah Carey. Isn’t she in the same age range as Mary J. Blige, Jay-Z, Common, and other artists that have decided not to embarrass themselves by making ridiculously immature music? These artists realize that there’s a whole generation who grew up with them, idolizing them for their respective skills, and would like to continue to grow with them, watching them succeed, evolve, and entertain. Mariah, on the other hand, will only do what will keep her at mega-star status, which means that she makes songs that excite 16-year old hood rats (no disrespect to hood rats, y’all know I got love) and their 30 year old mothers (no disrespect to 30 year old mothers, my moms had me at 14!).

Mariah is like 38, enough already with the songs like “Touch My Body.” Are you kidding?! Even “We Belong Together,” which was a cool song. But I swear she sounds like a 10th grade girl, longing over some skinny, rude punk with his pants hangin’ off of his ass, writing God-awful love poems that all the adults in her life don’t have the hear to tell her they suck. And the way she dresses! First of all, as good as she looks, and as nice as her tits look, she never looks sexy. Beyonce (who is going down the same road as Mariah musically, I guess to achieve the same success, which she’s headed to), as robotic as she is, looks sexy at times. Alicia Keys looks sexy almost all of the time. Even Keisha Cole and Ashanti look sexy from time to time. Mariah almost always looks like the pretty chick with low self-esteem who acts like she has high self-esteem, doesn’t realize how dope she can and should be, and lets all types of guys smash.

Electrifying conclusion: My intention is not to Mariah-bash. If that was the case, I woulda went in as far as the whole Nick Cannon debacle. But I actually fux with Nick Cannon. She’s a world-class talent, has some classic songs, and did a song with ODB. Gotta give it up for that. Plus, she’s the second chick I’d recruit for my Tragic Mulatto Harem/Opium Den (Halle Berry would be 1st). But the way her and her male counterpart, R. Kelly, have drowned their legacies by making ringtone r&b when both have game-changing talent, that’s what’s tragic. There are still many chapters to be written for her (maybe not for Kells), so maybe there will be a return to form in her future, not just sales-wise, but quality-wise also.

Don’t call it a recession! Joblessness is at it’s highest rate since ’86! It’s at 5.5 % which apparently isn’t that high historically, but not good nonetheless, especially considering the price of everything is rising, employers are scared, and that percentage probably hasn’t leveled off. They expect the rate to climb to 6% early next year, which really means 6.5%, at least, because the predictions are often on the low side. Even if that’s inaccurate, I say, expect the best, plan for the worst. Plan for 7%! The AP says that “A trio of crises — housing, credit and financial — have rocked the economy. That's caused economic growth to slow to a crawl as businesses and consumers have tightened their belts. Spiraling energy costs are another negative force.”

Electrifying conclusion: Obviously, whoever seems like they can get us out of this is gonna win the election. But really, many folks don’t care, b/c they’ve been in a recession all of their lives. They don’t know shit about “a trio of crises” because they don’t own a house and are subject to their landlords’ whims regardless of a housing crises, the only credit they know is at the bodega or with the dopeman, and they don’t really understand what the fuck economists mean by the “price of the dollar.” Fuck does that mean? A dollar is gonna be worth 50 cents, and they’re gonna have to come up with a new term for what 100 cents means? I’ll tell ya what this joblessness means, because I predicted this shit a few years ago. I said that we’re about to relive the ‘80s, and I don’t mean rope chains, Mohawks, skinny ties, Members Only jackets, and “Knight Rider” remakes, and VH1 specials. I mean niggas are gonna get real grimy again. People are already back on some coke-sniffing, piss-on-the-poor, celebrate-everything-trashy, glamour shit. The have-nots are about to do what not having money or jobs to pay for all of our outrageous living expenses forces us to do. There’s gonna be a lot more whoring, a lot more robbing, a lot more stealing, a lot more killing, a lot more garbage, a lot more police brutality, etc. All of this has been happening. The difference is that New York aint gonna’ have it this time. City Hall knows what’s about to happen, and they’re trying to make sure that all of the folks who would do these things are either brutally suppressed and contained in small areas (i.e. projects), or forced out of the city altogether. I don’t think that will work because many have-nots are very determined to stay in New York, and somehow, someway, will survive all efforts to be banished. Mark my words, one day in the very near future, the front page is gonna have a Central Park Jogger-esque story. I don’t wish that on anyone, but horrible things happen all the time, and the media uses their power to get us outraged only over certain things. When the elite really starts to get scared, they’re gonna use their media outlets to spook us into thinking hell is breaking loose, and extreme measures must be taken immediately. Just remember where you heard it first.

My mind is the subway, full of scantily clad young women of all persuasions, routes leading to several places good and bad, and open to anyone willing to pay the price. This is my train of thought:

I love Jack Black. I will not see “Kung Fu Panda.”*Obama should pull the trigger, and put Clinton behind him; so when the snipers take aim, he’ll have someone else watching his back, and potentially in place to take the bullet. I mean that figuratively. Not on some “RFK was assassinated late in primary” shit* 2 days left at my current job after today! Movin’ on, niggas!*Maybe we’ve been prematurely speaking of a Lakers Dynasty, and Kobe truly becoming hier to Air. Let’s talk about his next week.*I been running. In the park, on the streets, all of that. It aint showin’ yet, but watch out in a coupla years!*Solange (baby sister of Beyonce) Knowles broke her foot on the way to the stage, and continued on to perform, rushing to the hospital afterwards. This was during her tour. If this never happened, no one would know that she’s on a tour. Or that she has an album to tour in support of. Or that she sings. Or that she exists.*Li’l Wayne is a monster. “Lollipop” is #1, in the face of “American Idol” single, teenyboppers, divas, and anything featuring T-Pain or Akon. His album is about to sell a zillion copies. And it’ll be the first I’m gonna buy in a long time. I’ma try to get a cassette b/c I’m about to buy a car that has a tape deck. Gully.

Word’s of wisdom can be found in the most unlikeliest of sources. Today mine come from Usher’s “U Don’t Have To Call.”

“Situations will arise, in our lives, but, you gotta be smart about it…”


I'm StarPower, and I approve this message.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

I Love Brooklyn, Brooklyn Loves Me

There's a rumor goin' around that StarPower's anti-Brooklyn. Never! How insulting. Give me some credit for being a little smarter than that. Smart enough not to generalize a whole borough, an area with a coupla million people who live just as I do. I got crazy love. I'm anti-nonsense. And if nonsense exists in Brooklyn, then I'ma speak (we'll talk about that in my upcoming blog series "The Last Ones Left"). Brooklyn has been good to me, and I've been good in return. BK has given me 3 of my favorites artist of all time (Biggie, Kane, Jay), good friends, good times, and good jobs. Brooklyn has literally put money in my pocket. I know a few different kinds of Brooklyns, some I love, some I like, some I loathe.

I don't care about a cool Brooklyn or a trendy Brooklyn, or even a tough Brooklyn. I care about a successful Brooklyn, a Brooklyn that takes care of it's own, the folks who love Brooklyn even though Marty would rather push them out so he can get more $$ for their space, and chalk it up to Brooklyn's "revitalization." Fuck Bruce Ratner's Brooklyn, fuck Maggie Gyllenhaal's Brooklyn. And I do co-sign articles like this from Gawker:

"As Brooklyn gets less trendy and more mainstream (and more expensive), the hip young celebrities, flush with a little bit of money, will choose more convenient places to live. It used to be something of a tip of the hat for a rich famous person to move to the borough. "Aren't we shy and intelligent!" "We're just like you!" That kind of thing. But now all sorts of people live out here and there's no gesture or identity associated with "brownstone Brooklyn" anymore. If they moved to Crown Heights, that'd be something! But, they won't. They'll go for ease and (though they'd never admit it) status. And then we'll just be left with a bunch of boring old writers, who actually spend time in the neighborhood and clog up the streets. "

And comments like this from New York Observer:

"In Brooklyn, New Yorkers can rehearse their adulthood without committing to it..."

I don't fux with all that type of Brooklyn. But like I said, Brooklyn has love me, and I've loved it back. How? Well, I'm scheduled to participate in the exclusive "A Great Day In Brooklyn" photoshoot which is the lastest recreation of the famous "A Great Day in Harlem" or "Harlem 1958" group portrait of 57 jazz musicians in Harlem. Even though I aint from Brooklyn, my artist fam is based in BK. While describing my contributions to Brooklyn's "renaissance," I realized that as much as BK had done for me, I've done quite a bit for it also. Peep:

"As an artist, I'm a core member of Brooklyn's leading artist collective, called The Trifecta, which is made up of 3 of the city's illest underground hip-hop camps - Nuclear Family, The Project, and my camp The Dugout. We are producers, rappers, writers, singers, comedians, filmmakers, graphic design artists, and more. We have held loft parties, screened award-winning music videos and films, performed all over, including in front of Brooklyn Museum for free on the first day of summer. We have also held The Brooks Arts Festival, which provides a platform for independent artists with unique vision, as well as involved the community. We have also held a Brooklyn block party.

As an activist, I have a strong element of self-love, community love, black love, collectivism, and progress in my music. Along with keepin' it funky. I have also performed at an anti-police brutality rally. I have also served Brooklyn youth as an educator, coordinator of an attendance improvement program in East New York, a facilitator for The After School Corporation in Clinton Hill and Flatbush, and an Enrichment Coordinator for formerly incarcerated youth in downtown Brooklyn. I am also an Urban Mentors.

I've also contributed by being ill. Having ill slang, ill style, speaking my mind, being original and appealing, spitting and producing fire, writing blogs and articles, and generally being awesome. And humble."

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Fuck Tatum O'Neal! (Before Bill Does)

There have been reports from “Vanity Fair” magazine that Bill Clinton has been acting like, well, Bill Clinton. Jet-setting around the world with notorious playboy billionaires (Ron Burkle, who has a plane nicknamed “Air Fuck One,” he’s a champ for that, and Steve Bing, who didn’t pull out of Elizabeth Hurley, as no man would want to), smashing younger chicks, and doing all the things we expect the Skull-and-Bones set does in their silver years. They’re saying Bill has chicks from the Canadian Parliament (they do have a Parliament up there, right?) to Aspen to Hollywood.

Electrifying conclusion: He’s rumored to be smashing actress Gina Gershon (“Curb Your Enthusiasm,” “Showgirls”). Lemme just say kudos, Bill. She looks like she knows how to…well I’m sure you feel the same way, and that’s why you’re allegedly doing what you’ve been accused of, right? I think they have their agreements between husband and wife at the level of politics/celebrity/wealth that the Clintons are at. He’s rich as fuck now from doing whatever the hell ex-Presidents do (oh yeah, they form ‘foundations’ that rake in millions upon millions to do what exactly?), he’s famous as fuck, he no longer has to run the United States, and his wife is always out campaigning. And he has the sex drive of a dark-skinned person (read below for more on that).

So the great scientist James Watson, co-discoverer of DNA, revered the world over by people of every race and creed, is saying that there is probably a genetic basis, scientific proof, that black people are less intelligent than whites. He also suggests a link between skin color and sex drive. Scientific racism has been around for a while, and we’ve all heard of people claiming that they are of a “master race” and “genetically superior," but when someone so respected co-signs this sort of thinking, it unfortunately gives it a validity that it shouldn’t have. If you want to draw your own conclusion, I think that this article, a conversation between Watson and Henry Louis Gates Jr., is a good place to start -

Get this. There’s a whole community of folks called “frugalists” (aka anti-consumerists, freegans, frugalists or Dumpster divers) who get all of their food from the garbage. Not b/c they have to, but because they like cheap shit. I know what you’re thinkin’, “But StarPower, we all like cheap shit!” Not like these people like cheap shit. Would you spend your time getting 99% of your food from the garbage, like duplex-owning, solid-job-holding, artist Rebecca? Would you live like many extreme freegans, outside of the economic norm, hitchhiking, foraging for food and eschewing regular jobs? Didn’t think so. I’m simplifying this lifestyle though; there is an amazing culture surrounding it, that really has to do with re-defining value. I strongly urge you to read about it at this link, and then think about some of your consumer habits -

What a fucking spinster, but I guess she’s playin’ her hand the best she knows how. Tatum O’Neal talkin’ about the cops “saved” her by busting her with coke. Initially she said that she was researching a role (lying cokewhore), but then said that she was upset b/c of the death of her dog (lying cokeWHORE!). I doubt this was the first time she’s done drugs in years, just the first time she’s been caught. At least she has good perspective on what jail is like:

"I slept on a mattress with a couple of ladies because I was tired. ... And I thought the thing that was cool about New York, no special treatment. No special cell. It wasn't that horrible. I think it's worse for the people that don't have a lawyer to get them out."
"I'm still sober!" the 44-year-old actress told New York Post columnist Andrea Peyser in a phone call shortly after being released from custody Monday.
"Just when I was about to change that and wreck my life, the cops came and saved me! I was saved by the bell, by the guys in the Seventh Precinct."

Wow. You're such a lying cokewhoress Tatum. Say what you want, but you’re no better than any of the many coke/crackheads I’ve known in my life. Oscar or not. Michael Jackson probably started getting surgery after he kissed you in the ‘70s (or was it the ‘80s?) to destroy any traces of physical contact with you.

Damn, I’m being mean. I take it all back.

Electrifying conclusion: I lied. Fuuuuuuck Tatum O’Neal! Nothing personal, but fuck all of the white celebs who get LOADS of publicity after getting caught with drugs. Fuck Tatum, Robert Downey Jr., and Amy Winehouse. Usually the tone the media has is “feel sympathy and pity, wish for recovery, and celebrate the triumph, if it ever happens, which we hope it does.” She knew what the fuck she was doing, she probably made it easy to get caught. Then she’ll clean up, and one of her old Studio 54 millionaire producer buddies will offer her the kind of prime role that’s scare for actresses her age. Fucking Whora the Explorer.

I would still beat.

I'm StarPower, and I approve this message.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Eff The Golden Arches, How About The Golden Burger!

My dude Merc once said that cats are gonna start wearin’ platinum shirts. He meant it as a joke, but when it comes to the outrageous ways rich folk spend their dollars, a lot of truth is said. Ingest. This is the $175 gold hamburger. No really, it actually has gold on it. This is what The Gothmist had to say:

10 ounces of Kobe-raised beef crowned with a thick “lobe” of seared foie gras, 25 grams of shaved black truffles, and aged gruyere cheese. It comes enthroned on a brioche bun anointed with a homemade truffled mayonnaise and garnished with more shaved truffles. Oh, and gold leaf flakes from Japan, which has the yummiest gold.

Electrifying conclusion: With the way food prices are going up, I think that the folks behind the goldburger are just being visionary. That will be an average price soon if things continue like they’ve been going. Watch some of “Idiocracy” if you get a chance to see where unchecked ignorance can lead our society.

Is this for real?. If so, I think it's hella interesting. Aston Kutcher has a new show in the works where he plants fake stories about celebs to ‘punk’ the paparazzi as a way of gettin’ revenge for them being, well, paparazzi. I only found this out because I wanted to see what was up with this Diddy/Cameron Diaz rumor. It might be a put-on courtesy of Aston. Here’s a link:

So yeah, the student I was telling y’all about now hates me. We had a great relationship, now she won’t talk to me, and said that I ruined her life. He mother had warrants, and all types of police and social service got involved. This kid has loads of potential; there’s a very good chance it won’t be realized. It’s sad, but it’s true. Oh yeah, she spread it all around the school that I got her a case, so now I’m a school-wide villain. I’m leavin’ the school for good in a week, and she is transferrin’ also, but I thought there was a chance that I could mentor her. Not happening. I told her that I picked the lesser of two evils – her getting hurt vs. the system getting’ all up in her business. She couldn’t care less about my philosophies. She said that she told me stuff in confidence, and I let her business out, leading to her unfortunate situation. I truly felt like I did the right thing, but I don’t feel as strongly as I did on Friday, and that wasn’t a strong feeling to begin with. Maybe I should’ve let them handle it. Will any good come of this, for her family? Who the hell knows. Movin’ the fuck on…

I would understand if a newcomer to MMA said, “Screw this, I’m never watching this crap again,” after viewing that debacle on CBS Saturday night. I don’t know that much about the sport, but I do know what’s entertaining, and the finish to the Lawler-Smith fight wasn’t entertaining. I didn’t say that the fight shouldn’t have been stopped. I’m just talkin’ from the perspective of someone wishing to be entertained. That eye-poke probably warranted a stoppage, but that’s not what I, and many others, perceived. Plus, dude was ready to keep goin’. The Kimbo fight? Wow. First of all, it looked like he might have tapped at one point. Second of all, I don’t think he was gonna win. Third, if they were gonna call it b/c he hit that inflated ear, they should’ve called it from jump b/c it was obviously only a matter of time before Kimbo opened that bitch up. I think that the ear was a convenient excuse to stop the fight before Kimbo lost, which would have greatly decreased his mystique, thus his drawing power. I’m sure Kimbo could demolish me with very minimal effort, and take a peaceful nap afterwards, but I’m also sure that a good MMA fighter, not a great one, could take him apart at this point. Then again, I don’t know, I heard that he beat Tank Abbot. I only know Tank from wrestling, where he had the gimmick of being some hard-punching shoot-fighter; does it mean anything that he beat Tank Abbot? Holla at me if you’re more informed than I am.

Electrifying conclusion: I’ll still watch another Kimbo fight if it’s on CBS. I don’t really watch to see him win. I watch to see him do damage. Remember that in MMA, fighters do lose; even top fighters will have a record like 17-5. So I’ll keep watching. As long as there’s damage to be done. And Kimbo isn’t the only beast out there. Rampage got me into the sport. He’s worth watching, peep this -

R.I.P. to the great Bo Diddley, one of those artists who, along with Ike Turner and Little Richard, has a genuine claim to founding rock and roll. This is what the AP said:

In the early 1950s, Diddley said, disc jockeys called his type of music, "Jungle Music." It was Cleveland disc jockey Alan Freed who is credited with inventing the term "rock 'n' roll."
Diddley said Freed was talking about him, when he introduced him, saying, "Here is a man with an original sound, who is going to rock and roll you right out of your seat."
Diddley was also one of the pioneers of the electric guitar, adding reverb and tremelo effects. He even rigged some of his guitars himself.
Diddley's influence was felt on both sides of the Atlantic. Buddy Holly borrowed the bomp ba-bomp bomp, bomp bomp rhythm for his song "Not Fade Away."
Rolling Stones' bluesy remake of that Holly song gave them their first chart single in the United States, in 1964. The following year, another British band, the Yardbirds, had a Top 20 hit in the U.S. with their version of "I'm a Man."
Many other artists, including the Who,
Bruce Springsteen and Elvis Costello copied aspects of Diddley's style.
Growing up, Diddley said he had no musical idols, and he wasn't entirely pleased that others drew on his innovations.

Electrifying conclusion: I like the way this cat spoke.
This is what he had to say about the copycats:

"I don't like to copy anybody. Everybody tries to do what I do, update it," he said. "I don't have any idols I copied after."
"They copied everything I did, upgraded it, messed it up. It seems to me that nobody can come up with their own thing, they have to put a little bit of Bo Diddley there," he said.
On not getting paid what he was worth:

"I am owed. I've never got paid," he said. "A dude with a pencil is worse than a cat with a machine gun."

Bo knows truth.
  • The MTV Movie Awards sucked. I hate when someone tries to hard to be cool, or live up to the image they feel people have of them. That went on the whole night. A night of trying to create moments. Is Mike Myers gonna live off of the “Austin Powers” movies forever? Yup.
  • Robert Downey Jr. just jumped ahead of Brett Farve (but still behind Johnny Depp and Tom Brady) on the folks-white-people-idolize list. He can do no wrong. All the drugs and arrests and he’s treated like a god.
  • Go Mets.
  • “Sex and the City” cleaned up, didn’t it?! Tons of dudes were obviously forced into seeing it with their ladies. Not me! Mr. and Mrs. Power are waiting for that “The Wire” movie to come out.
  • I just might be buying a hooptie today.
  • I don’t care what anybody says, I aint gon’ count Clinton out ‘til this thing is totally over.
  • Can’t wait to get out there and perform my new music. I don’t see anyone doing anything like it at live hip-hop shows. I wouldn’t call it a completely original approach, but it is an evolution. An evolution for me, and for hip-hop. I really broke it down to beats, rhymes, and life – a universal sound anyone with rhythm can appreciate. It’ll just be an emcee, the mic, and his beats. A smooth current of rhymes inside a flood of rhythm. No wasted words, ideas, sounds, or motions. No posturing, no fakeness. If it doesn’t come off, I’m strictly to blame (and maybe the sound system ;) because I created this, and I’m solely responsible for delivering the music. I may have been building my whole music career towards this. Time to shine!
I’m StarPower, and I approve this message.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Sunday Mail

This is an artist's rendition of me and my close friends planning to board a fully operational mothership the-fuck-up-outta here. Strawberry fields, white rooms with black curtains, and aquaboogie await us. Activities will include sky-kissing, searching for white holes (if there are black ones, there must be white ones, right?) and keepin' it funky.

If you'd like to join us, hit me up at

Remember I said I saw Michael Wright from "The Five Heartbeats," "Sugar Hill," and "Oz?" This is the pic of him givin' a cool-ass b-day shoutout to my man Lou.

"Sugar Hill" was the first flick that almost made me cry. Never cried from a flick, but that came close. The way his pops took that dope to his vein, and died in front of his son at the end. Shiiiit. Watchin' movies like that on cable is almost like watchin' reality tv for real, for real, for some of us. Y'all don't even know! But movin' on...

I'm not gonna shorten my blog. It's for readers.

  • Confession: I had a drink on Friday that was off of a "Sex and the City"-inspired menu. It was actually a shot - Liquid Cocaine, which had 151, peppermint shnapps, and hellfire. One did the trick. Had me feelin' like "Mr. Big" out that bee-ya-itch.
  • Too many dance shows, folks, too many dance shows.
  • Those who tell don't know, and those who know are named StarPower
  • Gas is $11 a gallon in Turkey, $10 in France, and 12 cents in Venezuela. Do what you will with that info if you didn't have it already.
  • Nigga, we know why Obama quit that Church. 'Cause niggas was about to make him not be President, which he might not be anyway. No further analysis required.
  • Lots of shit in life don't require complicated answers, or advanced thinking. The shit that requires deeper thought, we simplify, and the shit that's easy to figure out, we complicate. Yes/no? Are the MTV Movie Awards on tonight? I'm all over that. I prefer the video jumpoffs, though.
  • I bought new computer speakers; I knew it would make a difference in how much better my beats would sound, but wow! It's showtime muthafuckas.
  • Should I let my former students read my blog? I may not have control over that anyway.
  • I'm fine with someone not feelin' me. It's cool. You have your reasons. We'll co-exist, maybe even cooperate, but that's it. And then we'll move on. Wanting to be friends with everyone is fucking immature. Adults have enemies. It's just life. Doesn't mean they spend energy trying to make your life less enjoyable. They might, might not. Some people just won't like yo' ass for whatever reason. And as long as they do, they're an enemy. The mature thing is to not associate with them, or foster a relationship with them that prevents you from getting money or pussy. An enemy might be the best person to gain off of, b/c you won't feel remorse for using them. If they allow themselves to be used, they need to become a better enemy. Like, go to enemy school or something.
  • I'm not a Denise Richards fan, never was, something about her, and I hate that she has a reality show. Same goes for the Lohan mom. But that's about as much of my energy as they'll get.
  • Can't imagine there's a place with more flavors of stunning women than New York. On one block you'll see waspy, ethnically ambuigous, hood, shy, schoolgirl (of age, of course), trashy, homely, thick, skinny, model-type, milf, tomboy, everything. Awesome.
  • I'm startin' that Masters Degree in Urban Ed in about 2 weeks! Let's get it!

I blogged before "T.E.C." It was on Friendster and MySpace. I wanna let y'all in further (pause...I know, I said I'm too mature for that, but it's fun to say sometimes, no matter how many fat poet girls get upset when I say it at shows) by re-posting old blogs to show you my mindstate back in '05 and '06. Here's my very first blog from July '05. I actually recited this as a paper, verbatim, in an English class during my last semester as an undergrad. Peep:

Limited Edition
My ‘Definitive Label’ in life will always be ‘Black Man,’ something I understand, and better learn to love, because it’s a title given to me; and when you give something a name, you possess a certain amount of power pertaining to that thing. So my mother, through her maternal powers, named me Roderick, and some colonists, (Irish or Scottish I presume) used their power to give my ancestors, the name Collins. Now, I’m defined by another title I didn’t give myself - Black man. I understand the slavemasters had the money and the power, and my mother was responsible for my life, so that was their claim to naming me, directly or indirectly. But now that I make my own money and I’m responsible for my own life, I want a say in how I’m labeled. Most people change their name, but I’m gonna work with that definitive label of ‘Black Man,’ also known as ‘Black Guy’ when coming out of the mouths of non-black comedians, ‘Brother’ or ‘Bro’ when coming out of the mouths of neo-hippies and black men who went to the Million Man March, or ‘Nigger’, when coming out of the mouth of Paris Hilton (though I wouldn’t be surprised if a coupla niggas have came into her mouth as well.) But listen, I didn’t come up here to rant and rave, like ‘Angry Black Man’ has been known to do. I feel like I have a helpful alternative to the label ‘Black Man,’ and the alternative is necessary. This is because some black dudes have an issue; like say something happened, and you hear a white person say “Oh, there was a Black Guy in there…” or when describing us, “You know, the Black dudes!” As a black person, you might be like “Oh, why she gotta say black guy?” or “Why he say it like that?!” Why? Because, that’s you’re definitive label, that’s why! What else should they say? It was the easiest thing to say, and it said all it needed to say about you.

You may or may not agree with what I’m saying, but consider this: How about, instead of ‘Black Man,’ (which I do like, it has a certain sense of force to it) how about we use “LIMITED EDITION?” Limited Edition Human Beings- “L.E.H.B.s” for short, or Limited Edition Homo Sapiens- “L.E.H.S.” for short. Now I know with that one, people will make jokes and says things like “you’re L.E.H.S. (less) of a person” or some dumb sh-t, but remember, we made black, which had nothing but bad connotations, beautiful. We can make L.E.H.S., more.
Now, “Limited Edition” says in the label, all it needs to say. When a limited edition of something is rolled out, it’s because it’s a little different, a little more special. It does everything the regular one does, but it might do a little more, look a little different. That’s us, Black Men. We gotta work a little harder than the regular American; we come in a different color than the regular American; you don’t see as many of us, you know on t.v. and in general; hell, they even try their hardest to keep us locked away, I guess for preservation or safekeeping. But like the most definitive aspect of anything labeled limited edition, we’re around for a much shorter amount of time than the regular American. White Americans’ lifespans are approaching 78, almost 80 years. Black Men reach 64, and that’s it. I’m not sure if that’s long enough to collect social security. So, appreciate the “Black Man” while you can, the Limited Edition Human Being, (“L.E.H.B.), aka the Limited Edition Homo Sapien (“L.E.H.S.”); we’re becoming more scarce everyday…


I know I talk a lot about gentrification, but as we look to purchase property for profit and prosperity, and eat out and lounge increasingly in neighborhoods folks wouldn't walk through a few years ago, and visit white friends in hoods that were traditionally never white-friend friendly, the subject's on my mind a lot. Not as much as hoping the Knicks draft well this year, nipple slips, or trying to lose the gut (I aint tryin' to look like R. Belly this summer), but enough to occupy a good amount of my thoughts. Know what? I can't be a gentrifier. Sort of like the "black people can't be racist" argument that states that racism reflects a postition of power. Only the group in power can discriminate based on race, so blacks can be prejudiced, but not racist. Similarly, I can't be a gentrifier because I am, and never have been, in a position to economically exploit those less fortunate. Not because I'm broke, but because I come from the exploited neighborhoods, I never left, and while I do have a comfortable household income (mostly due to the fact that me and the ol' lady split expenses, have no kids, relatively low debt, and don't try to live above our means), I wasn't born in any position of power. We have paid gentrifier-like rents, and moved into such apartments (i.e. the Harlem apartment they wanted us to pay $1900 a month for a one bedroom for that we still ended up payin' a grip for, that's literally a coupla blocks away from where I grew up, and my family pays under $600 month for a 3 bedroom for), but we are from the community. We would be reinvesting. Since we are of the community, if we profit through buying some shit up that many residents can't afford or aren't willing to take the risk to buy, then the community profits. 'Cause like I said, we are the community.

Better us than Ryan and Trish. And I aint got a beef w/Ryan and Trish. I would probably do the same if I were them. They'll get twice the space uptown than they get downtown for half the money, even though that half is still twice what uptowners are used to paying. Then Ry and Tri will bide their time 'til Conner, Amber, and Jordan and all the rest take the neighborhood over. They'll own it. And ownership is where it's at. 'Cause when you own shit, you have control. Money itself doesn't give you control. It's only as good as what you are able to own because of it. And if someone isn't willing to accept your money, what good does it do you? Ownership is what's up. A degree doesn't mean anything if you can't get a job, right? If someone wants to deny my black, tat-sportin'-ass a job and give it to a white, or just another, person who doesn't have a degree, I won't own a job. A job that could make me money, and help me own some shit. So this is what you need to do: find out how to own shit, b/c that's how you prosper, by owning. You shouldn't necessarily only learn how to make money. You should do that, b/c that's how you get to own shit, but sometimes you can bypass the money through bartering, work, or smarts. For instance, my homey owns a buncha fresh shirts that get him the same admiration that folks who pay big bucks for similar shirts get. He doesn't really buy them; he trades a service to a talented shirtmaker that only requires his time and natural abilities. Everyone can't do that, so they need money to own what they value, but he figured out how to own what he, and those like him, value, without paying much, if any money.

That's just an example. It won't always work. I'll need money to own property, of course, but I have an edge that will save me money. I know some rough, but up-and-coming neighborhoods, from living in them, or having friends who live in them. I didn't have a choice, I was poor. So I'm comfortable in these nabes, and I still have to go and live there. Other potential buyers will only hear about these nabes through people or publications, and will totally miss the boat on other nabes b/c they have no reason to ever discover anything about them. But I'll use my unfortunate upbringing as a plus, when it helps me to notice subtle changes in a certain hood that signal development, renewal, and future economic prosperity. Who will prosper? Honestly, the same people who always prosper in our class system, but folks like me don't even need a big piece, just a small piece that won't seem like a lot to a Trump, but will be more than enough for me to live it up. And that's what's up.

I'm StarPower, and I approve this message.