Professor ‘Rejects’ the Status Quo: A Case Study

The professor, who is she?

When she first walked in to teach Intro to Gender Studies, students knew she was going to be an engaging professor. She wears scarves in bright colors and prints–a shorthand for collegiate rebellion.

“We need to be critical of the status quo,” claims the white, straight professor. “That’s why, for this course, I’m banning a few words. ‘Society’ is one of them.”

Students, squished at desks that are too small for them, pencils poised, scrawl: “Society is a banned word” at the top of their notes.

Tearing Down the Institutions

Students, paying several thousand dollars to sit in this room, should know that Professor stretches their minds in new and exciting ways. She is only a little emblematic of the capitalist hell scape in which we’ve contained learning. She sends her children to private schools, because public schools–though good enough for everyone else–are not good enough for her precious babies.

Though she believes in free higher ed, she can’t do anything about it. She can only lecture at her students about their privileges. Her own lack of privilege–as a woman, as a white lecturer in a discipline that (necessarily) criticizes whiteness–exemplifies her teachings.

She knows that she strikes the perfect contrast to her student’s entitled attitudes.

Image result for gender studies class

(From The AAUW Gender Studies Symposium)

Inappropriate Student Feedback

Even a perfect professor, however, sometimes receives unnecessarily aggressive feedback. One problematic student, a black woman named Katherine, made the professor’s insides squirm with white guilt. Katherine once called the professor a hypocrite. In front of the class. 

The incident occurred a few months back, when the professor mentioned that she felt that white privilege erased the uniqueness of European cultures, making her feel directionless. “I just feel sad that…white culture is just a kind of void in America.”

Katherine, moved by thousands of years of colonial history and, indeed, facts, interrupted. “Wait. Your ‘white culture’ actively erases other cultures. It’s done that for hundreds of years,” Katherine said, staring at the professor. “…What are you teaching us?”

The professor replied, “Katherine, you’re thinking of this in the wrong way. I’m saying that racism hurts everyone.

“But it hurts some more than others, ‘professor.’ We’re a classroom of mostly white students in a mostly white state–should we maybe try to understand racism before we try to tackle white suffering?” Katherine countered.

“Let’s hear from someone else,” the professor suggested, glancing at the twenty or so white faces in the room.

Then came that word, that awful word, which cut the professor like glass. “You’re a hypocrite,” Katherine said, packing her bags. A few students, following Katherine’s example, exited too.

To the professor’s relief, Katherine dropped the class. Even the best professor can sometimes just have a bad student.

 

Rate Your Music dot com

Too Much Music?

In the vast untamed world of 21st century music it can be easy to feel lost. There are more artists and genres than ever before, yet we are still on a never ending quest of finding new music. Being overloaded with options can make it hard to find music that truly speaks to us. Internet radio stations are spotty. Discover weekly playlists never seem to show us anything new. Is there anything out there, made for the user, to navigate the infinite possibilities of music?

Rate Your Music

Let me introduce to you rateyourmusic.com. As a music enthusiast, this is your one-stop website when it comes to all things music. Rate Your Music has several useful features from album reviews to ways of discovering new music. If you want to make the most out of your listening experience and improve your music knowledge in general, Rate Your Music is for you.

When the website pulls up you’ll notice tabs in the upper left hand corner and a search bar in the upper right. The home page also includes a reviews, latest ratings, and new releases section. These can be useful in finding new music but honestly I rarely use them because they eliminate the greatest feature of rate your music which is specificity of searches.

Searching

For your journalist, the most used feature is the search bar. You may notice a drop down menu inside the bar. This changes the parameters of your search. Since it defaults to “artists” you have to enter the bands name when entering a search. If you try to enter a song title or album name you most likely won’t find what you’re looking for. Once you do find the band, click on their name to take you to the artists’ page.

Artists’ page shows when/where they formed/disbanded, members years active and instruments (click on their name to take you to that persons page), other names for the band, and genres (click on the genre to get more information about it). As you scroll down you’ll see their entire discography with a rating beside it. Albums are rated out of 5. Anything above a 4 is extremely rare and above a 3 is strong. The rating shown is an average of all reviews which come from critics and fans. These are also subject to change as more people like or dislike the album over time. This is why I feel Rate Your Music does a better job at ranking music than any other music review site.

You can then click on the album title to take you to that page. On this page you’ll find general album information including its rank for the year it was released and overall (yes, this is a comprehensive list). The most used features I use to get a taste of the album are it’s rating, genres, and descriptors. You can then form your own opinion about the album but it’s nice to have a place to start.

Charts and Lists

…are a great way to discover new music. The charts page allows you to search the top rated albums, eps, etc. from a specific genre. You can limit your search to a certain decade or specific year. If there is an album I particularly like, I’ll look at its genre and check-out the related chart. This has allowed me to sort through some of the classic music of that genre, in order to find the best, as well as discover more unknown artists that are highly acclaimed.

The lists page can also be useful for finding new music. This is essentially a page where users can compile playlists of similar artists or “best of” lists, etc. There are lists such as “1001 albums you must hear before you die” and some more random like “Worst album covers of all time”.

I’ve only scratched the surface of all the features this website has to offer. Go check out rateyourmusic.com and leave a comment below to tell me what you think!

The month in hip hop: October part 2

Oh you thought those were all the projects coming out this month? Not even close. The amount of new music that we’re getting this month is absolutely crazy. Check out the new projects that are arriving on October 19th and 26th!

Click here for part 1 of this post.

October 19th  

  • Future & Juice WRLD – WRLD on Drugs
    • Now this is the definition of a surprise album. After releasing the single “Fine China” earlier in the week, Future and Juice WRLD really went hard and dropped a whole 16 track album on us. The project is available now on streaming services and has features from artists including Young ThugLil WayneNicki Minaj, and Gunna among others.
  • Lil Yachty – Nuthin’ 2 Prove
    • Earlier in 2018, Lil Yachty released Lil Boat 2 which is a follow-up to a previous project called Lil Boat. Other than that, his musical output hasn’t been as prolific as it has been in the past. But a couple weeks ago he announced that he has another album titled Nuthin’ 2 Prove on the way. We didn’t have too much information about this project earlier in the week until Yachty tweeted out the tracklist. The project is available now on streaming services. Take a listen and let us know what you think in the comment section!  
  • Brent Faiyaz – LOST.
    • Many people have heard the song “Crew” by Goldlink. This song was released in late 2016 and became quite popular in large part due to the amazing hook that was sung by Brent Faiyaz. After listening to this song, I’d suggest checking out Faiyaz’s debut album Sonder Son. It is some high quality R&B music due to his beautiful voice and way with melodies. Even though he has had a quiet 2018 thus far, Faiyaz has finally announced his new project called LOST. The project will contain six tracks, and it’s looking to be a good one.    

October 26th

  • Madeintyo Sincerely, Tokyo
    • Even if you aren’t familiar with Madeintyo by name, you’ve probably heard some of his bigger tracks called “Uber Everywhere”, “I Want”, and “Skateboard P”. He has released projects every year since 2015, with True’s World in 2017 being the latest. This new project is titled Sincerely, Tokyo and will feature artists such as Roy Woods, Gunna, ASAP Ferg, and 24hrs. I’m very excited to see what Madeintyo can bring with this project. If you haven’t listened to him before, I’d suggest checking his music out before you listen to this album.    
  • Tory Lanez Love Me Now?
    • Toronto rapper/singer Tory Lanez is gearing up to release his second album of 2018, titled Love Me Now?. The project is supposed to have features from many artists such as Chris Brown, Gunna, 2 Chainz, and Lil Baby. It’ll be interesting to see how this project shapes up after we received Memories Don’t Die from Lanez earlier in the year. He’s already released “Talk To Me” featuring Rich The Kid and “Keep In Touch” featuring Bryson Tiller from the project.
  • Ty Dolla Sign & Jeremih MihTy
    • The duo of Ty Dolla Sign and Jeremih have collaborated on numerous tracks in the past, so their joint album should be something to look forward to for fans of R&B. Details about MihTy are scarce, but two singles have been released so far; “The Light” and “Goin Thru Some Thangz”. These are both quality tracks and should raise the level of hype for the project!
  • Mick Jenkins Pieces Of A Man
    • This project has been a long time coming. It seems like forever since Mick has released a project, but it’s only been about two years since he dropped his debut album called The Healing Component. We don’t know many details about this project yet, but Jenkins did release the first track from the album called “Understood”. Keep on the lookout for this project, it should be a good one.  

Stacked month

That’s about it for the hip hop world in the month of October. If I’ve missed any albums, please feel free to leave a comment on the bottom of this post and let me know!

Artwork owned by artists and their labels

Skalloween 2018

Neighbors have decorated their houses and lawns with skeletons and ghosts. Stores have candy stocked constantly. Horror movies are being released in theaters left and right. The Tower is playing Rocky Horror Picture Show! All of this means Halloween season is upon us, and in full swing! But you’re a music fan at heart. Where’s your Halloween hallmark? Don’t fear the reaper, because Skalloween has you covered!

Skalloween

…is an annual concert featuring four local Ska Punk bands — The Gringos, Scheming Thieves, The Anchorage, and Show Me Island. Each captures the sounds of ska, from jazz to reggae to rock, in their own way. The Gringos vocals evoke the scratchy sounds of jazz lounge singers. Scheming Thieves embody Ska music’s early 2000s pop-punk influences. The Anchorage brings the moody sounds of hard rock and emo to their wonderful brass. Last but certainly not least, Show Me Island is for the classic Ska fans. Their walking bass lines, composition, and lyrics will remind you of your first time listening to Madness or The Specials, but with a female vocalist!

The bands dress up too!

At Skalloween, everyone dresses in costume, dance and mosh together for a night of trumpet and bass-fueled fun. If you love Ska music, this is absolutely your place to be. You’ll be right at home in Skalloween’s pits that are full of moshing and skanking. Almost everyone there is dressed in costume, so if you’re looking to display yours before halloween, you’ll fit right in. Even if you’ve never heard of Ska, you’ll probably still love it because everyone else is having so much fun. Ever since I was introduced to this show, it’s been my favorite concert every year. I think every music fan should make it a tradition to go to this concert.

Skalloween takes place this year on Oct. 20 at the Beehive (666 S. State Street) @ 7:00 p.m, $7 at the door. I’ll be there, and I hope to see you too! Dress up and bring all your friends!

The month in hip hop: October

This may be obvious to many hip hop fans, but 2018 has been a year for the books. We’ve received so many projects from a huge number of artists, ranging from the superstars to those that are still working their way up to that position. But even with the crazy amount of albums, mixtapes, and EPs that have released this year, we still have two and a half months left. And naturally, those last few months will be chock-full of even more music.

We’re about halfway through October and there are plenty of projects coming soon from a variety of artists. I’ve compiled the hip hop and R&B projects that have been released this month that I believe are noteworthy and that you should check out.

October 5th

  • Sheck Wes – Mudboy
    • Cactus Jack Records signee Sheck Wes finally released his highly anticipated debut album after the great success that was “Mo Bamba”. This is a project with a lot of different sounds, great production, and interesting lyrics. Check this one out if you’re a fan of the more aggressive side of hip hop, because this will undoubtedly fill your appetite.
  • Gunna & Lil Baby – Drip Harder
    • A few weeks ago, Atlanta trapstars Lil Baby and Gunna unleashed their collab album after months of teasing it. The project contains 14 tracks, with features from the likes of Lil Durk, Nav, Young Thug, and Drake. If you’re a fan of trap, check out this project. It is one of the best collab tapes of the year.
  • Mozzy – Gangland Landlord
    • West Coast mainstay Mozzy has released his new studio album titled Gangland Landlord after first teasing it in 2017. The project contains features from YG, Ty Dolla Sign, Dej Loaf, and many more. It has so many dope vibes that’ll instantly make you feel like you’re in the middle of Sacramento, California. If you’ve never checked Mozzy’s music out before, this is a great project to start on.  
  • T.I. – Dime Trap
    • Atlanta legend T.I. has finally dropped his latest album Dime Trap after originally announcing it in 2014. It is a sequel to his previous album Paperwork. T.I. is a certified legend and one of the creators of the current trap sound, and it is always a good thing to receive new music from him. Since the project got a 7.4 rating from Pitchfork, I’d suggest checking it out if you’re a fan of that original trap sound.

October 12th

  • Quavo (of Migos) – Quavo Huncho
    • Recently, the three Migos members announced that they would all be releasing solo albums while still remaining a group. The first of these solo projects to drop is Quavo’s Quavo Huncho. The project is preceded in release by three singles; “Workin Me”, “Lamb Talk”, and “Bubble Gum”. Featured artists on the album include the likes of Travis Scott, Drake, Kid Cudi, and Normani. With 19 tracks in total, this is certainly one that’ll keep you busy for a while.   
  • Belly IMMIGRANT
    • If you don’t know who Belly is, it’s time to become aware. He’s been around for more than 10 years, steadily releasing projects since 2005. In 2015, he signed with The Weeknd’s label XO as well as Jay-Z’s Roc Nation. He then went on to feature on numerous tracks with The Weeknd and many other artists. His new project IMMIGRANT shines a light on his status as an immigrant and why he wants to support his fellow immigrants. The project is stacked with features from well-known artists including Meek Mill, The Weeknd, Yo Gotti, French Montana, and more.   
  • Usher A
    • It seems like quite a long time since we have got a new project from Usher, even though it’s only been a couple years. He’s back with his ninth studio album titled A, which is a collaboration with talented producer Zaytoven. The project’s title is inspired by both Usher and Zaytoven’s hometown of Atlanta. The project features 11 tracks with guest appearances from Future and Gunna. This is a return to form for Usher and definitely deserves a listen. 

That’s not all of the projects that are releasing in October, so keep an eye out for part 2 of this post!

Artworks owned by artists and their labels

Hip Hop’s goth cousin: Horrorcore

Horrorcore

It’s the season of ghosts and ghouls. I’ve been getting real spooky at the station putting together a mix of some of my favorite Horrorcore joints for our listeners! Before we get those speakers pumping, it’s important to know about the history of Horrorcore and some of its originators to get a better idea of it as a genre in Hip Hop.

Horrorcore, sometimes called DeathRap, is a subset of Gangsta Rap. Many of the classic themes are present while often taking their gruesomeness and imagery to the next level. Songs can often be recognized by transgressive lyrics and dark themes including death, psychosis, mutilation, suicide, and murder. Coupled with samples from horror films and bone-chilling beats, this is not the kind of music you would want your mother to hear you listening to!

History

The movement started early in the history of Hip Hop where real life stories of horror and street violence were rapped about. With the introduction of dark samples from classic scary movies created what we know today as Horrorcore. The genre gained prominence in 1994 with RZA of the Wu-Tang Clan appearing as the RZArector along with The Undertaker, The Grym Reaper, and The Gatekeeper forming the group The Gravediggaz. Their debut album 6 Feet Deep, originally named Niggamortis, found massive uptake in the underground. From just a single project started a massive movement. Consequently, horrorcore quickly spread across the country. New York saw emcees like Kool Kieth. The Geto Boys and Three 6 Mafia sprang up out of the south. And The Bone Thugs came out of Cleveland. Much of the rap music of the 90’s reflect these influences from horror culture.

During the 2000’s Horrorcore saw a small decline. Some music remained prevalent in the underground with artists such as Tech N9ne and his label Strange Music. Recently, however, we have seen a resurgence of dark music conjured from the underground to receive a fair amount of attention. Benny the Butcher, Conway, and Westside Gunn from Griselda Records in Buffalo, New York are working with Daringer, the grimiest producer in the game. They are releasing hip hop that feels like it was frozen in the golden age, or rather dark age of horrorcore. In addition, the wave coming from South Florida, in particular, the music of the $uicide Boy$, draw on much of classic Horrorcore. Accompanied by Three 6 Mafia samples, they put together some very dark but hype music.

Not for the Rap Novice

As a genre, Horrorcore has always had an uphill battle. It isn’t exactly the easiest of all rap genres to listen to. But for the real Hip Hop head, the lyrics and story telling draw you in. The beats and samples paint a horrific picture for any fan twisted enough. What comes to my mind when I think of Horrorcore is the bone-chilling tale in Immortal Technique’s “Dance with the Devil”. This song is an absolute moniker for the movement of the music you hate to love. Nobody forgets the first time they heard that song, which is exactly the kind of lasting impression these artists want to give with their music.

Horrorcore is not for the rap novice. You have to be a serious fan of old school rap and somewhat of a hip hop junkie to make it through a lot of this stuff. I’ve done the hard part for you and compiled some of my all time favorite Horrorcore and dark hip hop tracks from the late 80’s to today! Hope y’all enjoy my mix but as a word of warning, you may want to hold off on listening to this one alone at night!

October Spooky Tape Mixdown

Local Man Wondering Why His Mom Is So Stingy

Local Man, earning just enough to pay the bills and to put himself through school, finds himself exhausted by the pull-yourself-up-by-the-bootstraps American spirit. “I don’t mind when other people work hard,” he claimed. “It’s just not something I can sustain, you know? I think I deserve some things.”

City on the Hill

After asking for clarification, he shared the story of his great-grandparents; they were English migrants following the church westward to Utah, setting up a farm, and fighting their neighbors for water. They insisted on forming a city on the hill for the world to see and admire, which had to have the nice side effect of making sure that their children would (spiritually and economically) be a step up from everybody else.

Their crumbling headstones read, “Prepare yourselves to follow me.” Local Man saves a photo of those headstones on his phone.

Image result for city on the hill

(Digital Drawing by hawk862, found on DeviantArt)

Great Depressive Episode

Local Man’s grandfather was a bad-ass businessman. He earned his fortune by tooth and nail and grandpapi’s small loan, leaving it to most of his children. He (metaphorically) cut throats and withheld affection from the kiddos, and would scold them for throwing anything away. Local Man never saw the man cry, and he knows his mom probably didn’t either.

Mom, on the other hand, struggles to adhere to her papi’s econo-bad-assery. She only gave love to Local Man, and the city on the hill seemed to deflate when she decided to be an artist. “She’s pretty selfish, when I think about it,” Local Man says.

When I asked Local Man’s Mom, she told me, “That type of optimism ain’t in my wheelhouse. I love Local Man. He’s a good son. But I just can’t sink my life into him, you know? He’s gotta make his own way.”

Time for a Little Feud

“Y’know, some parents try to make their children’s lives better,” Local Man countered. “Tell her that. When I’m a parent, it’s what I’ll do. I’ll understand that my kids deserve my money. That’s the American Dream, you know.”

Your journalist nodded and stammered something about forwarding on an email, or something.

 

Salt Lake Hip Hop: Agustist King

On September 13th, Hip Hop Drip DJs StavoSteelo and KyleInPlay had the pleasure of interviewing the up-and-coming SLC rapper Agustist King. King is a Salt Lake City native, hailing from the Central City neighborhood. He reps his own label called Independent Money Gang.

King has been seriously rapping for the last two years. He has recorded over 200 songs and released more than 50 of those. He works on numerous projects and releases them on all streaming services. Some of his projects include West Coke, Valentine’s Day Massacre, and Nirvana.

The Interview

Agustist King had much to say about his life, music, and reasons why he raps. However, those are only a few of the topics discussed in this 30 minute interview. It’s chock full of interesting content from a rapper that’s as real as he says he is.

Click the link below to listen to our interview with Agustist King. Be sure to follow him on his social media accounts @agustistking (instagram) and @agustistk (twitter). If you like what you hear, check out his website agustistking.com and Soundcloud. His Spotify and Apple Music profiles can be found searching his name, Agustist King.

Listen to the Hip Hop Drip radio show every weekday from 4-7pm to get your daily fix of quality hip hop from local Utah artists and the biggest stars in the game right now.

Songs from interview:

“Park Place Carter (Fiyah)” – Agustist King

“Off The Scale” – Agustist King

“Down” – Agustist King