July 2008

Juelz and Skullgang

(photo sent from Juelz’s backyard bbq, he is planning for a bigger celebration next weekend)

I mentioned that a few weeks ago at the big homie Funk Flex’s Car Show in Edison, NJ…..I got a chance to catch up with my old friend Cameron Giles. Killa was looking very fit, kind of built even, and he was in a great mood. He was there with Huddy (formerly of Harlem World) too, so it was like an old Untertainment reunion. We talked about some new music and some new business ventures that Cam is doing, specifically in the Miami and Orlando area. And then Cam said, “Oh, by the way, I gotta talk to you about something else too. I sold Juelz’ contract to Def Jam for 2 million dollars.

WHAT? Huh? Wow.

Fast forward to last week,  I confirmed with other sources that yes, Juelz and Cam’ron had finally come to a mutual agreement, so now Juelz would deal directly with Def Jam.

Then the Best of Both Offices boys sent out this cryptic video message announcing the return of Santana. So I asked Juelz about his separation from his former mentor, and he sent back this interesting email….


A! What’s good !! Yeah, I’m free!! And ready to do me!! But its still Dip Set 4 life!! Its just going to be a new chapter!!

I have no hard feeling for Cam, after all, he did give  me a chance!!! But I will say this I was loyal to him and he took advantage.

I would like to say sorry to all my fans, and the DJs, and most of all, my city, New York. Play time is over. I’m back. Y’all niggas know what time it is.

Juelz Santana, Mr. HD, Young Splashy Splash. Skullgang, the new movement  to move wit!! Mixtape coming up soon, my solo mixtape (“the Reagan Era”).

I have a joint venture with Def Jam, a 50/50 deal…Yeah, it’s a new boss in town. Album is called Born to Lose, Built to Win!!!! (The rise of the skullgang). So just prepare for the future ’cause I  have.

Dip Set 4 Life Skullgang 4ever
P.S. Immmmmm baaaaack A!!!!”

The best case scenario is that the end of the label drama will actually help these guys repair their relationships. I may have more details later tonite…

But I just need to point out 1) I love the fact that Juelz actually incorporates “A!” into his verbal and written vernacular, and 2) I respect the fact that his moms hangs out with the crew even with no other older folks around, lol. Awesome.

More photos after the jump…..



Well last week we didnt have a Throwback Thursday, not because of any malevolent outside forces…just regular tech-hell ones. Poor Legend‘s computer crashed (just the thought sends shivers down my spine)…..but Analog Legend still managed to make it happen this week, with another Onsmash x Miss Info goodie to set off your weekend. This was Clue at his peak (and at his most self-congratulatory, lol)…..Enjoy!

DJ Clue “ClueNino ’98”

Partial Tracklisting after the jump (its titles without artists for now, I gotta run off to Enuff’s Pepsi event, so I’ll have to try to fix later….but seriously, you already know and love these songs, you’ll live, lol)



wow, Freeway has been on fire lately….not mad at him. This is dope.

Freeway “Hip Hop Lives”


(thanks to BoBo)

how come the guys always get all the good stuff? Their sneakers are better, and their LV accessories are sick.

I’ve always been a fan of the very simple, classic checkboard brown on brown Damier print. My favorite LV standard. And I know the Fall/Winter 08 revamp in black on black is gonna be even more popular….gives it a little more edge. Sadly for me, Damier Graphite is mens-accessories only for now.

Here’s a few pics of my favorite pieces…obviously, they’re prohibitively expensive, but a tote or french wallet would be nice it they expand line (I think they will).

(thanks to my LV insider Pedro Davila/Manhasset)

LV mens fall winter 08 3

I remember seeing Pharell with the Graphite duffel earrrly.

LV mens fall winter 08 4

This luggage def trumps the white damier. But clearly this is for rare birds….seeing as how you probably shouldnt check these at the airport, and you probably can’t carry them on….its either Teterboro or a cross country Winnebago ride for you.

Ladies, we’ll have to make do with the women’s bag collection (cruise 09). You can see photos over at my girl Wendy’s Nitrolicious post.

More pics after the jump


ugggh! grrrr! this made me exhausted.

LOL @ 5:29

“I dont see Ludacris as being aligned with Barack Obama, I think that’s just a strategy to align Barack Obama with some stereotypes about scary Black men….”

Luda? Scary? ummmm

(spotted on Nahright)

Picture 2

**Bobby Konders told me to say that. “Sell Off!”=crazy good : )

Here’s how its gonna go down…I’m gonna tell you that I loved loved loved Big Tyme and Peaceful Journey and Blue Funk, and you’re gonna maybe say “huh?” or “who?” and I’m gonna not care because Heavy D had a strong grip on many good moments in the late 80’s-early 90’s. Period.

Also, he was early with the hip hop-reggae blends and did them well….case in point

this super-heavy classic!

So now Heavy D is releasing an all reggae album this Sept called Vibes, and he’s featuring Sizzla, Barrington Levy, and Junior Reid. I’m hoping it has that classic crooner-blend reggae that was more prevalent in the early 90’s. (ie Supercat, Shaggy and Rayvon, Shabba, etc). It’s coming out on his own Universal imprint Stride Records.

And here’s the first song:

Heavy D “Long Distance Girlfriend” (I dont think Junior Reid is on this one though, maybe another track)
[audio:longdistance hev d.MP3]


Thanks to SleazyTrees from Ughh.com for passing along these clips….

Part 1: Jay E talks about his big stick (err…um..lol), his career thus far, his wifey ; ) and J.Dilla…

Part 2 after the jump


MTV interviewed Ludacris just a few weeks before yesterday’s “self-preservation cold shoulder” and Luda talked about his longstanding friendship with the presumptive Democratic presidential candidate and soon-to-be-former-homie.

“I’d known about him for a long time,” ‘Cris recently told MTV while filming a segment for Mixtape Monday in Atlanta. “I heard about his skills when he was doing his thing in Chicago. I definitely heard some rumors that he was going to run. But I just wanted to feel his vibe, man. He’s real down-to-earth, his energy is great. He’s just an honest dude, and he’s all about change. I’m all for change. I’m just pro-Obama. I don’t think there’s anybody better who can be put in that office right now besides that man.”

And here was Obama’s reference to Luda in Rolling Stone magazine.

What are you listening to now? What’s on your iPod? When I was in high school, probably my sophomore or junior year, I started getting into jazz. So I’ve got a lot of Coltrane, a lot of Miles Davis, a lot of Charlie Parker. I’ve got all the artists we’ve already talked about, but I’ve got everything from Howlin’ Wolf to Yo-Yo Ma to Sheryl Crow to Jay-Z.

What do you think of rap? Has it been unfairly attacked for destroying family values?
By definition, rock & roll is rebel music, which means if it’s not being criticized, it’s probably not doing its job. I am troubled sometimes by the misogyny and materialism of a lot of rap lyrics, but I think the genius of the art form has shifted the culture and helped to desegregate music. Music was very segregated back in the Seventies and Eighties — you’ll remember that when MTV first came on, it wasn’t until Thriller that they played Michael.

I know Jay-Z. I know Ludacris. I know Russell Simmons. I know a bunch of these guys. They are great talents and great businessmen, which is something that doesn’t get emphasized enough. It would be nice if I could have my daughters listen to their music without me worrying that they were getting bad images of themselves.

In related news….

Many folks are lining up to denounce Luda’s verse, from former Clinton advisors, to Black conservatives.

The bad thing is….all these folks probably never heard the other hip hop Obama tributes which didnt have any of the juicy candidate bashing…..Like Nas’ “Black President” song, or even Tyga’s simplistic “Obama Obama” freestyle.

After the jump, the full lyrics of Luda’s “Politics”


ludacris obama

Ludacris went hard for his favorite presidential candidate… maybe a bit too hard. I mean, we all know what he means but its a generational gap thing, they’re taking every line a bit too literal. Can’t blame them when you’ve got folks who will try to somehow use Luda’s lyrics against Obama.

Ludacris “Politics”


from Politico.com:

“Barack Obama’s campaign is condemning a song by the rapper Ludacris that praises Obama and bitterly attacks Senators Hillary Clinton and John McCain.

“As Barack Obama has said many, many times in the past, rap lyrics today too often perpetuate misogyny, materialism, and degrading images that he doesn’t want his daughters or any children exposed to,” said spokesman Bill Burton. “This song is not only outrageously offensive to Senator Clinton, Reverend Jackson, Senator McCain, and President Bush, it is offensive to all of us who are trying to raise our children with the values we hold dear. While Ludacris is a talented individual he should be ashamed of these lyrics.”

“Hillary hated on you, so that bitch is irrelevant,” say the lyrics. “McCain don’t belong in ANY chair unless he’s paralyzed Yeah I said it cause Bush is mentally handicapped.”

The song also celebrates Obama’s rise.

“The first black president is destined and it’s meant to be,” go the lyrics, calling on voters to “paint the White House black.

The song notes that Obama has praised Ludacris, and calls on him to “give Luda a special pardon if I’m ever in the slammer.”

“The world is ready for change because Obama is here!” it concludes.


Off the newly launched semi-beta Joell Ortiz personal blog (props to Mike H)…..

Joell analyzes the curious way that people spread what they think is bad news. We’re all guilty of it from time to time. Sometimes its personal, most of the time its not. Its just….a less than great aspect of human nature. Schadenfreude. Anyways….here’s Joell’s take on being so-called “Dropped”….

It really fascinates me how much feeling people put into a word.  I starting thinking a lot about the word “dropped” recently. A few months ago after my former label mate Bishop Lamont told an interviewer I was, ”dropped” from Aftermath.  Very shortly after his interview the news of my being “dropped” was all over the net, announced on the radio and even ended up on the evening news in Puerto Rico. People I hadn’t heard from in years called to express condolences after they heard I got, “dropped”.

A few people in my Mom’s building even taped notes on her door to express there grief over my getting “dropped”.  My mom has stood by me throughout my struggle to get a record deal and she is really protective of me so that word “dropped” affected her a lot.  She called me crying when she heard I got, “dropped”

I explained to her that I asked to be released and not “dropped” but she kept asking me, “Why are doing this to you”  I told her no one was doing anything to me but that word,”dropped” had a grip on her.  She is cool now but it was hard talking to her during that time. All cause of a word. I’ve attached two conversations about me where people are using the word ”dropped”. You can hear the emotions and the acting out that goes on around the word.

The first is where the rumor of me being dropped started.  It’s the Bishop Lamont interview.  During the interview Bishop is asked about me and my situation at Aftermath. Bishop sadly says, “don’t quote me but I think he got dropped.”

If you listen you can hear the mock concern about my being, “dropped” The whole, “I am sorry things didn’t work out” story gets going then Bishop goes on philosophizing on my lack of business savvy while dealing with the big Interscope machine. None of this banter is based in reality but it sounds good.  Now By no means am I trying to disrespect Bishop or the interviewer. I’m simply pointing out something we all do.  We all put feelings on words then create conversation to justify those feelings.

more of Joell’s blog after the jump


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