August 21, 2001

It's Just A White Bar

Hello, long time no hear from.... yes, the hiatus is finally over and done with. I know it's been a long time (over 8 months?? Whew!!). My apologies for taking so long and my thanks to all of you who've been staying in touch during my time away- I appreciate that you're still checking for the site. It ain't over by a long shot- in fact, it's really just beginning!

During my little break from the breaks I've been taking care of lots of business. Check the CD page on the site and you'll see that I have 3 new CDs now available- The new Soulman mix joint, "Drugs", which I feel takes it up yet another level from the previous CDs, and 2 new "Best Of Archaeologists" compilation CDs, "The Highest Pleasure" (some of my illest jazz joints) and "More Funk 45s" (since cats can't seem to get enough of those funky ass 7" singles right now). I'm also almost done with about seven more Best Of Arch CD's, so be prepared.

Next on my agenda I'm preparing to do a Soulman "Breaks" CD- this in response to my friends out there who only want to hear whole songs, not just the breaks. It has now become my mission in life to educate the unknowing that BREAKS ARE THE BACKBONE OF HIP HOP, SO PLEASE RECOGNIZE AND REALIZE!! So much revisionist history has been done concerning hip hop, and I'm not gonna let the lost art of fuckin' with the breaks die out so easily.

As soon as my man DJ Cash Money has some time we're planning on doing a CD together (my working title for it is "Philadelphia Beat Mission", but me and Cash will have to decide on that later). I promise you, we are gonna DROP THAT SHIT, so get your pooper scoopers ready!

On the journalism front, you should know that I've been doing my thing for Big Daddy magazine in the UK. If you haven't copped an issue yet, you need to right away. So far I've profiled the aforementioned DJ Cash, ABB Records' Beni B, The Molemen and next up will be a great article with up and coming producer / record fiend Fusion Unlimited. Also look for the debut issue of Wax Poetics which is gonna be a very dope magazine in it's own right- I did an interview with notorious record king Mr. Supreme that will have you in stitches, so don't miss it.

My most important production during the hiatus, though, is my second seed, who is due to blast onto the scene in January of 2002! Will wifey let me name this one after a record too? Don't count on it, but ya never know!

A few changes to the site that I think I should mention:
It's Just A White Bar

Some of the older tapes and CDs have been discontinued. Why? Because first off, tapes take too long to dub up, the sound quality varies and most people want CDs anyway, so the tapes had to go. The older CDs are gone because I wasn't happy with the way they were recorded- my studio set up is way better now, so I'm sticking to the newer stuff now. Even though everybody seemed to dig the older joints, it's important to me to try to insure that the quality is as high as possible and that my loyal customers get their money's worth. So look for professionally printed inserts and good sound minus tape hiss on all future CDs coming out of The World Of Beats.

After this month's update, future articles on the site will consist of my typical little ramblings and either a "Who's Who In The World Of Beats" segment or an article that was previously printed in Big Daddy or Wax Poetics. I'm gonna do my best to keep the updates shorter and more regular- I know I've said that in the past, but I'll try harder in the future.

And due to a few inconsiderate people getting rude with me, I will not be giving out any info on "who sampled what" to people who e-mail me with inquiries, so please don't even ask because I will not reply. At times I have given out record titles to cats who were cool with me and who have given me info as well. But it is not my job to be the sample snitch and give up all the secrets of the game- that's not what it's about, papi. The internet is making it too easy for lazy beat collectors who need to be out there in the trenchs getting dirty FINDING SHIT ON THEIR OWN just like I do. Respect to all who've been respectful with me, but no respect to the one or two clowns who have it all effed up- you know who you are.

It's Just A White Bar

Peace out to Wolf, Egon and everybody else at Stones Throw who are responsible for making this one of the illest labels out right now. Talk about breaking the mold- who else is coming out with stuff like this? The Breakestra records- a band from the present rocking breaks from yesterday. Lost funk 45 reissues by groups such as The Highlighters and The Soul Seven, complete with the illed out packaging and liner notes. Crazy stuff like the Cut Chemist / Madlib "Bunky's Pick" record (sorry in advance about the comments you guys may see in the upcoming issue of Big Daddy from my man DJ Fusion... it's just his opinion, what can I say, he wasn't trying to be malicious). And actually putting out joints from the old Melody House kiddie records by the Luckys??? Yo, Stones Throw is doing things differently, wodie- thank god somebody is! (The ad with the Stones Throw 8 Tracks is genius, too... look for me to bite that idea real soon!)

I've been getting so many beat joints sent to me that I know I'm probably going to forget some, but I'll mention the ones that come to mind: T.E.C.K.'s "Mystery Of Ages Vol.2", Groundbreaker Classics Vol. 1, The Sith Eleptikal Gems Pt.2 from After Hours & Barriosoundz, DJ O-Dub's " Soul Sides", Mo Majid's "Wall Of Fame Vols. 1 & 2" and "Off The Records II" by Asprin & Mr. Jeigh. What I'm really diggin' is that it seems like cats are seriously trying to bring their own style and personality to their CDs, where in the past it may have seemed like everybody was just playing the same damn records the same damn way on these beat tapes. Now I'm seeing a lot of diversity and individuality in the record selection and also little personal touches in each production. Let's keep it movin' and hopefully the crates community worldwide will show their support by copping these joints (and those SOULMAN joints too, lest you forget!).

Also on the homemade hip hop front, we have Jorun's "Breakfluid" CD, "Educated Consumers" featuring Seezmics & T.E.C.K. and The Earl's "Fantomfingers" CD (featuring remixes of songs by Nas, Mos Def, M.O.P., De La Soul and many others). All of these CDs feature wicked production that needs to be heard by the world, and hopefully they will be soon.

International hip hop / funk has been coming to me, too, and I'm feelin' a lot of it, even when I can't understand the words. A few of the 45's I've gotten are "Gadji @ The Barrio" on Puma Strut and Speedometer's "Ain't Going To Thursford" on Kennel Club. The most interesting 45 I've received is a fat little limited edition EP by Mr. Flash entitled "Le Voyage Fantastique". Some cool beats, but the heavy-duty picture sleeve takes the cake- it's modeled after one of those old school Disney records! I've also gotten some ill 12"s, such as the Heavy Bronx Experience joint and a bunch of other things that I either can't think of right now or just can't pronounce! If I forgot to mention your record or CD, please drop me a line and I'll try to get you next time.

I finally copped a Soundburger recently (caught an extremely good deal on Ebay that everybody else slept on) and now I see why people are paying huge amounts of dough for them. They make almost every other portable I've seen look like toys in comparison. The sound is just light years better than players like the Columbia GP-3. And forget about the Fisher Price joints, they're not even in the same category. Easy to use, compact and light, and it has rich stereo sound coming from two separate headphone jacks. A pitch control would've been nice, but I guess you can't have everything.

Still, I saw one go for $500 on Ebay recently... whoa! It's a dope machine, but for $500 it's gonna have to play records and fellate me at the same time!

I knew it would happen sooner or later. NY Ruff Rydin' rappers Jadakiss and DMX have a new song out, "Here We Go Again", that's making big noise in the NYC hip hop world because of the disses Kiss spits at Jay Z protege Beanie Sigel. The track is making big noise in The World Of Beats too, because whoever produced the beat lifted the sample straight off of that best selling Soulman "Neva Stop Diggin'" cd! Well, technically I'm not 100% sure that they got the sample from my cd- maybe the producer had the same totally obscure small label Spanish record that I played on "Neva Stop...", and maybe it's just a huuuuge coincidence that six months after my cd comes out, somebody puts out a song featuring a sample from that same obscure album. Yeah, right! So am I gonna sue 'em and try to get some money out of the deal?? Since I didn't actually compose the music, I guess that wouldn't make a whole lot of sense. Besides, it's beautiful! I'd rather hear today's emcees rockin' over a Soulman choice joint than rhyming to some of these Casio keyboard beats, wouldn't you? Next time they need to just give me a shout on the credits, though, just to keep me happy so I don't blow the whistle on them!

As for all the beefin' between Jay-Z's camp and damn near every thug rapper on the east coast, am I worried that somebody's gonna get killed? No, not really. I think these cats all got together and said, "let's dis each other to increase our record sales"! Think about it- wouldn't that be a great marketing ploy? After Biggie and 'Pac went at it and wound up dead, now everybody's morbid curiousity would be sky high to see who's gonna be the next rapper to take a dirt nap. Like I said, think about it- Mo' money, mo' money, mo' money!

The best thing about this little war that's going on is that cats are gonna raise their levels. Imagine how dope an ongoing Jay Z vs. Nas war could be. Nas' attack on Jay-Z over the "Paid In Full" beat ("Stillmatic") is the dopest thing he's done since his classic debut album, no doubt... I think it's one of his best verses ever, actually ("H to the Izzo, M to the Izzo / ...the rapper version of Sisqo"... damn, those are fightin' words!). Now you just KNOW Jigga is gonna come back with volcanic heat. And the way both of those dudes have been slippin' into the darkness of commercialized lyricism, it'll be great to see them go back to the shit that made everybody jock them in the first place. So far everybody's bringing it in these little battles- Cormega tore Nas a new one on a recent mixtape, and I haven't heard Jada's answer to Beanie or Jay-Z's assault on Prodigy yet, but I've been told that they're brutal. And rumor has it that Jay-Z is gonna team up with KRS to make "The Bridge Is Over 2001"??? (I'll believe that when I see it.) Well, just keep it all on wax and mixtapes, please... if it turns into a big bloodbath it might destroy everything that the rap industry has been building for the last 22 years.

By the way, speaking of Hova, I gotta big up Jay for his line in "Izzo": "I'm overchargin' niggas for what they did to the Cold Crush". On a whole, it was good to see him get away from the materialistic shit for his 1st single from the new "Blueprint" lp, but that particular line just made the whole song for me and every other rap fan who knows what's up. Younger fans will probably have no idea who the Cold Crush are, but maybe it'll make them investigate and go pick up a copy of "Wildstyle" so they can be introduced to the greatest rap group of all time that never made it big.

It's Just A White Bar

I know that many of you checking this site are not from the US and if you get into sports at all you're probably a fan of football (the brand of football that us Americans call soccer). If that's the case you might as well just skip this section, 'cuz all I'm gonna talk about is basketball and football- AMERICAN football, the kind where the guys wear body armor and carry an inflated piece of pigskin around in their arms. I'll try to keep it brief... I'm a big sports fan, though, so it'll be difficult.

The Lakers proved that they are, without a doubt, the best team in the NBA and should be the best for the next six or seven years as long as Kobe Bryant realizes that, for now anyway, Shaquille O'Neal is the most dominant force in the league and virtually unstoppable when he gets the ball. As long as Kobe can deal with deferring to Shaq for a few more years, I just can't see how LA can be beaten. Kobe has to realize that he's still gonna get his shots and he'll be recognized as a greater player because he's gonna win a lot of championships with this team. And in time this WILL be his team, no question... just not right now. Remember, though, Kobe's still only, like, 22 years old, right? Will he be mature enough to be cool about playing second fiddle? Could ANYBODY with his kind of talent be cool about playing second fiddle?? I don't know...

Regardless, the story of the season was my Philadelphia Sixers. I have never seen a team with so much heart in my life, they way they dealt with broken bones and bruises and all sorts of adversity and just kept coming back. I am worried about Allen Iverson, though... being here in Philly, I saw almost every game and that little guy takes waaay too much punishment. When you're young you think you're invincible- you get hurt, you heal up quickly and you keep playing. One day he's gonna wake up and that pain just isn't gonna go away. He's gonna lose some of that killer speed that makes him able to take guys a foot taller than him to the hole. If he doesn't alter his game and play smarter and with less contact, he's gonna have a shortened career. And that's a shame, because I think he's one of the most special athletes the world has ever known. My man is 100% warrior, without a doubt.

Philly's gonna have big problems getting out of the east next year, though. Two teams scare the shit out of me- Orlando and Toronto. Tracy McGrady has something that Grant Hill, with all his skill, never will have- arrogance and killer instinct. But with Hill taking his role as McGrady's second banana, and with all the other talent they have and Doc Rivers as their coach, The Magic will be hard to beat. Toronto just had that look in last year's playoffs like they're a team on the verge. The Raptors resigned all their key players and added Hakeem Olajuwon, so they are going to be very, very dangerous this year.

Will Micheal Jordan come back? I hope not. If he does he'll still be very good, but he can't be the guy we've known over the years- time waits for no man, even His Airness. Some of the NBA's young'uns are gonna shake and bake Mike's ass real bad at times, and I would just hate to see that. Oh, they'll respect him at first, but once they see that he just can't keep up with them, they will go for the kill. And they should- hell, that's what Mike did to the old timers when he came into the league!

Ultimately, none of this matters unless Kobe or Shaq goes down for the season. Because barring injury, nobody's gonna stop the LA Laker juggerknaut from steamrolling the league- again.

Well, I told you that the stinkin' Giants would be better last season- new unis count for a lot, how else can you explain those bums making it to the Super Bowl. And I said that the Ravens would be good, too. But do you think I had any idea that that no-offense havin' bunch of purple grapes would actually win it all? Hell no! Which, as they say, is why they play the games.

This year nobody has new uniforms, so it'll be harder to predict who's gonna do good. But of course, I'll try. All I know is that Tampa Bay will not be going to the Super Bowl- Brad Johnson is nobody's savior. Peep it:

  • NFC Division Champs: Eagles, Vikings, Rams
  • NFC Wild Cards: Redskins, Bucs, Saints
  • AFC Division Champs: Dolphins, Titans, Raiders
  • AFC Wild Cards: Ravens, Broncos, Chiefs
  • Super Bowl: Raiders over Eagles (but I've been wrong before!)

    Other NFL observations: I really hope I'm wrong, but I think Michael Vick is gonna be one of the biggest busts of all time. Not because he's not capable of being great- if you saw him play in college, you know he has incredible talent. The NFL just has a habit of trying to make so-called "running" quarterbacks (usually black quarterbacks) into pocket passers. Now why in the blue hell would you want to take away a guy's main asset??? I think some coaches do understand and are open minded enough to let these guys just play- Dennis Green in Minnesota with Daunte Culpepper and Andy Reid in Philly with Donovan McNabb are examples, I believe. But Atlanta coach Dan Reeves is an old school kind of guy, and I can't see him allowing Vick to be all that he can be. He'll try to make him a traditional QB who only runs when all else fails, and it's not gonna work... The Rams did a lot to try and fix their broken defense. It will still be broken, but probably not as bad as last year- it CAN'T be as bad as last year. Minnesota's defense will be as bad as last year, though, and it will kill them again in the playoffs when you need your D to step up. Defensive woes will continue to keep Indianapolis from reaching elite status, as well. Tampa Bay will still struggle on offense, and now they will have no excuse- hope it doesn't cost Tony Dungy his job, because he's one of the best coaches in the league.... Teams on the way down: Jacksonville, NY Giants (just because I can't stand 'em), Carolina, Detroit. Team that can only go up: San Diego. Dead men walking: Arizona, Atlanta, Chicago, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Dallas. Especially Dallas.

    It's Just A White Bar

    Well, I didn't forget about it but I think some of y'all did! Were you intimidated, thinking that's no way you could ever identify enough of those covers to actually win? Well, you shoulda took a stab at it like I told you to months ago, 'cuz you had a real shot. You coulda been a contender! I got more entries before the contest officially started than I did after it was in progress!

    Well, whatever. I'm happy to announce that Ray Bernardino of Philly, PA got the most answers right. And he didn't get a whole lot of them either! Here are all the correct answers:
    2. Black Velvet "Love City" lp on Okeh, 8. vintage pack of Lucky Strikes cigarettes (old packs of smokes are collectible too, believe it or not!) , 11. Rufus Thomas flicks taken from his "I Ain't Gettin' Older, I'm Gettin' Better" lp on AVI, 15. a shelltop adidas, 19. design inspiration: a Marvel Comics "Fantastic Four" cover from the 1960's; artwork: taken from an album by Smash on Source Records, 22. the rare Fat Albert & The Cosby Kids lp on Paramount, 24. the original Shaftman lp, 26. Donald Byrd & Booker Ervin "The Third World" lp on TCB, 28. Children Of All Ages lp, 33. one of the Lakers (Gail Goodrich maybe?) taking it to the hole on a young Kareem Abdul Jabbar when he played for Milwaukee, circa. 1970's, 37. design inspiration: Ebony magazine, 41. rare Eclipse lp, 46. Quake cereal, 49. scene from The Black Godfather, 50. pimpish pictorial taken from Players magazine, 1974, 51. Los Angeles Negros "Serenata Sin Luna" lp on International, 53. Funny Girl Ala Soul by the Ripple Blast Singers, 59. artwork taken from the "Ali Baba" lp by Chute Libre on EMI , 64. Absolute Elsewhere "In Search Of Ancient Gods" lp, 67. Freddy McCoy "Soul Yogi" lp, 71. Jimmy Lynch "Tramp Time Vol.1" lp, 73. the great Gale Sayers, circa. 1960's, 76. the cover of Assata Shakur's autobiography, 79. Star Trek lp by the Jeff Wayne Space Shuttle, 80. Raw Soul Express lp, 82. Stark Reality lp, 83. Bob Azzam & The Great Expectation lp, 84. design inspiration: vintage James Brown 45 labels on King, circa. 1960's.

    At the time I announced the contest I had no idea what the winner would win. Now, 8 months later, I can let the rest of y'all know what you missed out on:

  • The new "More Funk 45's" CD
  • A mega-rare CD copy of the "Soulman 2001 Spaced Oddities" joint- only 3 copies are known to exist and this will never, ever be for sale... ever!
  • "Drum Library Vol. 1" and "Drum Library Vol.2"... 2 limited edition (2,500 copies only) slabs on vinyl filled with drumbreaks. Courtesy of the fine folks at Super Break Records.
  • "Mr. Flash- Le Voyage Fantastique"- another limited edition vinyl treat, only 1,000 pressed up. Courtesy Of Lust Island Recordings.
  • The long discontinued "Soulman 60 Beats" tape from 1996... another ridiculously rare item that you will never see for sale anywhere.
  • Yet another CD that will be unavailable to the public forever ever, forever ever- "Archaeologists Classics Vol. 90".
  • My personal original copies of Stark Reality, Manzel "Midnight Theme", Third Guitar "Baby Don't You Cry" and Bob Azzam & The Great Expectation. (Yeah, I'm lying about those four records, but you knew that right?? The Soulman has jokes!)
    So you know the deal... next time we run a contest, ENTER IT! Who knows, you may be the next lucky contestant!

    Since you've waited so diligently for that new Soulman shit, I'm gonna give you a treat and reveal ten of the gems that I played on that infamous "Soulman 2001 Spaced Oddities" tape. Good luck finding them, and I'll be back in just a couple of weeks (really!) with a Who's Who from the Barriosoundz cats. Until then, be good.

    1. The Second Time Around- Ode To Billy Joe
    2. Andy Angel- Spinning Wheel
    3. Body And Soul- Yesterday's Dream
    4. Sassi Keshet- Pinkas Hakatan
    5. John Cacavas And His Orchestra- Make It Happen
    6. Clay Gatton- Karen
    7. Grant Gouldman- Chestnut
    8. Art Farmer & The Orf Big Band- Give Her A Chance
    9. Lee Willhite- The World Is A Ghetto
    10. Julio Finn Blues Band- Rain Rain Go Away

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