Thursday, November 17, 2005

Lolita Was a Man Eatah..and other music news

URB Artist of the Year- - Mathangi

Its been awhile since I have posted on MIA, and since I know you all have been waiting with baited breath, here goes. URB Magazine contributor Scott Sterling informed us late last month that Miss MIA, aka Mathangi 'Maya' Arulpragasam has been named URB magazine's artist of the year. I am not really surprised, are you? No, it isn't that she is desi, I just can't think of one other artist that has been as innovative and influential this year. MIA's music has been everywhere, from SXSW and Central Park to a Honda commercial and the O.C., and her influence is easily seen in the resurgence of electro-pop in the mainstream: drum machines and synthetic beats all intertwined with elements of various international flavors and hip-hop. Its not that hip-hop his dead, but it is almost as if MIA has added to this new genre of post Hip-Hop. Music with a message, but with danceable, stranger, hip-hop like beats . This sound has been kickinng around the indy hipster scene for awhile--look at bands like Supersystem on Touch and Go, and LCD Soundsystem. This trend seems to now be making its way slowly towards the mainstream. One of the first indicators, Madonna's latest release, Confessions on a Dance Floor. Scott has promised us he would be posting the full cover story soon. Here is a link to my first post on her here.

me the the scoop on how DJ Quik found the sample of Kaliyon Ka Chaman, for the first big hip hop record featuring a desi sample. Yeah, I am talking about Truth Hurts featuring Rakim's--Addictive [click here for a sample] from 2002.

Now I had heard the beginning, that DJ Quik was watching tv, and all of a sudden he found himself watching Zee TV and heard this rhythm and had to tape it. Anyway, here is DJ Quik's take on it (from the forthcoming URB article)

"Some Indian people are still mad at me for that song, because they thought that it bastardized their culture. I've had Pakistani people interview me that are so standoffish it's almost disrespectful. They are authentically pissed off about that record. I was watching this Bollywood channel that popped up on our cable service called Zee TV and I saw some dope shit going on. I recorded it onto my VCR, dubbed it down to a mini disc, put it into a drum machine and (BT Express') "Do It 'Til You're Satisfied" just went right through it --they both had that Panjabi rhythm. I put it on tape and gave the track to Dre. He thought it was some innovative shit and had Truth do her vocals and mixed it. So who was the real producer? I wasn't even in the studio when Dre produced the song. He didn't have to throw me a bone and give me full production credit, but he did. It started a little trend. I heard Tim doing it, Erick Sermon. Even the people that sued us had to admit the shit was hot."
First things first, what is DJ Quik doing subscribing to Zee TV? Not that non-South Asians shouldn't watch desi channels, but I thought the only way you can get Zee is by subscribing to it off of the Dish Network. I wonder if he is down with Bollywood. I bet he is down with TMBWITW. Secondly, if Dr. Dre was going to be so generous and give Quik a production credit, why not throw Bappi Lahiri a bone and give him some credit as well. And lastly, I don't know that people are mad that Quik and Dre took the beat, because, I have to admit, it was hot, but I do know there are some out there who are angry that they let Truth sing on the track. Her vocals ruined it. Ouch, my ears just started to hurt, thinking about the end of Addictive, you know the part where she tries to do that Qawwali type thing, trying to match Lata's range. Truth is Truth Hurts is just never going to come out a winner against Lata Mangeshkar.

And in the last bit of desi music news, New York's Finest, Jay Dabhi, (yeah, formerly known as Lil Jay), his remix of Hisham Abbas' "Nari Narien" will be featured in Xbox's Dance Dance Revolution Ultramix 3 video game by Konami.


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