Entries Tagged 'Blogs' ↓

Two Years Ago…

…I stopped blogging.

At that point, I’d been running the Media Assassin site for 2½ years. I was publishing new content every single day, five days a week. I had an interested, growing readership. I was being noted in the mainstream press. I broke a story. I even got into a fight with Kirstie Alley.

But, two years ago, after 828 posts, I just felt I’d run out of things to say. So I stopped blogging.

I knew it would not be forever. I knew I’d be back when I had a different, more compelling way to express myself: Something interrogative, more varied, deeper.

As well, I knew I wanted to confront the state of hip-hop culture, above. I didn’t want to just talk about it. I wanted to mount actual projects, and use the blog as a central location for drawing visibility and help to those efforts.

We’re at a real inflection point. Hip-hop is bigger than ever, right. There’s more opportunity than ever. There are more ways than ever for artists to truly get their grind on: To reach audiences and to profit from what they make. This, even as the music business changes radically.

One thing that will never change, however, is that knowledge equals power. It’s one thing to work hard. That’s grinding. It’s another thing to work smart. That’s design. The most successful people effectively blend the two.

That’s why, for the first time, I’ve decided to not only share what I know, but who I know.

If the state of hip-hop music, the record business, or where they’re going mean anything to you, keep reading this blog. Follow me on Twitter (@harryallen). Friend me on Facebook.

Keep your eyes open for the hashtag #gXd.

I’m going to be launching a project that is really important to me. It’s going to be a game-changer. I’ll be inviting you to join me.

Artwork: “Wack Rappers,” silk screen and watercolor on archival paper, by Patrick Martinez, 2007

Harvey Pekar, 1939-2010

Harvey Pekar, above, the renowned comics writer whose life’s own banalities formed his narratives, died from prostate cancer, Monday, at the age of 70.

A mainstay and elder of the underground comics movement, Pekar was an oft and early collaborator with artist Robert Crumb. Yet the Ohio native worked as a Veterans Administration hospital file clerk most, if not all, of his adult life.

It was only after retiring in 2001, that his American Splendor series—turned into a 2003 film starring Paul Giamatti as Pekar—brought him mainstream fame and acclamation.

I met Pekar at our WBAI studios on Wall St. in 2006, when he was promoting his latest American Splendor book, Ego & Hubris: The Michael Malice Story, right, with its namesake subject, the contrary blogger and founder of Overheard in New York.

The late Harvey Pekar, and Michael Malice, are the guests today on this rebroadcasted edition of my WBAI-NY / 99.5 FM radio show, NONFICTION, this afternoon, Friday, July 16th, at 2 pm ET.

You can hear their ideas by tuning in at 2 pm ET. If you’re outside of the New York tri-state, check out our live stream on the web. If you miss the live show, dig into our archives for up to 90 days after broadcast.

The Forest Will Be With You. Always.


Love fauna? Love the Force? Well, prepare to feel more than a disturbance in it: Animals with Lightsabers photoshops blazing plasma swords into the paws of what are, arguably, already pretty well defended creatures. The result, thus, gives them an even more deadly edge. Ever seen a curious dog yelp after a cat or some other smaller animal scratches his nose? Here’s betting that this Black Lab, above, doesn’t have a clue what’s coming next.

[via core77]

Don’t Stand So Close To Me.


A site about “Architectural Conjecture, Urban Speculation, [and] Landscape Futures” certainly seems to promise heady distraction, and Geoff Manaugh’s BLDGBLOG delivers by the Liebherr T 282B-full.

Up since July 2004, BLDGBLOG totes a range of diversions almost as wide as Manaugh’s obviously fertile mind: Ice floes (and interplanetary atmospherics); automobile test tracks; odd, old synthesizers; hell; and designing the long-term storage of nuclear waste. Every post delights with inquisitive, nimble writing and typically dreamy images, and his The BLDGBLOG Book—which compiles dozens of his best pieces—makes the whole enterprise fit on your shelf.

Now, in a new exhibit at the Storefront for Art and Architecture in New York City, Manaugh and co-curator Nicola Twilley (Edible Geography) turn their focus on another underaddressed, little-grapsed element of the human landscape. As states the page for Landscapes of Quarantine, which opens March 10th,

At its most basic, quarantine is a strategy of separation and containment—the creation of a hygienic boundary between two or more things, for the purpose of protecting one from exposure to the other. It is a spatial response to suspicion, threat, and uncertainty. From Chernobyl’s Zone of Exclusion and the artificial quarantine islands of the New York archipelago to camp beds set up to house HIV-positive Haitian refugees detained at Guantánamo and the modified Airstream trailer from within which Buzz Aldrin, Neil Armstrong, and Michael Collins once waved at President Nixon [above], the landscapes of quarantine are various, mutable, and often unexpected.

Geoff Manaugh is a contributing editor at Wired UK and former senior editor of Dwell magazine. He’s also the guest today on my WBAI-NY / 99.5 FM radio show, NONFICTION, this afternoon, Friday, March 5, at 2 pm ET.

You can hear this provocative ideas by tuning in at 2 pm. If you’re outside of the New York tri-state, check out our live stream on the web. If you miss the live show, dig into our archives for up to 90 days after broadcast.

Cuckoo For Coco’s Puffs?


Hey: Did you ever lie awake at night and wonder, “What would it feel like to be Ice-T’s wife, Nicole ‘Coco‘ Austin: Lying on the beach, getting a tan, and looking at the world from between my ginormous, saltwater-filled ta-tas?”

screen5I know I sure have. That’s why I was so startled when the cello-esque Coco, right—nude model, actor, and dancer—posted this disconcerting POV shot, above, on Twitter:

This is my view when I tan. Honestly, my boobs don’t look this big, it has to do w/the cameras perception

Well, Coco, they do say the camera adds ten pounds.

(Also, I just noticed another odd optical illusion: Coco says that her jugs are fake while her butt is real. But if you take the above right photo, then scroll down and cut it off just above the small of her back, it looks like the neck and cleavage of a woman with implants. Weird.)

800px-ice-t_and_coco_at_the_tribeca_film_festivalIn the spirit of full disclosure, I’ve known Ice-T, right, casually, for years, have met his lovely wife, and she’s quite sweet. In fact, in the YouTube, below, Ice talks about the moment he first saw the woman he’d eventually marry.

What’s most striking about his description of the events, though, is the utterly un-baller way their chance meeting proceeds. I mean, telling her how beautiful she is? Magic tricks? Playa….

But, then, on the other hand, it worked, right? Who’s to argue with breas…er, I mean success?

You need to a flashplayer enabled browser to view this YouTube video

UPDATE! No Cheers for @KirstieAlley: Why the Star’s Twittered “Wrath” Against MEDIA ASSASSIN Just Digs Her a Big, New Black Hole.


I honestly did not expect this.

After I posted Black Like @KirstieAlley: Twittering About Race with the Fat Actress” yesterday, I manually sent out one tweet, at 5:55 pm ET, announcing the posting. (My blog automatically sent out another one 45 minutes later.) I then left the house to take care of some business, getting back a little over two hours later. I went to my computer, and logged on to Twitter.

Big mistake.

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The Gap Band: Making Charles Goodyear Extremely Proud in 1980.

Where there’s smoke there’s fire…

When inventor Charles Goodyear accidentally dropped a piece of untreated rubber on a hot stove and “discovered” vulcanization (“Mesoamericans” had mastered the process centuries earlier), he probably never dreamed that, over 140 years later, the notion of burning rubber would lead to a #1 R&B smash for the GAP Band. Yet, alas.

Merci to hyper-cool Digital Femme Cheryl Lynn for linking to the video, which I’d never seen, despite the track being fundamental as 11-dimensional strings when it came to me getting through senior year at Freeport High School. Most of all, though, Lynn argues that “Burn Rubber On Me (Why You Wanna Hurt Me)” should be cited as “Reason #525 why Rock Band needs a Funk Band Expansion Pack.” To which I say, hear, hear.

METRO Gives Up the Love!

Maybe it’s Christmas!!A super-special shout-out to the people at my favorite free daily, METRO, for their tip-of-the-hat to MEDIA ASSASSIN in the paper’s “Voices: Blogarithms: A look at the best of the blogs” section this past Thursday, right. (The piece ran in their NY, Boston, and Philadelphia editions.) I absolutely was not expecting the coverage, or the reproduction of my recent “Mackin’ On-the-Go” post. So, imagine my surprise when picking up the paper to search its nonexistent movie listings. I was hit with a sudden, “That Looks Familiar…Oh, WOW!” slightly-out-of-body experience. Wonderful, just wonderful to receive all of the support we’ve gotten. Thank you, METRO, so much for including us in your oft-wry, smartly-written publication.


“Hi, everybody!”
She clearly didn’t expect to be followed so closely: Oprah Winfrey

Since starting January 1st, a Chicago performer, writer, and artist, Robyn Okrant, 35, has committed a full year to living her life as Oprah Winfrey suggests on her highly-rated TV program, The Oprah Winfrey Show. So, if Oprah says buy white pants, Okrant buys white pants. If Oprah says visit an animal shelter, that’s where she goes.

NPR interviewed her, and she’s writing about the experience on her blog, Living Oprah. No word on whether Oprah approves of this, however.

Fine-Tuning the Racial Contract.

“Do you know the difference?”

Without even a comment, Ray Winbush sent me the link to Jay Smooth’s most recent illdoctrine vlog post, “How To Tell People They Sound Racist.”

Oh, my: It’s a thing of beauty.

No, scratch that: It’s almost a piece of counter-racist science.

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