'Loving Yourself': The Philosophy of Junglepussy

Categories: Interviews

jp2560.jpg
Via YouTube
Junglepussy has but a freshman record and a few singles under her belt, but the fierce-as-fuck personality with a message about taking no shit and focusing on your health has already earned her a dedicated army of followers online. The Brooklyn-born West Indian rapper is a fashion student-turned-retail employee, -turned-YouTube comedian, -turned-MC, -turned-lifestyle guru, -turned-DKNY model. And she's only just beginning.

Earlier this month, Junglepussy (real name Shayna McHayle) put out a video for "Nah," a chilled-out track from her debut album, Satisfaction Guaranteed, on which she spits about staying hydrated, shopping at Trader Joe's, getting head, and Kevin Costner. We just had to talk to her.

See also: The 10 Best Male Rappers of All Time

More »

Loudon Wainwright III: 'I Figured I'd Be Dead Before I Was 30'

Categories: Interviews

loudonblues560.jpg
With the exception of his satirical West Coast soulmate Randy Newman, Loudon Wainwright III is one of the only singer-songwriters from the '70s still turning out tunes that are consistently well-crafted, profound, and funny. We recently spoke to Wainwright about his newest album, Haven't Got The Blues (Yet), which mordantly tackles such touchy subjects as clinical depression, old age, and (on the shit-stirring "I'll Be Killing You at Christmas") the country's demented love affair with guns. Hilarious onstage, Wainwright is actually sort of serious in conversation, though also quite forthcoming (and, OK, funny), as when he decided to discuss the superb songs on his 26th (!) album.

See also: Inside NYC's Burgeoning Folk Scene

More »

Darbie Nowatka of Bishop Allen Talks New LP and Leaving Brooklyn

Categories: Interviews

BishopAllen_MattPetricone.jpg
Courtesy of Secretly Group PR // Credit: Matt Petricone
Bishop Allen's latest LP Lights Out showcases their penchant for memorable hooks and earnest lyricism. After a little over a decade of crafting indie anthems featuring soundscapes reminiscent of power-pop ballads and twee glazed finesse, Bishop Allen continues to expand their aesthetic in a way that defies predictable clichés. After a little over a decade, Bishop Allen is still making listeners swoon. Listen to Lights Out and it's obvious why. 



In advance of their record release show at Glasslands tonight, we spoke with band member Darbie Nowatka about Bishop Allen's move from Brooklyn to Kingston, the final track on Lights Out, and future collaborations with her husband and fellow bandmate Justin Rice.

See also: Yes In My Backyard: Bishop Allen's Justin Rice on His Band's New Video for "True or False"

More »

Funk Legend Steve Arrington On Being Sampled By A Tribe Called Quest, N.W.A. and Jay Z

Categories: Interviews

SteveArrington.jpg
Funkateer Steve Arrington
Steve Arrington has attainted a position of righteous funk royalty. Having risen to prominence with the band Slave in the late-'70s, he then flew the roost to form the humbly-monikered Steve Arrington's Hall of Fame before storming through the '80s as a solo funkateer. Along the way, Arrington's swaggerific grooves have also been repurposed and looped up to bed tracks by rap chaps like Jay Z, N.W.A. and A Tribe Called Quest.

Ahead of a solo show at Le Poisson Rouge this Tuesday, we spoke to Arrington about the parallels between funk and rap, engaging in musical conversations with Q-Tip, and his links with New York City's nascent hip-hop movement.

See also: Q&A: Soul Singer Syl Johnson Prefers Money To Women, Loves Being Sampled By The Wu-Tang Clan, And Is Sorry He Had To Sue Cypress Hill

More »

Claude VonStroke Gives a Taste of the Dirtybird BBQ

Categories: Interviews

CVS-DAN-WILTON560.jpg
Courtesy of Infamous PR // Credit: Dan Wilton
Listening to the dirtybird BBQ compilation is a smorgasbord of sounds and thematic rhythms for the senses. TDJ and Producer Claude VonStroke is the mastermind behind dirtybird Records, and has maintained a close friendship with his fellow DJ colleagues, many of whom will be on the BBQ tour with him, since it all began in 2005. This label and friend group is taking their annual 'dirtybird BBQ' to a national level. Originally started and held in San Francisco, the BBQ is touring the US and Canada in the upcoming months, and for the first time spreading around the dirtybird love and sound the way it was meant to be shared.

We spoke with Claude VonStroke while he was on vacation with his family in Mexico about what makes his label work and the special guest being featured at Sunday's BBQ.

More »

Don't Make Eye Contact With Doug Stanhope

Categories: Comedy, Interviews

StanhopePiccropped.jpg
Steven Meckler
Completely sober.
Doug Stanhope has made a successful career for himself telling it like it is. And while some people may think he does so a bit too harshly, or dwell on his bad habits, even more would people would agree that he is habitually hilarious. You'll get your chance to be entertained by this comedic ringmaster when he hits the Highline Ballroom August 15th through 17th. And since he's coming into town, we couldn't wait to talk to him to see what's up in his insane life these days.

See also: Top 10 Stand-Up Comedy Specials of 2013

More »

Jean Grae Presents An Instructional Album For Adults

JeanGraeLifeWithJeannie.jpg
Jean Grae in Life With Jeannie

Being an adult is very hard for very many people. Jean Grae knows this and has written a handy eleven-track musical commentary on it titled That's Not How You Do That: An Instructional Album For Adults. It opens with the scatted observation, "That's not how you do that/ How about you fuckin' grow up?" and also includes the righteous call to arms "A Handle Means PULL" and "Use Your Fucking Headphones." You should stop whatever fuckery you're indulging in at the moment and go and procure it now.

While you do that, here's Jean answering a bunch of questions based on the contents of her new album. (Warning: Includes talk of kale salad, L train subway stress, and waitstaff interactions.)

See also: Jean Grae Picks Christmas Sweaters For Talib Kweli, Sean Price and Pharoahe Monch


More »

Bl'ast From the Past: Santa Cruz Punks Return to NYC After 25 Year Absence

Categories: Interviews

blast2560.jpg
[UPDATE: Oops. It turns out Bl'ast won't be back out east after all, as vocalist Clifford Dinsmore has come down with a nasty ear infection. This interview with him, though, is pretty great, so you should read it anyway. Enjoy. And always know no one can cancel the mosh pit in your mind!]

Santa Cruz California's Bl'ast! were certainly one of the more peculiar bumps to pop up on the American Hardcore landscape in the '80s. Formed under the name M.A.D in 1982, the band was initially deemed too influenced by fellow Californians Black Flag to be taken seriously. For further proof, check out Flag vocalist Henry Rollin's scathing mention of them in his well-known tour diary bio, Get in the Van.

But oddly enough, it was when the band signed to Black Flag's label SST in 1985 that they finally found their own footing. Immersed in the labels' weed-fueled aesthetic and matchless roster of bands, Bl'ast! carved out their own disturbing sonic niche within the label which culminated with the release of their final LP in 1989, the falsely maligned Take The Manic Ride, and their break-up soon after.

See also: The Oral History of NYC's Metal/Hardcore Crossover

More »

Meet Bobby Shmurda: The Rapper That Has You (and Beyoncé) Doing the Shmoney Dance

Categories: Interviews

Bobby Shmurda
YouTube
Bobby Shmurda
Bobby Shmurda is having the best summer ever. After bubbling in his native Flatbush, the 20-year-old has skyrocketed from relative obscurity to viral star upon the heels of "Shmoney Dance." The track and its swaying, dance accompaniment are the stuff that Vine dreams are made of. It's no wonder the video has generated millions of views and propagated a slew of hilarious parodies, including one set to the Backstreet Boys' "I Want It That Way."

It was only a matter of time before hip-hop took notice. In June, Meek Mill invited Bobby to perform with him at the famed King of Diamonds strip club, while Raekwon brought out the neophyte onstage at the 2014 Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival. Drake did his version of the dance while hosting the ESPYS, but the pièce de résistance came when both Beyonce and Jay Z gave a nod to "Shmoney Dance" on their On The Run tour at the MetLife Stadium last week.

See also: Christina Aguilera Is a Better Performer Than Beyoncé

More »

The Comedy Rap Improv of North Coast

Categories: Interviews

northcoastinaction560.jpg.jpg
Courtesy North Coast
There seems to be a lot of parallels between the worlds of freestyle rapping and improv comedy, so it shouldn't be that surprising that hip-hop improv troupe North Coast is thriving. Recently celebrating five years together, North Coast have spent their summer doing their brand of musical improv across the country, as well as every Saturday night at The Pit, which has just been extended through September. We spoke to two of the group's founding members, James T. Robilotta and Douglas Widick, about bringing freestyle rhymes into the realm of improv and how they've kept their style so fresh.


More »
Loading...