… or at least, a black person with prominent, rich white people pleading his case persistently.

Fugees affiliate John Forté

Shrub pardoned 14 people earlier today (Monday) and commuted the sentences of two others, including Fugees contributor John Forté, who was serving 14 years after getting busted bringing liquid cocaine through Newark airport.

According to HipHopDX:

The reduced sentence comes after numerous high profile celebrities and politicians were writing the President on the musician and producer’s behalf. Most notably, Utah Senator Orrin Hatch and 1970s singer/songwriter Carly Simon and her son were instrumental in garnering attention to the incarcerated Hip Hop artist. Hatch is also a musician.

Orrin Hatch? Are you fucking kidding me? I can’t wait to hear Forté’s work on How His Glory Still Shines (The Remixes!). Should be a banger. Most anticipated cassette of 2009. Bet.

So yeah, we all KNEW this. But a backstory: back in a past life I used to run up obscenely high phone bills in exchange for records to do a couple of radio shows that are of little importance in the grand scheme of things (but try telling me that back then…). So anyhow, I used to talk to record promoters at labels from time to time and one of them would ALWAYS have stuff that I hadn’t heard or found a way to get my hands on. Only he was stingy. He would let me hear them over the phone, but never send the shit to me. One night I’m talking to him and he plays me Biggie rhyming Lil Kim’s “Queen Bitch”…the entire verse down to the “queen bitch, disease free bitch…”. Quite odd, to say the least. He explained that he wrote the song and then recorded it as a reference track for Kim to make sure she stayed on beat, etc. Gotta love the game. So I begged for a copy of it and the dude never sent it. Probably for good reason. I would have leaked THE FUCK out of that tape. So anyway, I’m looking for something today and hit up the ebays to do a search for something and lo and behold, up pops this site: I start looking around and the first thing I see is THIS:

Biggie “Queen Bitch” (reference track)

Of course, I am like holy shit. It was one of those “holy grails” that I always wanted to get a copy of, but never had been able to locate. And that was just the beginning…that site is now permanently bookmarked and I’d like to buy each of the contributors to that site an adult beverage of their choosing at some point in time.

To close, if you can’t write or at least rap what somebody else has written for you then you should find another line of fucking work. MC Lyte didn’t need MC Milk to record a reference track for Cha Cha Cha, did she? [/steps off soapbox]

Changing subjects: Too many other things to point towards there and maybe I’m late on the site (if so, fuck all of you for not telling me sooner). But gotdamn that was about as good of a gift as I could ask for on a Thursday (besides seeing more Pam Beasley on this week’s The Office).

Thnaks to the Buhbomp crew for allowing me to enter their house–let the record show that I have wiped my feet on the rug and am looking forward to sharing random items that I locate on the interwebs for your enjoyment. Well, really it is just for my enjoyment…but you all win by association, I guess.


All emcees report to the stage …

In: Music, Video

All-star cast of characters showing out on stage at the G.O.O.D. Music after party in London. Nas performing “Halftime”? Yes, I’ll take more of that, please. Thnx. (I could have done without Will.I.Am tho) …

Shout out to future-contributer Dat Boy Dirty Red for passing on the link.

Wow, this was one of my favorite cuts back in ’99. A certified backpacklassic.

BONUS: Speaking of which… Just because you got Self Scientific & Scientifik (R.I.P.) confused, I present the illest ever outta beantown (Sorry Guru).

Just in time for the run up to Turkey Day, here’s our latest Welfare handout of musical treats to help put some pep in your steps as you’re elbowing your way to the turkey aisle at the supermarket.

dj lil tiger | bird feed …

SJOB Movement “Love Affair”
Some Nigeria disco funk to loosen up your feets.

Roy Ayer’s “I Am Your Mind Part 2 (Sal’s Nostalgia Edit)
Nice treatment by the man Sal Paradise. Peep more of his edits at his blog.

Roll Deep “Do Me Wrong”
I love me some Roll Deep, the East London crew that brought the world Dizzee and Wiley. This is a hot uptempo little club joint that’s fun as hell.

Serani “Crying For Peace”
Consciousness from the man Serani of “No Games” and “Dying” fame. On the Merge riddim. Love this tune.

Peter Ram “Tight”
This is my mid-tempo soca jam of the moment. Been digging Peter Ram‘s Bajan sounds for a minute now.

download: Gobble, Gobble.


cashless | Super Disco Backpack Rap Braekz4dayz

Ron Browz – “Jumpin”
Autotune, love it or hate it, it’s not going anywhere for a while, at least if Ron Browz has anything to say about it. Kanye, T-Pain, Lil Wayne... Browz is the new king of autotune and unless you’re willing to implant an Antares VST in your brain, you ain’t putting autotune to more use than Browz. I’m not sure if dude has a real voice at all.

Q-Tip – “Move”
I know. I’m just as surprised as you are. I got tired of listening to the new authorities on “real hip hop.” You know the ones. They always recommend one bland backpack rap lp after another. They lost me somewhere along the road. I’m not carrying the flag any longer. I’m now somewhere between trying to see young ladies “Pop it 4 pimp” at the knucklehead 18 & up club and getting my grown and sexy on with people who’s outfit at the club cost more than my rent. Somehow “Move” is exactly where I’m at.

Lil Wayne – “Mrs. Officer (Gregg Nyce/Estelle refix)”
I don’t know what to tell you. The G&S set goes crazy for this blend and so do I. So there.
(**EDITOR’S NOTE: Cashless accidentally put the original version of this tune instead of the refix in his zip file. He’s spinning right now, but will sort all that out afterward, so stay tuned for the correct version soon)

**Update of the update** The corrected version is now located below.

Trina feat Killer Mike – “Look back at me”
I’m dropping a recurrent here. Nothing new or anything. I’m really digging the intermingled screwed adlibs, but what really makes me flip is seeing women act out the lyrics on the dancefloor. This song is so nasty that it makes ME blush.

Rihanna – “Disturbia (Emynd’s Finally Blend)”
Outside of her looks, I haven’t been feeling much Rihanna lately. That doesn’t mean that her output can’t be salvaged. Emynd of and comes strong to save what’s normally an unlistenable cut.

download: Dave, drop a load on em…

Addendum: Lil Wayne – “Mrs. Officer (Gregg Nyce/Estelle refix)


jdfellin myself

Platinum Pied Pipers – “Try Me”
I like this song and have always dug their production

Meshell N’degecocello – “Hot Night”
Same here.  One song with Talib that I can actually enjoy

Ming and FS – “Kings County”
A great tribute to a great borough.

Raphael Saadiq – “Get Involved (Remix)”
I used to play this record all the time, and this remix definitely delivers.

Self Scientific “The Return”
Strap on your back pack for this underground classic.

Download Here.


empanadamn | Starvin’ like Marvin…

DJ Yoda “Food” (Feat. Edan)
A cutty & paste ode to vittles (tender if you please).

Weird Al “Eat It”
This 110% grade A classic helped shape my sense of humor as a child (and grown-ass man of today).

Goodie MOB “Soul Food”

AMG “Jiggable Pie”
2 (big) slices plaese.

Weird Al “Fat”
“Yo, Ding-Dong, man. Ding-Dong, yo.”

Bonus *eat (Take a nap. Wake up and do it all over again)
Fat Boys “All You Can Eat”

Yes, I have eaten at this location.

Download: Grace. 

I Still Love H.E.R.

In: Music, Video

Not new, but new to me. Digging this on the throwback vibe. Teriyaki Boyz with Kanye West. No auto-tune.

The performance kicks in at about the three-minute mark.

Shout out to the dude Masa for passing on the link.

Last Monday, a good friend of mine and one of the most compassionate, soulful and talented people I know, DJ Melodic, had a cardiac arrest and fell into a coma. He has since come out of the coma (thank goodness), but is still in the intensive care unit at St. Luke’s Hospital in Houston. Every person I know who has met or worked with Melodic in any capacity vouches for how good a dude he is. His passion for music and DJing has been an inspiration to me in all the years that I’ve known him.

Melodic is a gentle, hard-working and young dude. The fact that this happened to Melodic, a vegan who is determined to keep all things toxic out of his system, has really shocked a lot of people. Life is precious, and even the most careful among us can fall ill.

We continue to monitor the developments with his condition. Friends in Houston are organizing a benefit on his behalf to help him cover the medical costs of his recovery. I’ve included all that info below.

Even for those not able to attend or contribute to the benefit, Melodic and his family are accepting donations online at the link below:

Any contribution, no matter how small, would be a great help, especially in these tough times. Even if it’s just a few dollars. EVERY LITTLE BIT COUNTS.

Check out the benefit info below, and please keep Melodic in your thoughts and prayers.



“A genuine good guy”

“A great dj and great, positive person”

“A truly positive dude”

These and many other quotes like those are what people who have been touched by Paco aka Ben Jennings IV aka DJ Melodic express when they think of the person, the dj, friend. His gentle and positive spirit has touched many. His humility is unmatched.

On November 2nd Paco suffered cardiac arrest. He is currently at St. Luke’s Hospital in critical condition.

Paco’s close friends are organizing a raffle and musical benefit event to offset medical expenses and support his family during this difficult time. We need your support to make it a success.


Paco came to Soular Grooves and entered the Houston DJ community with the same genuine positive spirit and humility that so many describe about him. He learned as much as he could about dj-ing from as many as he could and applied those characteristics to his vast knowledge of music, to become one of the most respected, well-liked, and precision-like djs in Houston. His aesthetic is unique and contributes to creating an uncompromising signature of sounds that have no match. To listen to Paco, DJ Melodic, as he deejays, is to be taken on a course of great music that blends together seamlessly and continuously. All his selections, he intuitively knows, belong together. It is a truly joyful experience to listen to him and watch him perform.



Soular Grooves and Paco’s friends and family invite you to join us for a beautiful Sunday afternoon benefit filled with music, family and fun prizes. Paco’s closest friends DJ Sun, DJ Chicken George and Nick Cooper will perform a musical tribute.

Plus, you can purchase raffle tickets and win some of the coolest things from shops like Barney’s Co-op, Sloan/Hall, Peel Gallery, Melodrama, Betsey Johnson + gift certs from restaurants and bars including Boheme, AvantGarden, Dolce Vita and much more!

Light bites will be provided by La Strada and Stir-It-Up Coffee House.

November, 16, 2008
@ Block 21
2420 Washington Ave.
Houston, TX 77246

Event Tickets are $10, available at the door only
Raffle Tickets are $5 each or 5 for $20.

Thank you to Ziggy at Block 21 for generously offering to donate a portion of the event proceeds to support the cause.


We have set up a ChipIn account for anyone wishing to make a donation. Please consider making a contribution of any amount you can. Every bit helps!


Raffle items are specialty services, memberships, or gifts, gift certificates, art works,
event tickets, food items, music, apparel, electronics, holiday items, etc.

Businesses who have already donated include: MFAH, CAMH, Aerosol Warfare Gallery, Diverseworks, Barney’s Co-op, Starbucks, Dolce Vita, Boheme Cafe & Wine Bar, La Strada, AvantGarden, YogaOne just to name a few.

To donate a raffle item, download this form (.pdf).

and send it to Tina Zulu by Wednesday, November 12th at tinazulu at


New Flava from Rappers I Know …

In: Houston, Music, Video

Houston, my hometown, has gotten a lot of long overdue press over the years for it’s deeply talented rap scene. Most of that publicity has reached only a few aspects of Houston’s diverse sound. Now, our good friends Damien (D.) of the Legendary K.O. aka the K-Otix and FWMJ and his Rappers I Know juggernaut blog are putting some needed shine back on my city. Here’s what D. has to say:

There’s a movement going on at the bottom of the map. If you haven’t paid attention, then you’ve been missing a modern renaissance taking place in Houston, Texas. If you take a look back over the last few years, most of us have been involved in or connected to some of the most inspiring, influential creations to come across your iPods and computer screens.

Remember these names: Kay, The ARE, K-OTIX, Chris “Daddy” Dave, D. Rose, The Foundation, J “8 Months” Lewis, Neon Collars, H.I.S.D., The Niyat, DJ Cozmos, and Flow Factory. …

Peep the video below, with a cameo on the hook by none other than Devin the Dude. Houston, Stand Up!

Rappers I Know “New Flava” Video from FWMJ on Vimeo.

JD, Witnes and Sirius doing the damn thing in BK tonight.

285 Bedford Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11211


+ google

Caribbean People Time. We’re still recovering from Halloween and Day of the Dead activities, and we’re a little distracted by this whole election thing creeping up on us, so excuse the tardiness once again. Better late than never. Btw, today’s handout gladly features the inaugural 5ives contribution from JD, and JD always got heat, so that’s a good thing.

dj lil tiger | blake gideon hurt my feelings …

Kanye “Love Lockdown (Nu Era mix)”
Would this be considered a bruk mash? Not sure who is ultimately responsible for this one, but I dig it on a weird level. Kanye over a spacy, techy broken track by Nu Era, aka Marc Mac of 4hero

Busy Signal “I Fucked Your Girl”
Yeah, you know, for giggles and shits and what not.

Donae’o “African Warrior”
Damn Brits, always making me feel the wrath of the latte pass. Not new, but recently exposed to me. This UK Funky shit is my shit. Donae’o was a fave of mine back when I first started getting into UKG, so I dig that he’s on this scene.

H-Town All-Stars “Obama ’08″
Bun, Chamilli, Paul Wall, Cory Mo, Trae. Oh, and some verbiage from our next president. Can’t go wrong. Bump this on the way to the polls, if you haven’t already gotten your early vote on. HOUSTON STAND THE FUCK UP.

Lauryn Hill “Want You Around (Probe DMS remix)”
From the vaults. Probe is one of NY’s best kept secrets. If you get a chance to catch him spin, you won’t be disappointed. And he got the chops on the production side. Believe it.

download: Hold that.


jd | Come get it like you know you want it ®

O.C. Smith – “Sounds of Goodbye”
My vinyl rip and dedication to Bush.   See ya later!

Markus Enochson – “What About Us”
A stellar Brandy rework.   This is an oldie but a goodie.

Beck – “Dirty Dirty”
Also quite old, but never leaves the crates.  This is off of the remix and b-sides disc.

Archie Bell & The Drells – “Tighten Up” (Bobby LaBeat Re-work)
You can pretty much catch me never playing anything resembling bmore club, but this song is significant for a few reasons.  The first being that it is just a beast of a song, the remix kept the essence of the original and of course, Archie and his Drells are from Texas.

Bjork – “Who Is It” (Vitalic Mix)
I just really like this remix.    So jamming.

download: Take that, take that.


empanadamn | For the club | Serato ready

Aidonia “Flyin’ Dagger”
Aidonia’s voice kinda reminds me of Vybz Kartel with less gumption. Still, he posses a flow that can ride a range of sounds. This track, on the Sky Daggering riddim, is on the uptempo tip for your faster sets.

Beyoncé “Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)”
One for the ladies, this one picks up where “Get Me Bodied” left off. It’s produced by Darkchild, but sounds like a Swizzy joint with its chunkyness and jump. The clencher for me was watching the video. BOING!

Cory Gunz “Get Right Tonight” (Feat. Ryan Leslie)
I like this song because dude’s name is “Cory Gunz” and he’s from the Bronx. What’s more is that Ryan Leslie’s on the beat. Some midtempo filler.

Jazzanova “I Can See” (Feat. Ben Westbeech)
Germany’s Jazzanova returns with their 2nd full length studio album “Of All The Things”. With each release they seem to do something different, which I can appreciate. One of my favorite cuts, “I Can See” features Ben Westbeech, a soulful British bloke sangs, with ze Germans rock the new-old soul sound filled with strings, horns and xylophone.

T-Pain “Freeze” (Feat. Chris Brown)
A poppy joint for the club with a good balance of drum knock & synth. It has a couple of beatbox breakdowns and lacks catchy hook which kinda kills its momentum for a major tune.

download: Choose or Lose



DJ LIL TIGER starts things off with a love-themed Soul set with splashes of classic disco and contemporary R&B. EMPANADAMN holds it down in the second half with a mesh of synthy dance, pop, Hip-Hop and electro.

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EPISODE 221. 02 AUG 2016.

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