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City On My Back Archives » Editorial

EDITORIAL: "Rep Your City" – A History of Toronto Hip-Hop (By Del F. Cowie)

hyperadmin | Editorial | Thursday, July 1st, 2010

MichieMeeLarge

I recently posted this on my blog over at Vibes and Stuff, but since this is Canada Day and this site is dedicated to Toronto hip-hop, I thought I’d share it over here too. Since hip-hop from Toronto is garnering a little bit more attention these days, I wrote a brief introductory profile piece for VIBE on 10 of the hip-hop artists that have come out of this city in the last two decades or so. If you are from the Toronto these names (like Michie Mee above) will be familiar, but it’s worth remembering that these artists should command a lot of respect for their pioneering work and the music they have created.

Read the article

EDITORIAL: "When Trizzy Met Drizzy" (By DJ A-Trak)

hyperadmin | Editorial,Music,News | Tuesday, June 29th, 2010

Drake&ATrak

From DjATrak.com via HHC!

Montreal’s (and Kanye’s) Dj A-Trak tells the story of how he ended up doing the cuts on “Show Me A Good Time” off TML.

For those of you who checked out Drake’s album you may have noticed I’m scratching on song #5, “Show Me A Good Time”. Here’s the story of how that came about.

You could think that there was some sort of Canadian connection, or even a Kanye connection for that matter. But there wasn’t. When So Far Gone came out last year and Drizzy’s buzz went through the roof of the stratosphere of the ceiling of the galaxy, I remember thinking “wow, this is interesting, this is the first time there’s a Canadian rapper that I know absolutely nothing about.” Canada, while being a huge country on the atlas, has a very small music biz. Having been active in it for over a decade, I can tell you that usually everyone knows everyone. But the truth is, I left Montreal 4 years ago and Drake is pretty young, so in my view he just came out of nowhere.

Read the full story over HERE!

Previously: VIDEO: Dj A-Trak (Interview w/EIKENARF)

ARTICLE: Drake – "Let's Thank Him Now" (By Paul Grein)

hyperadmin | Editorial,Music,News | Thursday, June 24th, 2010

drake_thankmelater_atf

Seen on HHC!

Yahoo! Music’s Paul Grein puts Drake’s first week TML sales into historical perspective.

Drake’s first full-length album, Thank Me Later, enters The Billboard 200 at #1, with first-week sales of 447,000. This constitutes one of the biggest openings ever for the debut album by a rap artist. It’s bigger than Eminem’s first week with The Slim Shady LP in February 1999 (283,000). It’s even bigger than Kanye West’s first week with The College Dropout in February 2004 (441,000). And today’s sales climate is less favorable now than it was back then (to put it mildly).

Read the full article HERE!

EDITORIAL – Jay Smooth "Lyricism & Capitalism" (Video)

hyperadmin | Editorial,Video | Tuesday, March 2nd, 2010

Seen on P&W!

We make it a point to keep our posts local/CanCon around here but sometimes when what’s being said is sooo important, we make the exception, and Jay Smooth from Ill Doctrine has always been a welcomed one.

Peep more of his stuff at his new site Nil Doctrine

This is for all those artists that use the “I’m Not A Rapper…” tag line as an excuse for their musical mediocrity and blatant disregard for the culture; but most importantly this is for the ones that try to do right by hip-hop and need some inspiration to keep doing it.

EDITORIAL: An Essay On A Better Future For Canadian Hip-Hop (by Chris Shaban)

hyperadmin | Editorial | Thursday, February 11th, 2010

Spring Cleaning Pic

Okay, things at footnotes* are moving well in 20T0, so I thought I’d throw in a little intermission this week to bring you a little ol skool flavour. We’ve been enjoying an increasing number of new readers daily at blog.farbeyond.ca and we’re very happy for that. Makes me think it’s time for a twist. I know I have mentioned this many times before, but back in the day I used to write a few articles for some different publications under various names between the years of 2003 – 2007 . To this day a couple of those pieces have helped shape the way the urban landscape in Canada is currently viewed. But you know, I never needed the millions of dollars and G4’s that would have come with the recognition , I’m just happy about where we are now . Feel free to count this as my ‘What The Dog Saw’ . This little ditty was written in the Spring of 2006 , right around the time I first felt the itch to get back into the business. I had just sold my share of SafeBridge and spent the next 3 months figuring out what to do. Below is the results of the research that I conducted regarding what I felt was the staleness in the industry . After writing this, I knew the time was not right for me to get back in. Lastly, I made a decision NOT to alter anything in this piece, so my style may not be as, shall we say, strong, as maybe you’ve come to enjoy, so please bare that in mind. Very important to note that the footnotes added are BRAND NEW, so we’re mixing it up a little bit, but I think you’ll have more fun this way. Anywho, nuff yapping… dig in and enjoy.

I know, I know but believe me, the pic makes sense when you read the piece (lol!)…  Actually reading any of these pieces at www.farbeyond.ca is also recommended to get the full pop-up experience.

Hit the jump for the ‘full Shabby’!

Previously: EDITORIAL: Famous – The Building Of A Brand Pt. I (By Chris Shaban)

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EDITORIAL: Famous – The Building Of A Brand Pt. III (By Chris Shaban)

hyperadmin | Editorial | Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010

You know the deal by now…To fully experience this in all its Footnotes pop-up glory check it out here! Here’s Part III of Chris Shaban’s latest series: Famous – The Building of a Brand!

What’s Shakin’ F3’s?  Thank you for coming back to check out Part III of this Famous piece, it really has been a pleasure to write.  And not just cause it’s easy[i], the analytics are dope too[ii].  I want to take a quick moment in this intro to shout out one of the coolest and long-standing dudes in the game, Mastermind.  When I was growing up here in the GTA my only connection to what was cool in rap music[iii] was DJ Mastermind and ‘The Power Move’ show.  Along with each volume of his mixtape series, I was able to get a grip on not just what was good across the border, but, more importantly, here at home too.  Now, we’re talking like almost 20 years ago, long before anyone really gave Hip-Hop a voice in this country[iv].  He has done some truly incredible things for the culture and I know FOR A FACT that he does not get the credit he deserves[v].  Having been the Music Director at Vibe 98.5 in Calgary[vi] for almost a decade[vii], it’s sad that no one has even come close to replacing him here in Toronto[viii].  If you call yourself a Hip-Hop fan, please do yourself a favour and learn about this legend.  I know he’ll probably be mad that I said that, but it’s too late now, it’s true and it’s deserved.  You can count looking him up online as The Biz for this edition.  Oh ya, and follow him on Twitter @MastermindLive

Okay, on to the next one[ix]

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EDITORIAL: Famous – The Building Of A Brand Pt. II (By Chris Shaban)

hyperadmin | Editorial | Monday, January 25th, 2010

Famous article 2b

Part II of writer Chris Shaban’s piece on brand development is after the jump. If you’re not already, definitely check blog.farbeyond.ca; not only cuz they’re doing good stuff over there, but you get to read his industry editorials with the full ‘pop-up’ experience.

Previously: Editorial – Famous The Building Of A Brand Pt.1 (by Chris Shaban)

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EDITORIAL: Famous – The Building Of A Brand Pt. I (By Chris Shaban)

hyperadmin | Editorial | Wednesday, January 20th, 2010

Here’s my official disclaimer: This is WAY more entertaining to read HERE. Not to say that it’s not entertaining to read it here, but THERE the footnotes actually work how they’re supposed to (a la pop-up video style)!

Anyways, here’s Part I of Chris Shaban’s latest edition of his Footnotes series: Famous – The Building Of A Brand. The last one was called In Defence Of Drake which you can also check out on Chris’ blog if you missed it the first time. And without further ado:

What’s Happening my good friends?  Welcome back to footnotes* and, more importantly, Welcome to 20T0[i].  As you can see, we have revamped things around here so that you can feel a little more at home[ii].  I have had a very eventful couple of months since the last time I posted up here, but I’m sure that we all have, and I can sincerely say, it is great to be back.  With all of our 2009 articles counted as ‘research[iii]’, you can say that this here is the OFFICIAL launch of blog.farbeyond.ca.  Please check back each and every Friday for a crisp, new joint.  And to keep that freshness sealed in, we have started a little something new to increase the fun you can have while here[iv].  It’s an FYI on the music game, and it’s called The Biz 101.  Since I don’t intend to stay two feet in long enough to hate it, I thought I’d try and drop some jewels for the new generation that may want to tackle The Biz as a career.  Hope you likes…
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Concert Review – Kid Cudi w/ Keys N Krates, Nov. 28 @ Kool Haus (Exclaim! Magazine)

hyperadmin | A City In Focus,Editorial | Monday, November 30th, 2009

Kid Cudi Concert Review

Kid Cudi / Keys N Krates
Kool Haus, Toronto, ON November 28
By Kevin Jones

(Published in Exclaim! Magazine)

While the job of critic is to fairly and honestly pull apart a subject, pointing out both the good and the bad to give readers a complete picture, one must also be prepared to admit that some things are simply above critique. The recent sold-out Kid Cudi show at Toronto’s Kool Haus may have been one such instance.

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FEATURE: Manifesto Review by Sean Deezill

hyperadmin | Editorial | Wednesday, November 25th, 2009

This is admittedly a little late, but…better late than never! Shouts to Sean D for reaching out and blessing us with the piece. If you are a supporter of the arts and arts-based initiatives/events like Manifesto be sure to check the Beautifulcity.ca post below also!!!

Manifesto Review
By Sean Deezill

The wonderful city of Toronto recently hosted Manifesto, a 4 day long festival celebrating hip hop and the essence of a culture that is certainly more than just music. Attracting over 12,000 people at the Main Event on Sunday, September 20th, an event that was headlined by Reflection Eternal (recently reunited), 9th Wonder, Bajah + The Dry Eye Crew, and Colin Munroe, the Manifesto team developed [for the 3rd straight year] a tremendous feat of providing the city of Toronto with over a month of hip hop relative activity. Whether it was the Barbershop competitions with discounted hair cuts and fresh designs, the free-for-all graffiti wall, the hip hop workshops instructing turntablism and breakdancing, the Freshest Goods Market (similar to 100 different merch tables), the hundreds of new talent exposed in front of thousands, the film festival, or the massive art exhibition, Manifesto really brought hip hop to a whole new level in the genre’s second birthplace.

One City Series

The One City Series could be seen as the build up and conclusion to the 4-day climax that is the festival. Not to say that these events weren’t top notch, because with acts like K’naan, Classified, J.Period, Jedi Mind Tricks, Slakah the Beatchild, Mayer Hawthorne, Lindo P, and Scratch, it’s clear that talent flooded the city of Toronto during the month of September. One of the most impressive and memorable moments occurred at the Scarborough Fresh Fair, which ended on the note of a beat battle between the soon-to-be-giants Boi-1da, Rich Kidd, MegaMan, Soundsmith, and Northern Profit. It was all love though, especially considering that most of these cats grew up just around the corner from each other. Hard hitting hip hop beats and a great community to share it with? That’s a win-win nearly impossible to come by at the so-called “Screwface Capital” of the world.

The Festival:

The Film Festival
To open up the main events, Manifesto presented Bomb It! from award-winning director Jon Reiss. It takes the complex art of graffiti and explores greater worldwide issues while revisiting the history of the art from the origins of the prehistoric caves to the current global issues surrounding property and crime control. Additionally, the festival featured The Freshest Kids, a film looking at the groundbreaking origins of breakdancing, as well as famous b-boy crews and rappers that supported the risky and funky movement.

Previous: 9th Wonder says “Toronto is the hip hop capital of the world”.

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