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• Hip Hop Slam NEWS Roundup by Munkifunk (inc. Mike Relm joins
   "Ghetto Pop Life" & DJ Jester tours East Coast in Ice Cream Truck)
• What's Up With New Bay Area Station Power 92-7
    Program Director Skip Dillard Tells Billy Jam
• Diary of a DJ in the US Air Force Part 3 by ALF
• Atmosphere in Ireland: Tall Paul Lowe Reports

by Munkifunk

Mike Relm was recently added to the "Ghetto Pop Life" tour with Danger Mouse, Money Mark, and J-Zone. Expect him to team up with Money Mark and J-Zone to cut it up for a couple sets. The tour kicks off May 12th in Phoenix, AZ at the Marquee Theatre. DJ Jester will also be touring next an ice cream truck! He'll be traveling along the East Coast to promote a new "slow churning" technique that makes light ice cream taste as good as the full-fat variety. Along the way he will be in search of good record stores, cool venues, and decent radio stations. DJ Jester will also have a track featured on the upcoming Return of the DJ Vol. 5.5 Supplement CD coming out on Bomb Hip-Hop.

WAR (if it feels good, do it!) is back at #1 on the KFJC CMJ chart. It seems that every time something blows up in Iraq, the Hip Hop Slam anti-war album blows up along with it. Featuring conscious artists such as: Azeem, Mr. Lif, and the DJs of Mass Destruction consider it the moral soundtrack to an immoral war. Sometimes music can bring much needed relief to our hectic lives and especially for the soldiers deployed around the world. Be sure to check out part three in the ongoing series of a "DJ in the US Air Force" by ALF, who is stationed in Japan, as he struggles to stay alive and keep up his skills on the wheels of steel.

The Kool Mixx marketing campaign was recently dropped by Brown & Williamson, one of the largest cigarette manufacturers and marketers in the United States. Maine Attorney General Steven Rowe ordered the corporate giant to halt the campaign, which was obviously targeting teens with its use of hip hop images of rappers, deejays, and b-boys.

David Bowie is offering up his tracks for a special mash-up contest. ( He was quoted in the Times saying: "Mash ups were a great appropriation idea just waiting to happen. I first heard of them when 2 Many DJ's put out their album a year or so ago and have been following the evolution avidly ever since." Props to the former Ziggy Stardust for being so receptive to other styles of music and the way people make that music today. Just let it be known that on this side of the pond, and especially this side of the coast, we call them blends and we use turntables instead of computers and we like to do that shit live.

The Bay Area just got a new radio station, Power 92-7, which is billing itself as hip hop. But will it be the real deal, or just more of the same old bullshit? Find out as Billy Jam conducts a little Q&A with the new station's program director Skip Dillard.

Freelancers United will be presenting two more volumes in their Turntable + Faderboard Sessions this month. Vol.7 on Sunday, May 9 will feature Shing02 (faderboard + ARP Odyssey), DJ A-1 (Turntables), G. Rantala (Amiga 1200), plus guests. Vol.8 on Sunday, May 23 will feature Shing02 (faderboard + ARP Odyssey), DJ A-1 (Turntables), DJ Qraft (Turntables), and very special guest Albert Mathias (of Live Human) on the drums. (The Beat Lounge / San Francisco, CA / 9pm - 1am... check out for more info.)

by Billy Jam

Recently many Bay Area radio listeners were pleasantly surprised when they stumbled upon a new radio station playing non-stop 2Pac without any commercial interuptions whatsoever. The new station, POWER 92-7, taking over the FM frequency where that so-called "Party" station somehow managed to play the worst dance music ever recorded once dwelled, was making its transition by playing non-stop Tupac, something they figured would instantly grab the Bay's attention. It worked! Soon everyone, including the legions of disgruntled KMEL listeners, were tuning in and talking about this "new hip hop station". And even though the new station hasnt fully kicked into operation already it has clearly unsettled Clear Channel's KMEL and KYLD urban outlets. KMEL, which has rapidly fallen in both Arbitron ratings and listener loyalty over the past few years, has been making some abrupt programming changes in direct reponse to this first bit of competition they have had to deal with.

But will this new station be a God-send to a listening audience who once believed that KMEL really was "the peoples' station" - one with a sincere interst in their lifestyle, cultural and musical needs? Or will the new POWER 92-7 just be more of the same commercial radio bullshit, playing preprogammed playlists of generic national rap and R&B urban hits with absolutely no sensitivity to the uniqueness of the Bay Area? To answer these questions we got in touch with Skip Dillard, the station's new program director, who appears extremely open to and genuinely concerned with making a connection with the Bay Area community, in particular Oakland where the new radio station offices are located. He is also a mix DJ and a hip hop fan who, when told about the Hip Hop in the Park event on May 1st with Crown City Rockers, Oakland Faders etc, wanted to know all the details so that he could definitely attend the event in Peoples Park Berkeley.

Billy Jam: Who owns the radio station?
Skip Dillard: KPTI (soon to be KBTB) is owned by 3 Point Media San Francisco, a division of
Marathon Media Chicago. Medium sized broadcaster with stations in Las Vegas, Salt Lake City, Denver and other markets.

Billy: I've heard your general format described by several people as a "hip hop" station but I heard r&b on there. What qualifies as "hip hop" in your opinion?
Skip: Hip-hop can combine elements of rap, poetry and R&B. Our focus will be more towards the rap side but the Bay is so diverse, I've noticed over the years from visiting that this area has some of the most "educated" hip-hop listeners out there. They also know and enjoy other forms of music. While we can't play everything, we have to include artists like Alicia Keys and others who our listeners love even though they aren't necessarily rappin'!

Billy: How would you describe your format not in musical terms like hip hop, but otherwise?
Skip:. Our format is truly "lifestyle". We're young, upbeat and will be on the pulse of what the streets of Oakland, The City, and the rest of the Bay are about musically!

Billy: What will make POWER 92.7 unique to Bay Area listeners?
Skip: Our community connection will make us unique. We don't have 100,000 watts. We haven't been here 20 years so we've got to show and prove! That involves reaching our listeners one on one and working to make a difference in the Bay while being accessible to both listeners, artists and community leaders. We know we've got to hit the streets and work harder to win! The jocks, mixers and support people we choose to be a part of our team will eat, sleep, and live the "Bay"!

Billy: Will you have many (if any) mix shows and if so will you give DJs freedom to pick any/all the selections?.
Skip: I'm a mixer myself. Mix jocks have more influence here than almost any area I've worked or lived in. I look forward to a team of diverse, creative mixers with an ear for music who can "bring-it" in the clubs as well as on the radio. I've already met with a number of hot mixers in the Bay from both in and outside of radio.

Billy: How much non-music or news/public/cultural affairs type programming (if any) will you have on average week?
Skip: I can't say how many hours until we have things in place but I promise this: We will keep our listeners informed in hours in which they're awake to hear it! I know poetry is also hot and we look forward to showcasing culture not only on the radio, but promoting positive community events for both youth and young adults.

Billy: Will all programming be produced in-house or will some be satellite feeds from elsewhere (which is what you are doing now I'm told)?
Skip: Yes! We look forward to being live and LOCAL. Programming now originates from our studios in Oakland and we're in the process of re-building our studios to accomodate a fully local operation.

Billy: Will you broadcasting online also? If so what is site address
Skip: We're hoping to stream online. Currently working on a new website and features as we speak.

Billy: Anything else you would like to add?
Skip: I just have to thank the community for the calls, welcome cards, tips, referrals and kindness shown since arriving in Oakland. I live here, shop and recently joined Love Center Church on East 14th. I have been blown away by the kindness and realness of people here in the East Bay. It is an honor and privilege to serve you! My office number is 510-762-0927. I look forward to hearing from more of you with your suggestions, support and comments as we build the New Power 92-7!

Diary of a DJ in the US Air Force Part 3
by ALF

As Guru from Gang Starr says "The Question Remains." What do you do as a DJ in the armed forces if you get called or volunteered to go to a deployed location? Personally, the only thing I would do is bring my little practice scratch block (showcased by DJ QBert at Skratchcon 2000) and pray that by chance the location I would be going to has some turntables of some sort. It wouldn't matter to me if it's the CD player type or the traditional direct drive turntables; I'll use them. As long as I have something that would keep my skills up to par, whether it's mixing or just scratching. Two of my DJ friends have been put to the test of "what do you do?" DJ Mam, who's in the Marine Corps and went TAD to Malaysia a while ago ran into the dilemma about how he's going to bring his turns on the TAD. He calls me and asks me about how long it took for my cases to come in the mail. I told him that it took them an unbelievably 2 to 3 months for them to arrive in the mail. If I knew that I wasn't going to be DJing at Radius Squared during the time he was away, I would've let him use my cases. So, pretty much he went to Malaysia with no turns, scratchpad, or whatever. When he returned from his TAD, he told me believe it or not that he was playing at a club there. I was like "WHAT?!" "Man, how did you pull that off?" I asked him. "Hey dog, I just went and talked to the owner about a lot of DJ stuff from artists to equipment," said DJ Mam. He was using CD turntables for the first time. He made the best of his time there by simply mixing, pleasing the Marines whom most didn't know he DJed at a club on home station.

What I gained out of DJ Mam's experience is that music thank goodness is still the universal language. Maybe music is the key to alleviate all this drama that is happening around the world. We are on the brink of WW III. Who knows, maybe at the current "hot spots" like Iraq, Haiti, etc., there's some DJ that is maybe cutting up some form of music just to try and help alleviate all the conflicts that surround us. To be continued...

Atmosphere in Ireland
by Tall Paul Lowe

April 26, 2004

When I walked into the gig Mr. Dibbs was getting ready to grace the turntables with his presence and show why he is all that. The man graced us with some lovely cutting style and if I am truly been honest, the main reason why I went to this gig was to check out the man himself. Before last night I did not know any of Atmosphere's music which I found at the end of the night was a big mistake. Slug is a very talented MC and very down to earth. He is an MC in this game for the love of Hip Hop and making good quality Hip Hop at that. He made sure that the crowd was involved in everything that he and Luckyiam PSC were doing while on stage. The mood was very somber but very cool. Everyone was chilled and having a great time. The rhymes were unbelievable. Every word and syllable was so crystal clear.

The talk of Bush came up and Slug suggested instead of cheering for Dubya we should boo him. This meant every time that Slug or Luckyiam PSC mentioned his name we all booed him. Slug made up a freestyle of this and just kept flowing while the crowd kept booing. Mr. Dibbs at this point still had the bandanna tied around his face and baseball cap on his head. He kind of looked like a terrorist. The boys stated to break it down and threw down a mosh pit with Dibbs cutting the fuck out of the hardcore guitar tunes. Everyone jumped in the pit and just seemed to get involved. Luckyiam PSC even stage dived. Slug told a story about him been on the tour bus with Luckyiam PSC, Dibbs and a few others. He mentioned the fact that on this particular day he had received bad news and his girl of 5 years dumped him. He found these tablets, took them and mixed them with alcohol and he sat staring out the window buzzing and seeing weird and wonderful shapes.

Towards the end of the show some girl got up on stage and wanted to dance with Slug. Luckyiam PSC was having none of this and proceeded to escort the girl of stage. Slug and Luckyiam PSC said as they were approaching the end of their show and that they wanted to freestyle. At the end of the night the guys said they should come to Ireland more often as they felt a lot of love from the people here. Between the 3 of them they passed around a pint of Arthur. Slug gave a huge shout out and respect to DJ Flip for his opening set and said that he hooked up with in Flip before in Minnesota where Flip crashed on his floor and drank beer with Slug and his girlfriend.


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