Joined on 2/9/06
Posted by 36Holla - November 30th, 2009
Tomorrow (December 1st) I'm going to be undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery for an ACL and meniscus tear in my right knee. I got these injuries from playing basketball a few months ago, and have limping around on my job, which requires me to be moving around a great deal, for all that time. So now I'm ready to get this done and get on with the recovery. I don't know how long it'll take before its fully healed (recovery time is different for everyone I guess) or how long I'll be off work exactly but the prospect of being off work and getting paid at the same time is pretty sweet.
This will also be a good (forced) opportunity to find out just how hard it is to change clothes, go to the bathroom, and get in and out of the shower while only using one leg. Fun times ahead, I'm sure.
12/15: I'm slowly going insane from being inside all the time. All I do is browse the internet, play video games, and do leg exercises. Countless leg exercises. The worst part is that I feel like it's not doing much at all to improve my overall leg motion. I still can't bend it too far or fully straighten it out. Compared to last week though, I'm able to get around a lot easier and I can even stand in one place without crutches now, but I still can't walk without them. Can't wait to be able to drive again.
12/28: Tomorrow marks 4 weeks since the surgery. I'm now able to get around without crutches albeit slowly, and I've begun to climb and go down stairs without them too. The things that were hard to do two weeks ago such as sitting down, dressing, or getting into the shower are much easier and more pain free to accomplish now. In physical therapy, Ive begun to use the stationary bike and increase the difficulty of the exercises that I'm doing to strengthen the leg.
Posted by 36Holla - August 25th, 2009
Yeah so if my username didn't tip you off, I like rap, and hip hop music. I know most people here hate those genres for one reason or another. Might have something to do with a natural fear/aversion to black people because of negative stereotypes, thinking that there is no skill involved, or the worst excuse yet which is that ALL rap/hip hop is about money, cars, degrading women, and drugs. Just one thing I want to say about that is that mainstream rap/hip hop focuses on that stuff and is not quality music. There are many talented underground artists who have intelligent messages in their music but they don't get exposure because those messages are not what makes money with radio and record companies. What I'm trying to get at here is that I think that if people are exposed to the right group of artists, then the appreciation for the genres would grow.
So here's my rap/hip hop starter kit for those who are willing to give it a chance.
And right off the bat my goal is to get those pre-conceived notions of violence/degradation of women out the window.
Jedi Mind Tricks - Uncommon Valor (Anti-Vietnam rap song. Flow in it is so smooth that it's insane how they're able to fit so many words in such a short space.)
Eminem - Beautiful. (A song about taking on other people's point of view and realizing where others who are different than us are coming from.)
CunninLynguists - Brain Cell (Song about making general intelligent decisions such as valuing education, and not getting caught up with drugs. Basically telling you to use your brain cells or you'll end up in a prison cell.)
Update: 2nd Music Set
Five Deez - Late October (Quick shoutout for them. Great group, and this song in particular is one of their best.)
Cyne - Paradise (I recommend checking out Cyne beyond this song because almost all of their stuff is solid. What I got out of this was them talking about how making music should be about the message and not about money. Definitely check out their other stuff.)
Common - The People (Song that highlights how people band together for support in their communities, and turning negative situations into positive ones. Common is a mainstay in this category of good hip hop/rap and I highly recommend checking out his other stuff)
Dead Prez - Hip Hop (Some might recognize this as Dave Chappelles back ground music for his show, and besides that, this song is really good. You might have to actually look at the lyrics to understand why: Lyrics The song's a reflection on the genre of hip hop and what it has somewhat become with moving into the mainstream. The genre's new focus on materialism is a target in the song as well as artists who are talking about their money more than a good message.)
Update: 3rd Music Set
Jay Z - My 1st Song (Jay Z was mentioned to me before and it's not a bad idea to start off with him. The message of My 1st Song, which should be very apparent when you hear the voice of Biggie Smalls in the intro, is that when you're in the creative process of making a song, you should put as much enthusiasm and effort into it as you did when you first started out and the process was new and exciting. It's a message to not get lazy and cut corners. This message can not only be applied to making music though. It can be applied to almost any type of creative task or job making the message more mearningful.)
Atmosphere - Guarantees (I came across this song recently and it led me to explore Atmosphere more. It's a song talking about one particular person who fell off the 'normal path' and the problems they're faced with. This is a song that can be highly interpretable but what I kept coming back to was the line "I should have schooled it up when I was younger, should have stuck to the plan." It seemed to me that the problems being talked about stemmed from this decision to drop out of school. The other, and perhaps more obvious message I got out of it was that you don't know where life is going to take you, but the only thing that is for certain is it will end eventually. Lyrics)
Talib Kweli & Hi Tek - Good Mourning (Talib Kweli is a cornerstone of underground hip hop and has done a ton of songs with Hi Tek. There are a few messages in this song, including the remembrance of other Brooklyn MCs such as Big L. I also got the message that you shouldn't live for yourself or be doing things that can get you in a dangerous situation because the pain you felt is likely to follow those who you left behind such as your family and friends.)
Update: 4th Music Set
Lupe Fiasco - American Terrorist and Conflict Diamonds (Here's a double dose of Lupe as it was pointed out by TehreTard that this list lacked one of the best current rappers in the music industry. First song is a general overview of various problems present in American society such as closing schools with little care, the rich not contributing to helping the poor, and using religion as a justification for war. The title alone flips the perspective on American's as terrorists which is a thought that most American's of course don't want to have seeing as we've tried to establish ourselves as one of those 'good' countries out for the cause of peace. Conflict Diamonds uses the Kanye West background music for Diamonds are Forever, and is another take on the situation of people in Africa who mine diamonds and how rappers such as Lupe feel when they found out that they're helping fund African militias that endorse slavery, and don't give the same civil rights that everyone should have.)
Tupac - Keep Your Head Up (No it's not Changes. That's a good song, but Tupac had other great songs and we're going to focus on something that not everyone might know about. This is a song focusing on treating women right and it's his message to women in bad or hard situations to find some source of strength so that they can get through it. Very inspiring coming from Tupac and if you haven't seen some of his other stuff, look at his other songs like Never Call You Bitch Again, Young N***as and Living to Die. That last one especially with Biggie in it makes me realize how important he and Tupac were to the industry. Speaking of Biggie...)
The Notorious B.I.G - Juicy (You can't mention Tupac without talking about his East Coast counterpart. I'm not as familiar with Biggie than Tupac, but I do understand the impact he had on the genre. I found Juicy to be a good example of a rags to riches rap, but it focuses on how Biggie defied people's expectations to become successful even though people thought he wouldn't be, and not so much on the material aspect of being successful.)
De La Soul - Me Myself And I (Ending this update, I decided to go in a different direction. This was one of De La Soul's most popular songs and even so it might take more than one listen to get the meaning of the song. Watching the music video, the concept of a rap class in a school setting is seen. The portrayal of a class with the members of DLS being the only different ones and being given a hard time was their way of saying that they were trying to go in a different direction than the rest of the rap and hip hop genre which was gravitating towards more violent messages with the emergence of gangster rap. They wanted rap to contain more peaceful messages and as such they were labeled as hippies of the rap industry. Their peace message didn't actually come from being apart of the hippy movement as much as it was coming from the simple desire of the group that the music genres should focus on inspiring the audience with positive messages in their songs.)
That's all for now. Ask questions, expand on the music shown here, etc.