Inner City Soul is a Jazz/Funk\Soul/Hip-Hop band hailing from Los Angeles. Band members include: Keys: James Kaufman Drums: Ace campos Vocals: Destruct Bass: John Northup Tenor Sax: Abel Gonzalez Alto Sax: Joaquin Pacheco
The Debut Album "Picking Up The Pieces" Is Coming Soon..
"contrary to the popular belief of many who know me to be “the sober guy,” i don’t abstain from intoxicating substances because i dislike them or because i think they’re bad. i actually refrain from kickin it like that because i’d probably enjoy that activity too much.
whatever i do, i have a tendency to lean to the extreme. kinda like the explanations of these beats. choosing a more vice laden path in my younger years would have likely driven me to be far more successful socially and in my music career and ultimately ending up like Bradley Nowell (who was rad, btw.) however, since i’d like to actually live to see at least some of my 30s, blah blah etc etc.
so, in my late teens, eliminating alcohol, pills, and herb from my lifestyle ultimately boiled down to a habit of smoking copious amounts of tobacco. plenty of cigarettes were burned during the creation of these beats.
although it is becoming increasingly popular to consider cigarettes the worst thing in the world, there is some rationale behind this choice of vice. smoking can be a foul and offensive habit, no doubt. however, my experience has taught me that, contrary to mind-altering substances, tobacco doesn’t cause irreparable damage to my intuition, conscious creative thought, motivation, or my capacity to reflect. in a way, for me, it turned out to be the safest way to do something stupid to my body (something that a lot of American teenagers feel compelled to do for some reason?)
so, while the goal ideally is to live a life that is clean and healthy in all aspects, i choose to keep the preservation of my inner consciousness as the top priority because it’s actually the only tool i’ll be able to use in order to break free from material addictions and attachments in the first place. there might be a shred of circular logic in there somewhere, but hey, it worked for me.
also, i already quit smoking, so it’s whatever.
anyway, like many college students, i had also taken an interest in the armchair approach to studying the struggle of working people around the world. eventually i stumbled upon a book called Tobacco Road by Erskine Caldwell that tells a story of a family of poor white farmers in rural Georgia. it’s gotta dood named Dude in it.
the story is set during the worst years of the Great Depression when the business of many southern independent agriculturalists was pretty much destroyed. Jeeter, one of the main characters in the book, is deeply attached the land he grew up on and can’t seem to understand why he’s unable to get the resources he needs grow crops. despite the fact that he was poor, a little slow in the head, and everybody around him was comically ignorant, i didn’t see it simply as his lack of outward opportunity that kept him stuck in that rut. Jeeter’s failure had more to do with his unawareness (or unwillingness to see) that greater forces further than his locale—economic and cultural forces beyond his control—had shifted thereby making that craft he had to offer, or at least the way he had to offer it, no longer relevant.
there’s a striking parallel between this story and the tales of woe sung by so many artists that claim the “real hip-hop,” wink wink.
my buddy Ryan, the MC in Common Market, had grown up in Kentucky and would occasionally tell me stories about the various labor intensive jobs he’d worked in the South. coincidentally one of these was a brief stint in the tobacco fields. during one of our discussions i suggested the name of Caldwell’s book as the title of our next album and he said “heo yea.”
tobacco, the South, existential dilemmas, labor, the struggle for clean living, touring, debates about hip-hop, poor white people, a couple of pre-96 Dilla beat tapes i had on rotation in the Sentra hooptie—and the hilarious irony of naming a boom bappy record after a book about your boy Jeeter—all turned out to be the rather unique gamut of inspiration for this era of instrumentals.
TOBACCO, 1 is a sort of evolved, neo-‘96 era, minimalist sample based boom bappery. Good music for driving, studying, freestyling, thinking, chillin(g) and alladat."
"RAVENNA is my first collection of instrumentals that found its way to the public. Produced between 2003-2005 in a house and an apartment near Ravenna. Each track was originally composed to stand on its own which is why they all have their own unique titles. These beats eventually served as the production bed for the first album released by Blue Scholars in 2004, and the reissue of the same album with bonus tracks in 2005." Sabzi
"These instros explore similar themes found in the RAVENNA collection, just a little more evolved and clean in their sample chopping and blending. also, besides just being fascinated with samples, one thing to mention is that i made a lot of these sounds in my early 20s when i had no money. outboard synthesizers were expensive, and the soft-synth game was a little under the radar so quite frankly it was more affordable to make beats outta snatching sounds fromrecords.
lucky for me, a rap group i started with a friend earned us a little chalupa and i copped a MOTIF Rack ES. with this new toy, i could sprinkle bits of synth and bassy-er bass lines into the music and slowly gravitate myself back toward my West Coast ways.
these 9 tracks were paired up with words spat by Geo (Prometheus Brown) and released as The Long March EP by Blue Scholars in October of 2005" Sabzi
"A bulk of these tracks were composed during a period when the home studio was located in a cozy attic atop a house across the street from The Maplewood Playfield.
in the summertime we’d run extension cables from the house, over the trees, and across the street to the field to power turntables and speakers while the homie from Whitecenter who hooked me up with my first car grilled hella koobideh and joojeh kabob for about 30 of our friends.
the crazy landlady tried to remodel the house while we were living in it, at one point putting the kitchen entirely outta commission simultaneously talkin bout raising the rent. she also smelled hella bad.
The Maplewood Playfield contains (with a couple exceptions) the breakbeat-iest sounding instrumentals out of the first three collections and concludes the “drum-break era” of my production. these 15 tracks were selected to serve as the production bed for the eponymous Common Market album."
"2006 was kind of a dark period. a lot of attention was on the war, housing was really expensive, nobody liked the president, and Dilla had just died. maybe this is what inspired me to make a bunch of beats that some would call melancholy, hopeful, or glorious. i liked that. this collection moves away from the classic drum-break approach and explores a whole lot of snares and off-beat claps, the fusion of samples and synthesizers, and a handful of live instrumentation. a darker, electronic and also organic vibe. these instrumentals served as the production bed for the second Blue Scholars LP, “Bayani”" Sabzi
Sabzi of Blue Scholars decided to drop a lot of his old instrumentals. The comments come from Sabzi own's Bandcamp and official site .
Part 2 of the "Love For The Music" series by MoonChild.
"Moonchild is the Producer/President ofHi-Hill Recordings. Hailing from Metro- Detroit, he's been influenced by hip-hop since childhood. Moonchild became inspired from an early age, choosing to follow in the footsteps of his uncle “Brian”, older brother “Oronde” and his cousin “Uncle P” – who are all respected musicians within his home state of Michigan. His talents developed first as an emcee before he soon found his calling as a producer. He cites his other musical influences from a production perspective as being J Dilla, Timbaland, and DJ Premier." (From MoonChild official site.)
"FREE CHRISTMAS DOWNLOAD! After the success of the KingUnderground/WODV collaboration we thought it would be a nice touch to say thanks to the fans of Lewis Parker, with this special Christmas day, FREE download! The track is a remake of the 'Fake Charades' song that featured on Lewis Parker's first full length LP 'Masquerades & Sillhouettes' back in 1998'. The beat has been reworked in the SP-1200 and the vocals have been rapped again! Also features the instrumental version too! We hope you enjoy it & have a Merry Christmas from Lewis Parker & KingUnderground! "
Something completely different ...""Little Armenia (L.A.) is the sound of a diaspora that settled in Los Angeles, Armenian music filtered through Dr. Dre's The Chronic and underground hip-hop." - LA Weekly"...Enjoy.