Since their debut album, 1993′s Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), Wu-Tang has become synonymous with gritty, direct lyrics and beats that draw from classic soul, horn-blasted funk, cinematic curios, and dirty guitar licks (among many others.) With each successive album, the group solidifies their hold on hip-hop, watching over the years as rappers, trends and ephemeral styles come and go and become musical footnotes in the game.
As devoted fans clamor and salivate for anything Wu-related, Gold Dust & Nature Sounds are proud to announce the release of Return of the Wu & Friends, produced and compiled by Wu-Tang Clan producer/DJ Mathematics and including some exclusive tracks, lost gems and old time favorites featuring all nine emcees.
The 16 tracks featured on Return of the Wu & Friends were compiled from songs recorded during the group’s critically acclaimed 2000 album The Wthrough 2008, including exclusive tracks like “Steppin 2 Me” featuring GZA, Inspectah Deck and Masta Killa. The producer also offers a slew of new remixes, including “Respect Mine” and “Clap”. On the former, featuring Raekwon, Method Man and Cappadonna, the sprightly piano loop found on the original (from Mathematics’ 2003 solo album Love, Hell or Right) gets flipped into a slower, more ominous track anchored by a funky slap bass line.
On Return of the Wu & Friends, every member gets their chance to shine, backed by Mathematics’ acute ability to perfectly match each member’s cadence and tone to the respective beat. Slower, more soulful tracks like “Da Way We Were” and “Strawberries & Cream” are balanced with classic Wu funk like “Iron God Chamber” and “It’s What It Is” (the latter the new superhero anthem for the 21st century.) For anyone fiending for more Wu classics, Return of the Wu & Friends offers up an album’s worth of tracks sure to fill the need for Wu bangers.
Having known the Clan since the mid-80s and produced for them since 1996, Mathematics is no stranger to the group. Starting off as GZA’s DJ during the emcee’s Cold Chillin’ days, the producer has since gone on to create a diverse and memorable production catalog with the group, contributing tracks to The W and 8 Diagrams, as well as Ghostface Killah’s Supreme Clientele, GZA’s Beneath The Surface, Method Man’s Tical 2000: Judgement Day and Method Man & Redman’s Blackout!.
Wu-Tang- The Return of The Wu-Friends will be released on 2-16-10 on Gold Dust Records
DL Link to “Clap 2010″ f/Raekwon, Ghostface Method Man & U-God: http://www.mediafire.com/?kynizeiwjmy
A new Guinness World Record was set for the largest serving of hummus this week in the multi-cultural village of Abu Ghosh near Jerusalem, Israel. The record-breaking hummus dish weighed 8,992 pounds and was spread into a 20-foot satellite dish, beating the previous Guinness World Record set in Lebanon two months earlier. The event was organized by Jawdat Ibrahim, owner of the Abu Ghosh restaurant, and presided over by Guinness judge Jack Brookbank.
The Israeli Arab village of Abu Ghosh was established in 1520. It was built over the ruins of the biblical town of Kiryat Ye’arim (Town of Forests). It was here (according to I Chronicles 13:5-8) that the Ark of the Covenant was kept for 20 years, before being moved by David to Jerusalem. Abu Ghosh is now known for its restaurants and International Liturgical Music festival.
Madagascar’s Razia Said Issues a Soulful and Poignant Musical Call for an End to Environmental and Cultural Destruction in her Native Land
|Download the track “Babonao” from Zebu Nation
Watch Videos from Zebu Nation
Zebu Nation is the outcome of a personal journey that began in February 2007 when Razia returned to Madagascar to reconnect with the land she left as an eleven year-old child. For six weeks she traveled around the country in a van with a group of musicians and a film and audio recording crew. Along the way, she visited inspiring local musicians and saw firsthand the damage done to her homeland’s forests and landscapes. The results of her journey are reflected in the stunning collection of songs featured on Zebu Nation, and in an interactive multimedia website (www.raziasaid.com) that includes songs, pictures and videos from her travels.
Featuring Razia’s smooth and soulful voice, Zebu Nation weaves Malagasy music styles such as tsapiky and salegy with contemporary arrangements to create an uplifting and accessible sound rooted in the Indian Ocean island’s strong musical traditions. Zebu Nation features some of Madagascar’s most celebrated instrumentalists including the guitar and marovany (a box lyre) player Dozzy Njava and the world-renowned accordionist Regis Gizavo. “Their presence in these songs really gives this album that special Malagasy feel,” notes Razia.
Razia began singing for her family in Madagascar at the age of three. At age eleven, Razia went to live with her mother in Gabon, West Africa, where she joined the local church choir. As a teenager, she was sent to boarding school in France, where she played guitar and began writing songs. Seeking stability, Razia obtained her doctorate in pharmacy in France, and has lived in Italy, Bali and Ibiza. She now lives in Harlem, New York where she performs regularly at several of the city’s well-known venues.
Madagascar is home to thousands of plants and fauna unique to the island, which is the world’s fourth largest and situated in the Indian Ocean off the southeastern coast of Africa. One third of its native forests and vegetation have disappeared in the last thirty years, and scientists predict that several species of amphibians and reptiles found in Madagascar’s mountainous north could become extinct in the next 50-100 years because of global warming.
The loss of forests in Madagascar is what galls Razia the most. “To see my country stripped like this is heartbreaking.” Her song “Slash and Burn,” is an outcry against the rampant practice of clearing brush which devastates Madagascar’s fragile soil. “What I saw shocked and appalled me,” Razia says. “I found the decimation of what once made Madagascar unique in the world: its intense, vivid flora and fauna, its forests, its very essence. I saw an entire country being destroyed.”
In addition to delivering an urgent message, Zebu Nation creates a personal, soulful portrait of Madagascar. Razia says, “The songs ofZebu Nation let listeners journey to the magical place I have always known and loved.” Songs such as “Yo Yo Yo” and “Mifohaza” speak to the richness of Malagasy sounds and rhythms, while “Omama” sends a message of love and thanks to Razia’s grandmother, who still lives on the island.
“As the strife and political chaos of the country are growing daily,” says Razia, “some of the Malagasy people are turning to art to inspire unity. We want to share in that movement and tie in with communities and organizations that are working on projects for change in Madagascar.
MANU MALIK RELEASES DEBUT ALBUM “HOOKS & BARS” ALONGSIDE THE LAUNCH OF HIS WEBSITE AND BLOG
Manu Malik in cooperation with the internet marketing team of Q21 Productions, is proud to announce the release of his debut album “Hooks & Bars”. “Hooks & Bars” delivers 17 tracks of raw hip-hop beats meshed with compelling stories told through sharp, witty lyrics. Straying away from the frequently used “criminal mind state” persona hip-hop is accustomed to; the album is set to shine light on the too often left in the dark lyrical side of hip-hop. “Hooks & Bars” will be available for download in February 2010 on iTunes and all major digital retailers.
Hailing from Ottawa, Manu Malik is far from your average rapper whose claim to fame is based on “hustling”. He is a University of Ottawa graduate who spends the hours of 9-5 as a contracting specialist. From there, he divides the rest of time between being a devoted father and an emcee. While the day job provides funds for studio time, it’s his time with his family along with his outlook on life that fuels his lyrics.
Listing legendary emcees like Tupac, Nas and Rakim as major influences, Manu aims to convey hip-hop that brings honesty and a positive attitude through the music. Manu says “I consider any hip-hop artist who takes you to their environment and projects complete honesty in their lyrics, an inspiration. Whether it would be Young Jeezy or Lupe Fiasco, they bring you to their world when you listen to their music; and that’s what I wanted to do with this album.”
Teaming up with Q21 Productions, Manu is also set to launch his own website www.manumalikmusic.com and blog to coincide with the release of his album. Q21 Productions, will be handling Manu’s internet marketing campaign to ensure his presence online; ranging from internet radio to designing and maintaining his website. Alongside his website and blog, the outspoken emcee will also be tapping into all the social networks (Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, Reverb Nation, etc.) to make sure he gets his music and thoughts out on a global scale. Manu adds, “The World Wide Web has definitely changed the face of the music industry. These days, you just can’t put out great music, people want to know every little detail about you and the internet will definitely be the place to find Manu Malik.”