Ohio State coach Jim Tressel
There has been much talk in the sports world regarding one of the most successful coaches in NCAA football history. Jim Tressel, head coach of the Ohio State Buckeyes, has resigned because of his involvement, or lack thereof, with some of his athletes engaging in illegal activities.
for the full story.
The student athletes were trading their conference rings and other memorabilia in exchange for tattoos and cash. This is what disturbs me. Trading your conference ring for a tattoo — who does that!? I guess achieving excellence in football at the collegiate level and having a ring to show for it means nothing to these gentlemen. I know these guys need money and all, but it's not like they don't have all the perks that come with being on a Division I football team: scholarships, room and board, tutors. I just find it disrespectful. It's too bad that Tressel got caught with his hand in the jar. I still got love for Jim since he was at Youngstown State, even though I'm a Michigan fan. It's a shame that situations such as this happen more times than not in these college programs. I guess it was time to make an example by lowering the boom on one of the most successful coaches. The athletes know that its illegal, but it's common practice and the powers at be usually turn a blind eye. That's one of the perks that I alluded to earlier. At some point, you have to smarten up. At least get a car out of the deal like
Terrelle Pryor. I bet most of the guys who did it were on the bench and had little bargaining power to get a car. Hopefully Tressel can bounce back soon
. Maybe even come back to coach the YSU Penguins. What's more, I hope these student athletes develop more character and class off the field, develop there bodies and skills on the field.
I've been watching a lot of movies over this Memorial Day weekend. Most recently I've went to see Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. In this latest installment of the Pirates, Jack Sparrow and Barbossa embark on a journey for the fountain of youth. They are met with opposition from Blackbeard and Spanish sailors.
There were mixed reviews regarding the film, but I have to say that it was on par with the other films. Before seeing the movie, I thought I would miss Will Turner (Orlando Bloom) and Elizabeth Swan (Keira Knightly), but that was not the case. Aside from being visually stunning, Penelope Cruz was convincing in her role as Blackbeard's daughter. The addition of Blackbeard and the mermaids added a new dynamic to the Pirates series.
The effects and cinematography were done well. This was the first movie I've seen in IMAX 3D, but I would have liked seeing it on the regular screen just as well. You can expect epic battles as the music of Hans Zimmer plays in the background, giving the film energy. I would definitely see this movie again. Although it is not my favorite of the series, this latest installment is just as entertaining and intriguing as its predecessors.
Take a look at the trailer for Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides:
I went to see the movie Bridesmaids the other night, and I think it's hilarious. Not your average chick flick. In fact, It's more like guy humor for girls. If this were a movie with guys pulling half the stunts the women are in this film, it would be viewed as crass. Double standards aside, the women pull this comedy off very well.
Bridesmaids is about a maid of honor (Kristen Wiig) who has to juggle planning her best friend's (Maya Rudolph) wedding, her relationship problems, career crisis, living situation, and the relationship between the other brides maids.
As can be expected from the Saturday Night Live cast-members, Rudolph and Wiig are very funny. I was surprised to see actress Rose Byrne (Helen) pull off her comedic role so well after last seeing her portray a more serious character in the movie Adam, but she does this role justice. In fact, the whole cast is brilliant. The chemistry between the actresses gives the film a sense of "realness" amidst the more gut-busting comedic moments. My favorite character in the movie is Megan (Melissa McCarthy). She is full of surprises and the way McCarthy portraits her is fantastic.
I would definitely recommend that you see this movie. Fellas, don't be afraid because of the title; you will definitely get a kick out of this one, but be warned. You might view women a little different after seeing how they really act when your not around. Check out the trailer below to get you geared up to go out and see it in theaters:
It's been a dreary couple of days here in NYC. So to pick up my spirits, I decided to make a list of my favorite dances of all time and the songs that go with them. Here we go:
5. The Stanky Legg- When you hear the beginning of this beat you know what time it is! A lot of people hate on this dance, but it smacks in the club and when everybody's doing it its a good time. I like it because you can groove to it and have fun.
4. The Chicken Head- This was one of my favorites back in high school, during my marching band days. We used to do this on the football field i believe, lol. All the good dances came out back then in 2000 to 2003, and this was one of my favorites.
3.The Harlem Shake- Back in the day this was MY DANCE! Me and my homie Marques would tear the party up with this. Just shake your shoulders. I think I was on the level of these New York cats back in my prime. I chose this song to represent for the Shake because the little kids in the video were doin their thing. I just might have to catch the train uptown to see what's really good.
2. The Dougie- My new favorite. I love that it's all about the groove, like dances were back when I was growing up in the early 90's. Since it's inspired by one of the New Jack Swing era greats, Doug E. Fresh, you can expect it to have that kinda groove to it. Shout out to D-town too. they're coming up with all the new dances.
I had to put this at number one. I love the free-form rawness of this dance. You can go from the birthday party to the battlezone with this. I also love the movie Rize
, which chronicles the dance movement in Los Angeles. Next time you in the club, GET BUCK!
M-Bone from the hip-hop group Cali Swag District
It's crazy. Here I was, happy as can be, dancing to "Teach Me How to Dougie" by Cali Swag District and about to write something about the song, and then I look down at the comments on the Youtube video and see that M-Bone was murdered Sunday night in his hometown of Inglewood, California. One fourth of CSD, Mbone's public persona seemed to be a fun loving, quiet guy, yet his life was taken in violence.
My first thoughts when I learned of the way he died was that someone was probably jealous of his success. Him being who he is and still living in the hood, may have provoked someone to do this. I'm not sure what caused the event but, I hate to see a life go from unnecessary violence. Hip-hop has seen too many succumb to the streets.
It's hard to believe that someone who's claim to fame is "Teach Me How to Dougie" would lose his life in such a way. I hope that young men and women learn to handle their issues in more constructive ways. Life is too short as it is. We need to build each other instead of perpetually tearing each other down. For more on the story click here.
June 2011 Cover of PC World
We've come a long way in society since Moses wrote the Ten Commandments on stone tablets. Now there are dozens of mobile tablet devices to choose from that not only allow you to write, but read books, surf the web, access email and listen to music. with tablets gaining steam, how do you know which one is right for you? They aim to answer that very question in the latest issue of PC World
. PC World compared Apple's operating system with the BlackBerry Tablet OS and Android 3.0 in several categories: Home Screen, Mail, Web, Multimedia, Apps, and Best Overall. The writer felt the Android 3.0 had the advantage as far as home screen functionality and web browsing capabilities, and mail. She felt the other tablets were too static in those applications and Androids smooth transitioning and practicability in the way it handled files
outweighed the others.
No one tablet stood out as having a clear advantage as far multimedia functionality. iPad's strength is in its integration with the iTunes, but there is no drag and drop feature for for adding music, you must perform a sync. There was no Music Beta
at the time of the writer's tests, but she states the ability of Android users to shop at various stores to music. On the downside, there is no dedicated video player and videos are stored in the Gallery with photos. The BlackBerry tablet has the ability to output 1080p video to a television and still allow users to access to the web. Vertical images may have trouble rotating horizontally, however. Not surprisingly, the iOS 4.3 had the advantage as far as apps is concerned. More than 18% of of the apps in Apples iStore are optimized for the iPad. Android has a hundred-plus apps optimized and if you've used a BlackBerry device then you know some of the apps aren't that great.The best overall tablet OS wen to Apple's iOS, even though Android had the advantage in several categories. When Android fixes it's drawbacks and more apps become available, then the author believes it will be in a dogfight with Apple. Other tablets that were mentioned include: Galaxy Tab, TouchPad, G-Slate, Azpen, Iconia Tab, Flyer.As a music producer, I am interested in the development of these tablets. Their portability
make them ideal for production set-ups when traveling or transferring material from your home setup to the studio. Also they would be great for using on tour. Apple has already positioned its iPad as musician friendly in some of its commercials, we'll see how many other tablets follow suit.
Have you heard about Google's latest offering, Music Beta
? If not, check out this article here
. This cloud music and movie service will allow users to upload 20,000 songs and sync files between their phone and tablet devices running on the Android system, as well as computers. This service allows songs to be stored in a "cloud" (the web) and made accessible through apps, eliminating the need for cables and files that take up storage space.
With the new music and movie services, and its growing line of phone and tablet devices, Google is poised to compete with Apple head on. The idea of cloud service has been debated for a few years now and seems to be gaining steam with Google's latest venture. Amazon also has launched a cloud service of its own. The fact that the royalty rates have been squared away for streaming audio makes this much less of a struggle for the content creators, although Google has launched its service without the backing of record labels, which isn't surprising because the major labels always seem to be the last ones to the party. Cloud music seems as though it could work in the digital era where everyone owns a smart phone, but some say it is not the best option. That's certainly the case according to Bob Lefsetz. In one of his recent letters about Google's new service (Click here to read the full letter) he makes a strong case for the subscription business model. He believes that the music industry must adopt the subscription model because it has proven effective, siting Netflix's success despite much content being unavailable for streaming. He believes the future is in subscription and not up the in the clouds.
I think the future is maybe a little bit of of both cloud and subscription. From a storage and accessibility standpoint, cloud services make the most sense. Combining storage capability of cloud with the cost effectiveness of subscription would strike a balance between the businesses and consumers. I believe the subscription model would go over more smoothly if major labels can work out a deal with internet/phone providers to attach a "music cost" into the cable and telephone packages they sell. Hopefully
something will finalize soon, as far as the economics of the music industry is concerned. Maybe then we can focus on what's really important...THE MUSIC! In the mean time check out this video about Music Beta:
In honor of the late great Bob Marley
on his 30th Anniversary, I'm posting this track I did a few years back. I named the track after the legendary Marley and sampled some percussion from a song of his. I remember around the time i made this, I had just got his Best of
... CD I believe from a friend of mine. I was just listening to the tracks on there, thinking, I gotta make something with that old reggae feel like Marley had. Vibe to it as you remember the legacy of Bob Marley
on this day. One Love!
April 2011 Cover of Fortune Magazine
I recently was reading the latest Fortune Magazine cover story on the current state of Twitter. Since everyone and there mother is utilizing the power of the tweet, this revolutionary company is always the microscope. With its plethora of leadership issues and lack of product development, The company will be under greater scrutiny as competitors continue to gain market share. Having read the cover story, I found these points most interesting:
- Approximately half of Twitter users are no longer active on the network.
- Ad revenues were only $45 million compared to Facebook's 1.86 billion.
- 25% of users producers 90% of the tweets.
- 50% of users access twitter across multiple platforms.
- Users created common abbreviations such as hashtags and retweets.
The fact that nearly half of the accounts on Twitter are inactive says that there is still a bit of a learning curve to get over. Also the idea that one must go out of their way to constantly tweet and look at tweets may turn people off of the service. Twitter is a great promotional tool for businesses and people trying to spread a particular message, but can be off-putting for the more casual social-networker.Twitter's lack of ad revenue needs to be rectified quickly. Thus far, ad sales seems to be the only viable revenue stream that produces results in the social-networking world. Twitter has become big enough and influential enough that the bottom line is the most important aspect of the company. Twitter's user activity is indicative of how the digital era is. With so many upstarts and alternatives, most people only stick with a service for a short time and then its on to the next. Also, the ability and the necessity to have accessibility over multiple platforms has caused usage to
shrink from a metrics standpoint. It becomes more difficult to analyze exactly who is using your service when its being used over a wide variety of websites, applications, and mobile devices. The world is shrinking with each technological advance. At some point I think we'll see a company develop a site that incorporates the best of Twitter, Facebook, Myspace
, Stumble Upon, Tumbler, Digg...etc, basically becoming "THE" social network; everything to everyone. This might be a little too ambitious, but maybe Twitter will become it once it bolsters its product development and figures out which direction it wants to fly.Read the full Fortune article here.If you haven't heard it yet, listen to my Twitter song "Tweet Tweet (Jungle Bird)."
I've been listening to a lot of R&B lately. Early 90's R&B that is. They don't make it like they used to. This track below is something I've recently been working on that makes use of a sample from Tony Toni Tone's jam "Whatever You Want." I originally wanted to go in a more smooth direction with it, but in the process of creating it evolved into something a little different. I may add a few more things to the track and record some vocals, but for now it is what it is. Let me know if you have any ideas on what I should do. Enjoy!