And since today’s a relaxing Labor Day, it feels like an undun day…
BieberMania is back in full force with his VMA mini-comeback this past Sunday cementing his new single.
He does that further during his takeover of Jimmy Fallon last night. He performs said single “What Do You Mean?”, both for real with The Roots, and as a country ballad. The cool points for me come with his freestyle with Black Thought. Enjoy that, the drum-off with Questlove, and more below.
I just caught this pretty wild story via Okayplayer that deserves a repost for our readers who would appreciate it just as much as I.
Questlove shared his account of playing for J Dilla at the 2000 Detroit Electronic Music Festival… while bleeding the whole time! Alas, the story…
Most of the weekend’s hip-hop was on day two, with Mayor Archer introducing Slum Village on the main stage. J Dilla – then known as Jay Dee – hung with dance as well as hip-hop producers, and remixed acts for Planet E. He also hipped Questlove to the Thomas Bangalter twelve-inches on Roulé he was sampling, turning Quest into a Daft Punk fan.
“The stage was set up weird – not a place that was ready for a band,” says Questlove. Instead of a staircase, he had to step on a plastic milk crate to get onstage. “At the time, I was dangerously obese – about 420 pounds. I took one step on the milk crate and my foot went right through it. It went three inches into [my leg]. When you get stabbed you don’t try to yank it out” – but he did. Then he got on the riser and played a two-hour set with blood pouring from his right leg. “Because of the adrenaline, it was painless. And of course, being mortified in front of thousands of people – and my idol, Dilla – I played it off like I wasn’t hurt.” When they finished, Questlove forewent a hospital visit because Dilla wanted to play him a new remix. “He said, ‘What about your leg?’” That summer, the drummer began a diet, eventually shedding 150 pounds.
This is part of Red Bull Music Academy’s larger piece, which is worth a full read if you liked that above. Crazy!
Cool news for music heads and aspiring artists alike as Instagram has launched an official @Music channel. The official words from CEO Kevin Systrom are below, with Questlove kicking things off with IG. I hit the follow button and can see this becoming a nice little outlet for fans and tastemakers too.
The music community is — and always has been — an important part of Instagram. For the past four years, we have become the home for artists big and small — a place where people across the musical spectrum come to share stories, reveal their creativity and connect directly with fans.
Today we’re launching @music, a new account dedicated to exploring music around the globe, from those who create it to the community around it.
Each week, we’ll take a look at the musical experience on Instagram. That means showing you a different side of artists you know and love, like Questlove (@questlove), and introducing you to up-and-coming talents from around the world, like Tricot (@ikkyu193). It means highlighting music photographers, album illustrators, instrument makers and, of course, fans. In the Instagram tradition, we will also welcome community participation with a new, music-themed monthly hashtag project.
Music is a huge part of all of our lives here at Instagram. It’s a passion of ours, and we know it’s a passion of yours. So follow along at @music — we think you’ll discover something new. — Kevin Systrom, Founder and CEO
Art by @jaredeberhardt
Let’s begin our Thursday with some humor — hip hop related of course.
Questlove appeared on this week’s Parks & Rec, making a cameo as Donna’s estranged brother. Wow, this sounds awesome and I’m now even more mad at myself that I haven’t started the season yet. Changing that today. ICYMI as well, here’s the clip up above.
Your Saturday morning cartoons crossover into hip hop today as Action Bronson stars as “Uncle Taco” in these new ‘Animation Domination’ shorts.
Also, ?uestlove plays Ja Rule. Need I say more?
Have a couple hours on your hand this Thanksgiving?
I suggest you carve out some time (no pun intended) to let this run in the background: Chris Rock and Questlove talk with Peter Rosenberg & Cipha Sounds on the Juan Epstein podcast, recalling some awesome stories and having a genuinely good time throughout.
Among them: Questlove begins the video portion above by recalling how he found out about Biggie’s death. It’s a fascinating tale that brings us back to how Biggie and The Roots weren’t all the way right before the untimely passing.
Also: Chris Rock calls Kanye West’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy the best album of the past 50 years. Damn. Strong words, but said without doubt by Rock. He also describes some in-studio experiences of the album like when he himself recorded his part for “Blame Game”. The full pod is below — a shorter 20 minute clip is above (extracted from the 18 minute mark in the full 2 hours.) Great stuff from Juan Epstein.