Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Kids in France LOVE B L A C K I E

As evidenced by this video...

Austin's Phranchyze to compete in the Red Bull Emsee US Final tonight!

It's been a long rhyme coming but tonight it's really goin' down in Atlanta! Red Bull Emsee US Finals, and once again our Austin homey Phranchyze is in the running. And will probably win. #bias

Everyone at the Houston battle went hard, but alas, Phranchyze is kind of untouchable. He's a battle MC Monster and everyone knows it. I think tonight he should do pretty well, no hate towards anyone else, but Phran is a serious MC and about to do some big things. I think his confidence levels at the moment should be through the roof and its really about to go down. Press release info on the event is below. I wish this was gonna be shown online I wanna see how this goes down!

Other Competing MCs include: Mic Stewart (Philadelphia), D’Meitz (Washington D.C.), Jonny Storm (Miami), Hostyle (Detroit), Phranchyze (Austin), Dirtbag Dan (Los Angeles), Bishop I (Seattle) and Pat G (Boston)

What: Red Bull EmSee National Finals
When: Tuesday, May 29th
Where: The Masquerade (695 North Ave, Atlanta)
Doors: 8pm, Show: 9:30pm | Admission is FREE; Must Be 18+
Who: Judges - David Banner, Big K.R.I.T and DJ Premier | Special performance by David Banner | Hosted by Phonte | Sounds by 9th Wonder
Doors: 8pm
Official Website: www.Redbullusa.com/emsee


Hosted by Phonte with special performances by David Banner, Big K.R.I.T. & DJ Premier And 9th Wonder on the decks Red Bull EmSee is an invitation-only battle series designed to find the best freestyle rappers in the country and give them a national platform to show their skills and earn acclaim. The nine-city tour makes its final stop Atlanta for the Red Bull EmSee National Finals on May 29th at Masquerade with Phonte playing master of ceremonies. Winners of the regional qualifiers hosted in Los Angeles, Seattle, Philadelphia, Houston, Boston, Washington D.C., Detroit and Miami will face off for the national title in front of a judging panel of hip-hop heavyweights, including the dynamic David Banner, Island Def Jam’s Big K.R.I.T and Gang Starr’s DJ Premier; while Grammy-award winning producer/DJ 9th Wonder commands the turntables throughout the competition.

Red Bull EmSee’s innovative battle format challenges MCs to bring the true freestyle spirit back by adding a twist to the conventional head-to-head clash. During the competition, MCs are posed with a variety of challenges designed to showcase their technique, creativity and dexterity. In addition to spitting flows over beats and a cappella, MCs are challenged to come up with hard-hitting verses straight off the dome based on visual cues and words submitted by fans.

“The format of the challenge forces you to stick to the true essence of freestyling, which I think gives it freshness and definite authenticity,” said reigning Red Bull EmSee National Champion, Fowl.

When it’s all said and done, the national champion will earn a trip to Los Angeles to record at Red Bull Studio with a headlining producer of his choice. For more information on Red Bull EmSee, please visit www.redbullusa.com/emsee.

WHERE: Masquerade – 695 North Ave. Atlanta, GA 30308
Doors: 8pm, Show: 9:30pm | Admission is FREE; Must Be 18+

Yala al Amar (Yala to the Moon)

Shout out to my brother Suhel Nafar from DAM & Jacqueline Reem Salloum from the film Slingshot Hip-Hop! This family friendly short film is super dope.

Peddling cds on the streets of the West Bank, Aseel uses her imagination to magically remake the world around her.

Directed by: Suhel Nafar & Jacqueline Reem Salloum

Starring: Asil Kadura, Nizar Ablasee, Karim Nafar, Tamer Nafar, Hiba Natour, Ibrahim Sakallah, Nada Nafar

Camera: Sari Bisharat, Ayed Fadel, Suhel Nafar

Written by: Suhel Nafar, Jacqueline Reem Salloum, Tamer Nafar

Edited by: Jacqueline Reem Salloum and George Cox

Graphics and Animation: Suhel Nafar

Art Director and Stylist: Nada Nafar

Music: Bassam Beroumi, DAM, Rami Saleh, Nabil Nafar YouTube - Videos from this email

Saturday, May 26, 2012

B L A C K I E Live in France!

Sorry friends, didn't mean to slack once again, but I been in Europe, and preparing to be in Europe and well its been 80 degrees and like a good European I have been outside, with the people, as opposed to tethered to the internet soooooo no posts, till now!

VIDEO of B L A C K I E live in Metz France. Played outside in this crazy courtyard, super old beautiful building, vibes were super right. He killlleed it today in Paris. Video coming soon, but for now check this out. Its really goin' down out here.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Did you hear the Austin Red Bull Thre3style Preview Special on Raido KAOS?


Interviews with Kid Slyce, Bird Peterson and Abe the Assassin. We also give it up to Chuck Brown, Rest IN Peace.

Austin Red Bull Thre3style Competitors Ready To Take It National!

OMG OMG OMG OMGGGGGGGGG Its really goin' down tomorrow night at the Beauty Ballroom (8:30 p.m., 2015 Riverside Dr., 18+). The Red Bull Thre3style Austin Qualifier is finally here. Eight of our finest DJs will lay it all on the line tomorrow night in hopes of reaching the Thre3style National Finals later this year. Austin already has PHRANCHYZE in the Emsee Battle, set to happen May 29th in Atlanta, so its only right that one of our DJs make it to the end of the road with Thre3style.

RSVP at Do512 NOW to get in FREE (offer ends Friday end of day)


Txt ATX3STYLE to 72855 and it's all good.


We here at AustinSurreal are obviously pretty psyched about it, so we wrangled all 8 of the participating DJ's to give you a look at what you can expect this Saturday night. But don't get too confident, Thre3style is all about the element of surprise. Weaving multiple styles into one coherent, party rocking set.


Fellas, are you ready?
Click through to learn more about what these dudes bring to the table.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

TXPowerhouseTV Footage From Pachanga Fest After Party

Featuring Sertified, J. Goods and Snow tha Product!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Pachanga Fest 2012 Wrap Up!

Feel the funky real! It really went down this past weekend in the ATX! It was Pachanga Fest time once again and man, what a weekend. This, as I have stated a couple years in a row right here on this blog, is one of my favorite festivals year in year out! Latin music from all over the musical spectrum, in one place at one time, and its just gorgeous. Also the weather was more gorgeous on these two days than it may have ever been before in this here city, ever. At least in the past year. Hands down, Saturday was the NICEST day we have seen in Austin, TX in at least one full year. Just look at the smiles on Rich Garza (founder and el presidente of Pachanga, Inc) and Alex right here.

Suffice it to say, IT WENT DOWN. And for the first time I have inserted a jump break. MORE PICS AND FOOL REPORT AFTER THE JUMP!

Reggie Coby and Muhsinah LIVE at Hotel Vegas Last Night

OMG REAL TALK IT WENT DOWN! And I was genuinely shocked. A progressive, new, unique artist, with a couple locals, on a Monday night and the place was packed and enthusiastic. This was no joke.

I almost stayed on my couch, I can't even lie. My wife went to bed and I was like, "well maybe I'll just go to b..." and I pulled myself up and hit the streets in the life giving rain. And I am so glad that I did. First of all Hotel Vegas is one of my favorite live music venues to hang in. Its just good vibes and the right amount of raw. Place looks like the sound would suck in a punk rock way, but for Reggie's set at least, the sound was utterly perfect. I even complimented the sound man and he said he's been on the road with Gary Clark Jr. Touche, so yeah he knows what he is doing.

Anyway, Reggie Coby of the League of Extraordinary Gz really has something special. On the beats and on the mic. Singing and rapping. He's a modern day renaisssance man, if that is indeed how you spell the word. Fucking hell he's the man. The crowd went ballistic the whole time.

Even when he brought up Do Wrong and gave itup to the late, great Esbe da 6th Street Bully, may he rest in peace.

This was actually really rough. Also I am hoping there is better footage than this out there of the whole show. Twas no joke. Try not to cry, be tough like Da Bully. Yeah right...

So happy for my brother Reggie for real.

So happy, like him. He was geeked the whole night. Musinah is one of his favorites and this was the first show he ever put together on his own. Did a great job and made a real connection with the people, and hopefully Musinah.

Max Frost is also an ATX Force to be reckoned with!

Muhsinah hit the stage and brought the gorgeous for real. Her music is just that, gorgeous, and composed and played by her. She had a shaky start, singing to a laptop, but when she hit them keys and pads it was straight magic. Lots of fun to be had last night.

I want to see her again. Next time in Austin I predict Mohawk. Then the next time, Stubb's.

AUSTIN! We have a Guiness Book World Record Holder in our Midst!

David Didonato done did that! Last night just after 7pm he broke the official Guiness Book World Record for longest guitar solo! I'm not totally sure how long he actually went, but the record before him was 24 hours and 18 minutes. I took the kids down to Red 7 after school to check it out, around the 21st hour or so I guess, and dude was SHREDDING, I am talking about really, genuinely getting it in on the guitar, in a Bad Brains t-shirt, in front of 10 people and 2 cameras, just GOING. Respect to him man, I am so glad we got to witness a little bit of history. IMPORTANT history at that.

David Didonato Doing Da Damn Dang

My two chicks posted up at the bar.

The good life indeed! Thanks David for bringing this to ATX!

Bavu Blakes - Better 2 Be [co-starring BLAXsmith]

shot/directed/edited by Eric "M.O.S." Morgan for DVZN Media Track 4 from the SANCT EP available on CD and digital May 22, 2012 / produced by Reggie Coby / feat BLAXsmith / mixed and mastered by Josh Brochhausen aka DJ Sae One for Mophonics / photo and video by Eric Morgan for DVZN Media Pre-Order the SANCT EP HERE www.hiphopgrewup.com

B L A C K I E Leaves for Europe Today!

It's really happening! Houston's own B L A C K I E leaves for Europe today. OK most of the shows are in France but its a real start! Then Canada for NXNE after this. MAAAAAAN 2012 gone be his year. I'll be in Amsterdam, Metz and Paris shows. Hope to see all my people out there!

Monday, May 14, 2012

This is really happening right now in Austin
David Didonato attempts Guinness Book of World Records longest guitar solo of all time

I'm not kidding this is really happening right now and if he makes it till 7pm tonight, he wins. Wanna meet for an after school beer and cheer him on? Moms? Anyone?


Broadcasting live with Ustream

More info here.

But yeah, former J Church/Rat King/Ultimate Dragons guitarist and current Modok guitarist/music instructor David Didonato is in the house at Red 7 right now attempting to do this. This is huge. Good luck to him. May have to slide down there and cheer him on a bit. I bet the bartenders are in a great mood right about now...

I Told Y'all R. Kelly wasn't going to perform at The Mansion

Well, not all of y'all. I usually stay out of other promoters things and just let them happen. But I was kinda shocked at how many personal friends of mine, not only have no problem supporting a pedophile molestor who caught himself in the act on video, but were actually going to the Mansion thinking that R. Kelly was gonna perform on a stripper stage for a $30 ticket.

I was ready to eat my words Sunday if everyone I knew who went came back and told me how amazing the show was, but um, yeah, I was right. 100% right.

This was a "celebrity appearance" as you will soon learn in the video below. For these type of things, people pay famous people to come to their clubs, walk around a bit and then post up in the VIP. Basically you paid money to be in the same room as R. Kelly. That's all that's it. It's a hustle I cannot knock, but I for one sure as FUCK am not going to even attend any "celebrity appearances" let alone pay to do so. I hate celebrities.

So whatever, in fairness, I saw the flyers, nowhere did it say "celebrity appearance," nor did it say "just hosting." It also didn't guarantee a performance, but um, we live in Austin, the live music capital of the world. This isn't LA, this isn't NYC, this isn't even Houston. This is a place where 99% of us go out to see/hear live music. So yes, I suspect that many people in attendance had their hopes up.

Like these folks:

Julie Sunday of How To Have Sex In Texas Wants A Refund

Devon from the Austinist was not stoked about it

My man Chad at Austin360 really wasn't too pleased

But my friend Annie had a great time so whatever.

Maybe there was some merit in this. Check the video and see for yourself.

And this is the "performance"

If it sounds too good to be true, it pretty much is. Always.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Holla at a Skolla
My work on the university level as of late

(Yes I fully realize that AustinSurreal has become like, one big advertisement save for the radio show as of late, I know, I know, I need to write more. And post pics. Etc. Here is how far behind I am! And I'm even further than this OMG!)

Alright that might be a bit much, but its kind of true. A couple weeks ago I had the pleasure of speaking alongside Eric Manegold at the University of Montana for some one on one sessions and to a class in the Entertainment Management section of their business school. It was really dope as we got to delve specifically into the hip-hop music business mostly as it pertains to managing events and the whole process and man it was just really cool to get out there and speak to some youths.

Missoula, Montana is a seriously beautiful city, surrounded by mountains and flanked by rivers, with three record stores in the small downtown area alone!

When I arrived last Sunday I went straight to the Doubletree Hotel, which is now one of my favorite hotels. My room had a sliding glass door that opened up basically on to the river, literally. It was directly below my second floor balcony, and I was able to leave the door open both nights I was there and just fall asleep listening to the rushing Clark Fork River.

The river really does rush, and is cold. On this particular day though it was 80 degrees outside with bright sunshine. Seemed like everyone in town was out, walking the paths along the river, sunbathing, fishing, and what not. Me, on a day like that, with a river right at my toetips, I of course hit the bar at the hotel with Eric, which was on a super cool deck overlooking what seemed like EVERYTHING at that moment (mountains, river, etc) and had a few local beers. Cold Smoke being the best and Moose Drool being a close second.

Anyway, as we were sitting there drinking a couple beers I looked across the river and saw and older looking man swimming in the strong current, upstream. I watched him for a couple minutes, and honestly I thought he was a bodybuilder or something doing some resistance training in the water. I had no idea why else someone would be trying to swim upstream in such a heavy current. Then I saw him get whisked away down river a bit, where he was lucky enough to grab an overhanging branch and pull himself out of the frigid water. He got out of the water, took two wobbly steps and fell on his face. At this point, the hotel manager was already on his way across the bridge, and had called 911. Turns out dude was drunk (?) and some woman who he loudly described as "JUST A FUCK" had pushed him in the river.

Shit was crazy. I dunno.

Anyway, walking around downtown Missoula on an 80 degree day in the springtime really does not suck. In fact it was really energizing. The perfect combo of beautiful nature, and just what you need and not too much more, city life.

Here's Eric, Scott and Judy. Eric is from Seattle and connected me with the school. He and I presented to the class together and it was a real pleasure to work with him. Scott started the Entertainment Management program at University of Montana and Judy is his wife who also plays an integral role in all of this.

No I wasn't just out there fishing, I was on a mission.

I don't know.

I want to know more about the hip-hop scene in Missoula. Seems untapped. But the record stores, especially Ear Candy, were thoroughly stocked and there seems to be a real scene there.

I also want to spend way more time being lazy in the vicinity of that river.

And drinking Kettle House beers. Man, they need to get that to Texas. That COLD SMOKE SCOTCH ALE on tap is one of my new favorite beers.

Dynamic Duo. We should speak at MORE Universities. I joined LinkedIN for that reason but don't really understand LinkedIn.

This is rush hour in Missoula. Pretty much what I am talking about...

A couple weeks before that I spoke at the Awready Houston Hip-Hop Conference at the University of Houston. It was a day of panels and workshops that celebrated Houston hip-hop culture, while also kicking off the opening of the Houston Hip-Hop Archive at the UH Library. Thanks to Julie Grob for getting all of this together. I never thought I would see the day when a university would care about Houston rap music. Even though a lot of that rap music was made VERY close to the campus. This is huge, and so amazing.

And I am an idiot for taking so long to blog it. Suffice it to say, I have had other things on my mind.

These photos are just a small preview.

She's even got a good amount of DJ Screw's personal vinyl collection. I haven't seen that yet but will definitely make the trip to do so.

I can't lie. Before I got there I asked myself just how in the hell am I going to be able to sit in a room all day and listen to people talk about Houston rap history? I relaly wasn't sure but I had faith and knew this was something that I could not miss. And I am so glad that I did not miss this. The entire day was thoroughly engaging, and me, a guy who knows a lot about this history, I even learned quite a lot.

The first panel was mind blowing for a guy like me. K-Rino, Steve Fournier, Willie D and Ricky Royal? These are THE dudes I came up on in my youth in Houston. Steve Fournier ran all the most historic clubs and a huge record pool. He even wrote about Houston in The Source Magazine when it first came out. Dude is a legend and someone I definitely admired. And K-Rino, Will and Rick all were like, the kings of the rap community at that point. So this was huge.

I don't want to try and retell the stories here. I just can't wait till the videos come out. I'd watch this one again for real.

Meshah Hawkins, Lil Keke, Lance Walker, Shorty Mac and ESG (and later Big Pokey) all broke down the history of DJ Screw and his music. More amazing stories for sure.

My friend Kasia was in town from WARSAW and came out to the event and sent me this picture of myself, moderating the Legacy of DJ Screw panel. We added OG Ron C in at the last minute, as ZRo didn't show up, and he added a lot to the convo with me, Bun B, Paul Wall and Chingo Bling all talm bout how far this music has come. It was pretty perfect actually. I'd actually like to see this one myself. Count how many times I said um, and twitched my hands. ANYWAY it was a super dope event and I'll definitely post videos when they come available. Wish I would have taken more photos, but it was right after SXSW and I was still in a state of shock. Also my mind hasn't been in this shit lately, OBVIOUSLY.

My mind is more here, at the beach. Which is where I'd like to be way more often. Took a family trip to Surfside for Easter weekend. Lovely, just lovely. Not sure how this water is looking blue in the photo, its brown for sure, but not as bad as it could have been. We swam the whole time.

Which is what I want to do.

Even if cars drive up and down the beach which is something I never understood but locals seem to like.

Easter weekend as you may or may not know was also the Unofficial Texas Beach Party Weekend, and well, it ended in gunfire with multiple people being shot, and one man dying. We had no idea as we were maybe a mile away at our hotel, but found out when we asked some folks in this insane traffic, what happened. Some of these folks sat in their cars for 3 hours waiting to get off the "island" and back to the city. Sad end to a great weekend. Not for us, but for a lot of others.

OK So whatever I'm gonna start writing more I swear, and shooting pics like I'm supposed to. Pachanga Fest is this weekend and I plan to go hard! Gimme them Bud Lite Limes and watch me go.

Oh yeah also there was this swarm of bees in our yard for a couple days.

I figured it was a hive, but then it was gone. Completely gone.

So was it just a swarm?

I don't know, the butterflies wouldn't tell me.

And neither would they.

Also I don't like the new Blogger back end system and I hate the new gmail and I hate Facebooks timeline. OK I have said what I needed to say. Back to it.