AJ Calloway Blasts BET Music Videos-tells Why he Really left

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AJ Calloway Blasts BET Music Videos
Former BET Star Says He Left Show Over Vulgar Music
original article: April 2 2006

ORANGEBURG, S.C. (April 1) – The former co-host of BET’s popular 106 & Park video countdown show blasted this week what he called the destructive messages of many of the show’s most popular music videos.

A.J. Calloway co-hosted the show for five years with Free, whose given name is Marie Wright. Both left the show in July.

“I couldn’t watch my own show with my niece on my lap,” Calloway told an audience Wednesday at South Carolina State University as part of the “Black Student Today” panel. The discussion focused on the impact of hip-hop music.

“Pick your five favorite songs,” Calloway said. “Write down every word that’s in your favorite songs. Read it back to yourself and think about what that has put into your head.

“Understand internally what you’re taking into your soul and into your system. Really look at it. You might say it doesn’t do anything, but I’m telling you it does.”

Calloway has said that he left because he was only offered a brief extension at the end of his contract. But BET executive Stephen Hill said then that he was surprised Calloway decided to leave the popular show.

Calloway told the university audience he had vowed that after facing racism growing up in New Jersey he would “never do anything against my race.”

“I felt like I was hurting us by doing what I was doing,” he said.

He said the messages in some hip-hop music serve as a distraction to the challenges facing blacks.

“We’re so lost in the music, we don’t understand the reality of what’s happening day-to-day in our lives,” he said. “All those institutions that are out to bring down (blacks) don’t have to work any more because we’re doing it to ourselves. … They’re laughing at us.”

Another panelist defended hip-hop music’s messages.

“Most of the lyrics, if you listen to the poetry of hip-hop, is about taking a devastating situation and making it better, coming up out of poverty,” said Ben Chavis, co-founder of the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network.

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Breakdown FM- Paris-The Making of PE’s Rebirth of a Nation

 On the Line w/ Paris-The Making of PE’s Rebirth of a Nation

by Davey D

original article: Sunday, April 02, 2006 

We sat down with the Black Panther of Hip Hop-Paris and spoke to him about the array of projects he has coming down the pipe on his Guerilla Funk record label. That would include the ‘Hard Truth Soldier’ album Vol 1 which includes socially conscious songs from MC Ren, Kam, Dead Prez, Mobb Deep, KRS-One, Cypress Hill, and the Conscious Daughters to name a few. He also has an album from new artist T-Kash out of Oakland which is also set to drop.

We also spoke with him about the current state of Hip Hop, the art of emceeing and of course the making of the new Public Enemy album ‘Rebirth of a Nation’. For people who are unfamiliar Paris not only produced but he wrote all the lyrics to the songs featured on the PE album. He spoke about how he and Chuck D came together on this ambitious project. He also spoke about the type of chemistry they developed and the type methodology used which would allow Paris to effectively write lyrics from one of Hip Hop’s most gifted and insightful political icons.

Paris explained how he wanted to recapture a moment in time when PE put out some of their most groundbreaking work as exemplified on albums like ‘Fear of a Black Planet’ and ‘It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back’. He talked about how he used records like ‘Don’t Believe the Hype’ and prophets of Rage as a template.

We also spoke about role Flava Flav played in this project as well as the type of dynamics that currently exist in the group and how it may have effective their recording process. Paris talked about sampling versus playing live instruments and how that factored into the new album.

Also in this segment we spoke extensively about the art of emceeing and how conscious artists don’t always get recognized for their rhyme skillz…

In the second part of our interview… Paris opens up and talks about the inner workings of the music industry. He talks about how major record labels try to manipulate stock prices and create the illusion that they are doing well when in fact everything is crumbling..

This session is defintely Music Biz 101…. be sure to listen..

Paris Interview pt 1 

Paris Interview pt2

Paris Interview pt3

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