Malcolm McLaren the Man Who brought Us Buffalo Gals and Fuzed Hip Hop and Punk is Dead

Malcolm McLaren was an important figure both in Hip Hop and early punk.. Many outside the US knew him for his work in the punk world. Most of us who were around in the early 80s  knew McLaren because of his work with the World Famous Supreme Team radio show and his hit records Buffalo Gals, Hey DJ and Hobo Scratch which for many outside of New York was the first time they heard scratching. A true pioneer on a number of levels..McLaren to me was one of those crucial bridges between punk and Hip Hop. That’s a history that is often overlooked and down played..

Malcolm McLaren, the former manager of the Sex Pistols and impresario, has died. He was 64.

McLaren had had cancer for some time. His condition recently deteriorated rapidly and he died this morning in New York. His body is expected to be brought home to be buried in Highgate cemetery, north London.

Born in North London, McLaren was best known as the manager of the iconic punk band The Sex Pistols. After attending and dropping out of several art colleges in 1971 he opened a clothes shop on the King’s Road , Let It Rock, with Vivienne Westwood.

He achieved the notoriety that never left him when The Sex Pistols’ anti-establishment single God Save The Queen stole the number one spot during the Queen’s silver jubilee in 1977. His spokesman Les Molloy told The Independent: “He had been suffering from cancer for some time, but recently had been full of health, which then rapidly deteroriated. He died in New York this morning. We are expecting his body to be brought back to London and buried in Highgate Cemetery.”

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League of Young Voters Teams Up w/ Hip Hop Artists to Encourage Folks to Fill Out Census

The League of Young Voters Latest Initiative Aims to Get Our Nation’s Youth Involved in the 2010 Census Through the Innovative Platform of
Los Angeles, CA (April 6, 2010) – Nearly a year after Barack Obama was sworn in as the nation’s first African American president, today The League of Young Voters Education Fund (LYVEF) announces the launch of it’s latest effort, the Numbers Don’t Lie Campaign – a new online initiative and call to action for our nation’s youth to get involved in the 2010 Census.  Numbers Don’t Lie is a project of the League’s news portal and will attempt to reach urban youth in their neighborhoods across the nation using viral videos and hip-hop culture to teach them about the importance of the census.
The Numbers Don’t Lie project has been rolling out a series of viral video PSAs hosted by DJ Willie Shakes (Core DJs, Star Trak’s Chester French).  DJ Willie Shakes, has been touching down to talk with tastemakers, hip hop artists and celebrities at the local level in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Milwaukee, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Columbus, Tallahassee, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Portland (ME), Houston, and the Bay Area to talk about the ways in which the Census is important to each individual community. The Numbers Don’t Lie viral video PSA series enables each featured interview to give their own spin on why the 2010 Census is important to them, as well as the neighborhoods they reside in and come from, in order to reach young voters in an organic and impactful way on such a meaningful issue.

  “The Census is so important. It decides how trillions of dollars will be spent in our community,” said LYVEF’s Executive Director, Robert “Biko” Baker, who prior to taking his current position served as The Source Magazine’s Political Correspondent. “Every 10 years young people don’t get counted because they don’t understand how important this process is.  We are going make sure this doesn’t happen. We are going to meet young people where they are at, and make sure they understand how important this process is to their future.”
All content created from the Numbers Don’t Lie campaign is currently showcased on The League of Young Voters’ online platform  Launched January 20, 2009 is a site that combines new media, investigative journalism and pop culture to engage a young demographic on local inner city issues from a hip-hop perspective.  The site was influential in banding together awareness among urban youths and minorities for the 2009 election of President Barack Obama and aggressively courts the urban, hip-hop, and underground arts communities of America with thought provoking and investigative news stories about real people harnessing political power to make changes in their own lives.
Los Angeles based Cashmere Agency has signed on to be a part of this exciting campaign, spearheading the League of Young Voters marketing campaign surrounding this project.

About The League of Young Voters Education Fund
The League of Young Voters Education Fund (LYVEF) empowers young people nationwide to participate in the democratic process –with a focus on non-college youth from low-income communities and communities of color. LYVEF makes civic engagement relevant by meeting young people where they are, working on issues that affect their lives, and providing them with tools, training, and support to become viable players in the civic process. 

In 2008, LYVEF educated hundreds of thousands of new voters about the importance of voting. You can find out more about The League of Young Voters Education Fund by visiting .

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Chamillionaire: Hustling & Grinding in a Hi-Tech World…

We caught up w/ Houston rapper Chamillionaire who has been making a lot of noise as of late, not just for him reuniting with childhood friend and fellow Paul Wall after 7 years and going on tour, but also because he’s been making some behind the scenes moves into the tech world. In fact much of our conversation centered around us discussing ways in which rap stars can move away from simply setting up record companies and use their creative ingenuity to set up the next Google or Youtube.  

“It’s not always about making money with these companies, sometimes its about getting information so later down the road you can make money”, Chamillionaire noted. He explained that in the age of music going digital rappers need to be thinking outside the box and trying to figure out other ways to leverage their brand  and resources above and beyond simply selling records and merchandise.

We talked to Chamillionaire about how he stays on his grind and asked if he saw any differences in the way the Bay Area makes it happen compared to our sister city of Houston which shares a strong independent rap scene. He noted that one can definitely tell when they are in the Bay Area. The music and overall swagger is unique on to itself. However, the people’s work ethics and drive to succeed on their own terms are pretty similar.  He noted how Paul Wall and Bay Area rapper Tha Jacka had just departed the tour bus as I arrived to go shoot their own videos. Chamillionaire marveled at the way folks collab with each other and

Along that vein we chopped up it up about the large yet often overlooked Latino/Brown Hip Hop scene in Texas. Chamillionaire noted that he was impressed how large it was and how some artists coming from Brown communities are killing it in terms of the people they can reached. he talked about Houston rapper SPM and how succesful he was while many withing ‘mainstream’ Hip Hop circles were clueless. Chamillionaire talked about how some of his songs are popular in brown communities and the influence is so strong that he’s started rapping some of the songs in Spanish which he puts on his mixtapes.

We also talked about mixtape game and whether or not they were still relevent in today’s climate. We also chopped it about whether he would continue doing his  ‘Mixtape Messiah‘ series. He noted that after 10 years he decided to retire that series and launch a new one called ‘Major Pain‘.

We concluded our interview by talking to Chamillionaire about his upcoming album called Venom where he explained that he wanted to move away from being ‘political correct’ topics and explore more edgy type of material . “I wanted to be a bit rebellious on the album”, He noted.

Chamillionaire also laid out who he feels are some of the most important rappers in Texas that we should be paying attention to as well as his favorite songs including ‘Turn It Up’ and ‘Hip Hop Police’.

Click HERE to Here Breakdown FM podcast featuring Chamillionaire

Below are the links to our two part Breakdown FM Podcast.

Chamillionaire Interview pt 1

Chamillionaire Interview pt 2

Below is another interview that  our friends from Check the Levels  out in Austin did with Chamillionaire during SXSW

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