Archive for June, 2010

Auburn

Date of Interview: 06/17/2010

Auburn Williams is the lone female artist on Beluga Heights’ roster. And for this very reason, super-producer J.R. Rotem and her male companions – Jason Derülo, IYAZ, Sean Kingston, and Mann – have dubbed her as the “Princess of Beluga Heights.”

Blending the finest elements of pop and R&B, Auburn has garnered a considerable amount of underground buzz with her debut single, “La, La, La.” And with the release of her debut album, you can bet your bottom dollar that Warner Bros. will ensure that she receives the “royal treatment” – considering the massive successes attained by her label mates.

In the midst of a promotional campaign for “La, La, La,” Auburn managed to squeeze some time out of her busy schedule and settle down for an interview with Clayton Perry – reflecting on Keyshia Cole, her passion for film-making, and the influence of her cousin, J. Isaac.

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Macy Gray

Date of Interview: 06/16/2010

Macy Gray may be many things, but she’s a far cry from being a “sell-out.” Since her 1999 debut, she has pushed the envelope on commercial expectations and limitations on artists within the music industry complex.  And unintentionally, whether Macy knew it or not, her brilliant distinctiveness challenged music lovers – at the very same time – to recognize that the “beauty in the world” around us comes in varying shapes, sizes, sounds, and colors.

The Sellout stands as the fifth studio album in Macy Gray’s decade-plus career.  In the midst of a promotional tour for the album, the singer managed to squeeze some time out of her busy schedule and settle down for an interview with Clayton Perry – reflecting on marketing struggles, her purpose as an artist, and age discrimination within the music industry.

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Hal Linton

Date of Interview: 06/14/2010

Hal Linton is the latest musical export from the island of Barbados.  Following in the footsteps of Rihanna (Def Jam Recordings), Shontelle (Universal Motown), Livvi Franc (Jive Records), Jaicko (Capitol Records), Rupee (Atlantic) and Vita Chambers (Universal Motown), Linton is preparing his solo debut, Return to the Future, after garnering critical acclaim in his home country.

This summer, as part of Hal Linton’s introduction to American audiences, he will be accompanying Anthony Hamilton, Kem, Jaheim, Raheem DeVaughn and Abraham McDonald on Budweiser’s 2010 Superfest Tour. Before hitting the road, however, Hal Linton managed to squeeze some time out of his busy schedule and settle down for an interview with Clayton Perry – reflecting on the influence of Raphael Saadiq, the details of his initial contract with SRP, and the key reason he loves to experiment with music.

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Common

Date of Interview: 06/10/2010

Over the past decade, Common has slowly evolved into a modern-day Renaissance man.  As one of hip-hop’s few credible actors, he has graced the “silver screen” – in the midst of his GRAMMY-winning career – with several memorable performances: Date Night (2010), as Detective Collins; Wanted (2008), as the Gunsmith; and Smokin’ Aces (2007), as Sir Ivy.  With Just Wright, however, Common transitions into the role of film headliner—showcasing a sensitive, loving side, as Scott McKnight, alongside fellow hip-hop laureate Queen Latifah.

In the midst of a promotional campaign for Just Wright, Common managed to squeeze some time out of his busy schedule and settle down for an interview with Clayton Perry – reflecting on lessons in love, the film’s historical significance, and his growth as an actor.

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J. Cole

Date of Interview: 06/04/2010

Depending on who you ask, the future of hip hop lays within the hands of Jermaine Cole.  Having received validation and financial support from one of the genre’s living legends, as the first artist signed to Jay-Z’s Roc Nation, it appears that J. Cole has officially been passed the proverbial baton.  And if you believe in signs and premonitions, then his guest feature on The Blueprint 3 says it all: “A Star is Born.”

With two successful mixtapes, The Comeup (2007) and The Warmup (2009), a great deal of buzz has been generated in anticipation of Jermaine’s solo debut.  Upon the release of “Who Dat?,” the album’s lead single, J. Cole managed to squeeze some time out of  his busy schedule and settle down for an interview with Clayton Perry — reflecting on his love of Nas and 2Pac, the professional lessons he’s learned from Jay-Z, and the lasting influence his mother had on his burgeoning career.

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Darryl "DMC" McDaniels

Date of Interview: 06/03/2010

In the world of hip-hop, one group stands supreme: Run DMC. Although Joseph “Rev Run” Simmons, Darryl “DMC” McDaniels, and Jason “Jam Master Jay” Mizell stood upon the shoulders of several rap giants, their countless contributions to the genre are unparalleled in scale and scope.

Run DMC was the first rap act to earn RIAA gold, platinum, and multi-platinum    albums; the first rap act to appear on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine; and the first rap act to receive a GRAMMY Award nomination. Run DMC also received heavy rotation on MTV – starting with their first rap rock video, “Rock Box,” to the unforgettable crossover smash “Rock This Way.”

More recently, outside of the music arena, Darryl McDaniels has ramped up his role as a social and political activist – tackling issues within foster care and the adoption arenas in particular. Even so, in spite of his jam-packed calendar, DMC managed to squeeze some time out of his busy schedule and settle down for an interview with Clayton Perry – reflecting on the 25th Anniversary of Krush Groove, the influence of Ken Webb, and Run DMC’s prophetic induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

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Moby

Date of Interview: 06/02/2010

Over the past quarter-century, Moby has firmly entrenched his reputation as one of the most important figures in the modern dance music movement.  And while he is widely-known for his alternative mash-ups of slave spirituals and psychedelic beats, Moby has also become the archetype for artists who see music as not only a part of their life’s work but also as a social platform in which they can lend their celebrity status to encourage social reform.

In addition to his musical work as a member of Vatican Commandos, AWOL, Caeli Seoul and Gin Train, Moby has recorded nine studio albums: his self-titled debut (1992), Ambient (1993), Everything Is Wrong (1995), Animal Rights (1996), Play (1999), 18 (2002), Hotel (2005), Last Night (2008) and Wait for Me (2009). The latter effort has also been released in two special editions: Ambient (2009), which was included in a special deluxe edition, and Remixes! (2010).

Upon review of Wait For Me’s remix album, Moby managed to squeeze some time out of his busy schedule and settle down for an interview with Clayton Perry – reflecting on the origin of the “Little Idiot,” the motivation behind Animal Rights, and his early years as a hip-hop deejay.

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