Bulletin Board Archive

Topic: They're paying their dues below the hip-hop radar

  1. Mar 17, 2006 09:30am by NRG - livin the art that is life ! www.64111clinic.com fam www.nrginmotion.com massage www.myspace.com/nrginmotion world community Location: havenhouse KCK/ 64111 Clinic 4 Life
    By Soren Baker, Special to The Times Don't let the often redundant and routine rap songs and videos played on commercial radio, BET and MTV fool you. There's a vibrant rap scene with advanced lyricism, stinging political commentary and quality DJ performances that continues to flourish in a seemingly parallel universe, largely shunned by the mainstream media. Several leaders of this movement, including El-P, Aesop Rock, Brother Ali and Living Legends, delivered solid sets Saturday at the 2006 Paid Dues festival at the Shrine Expo Center. Los Angeles rapper Murs, the concert's emcee, was celebrating his birthday and performed a headlining set as half of Felt, a lighthearted duo that also includes fellow underground trailblazer Slug of the group Atmosphere. As the enthusiastic crowd rapped along to such Felt tunes as "The Two" and "Hot Bars," Murs seemed almost overwhelmed by the attention being lavished on the pair. "We don't get played on the radio or on television, but you still welcome us into your hearts," he said to the receptive crowd. Cage, one of the more intense opening acts, could have benefited from some of the exposure Murs spoke of. The New York rapper, whose warped, violent subject matter on such songs as "Teen Age Death" and "Agent Orange" has earned him a cult following, was almost ejected by security after diving into the crowd. Cage, who could pass as a lost member of Green Day, and several fans had to explain that Cage was indeed the talent and not an overzealous fan before security let him return to the stage. Talk about paying dues.