Lynne d Johnson



« November 2003 | Diary | January 2004 »

12.29.03 02:49 PM

i'm still here, but not really

The new site is taking longer than expected. I know you're wondering why the hell it's taking so long to take down the old html pages and style sheet and put up a new one. Well, it ain't that simple, 'cuz I'm trying to figure out how to nuke it via post nuke or php nuke. Basically that means figuring out how to use my html, style sheets, and images as a theme to wrap around post nuke, so that I can benefit from using the modules and php scripting. If I could find a really good hack, I'd pay him/her handsomely. Someone from New Zealand already gave me a quote of $350, which is really not that bad, but then I was going to try to finish trying to do it myself. I just haven't had the time to do the whole darn thing yet. It may also be a little too robust for what I'm doing in terms of a site, but I also think that perhaps MT doesn't quite have enough for what I'm projecting to do with the site in the future. Then, for now I could build my own CMS in PHP since I'm mainly really only updating the diary on a consistent basis. But then I'll have to make my own commenting system, or download one of those I can set up on my own server. Lots to think about. Sorry I'm such a geek folks, and can't just post these html pages so I have that fresh new look for the New Year.

But in the meantime...

Since errr’body loves their end of the year lists, you know I had to have my own - musically speaking that is.

It’s the end of the year, and everyone is consumed with lists. Best/top albums, DVDs, movies, books, games, tech, etc. This one guy, Rex Sorgatz has listed them all in one place.

Lots of my blog fam has been doing this list thing too. Check EJ, Jason, Trent, and Eric.

I'm having trouble whittling mine's down though. Surprisingly I have no underground breakouts this year, and though some were released in '02, they made great impact in '03. Perhaps you can help me get this list in order. I need to take it from 17 down to 10. Listed in no particular order, of course.

1. Outkast - Speakerboxxx/ The Love Below
2. Jay-Z - The Black Album
3. Erykah Badu - Worldwide Underground
4. TI - Trap Muzik
5. The White Stripes - Elephant
6. Kelis - Tasty
7. Anthony Hamilton - Comin' From Where I'm From
8. Basement Jaxx - Kish Kash
9. Roy Hargrove - Hard Groove
10. 50 Cent - Get Rich Or Die Tryin'
11. Linkin Park - Meteora
12. R. Kelly - Chocolate Factory
13. Coldplay - A Rush Of Blood To The Head
14. Sean Paul - Dutty Rock
15. Radiohead - Hail To The Thief
16. Spacek - Vintage Hi Tech
17. Jean Grae - The Bootleg of the Bootleg EP

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12.23.03 06:26 PM

funny thing is, i'm every where and you don't even know it

I'm on
Bearing the Black Female Body as Witness in Sci-Fi

And I'm pretty much on as often as I can be. I've got a weekly Friday column, on which I need some input, so in the future I'll be looking for your support.

But just since y'all must not go over there and visit, I'll provide the last two weeks here. The column is called "Fresh Friday Five: The Music You Want To Hear."

From December 19, 2003

Every Friday, I'm going to break down five singles that are in heavy rotation on my playlist. They might be throwbacks, unreleased tracks, come from mixtapes, or they're just hitting the shelves at your local retailer. I look forward to your feedback and suggestions in the comments section. I'd love to add your suggestions to my next list, so holla' back.

1. Ghostface featuring Jadakiss & Comp: 'Run'
Do you remember back in i93 when you first heard Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), and you thought it was the livest, realest hip hop you ever heard? Well, 'Run,' is that ish. RZA has produced a track that is so utterly impeccable you'll wonder why more heads don't utilize his hands on the track boards nowadays. It's really sick. You actually feel like someone is running, with all the sound effects RZA weaved in. And lyrically, can we just say that Ghost excels. Jadakiss and Comp are exciting additions, but Ghost really could have held this track down for self.

2. Glenn Lewis featuring Kardinal Offishall: 'Back For More'
Kardinal Offishall is definitely known for putting T-Dot (that's Toronto for those who don't' know) on the map in both the hip hop and dancehall games. Whoever came before, was definitely forgotten when he fire started our aural cavities. Lewis teamed up with Kardi on his debut on the single, 'G' Walkin',' which really wasn't one of the best songs. But this time, it's a win-win for both Kardi and Lewis. 'Back For More,' is just one of those party singles you gotta' love. You get Lewis' smooth, silky R&B croon, Kardi's dexterous rhythmic delivery, over a banging track.

3. Jae Millz: 'Rude Boy Get Up, (No, No, No)'
Sometimes a new jack comes along, samples a song and turns it into something totally wack. Not Jae Millz though. He paid proper respect to Dawn Penn's reggae classic, 'You Don't Love Me (No, No, No). First off the production team kept the best elements of the song intact, and then Millz laid down his battle-styled delivery as smooth as butter over the track. Besides, you can't hate on him for keeping the track in its proper element by bigging up all rude boy massive worldwide.

4. Ludacris: 'Splash Waterfalls'
This has got to be one of the most x-rated love songs I've ever heard. The track is both funky and melodic, and the background vocalist keeps it sexily flowing between Luda's verses, the punchy bass, and tinkling hi-hat. It's also just the type of track you'd hear at CLUB ROLLEXX in Miami or The Blue Flame in Atlanta, or wherever there might be a pole, if you get my drift.

5. Musiq featuring DJ Aktive & Carol Riddick: 'Soulstar'
Honestly the only reason this track is hot is because of the soulful siren coming out of Carol Riddick. She makes this track what it is, repeating the refrain over and over again. When the word 'soulstar' emits from her lips, it has a chilling effect. Musiq barely sings on this joint, which might be good thing, since there aren't many pitch changes in his vocal range.

Be sure to check out Jae Millz and other artist's we write about in VIBE Magazine and on VIBE Online, in our new streaming section called Digital VIBE. Just click on the listen button below.

From December 12, 2003

Every Friday, I'm going to break down five singles that are in heavy rotation on my playlist. They might be throwbacks, unreleased tracks, come from mixtapes, or they're just hitting the shelves at your local retailer. I look forward to your feedback and suggestions in the comments section. I'd love to add your suggestions to my next list, so holla' back.

1. Missy Elliott: 'Violator Run S***t'
Missy continues to rewind us back to the ‘80s. This time she's giving a major nod to Public Enemy, with this track sampling their 1988 classic, 'Rebel Without A Pause.' Lyrically, Missy even sets it off as if she'd been studying with Chuck D himself. No there's no political agenda here, but her delivery is so on point that she's riding the beat nimbly and articulating accentuated polysyllables with the drop-kick of a skittering snare. This is an anthemic, adrenaline-rush to the head.

2. Kanye West, Jamie Foxx, and Twista: 'Slow Jams'
I'm not mad at Kanye West at all for speeding up Luther Vandross' chorus from "A House Is Not A Home" to make this song. And when was the last time we even heard Jamie Foxx sing seriously without imitating someone else? Then West shows us just how skillful he can be with that drum kit by tripping out the snares. But we don't get the full effect of it until Twista gets all up in there with his rapid-fire delivery.

3. Kelis featuring Nas: 'In Public'
This song is feverishly sexy, which of course happens to be what the lyrics are about. 'Let's get it on in public,' taunts Kelis as Nas wraps it up in original QB style. The bass line reminds me of 'White Horse,' a song by Laid Back that was out in the mid-80s. But y'all probably don't know nothing about that. Then again, of course it also sounds very Neptunes-ish. It's delectably hot.

4. Alicia Keys featuring Lellow: 'So Simple'
What we have here folks is a KrucialKeys classic. I can't even describe the way this song moves me. Alicia Keys voice is haunting, yet sublime. And the musical arrangement contains numerous layers, forming a cohesive masterpiece. It bumps, thumps, and pulsates, but in the end it's all just a very smooth ride.

5. Andre 3000: 'She Lives In My Lap'
The more I listen to The Love Below, the more I keep thinking that 3000 is a rip-off artist. But it's in a way that it's a very good look for him. That he was quoted as saying the disc is a soundtrack to a love story that takes place in Paris, just reeks of Prince's Under The Cherry Moon. Yet I'm no hater, so I can definitely give this man his props for producing such a funky ditty.

Be sure to listen to Outkast and other artist's we write about in VIBE Magazine and on VIBE Online, in our new streaming section called Digital VIBE. Just click on the listen button below.

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12.08.03 10:05 PM

burnt out

As if you haven't guessed by now, I'm on hiatus, again, for the umpteenth time. I have a whole new site designed, and yet I'm still not motivated. It's not that blogging is boring me. It's not that I have writer's block. I've just spent a lot of years overworked, doing ten thousand things at once, and I think that my brain is finally giving me a sign that it needs to take a rest. I was like one of those kids in college, who was an RA, had a work study job, was editor on one of the campus newspapers, and took a full course load. I probably operated like that since I was 16. Always involved, always overstretching myself, and helping other folks out. The past year has been no different, so I'm taking a breather and rediscovering some of my passions. Trying to be healthy, and trying to live a fuller, better life. Since I'm in front of a computer all day, dealing with code and dealing with words, it's kind of hard to come home and do the same thing. So many emails to deal with. So many voice mail messages. Sometimes I just seek silence. Sometimes I can't even read words, they become a blur. I'm not saying the black superwoman is a myth, it's just not the way I have to live. Not anymore. I'm trying to find little ways to be fulfilled in my life everyday, and so...

I do want to try and find a fresh perspective for writing here. I don't want to talk about me and my life. I don't always want to talk about hip-hop. But I do want to tell stories. There's loads of them inside, bursting to get out.

I'll be around. Sooner than you think.

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12.07.03 04:21 PM

caught out there

L to R: Lynne d Johnson (Vibe) and guest at The 2003 Vibe Awards
After Party at The Viceroy Hotel Santa Monica CA (11/20/03)
Photo: Johnny Nunez/NuBuzz

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