When Stevie Wonder tweets

13 12 2009

Hip Hop is cultural representation

7 12 2009

“In the early 1970s a musical genre was born in the crime-ridden neighborhoods of the South Bronx. Gifted teenagers with plenty of imagination but little cash began to forge a new style from spare parts. Hip-hop, as it was then known, was a product of pure streetwise ingenuity; extracting rhythms and melodies from existing records and mixing them up with searing poetry chronicling life in the ‘hood, hip hop spilled out of the ghetto.”

Kurtis Blow

Continue reading at LDBK

“Breakin” by Stijn Coppens

Excursions in hip hop theory

26 11 2009

It’s something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time but never really found the right outlet for: write about hip hop scholarship. Presenting: Excursions into Hip Hop Theory, a 10 post series about what hip hop is and what it is not. I’ll be posting a new episode on a weekly basis on your other favorite space: laid-back.be. Big up to Julius.

Picture by Anattitude Magazine @ Flickr.com

Curating the web: “Today” by Eric Baker

18 10 2009

“Each morning, before starting work, I spend 30 minutes looking for images that are beautiful, funny, absurd and inspiring. Here’s TODAY”

— Eric Baker

Read the rest of this entry »

Twitter is about tuning and feeding

14 10 2009

Lovely, lovely blog post by Howard Rheingold on Twitter literacy. He list his reasons for using Twitter. Even though I don’t agree with all of them, I am reproducing them here in executive summary format because most of his reasons do make sense to me:

Openness – anyone can join, and anyone can follow anyone else;
– it is a rolling present;
– You are responsible for whoever else’s babble you are going to direct into your awareness;
– people give and ask freely for information they need;
A channel to multiple publics
– I’m a communicator and have a following that I want to grow and feed.
– Few people follow exactly the same people who follow them. I follow people who inform or amuse me, and I hope to do the same for people who follow me;
A way to meet new people
– Connecting with people who share interests has been the most powerful social driver of the Internet since day one;
A window on what is happening in multiple worlds
, some of which I am familiar with, and others that are new to me;
– Twitter is not a community, but it’s an ecology in which communities can emerge;
A platform for mass collaboration:
I forgive the cute name of Twestival because this online charity event has raised over a quarter of a million dollars via Twitter, funding 55 clean water projects for 17,000 people in Ethiopia, Uganda, and India.
– Twitter users developed the convention of adding a tag with a hash sign in front of it, like #hashtag, that enable them to label specific topics and events. When I recently participated in a live discussion onstage, we projected in real time the tweets that included a hashtag for the event, an act that blended the people in the audience together with the people on the panel in a much more interactive way than standard Q&A sessions at the end of the panel. After years as a public speaker and panelist, I found it fascinating and useful to have a window on what my previously silent audience was thinking while I was talking.

Disclaimer: I ‘unfollowed’ Howard Rheingold two weeks ago because his tweets about painting do not interest me. His views on social media and journalism do. I rely on other people such as Marcus O’Donnell to curate his tweets for me.

And now, two of my childhood heroes

9 10 2009

Walter Iooss Jr. is to (US) sports photography what Usain Bolt is to track and field. Some of the best work of this celebrated Sports Illustrated photographer is now on display at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. Pictured below is a fine example of Walter’s work. Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier, two of my childhood heroes. A true definition of soul.

The Economist: Shift happens

26 09 2009

“So what used to fit in a building now fits in your pocket
what fits in your pocket will fit inside a blood cell in 25 years”

Ray Kurzweil

Making the beautiful blk/rhetoric work

12 09 2009

who’s gonna make all
this beautiful blk/rhetoric
mean something.
i mean
who’s gonna take
the words
and make more of it
than blk/capitalism.
u dig?

Excerpt from Sonia Sanchez – Blk/Rhetoric (1969)

For some reason, I cannot spell rethoric. I mean rhetoric. Cheers, Ellen.

Scrabble, globalization, dopeness

11 09 2009

Ha, grassroots cultural productions. Does it get any better than this? Case in point: the global trajectory and flavor of Scrabble, a laid-back.be production. What started as a blog post, grew into a Japanese remix and materialized as a 7 inch. Floats my boat. If only I had a record player.

“Hey Colleen, you’ve got a great ass”

7 09 2009

One of Dell Hymes’ major insights into language and communication is that talk is always and inevitably a lamination of genres. While conversing, we routinely shift in and out of communicative modes: we embed anecdotes, he-said-she-said stories, jokes, and so on and so forth. This layering of genres achieves epic proportions in this gem of a fight scene.

[H/T: cracked.com]