Music Video

‘Broke Rappers.’ I Don’t Do Free Shoots. Period.

No if’s. No and’s. No but’s.

Oh boy. The relationship between ‘broke rappers’ and actual broke video producers.

Or producers of any kind. Graphic designers. Web designers. Engineers. We’ve all had a run-in with a selectively cheap artist that brags about their lavish lives in their music. Then turns around and low-balls you for your services. ‘Broke rappers’ are usually not broke at all. Just dudes with f*cked up priorities and no respect for artistry. And an over-inflated sense of self.

Tell them to kick rocks. They probably won’t do it while they wear their new Balenciaga’s.

Sure there are genuinely starving artists that will actually barter some of their services for yours. And there’s nothing wrong with respectfully admitting, “this isn’t something I can afford right now. Hope to work with you in the future!” and keep it moving.

But.

See what we’re not going to tolerate is someone devaluing our work and saying “can you lower the price” just because. A friend-of-a-friend discount.

I can’t walk into Best Buy and use an Instagram shout-out as a form of currency to buy a camera. So what makes you think you can pay someone in exposure for a skill that took a lot of time and money to develop?

Let’s take a step back. There are actual broke rappers.

Working video in Hip Hop is an interesting beast different from weddings, commercial, or film work. Probably the most fun you’ll have as a creator. Oftentimes gigs that are most fun tend to pay less. Especially in a genre that is literally the voice of the underprivileged. Artists turn to Hip Hop to express socio-economic hardship. They will make music by any means necessary. And sometimes being resourceful means hustling others into doing free work for them. I come from a place where my friends would pool money together from their 9-5 jobs and invest in an entry-level DSLR camera. Then just shoot it themselves. We didn’t even know what ISO was. We were just dedicated to learning by experience and doing what we could. But we definitely weren’t contacting professional-level producers that we knew had high rates to try to lower their prices… especially not offering to pay them in “exposure.”

Producers aren’t charging you these prices because they want to scam you. They do it because its how they keep the lights on. It’s how they’re able to afford to maintain their equipment and keep doing what they do. Video is especially important in boosting a music career. No one will take you seriously if you invest thousands in looking good or even on hours of studio time but won’t invest in the visuals. If you really can’t afford to pay a professional, study the craft and do it yourself. Don’t burn bridges by disrespecting the value of other artists.

A Real Life Water Bender (Blaze Yentruoc – Told You Dance Video)

Watch the Blaze Yentruoc Dance Video from Jojo– the star of Almonte’s “The Initiate.”

Almonte recently teamed up with the multi-faceted star of his short film, The Initiate to shoot a freestyle dance video to MELLDU’s “Told You.” The song paints a picture of a modern cowboy walking in a cold food-desert of Harlem to confront all that ever doubted him. The climactic face-off is with his biggest competitor. Himself.

The nature of how this video was shot embodies the vibe of this song. In every take of the Blaze Yentruoc Dance Video, he attempted to best himself after watching the footage over and over. And Over. In the freezing cold. His movements more dynamic with every fleeting minute. Physically fighting to abstain the heat from leaving his body. Blaze’s freeform movements are like something out of a Mortal Kombat Kata sequence. Even finger tuts that looked like waterbending.

Blaze takes the song where his heart wants to take it. The raw passion accentuates every beat of the song’s pulse. As if the beat was dancing to Blaze’s body, as opposed to the converse.

Follow him at @sain0ne

 

 

Rappers Drinking Pepto Bismol At The Club is Now a Thing

It was only a matter of time before rappers drinking Pepto Bismol in music videos became a thing.
Why tho?

I guess shitting on niggas gets tiring after a while.

Sometimes you realize you’ve been flexing entirely too much. So you have to get your hands on that pink drink to stop yourself from indulging in consumerist behavior and shitting on everyone less iced out than you are I suppose. Rappers drinking Pepto Bismol at the club is the new wave.

@TimHannRivera really killed it. It even got nominated Best Sketch Comedy at the Official Latino Film Festival. 

Here’s the Lyrics:

Sippin on that pink drink,
Got my stomach moving slow,
Sip it with a gingy,
Mix it with that combo,
Finish till it’s empty,
Think I might need one more,
Got me feeling sweaty,
Hope I make it to my show
Sippin on that pink drink,
Hope my shit don’t stink,
Popped a pill and it’s pink
Too late to rethink
Cus now I gotta go gotta go gotta go gotta go
Niggas see me with the hoes
can’t feel me toes
now I’m froze can’t move
got shit on my shoe
got Shawty saying what are those
I suppose fucked up my clothes
that’s how it goes when you
order out and get a three topping pizza at dominoes,
Gotta pop another pill,
cus mothafuckas is too trill,
drink a bit of gingerale,
boutta get that peptobismol refill
Sippin on that pink drink,
Got my stomach moving slow,
Sip it with a gingy,
Mix it with that combo,
Finish till it’s empty,
Think I might need one more,
Got me feeling sweaty,
Hope I make it to my show
12:28 I’m tryna get this drank,
Haven’t ate nothing but a fuckin frank,
Debit card not working gotta run to the bank,
Sharted in my pants shits about to stank,
Ima street nigga fuck you talking bout,
wanna order wings but I’m having doubts,
Ayo Bandage don’t do it man you’re butthole gonna feel like a drout,
Nigga fuck all that other shit I’m ready to check out,
I just got me two piece chicken wings,
Ima street nigga I can do these things,
once I took a bite my fuckin stomach dropped,
these mothafuckin wings made my heart stop,
gotta find me a drug store,
anything that sells that peptobismol,
Ima street nigga y’all already know,
but these wings boutta make my stomach blow…
Sippin on that pink drink,
Got my stomach moving slow,
Sip it with a gingy,
Mix it with that combo,
Finish till it’s empty,
Think I might need one more,
Got me feeling sweaty,
Hope I make it to my show

 

What Song Was That? || TRUST By Deebo Dioso

Everyone loved the song at the end of Almonte’s most DEADASS video of 2017.

Let’s keep it real–Deebo Dioso can sonically enhance any of Almonte’s content.

And so much of Almonte’s audience finds themselves binge-listening to Deebo Dioso after hearing just a snippet of his sound in the end credits(people stick around for those)? Why?

“I think the subject matter of my music match the same as [Almonte’s] videos” Deebo Dioso says. “..sometimes not word for word but the vibe usually fits perfect.”

If you love Almonte’s visuals, you’ll most likely feel the same Deebo Dioso’s music. They’re two different artists that grew up in the same vibrantly dark conditions of East Harlem, just 5 blocks from each other. Naturally, their work compliments one another. They even worked on an urban martial arts web series together .

Gang violence, drug addiction, art, culture, family, spirituality, and activism are what give Harlem its cultural density. The east side contains a lot of urban decadence but also shares all the good that comes with still being Harlem. It is the birthplace of the Harlem Renaissance and a monumental location for Black leaders like Malcolm X to thrive. The pain of growing up in a toxic environment tends to make artists turn to their craft as a coping mechanism. Hip Hop and urban literature are two things misunderstood as being glorifying of violence. But in reality, these pieces are merely victory screams of being able to survive despite it all.

In “When New Yorkers Leave the Hood,” Almonte exposes the mixed emotions resentment can cause for friends in the hood.
In “Trust” Deebo Dioso tells a story we all resonate with, inside and outside of the hood. Broken Friendships.

Oh man, these n*ggas up to no good. You be a young n*gga makin sure the bros good. Next thing you know, Chinx shot in his own hood.” 

Chinx was a popular rapper that was shot dead in his own neighborhood. And we all know what happened when Katt Williams returned to his hometown.

“When you finally escape this social prison [that is the Hood], your childhood friends are bound to feel resentment,” Almonte saysBut in his skit, the character has a bittersweet love for his friends, side eyeing them and knowing they’re probably speaking ill of him out of fear of abandonment… so he reassures them of his friendship how? Returning to buy them chopped cheeses. Not gold chains, not taking them out to the club… but buying them a token of what they all shared culturally that you can only find done right in their hood. Deebo Dioso’s “Trust” embodies how this character feels on the inside, juxtaposing his outward actions to retain his acceptance in the hood. “What the f*ck wrong wit a n*gga, actin like they never get along with a n*gga.”  The combination of Deebo Dioso and Almonte’s theme create a duality to show the Hood far from the monolithic, one-dimensional portrayal we are so used to seeing. The relationships between these people are multilayered and their emotions are complex. They say one thing and feel another. They feel more than one emotion at the same time. They aren’t just rage-filled, hypermasculine caricatures looking for a come up.

Lyrics: 

Only a few n*ggas i’d die for//
Brothers knocking on god door//
F*ck we calling these cops for//
N*gga they the reason we here//
My right hand on this Glock 4
N*gga they the reason we here//
We on em n*ggas like lock jaw, CHECK
On my deebo sh*t//
A n*gga tired of hearing that amigo sh*t//
Repping 3A on my trio sh*t//
And cutting n*ggas short on some chino sh*t// And the G’s know

All i hear is onomatopoeia// Show a little sign of gonorrhea// Sicker than the b*tches really thinking that they fly but not Aaliyah// N*ggas being b*tches like the n*gga Tyler got Madea// Owwww

I ain’t tryna shake yo hand// Hating n*ggas ain’t yo mans// I do what i do what i does and it ain’t no scam// Now they telling n*ggas they yo fam// Oh man
These n*ggas up to no good// You be a young n*gga making sure the bros good// Next thing you know Chinx shot in his own hood// And im another n*gga writing in a notebook// So i dont look//
Dolo (sh*t)// Its bloodsport on some bolo (sh*t)// This for them n*ggas on the low low// And dont know im jumpin n*ggas on some pogo (sh*t)//
A n*gga can’t keep holdin what i can’t maintain// Its when you getting paper n*gga everything change// So every motherf*cker that been hating on a n*gga when i see em imma hit em with the bang bang bang

Hook

It hurts the more i think about it// You p*ssy n*ggas don’t speak about it//
NO NO NO time to make peace about it// Cuz you p*ssy boy! and we be about it we on
Im on one i don’t trust these n*ggas x4

Verse 2

What the f*ck wrong with a n*gga// Acting like they never get along with a n*gga// Sh*tted on my mixtape now they wanna do a song with a n*gga// my n*gga my n*gga // Feelin like denzel in this b*tch yo// They tryna get to yo bread through a window// They treat me like bruh man from the 5th floor//
Coming in like homie// I really like the way you flowing// Ever since high school u been growing// I mean look at all the places u going// But one thing the whole team know is//
I be only riding for my n*ggas// Tryna be surrounded by the realest// Ya be thinkin ’bout the money feeding off the thousand dollar dealers// Till our people dying and we been surrounded by the killers// GOT DAMN
Shouts to my latinum n*ggas// All my latin n*ggas going platinum n*ggas// Love to the black real n*ggas// They say we monkeys with banana clips that’ll peel n*ggas//
God’ll never judge but he finna deal wit us// Represent the warriors and they reveal n*ggas// Rest in peace to tio but a n*gga still wit us// If it wasn’t for the spirit woulda tried to kill n*ggas//
What… yall n*ggas trippin like a westbrook interview// I mean where was the love when i hit rock bottom but i blow and im ‘pose to remember you//
Ya make a n*gga lose hope// Where the f*ck is yall when a n*gga too broke// Where the f*ck is yall when a n*gga lose folks// But wanna hit me up asap ‘cuz a n*gga too dope//
You MotherF*ckers is getting too close dont cross that line// Picture everything i saw at 9// Can’t deny the foreplay// Was 9 in 4th grade// A 9 and 4 gauge //Across that spine//
B*tch yup// If u wearin a vest// Then yo head and yo neck is finna be D.O.A// I told u n*ggas we dont play// Swore to my mother imma be ok//
She said “boy i don’t give a f*ck about these n*ggas// I wanna see you clown these n*ggas// They really thinking they it, I be ready to pound these n*ggas// Swam with the sharks so you finna drown these n*ggas//
‘Cuz u can’t keep holdin what you can’t maintain// Its wen you gettin paper n*gga everything change// So every motherf*cker that been hating on a n*gga when you see em better hit em with the bang bang bang// MY N*GGA

 

 

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