Aaron Phillip, better known by his stage name Afu-Ra, is a New York-based American underground rapper. Afu, born Aaron Phillip, is a devout student of the martial arts, as well as chess. Afu is a member of the Gang Starr Foundation, among others, Jeru the Damaja, Big Shug and Group Home, is most well known through his affiliation with the foundation and Jeru the Damaja, his first appearance was on Jeru's classic 1994 album The Sun Rises in the East, on the song "Mental Stamina". He made another appearance on Jeru's second album Wrath of the Math, on the track "Physical Stamina", in 1996. Afu's debut single, "Whirlwind Thru Cities", was released in 1998, reaching the top 20 on Billboard's Hot Rap Singles chart. In 1999, he released his second single, "Defeat" b/w "Mortal Kombat", his anticipated debut album, Body of the Life Force, was released in October 2000. The album featured production from a number of prominent Hip Hop beatmakers, including DJ Premier, DJ Muggs, True Master and Da Beatminerz.
Guests included Wu-Tang Clan's GZA and Masta Killa, M. O. P. Ky-Mani Marley and the Cocoa Brovaz. "Whirlwind Thru Cities", "Defeat" and "Mortal Kombat" were included here, as well as the singles "Equality", "Big Acts, Little Acts" and "D&D Soundclash". Afu released his second effort Life Force Radio in May 2002, featuring production from DJ Premier, Curt Cazal, True Master, Easy Mo Bee, Needlez and Ayatollah. Guests included Hip Hop legends RZA as well as R&B star Teena Marie. In 2004, he released, he returned with another album in State of the Arts. DJ Premier returned once again to produce the single "Sucka Free". Wu-Tang's Masta Killa appeared on the song "Livin' Like Dat", underground favorite Royce da 5'9" appeared on "Pusha". Official Site Official Site Site
Cover art is a type of artwork presented as an illustration or photograph on the outside of a published product such as a book, newspaper, comic book, video game, DVD, CD, videotape, or music album. The art has a commercial function, for instance to promote the product it is displayed on, but can have an aesthetic function, may be artistically connected to the product, such as with art by the creator of the product. Album cover art is artwork created for a music album. Notable album cover art includes Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon, King Crimson's In the Court of the Crimson King, the Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Abbey Road and their "White Album" among others. Albums can have cover art created by the musician, as with Joni Mitchell's Clouds, or by an associated musician, such as Bob Dylan's artwork for the cover of Music From Big Pink, by the Band, Dylan's backup band's first album. Artists known for their album cover art include Alex Steinweiss, an early pioneer in album cover art, Roger Dean, the Hipgnosis studio.
Some album art may cause controversy because of nudity. There have been numerous books documenting album cover art rock and jazz album covers. Steinweiss was an art director and graphic designer who brought custom artwork to record album covers and invented the first packaging for long-playing records. Whether printed on the dust jacket of a hardcover book, or on the cover of a paperback, book cover art has had books written on the subject. Numerous artists have become noted for their book cover art, including Richard M. Powers and Chip Kidd. In one of the most recognizable book covers in American literature, two sad female eyes adrift in the deep blue of a night sky, hover ominously above a skyline that glows like a carnival. Evocative of sorrow and excess, the haunting image has become so inextricably linked to The Great Gatsby that it still adorns the cover of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s masterpiece 88 years after its debut; the iconic cover art was created by Spanish artist Francis Cugat. With the release of a big Hollywood movie, some printings of the book have abandoned the classic cover in favor of one that ties in more with the film.
Magazine cover artists include Art Spiegelman, who modernized the look of The New Yorker magazine, his predecessor Rea Irvin, who created the Eustace Tilly iconic character for the magazine. Today the word tabloid is used as a somewhat derogatory descriptor of a style of journalism, rather than its original intent as an indicator of half-broadsheet size; this tends to cloud the fact that the great tabloids were skilfully produced amalgams of intriguing human interest stories told with punchy brevity, a clarity drawn from the choice of simple but effective words and with a healthy dose of wit. The gossipy tabloid scandal sheets, as we know them today, have been around since 1830. That's when Benjamin Day and James Gordon Bennett Sr. the respective publishers of The New York Sun and The New York Herald, launched what became known as the Penny Press. But some of the world's best journalism has been tabloid. From the days when John Pilger revealed the cold truth of Cambodia's Killing Fields in the Daily Mirror, to the stream of revelations that showed the hypocrisy of John Major's "back to basics" cabinet, award-winning writing in the tabloids is acknowledged every year at the National Press Awards.
Good cover art can lead readers to this fact. So too does the News & Review, a free weekly published in Reno, Chico and Sacramento, California; the tabloid has thrived since the 1970s, uses cartoonish cover art. Tabloids have a modern role to play, along with good cover art they fill a niche. Sheet music cover artists include Frederick S. Manning, William Austin Starmer, Frederick Waite Starmer, all three of whom worked for Jerome H. Remick. Other prolific artists included Albert Wilfred Barbelle, André De Takacs, Gene Buck. Book cover History of graphic design List of controversial album art Video game packaging Media related to Cover art at Wikimedia Commons Media related to Comic book covers at Wikimedia Commons Media related to Book covers at Wikimedia Commons Media related to Magazines at Wikimedia Commons Media related to DVD covers at Wikimedia Commons Media related to Sheet music covers at Wikimedia Commons
Hip hop music
Hip hop music called hip-hop or rap music, is a music genre developed in the United States by inner-city African Americans in the late 1970s which consists of a stylized rhythmic music that accompanies rapping, a rhythmic and rhyming speech, chanted. It developed as part of hip hop culture, a subculture defined by four key stylistic elements: MCing/rapping, DJing/scratching with turntables, break dancing, graffiti writing. Other elements include sampling beats or bass lines from records, rhythmic beatboxing. While used to refer to rapping, "hip hop" more properly denotes the practice of the entire subculture; the term hip hop music is sometimes used synonymously with the term rap music, though rapping is not a required component of hip hop music. Hip hop as both a musical genre and a culture was formed during the 1970s when block parties became popular in New York City among African-American youth residing in the Bronx; however hip-hop music did not get recorded for the radio or television to play until 1979 due to poverty during hip-hop's birth and lack of acceptance outside ghetto neighborhoods.
At block parties DJs played percussive breaks of popular songs using two turntables and a DJ mixer to be able to play breaks from two copies of the same record, alternating from one to the other and extending the "break". Hip hop's early evolution occurred as sampling technology and drum machines became available and affordable. Turntablist techniques such as scratching and beatmatching developed along with the breaks and Jamaican toasting, a chanting vocal style, was used over the beats. Rapping developed as a vocal style in which the artist speaks or chants along rhythmically with an instrumental or synthesized beat. Notable artists at this time include DJ Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five, Fab Five Freddy, Marley Marl, Afrika Bambaataa, Kool Moe Dee, Kurtis Blow, Doug E. Fresh, Warp 9, The Fat Boys, Spoonie Gee; the Sugarhill Gang's 1979 song "Rapper's Delight" is regarded to be the first hip hop record to gain widespread popularity in the mainstream. The 1980s marked the diversification of hip hop.
Prior to the 1980s, hip hop music was confined within the United States. However, during the 1980s, it began to spread to music scenes in dozens of countries, many of which mixed hip hop with local styles to create new subgenres. New school hip hop was the second wave of hip hop music, originating in 1983–84 with the early records of Run-D. M. C. and LL Cool J. The Golden age hip hop period was an innovative period between the early 1990s. Notable artists from this era include the Juice Crew, Public Enemy, Eric B. & Rakim, Boogie Down Productions and KRS-One, EPMD, Slick Rick, Beastie Boys, Kool G Rap, Big Daddy Kane, Ultramagnetic MCs, De La Soul, A Tribe Called Quest. Gangsta rap is a subgenre of hip hop that focuses on the violent lifestyles and impoverished conditions of inner-city African-American youth. Schoolly D, N. W. A, Ice-T, Ice Cube, the Geto Boys are key founding artists, known for mixing the political and social commentary of political rap with the criminal elements and crime stories found in gangsta rap.
In the West Coast hip hop style, G-funk dominated mainstream hip hop for several years during the 1990s with artists such as Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg. East Coast hip hop in the early to mid 1990s was dominated by the Afrocentric jazz rap and alternative hip hop of the Native Tongues posse as well as the hardcore rap of artists such as Mobb Deep, Wu-Tang Clan, Onyx. East Coast hip hop had gangsta rap musicians such as Kool G Rap and the Notorious B. I. G.. In the 1990s, hip hop began to diversify with other regional styles emerging, such as Southern rap and Atlanta hip hop. At the same time, hip hop continued to be assimilated into other genres of popular music, examples being neo soul and nu metal. Hip hop became a best-selling genre in the mid-1990s and the top selling music genre by 1999; the popularity of hip hop music continued through the 2000s, with hip hop influences increasingly finding their way into mainstream pop. The United States saw the success of regional styles such as crunk, a Southern genre that emphasized the beats and music more than the lyrics.
Starting in 2005, sales of hip hop music in the United States began to wane. During the mid-2000s, alternative hip hop secured a place in the mainstream, due in part to the crossover success of artists such as OutKast and Kanye West. During the late 2000s and early 2010s, rappers such as Lil Wayne, Soulja Boy, B.o. B were the most popular rappers. During the 2010s, rappers such as Drake, Nicki Minaj, J. Cole, Kendrick Lamar all have been popular. Trap, a subgenre of hip hop has been popular during the 2010s with hip hop artists and hip hop music groups such as Migos, Travis Scott, Kodak Black; the creation of the term hip hop is credited to Keith Cowboy, rapper with Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five. However, Lovebug Starski, Keith Cowboy, DJ Hollywood used the term when the music was still known as disco rap, it is believed that Cowboy created the term while teasing a friend who had just joined the U. S. Army, by scat singing the words "hip/hop/hip/hop" in a way that mimicked the rhythmic cadence of soldiers marching.
Cowboy worked the "hip hop" cadence into a part of his stage performance, used by other artists such as The Sugarhi
Andrew "Andy" Carthy, better known by his stage name Mr. Scruff, is an English record producer and DJ, he lives in Stretford, Greater Manchester and studied fine art at the Psalter Lane campus of Sheffield Hallam University. Before he could make a living from his music alone, he worked as a shelf stocker in the Hazel Grove branch of Kwik Save, his stage name was inspired by his scruffy facial hair as well as his trademark loose-lined drawing style. He has been DJing since 1994, at first in and around Manchester nationwide, he is known for DJing in marathon sets, his eclectic musical taste, his love of a "nice cup of tea", the quirky home-produced visuals and animations associated with his music. In an interview he said: "It's about paying attention to detail. I get annoyed. I’m hard on myself." In his twenties Mr. Scruff's first 12" vinyl, "Hocus Pocus", was released on the small Manchester-based label Robs Records. Subsequent singles and his first album followed. After a brief spell working with Mark Rae, he moved to the larger Ninja Tune label and subsequently released the albums Keep It Unreal and Trouser Jazz.
His most notable hit, "Get a Move On", is built around "Bird's Lament" by Moondog and has been used in several commercials ranging from Lincoln and Volvo automobiles to France Télécom and GEICO insurance. The song samples Shifty Henry's "Hyping Woman Blues" and led to a renewal of interest in Henry's compositions. In 2004, Mr. Scruff released Keep It Solid Steel Volume 1, the first of what is intended to be a series of several DJ-mixed compilation CDs for Ninja Tune's Solid Steel series of artist mixes; these mixes are designed to recreate the eclectic genres one would expect to hear at a Mr. Scruff club night. In November 2006, Ninja Tune confirmed that the 8th Solid Steel record would be mixed by J Rocc and the 9th would be Volume 2 from Mr. Scruff. Other Solid Steel mixes have been released by fellow Ninja Tune artists including The Herbaliser, Hexstatic, DJ Food and Amon Tobin, he has a wide array of remixes to his name, has produced tracks for others – notably "Echo of Quiet and Green" for sometime-collaborator Niko for her 2004 album Life on Earth.
Niko returned the favour. Having performed at The Big Chill Festival in Eastnor Castle deer park, Herefordshire, he was asked in 2006 to select the tracks for the compilation album, Big Chill Classics. July 2008 saw the release of Southport Weekender Volume 7, a double album released in the Southport Weekender series, recorded in a purpose-built holiday village in Southport, Merseyside; the first disc was mixed by German nu jazz DJs Jazzanova, the second was mixed by Mr. Scruff. Scruff's contribution is a mix of soul music. In 2008, a new independent record label, Ninja Tuna, was founded, a collaboration between Scruff and the Ninja Tune label. Mr. Scruff's most recent singles and the album Ninja Tuna were all released on the new label. A US-only release of the album on mp3 came with 10 additional tracks from the Ninja Tuna recording sessions, under the title Bonus Bait. A CD version of this supplementary album was released in the UK in February 2009. On 19 May 2014 Ninja Tuna released Friendly Bacteria.
Mr. Scruff's album and single cover art, music videos and his official website are noted for their whimsical cartoonish look; the images and animations are projected onto large screens during his gigs. Scruff drew cartoons for music magazines such as Jockey Slut in the 1990s. Mr. Scruff began selling tea from a small room at the Manchester club, the Music Box, where he was resident DJ in around 2000, with the proceeds going to charity; when he started touring, Scruff took the enterprise with him and gained a reputation for being the DJ with the teashop. When appearing at festivals, such as Big Chill and WOMAD, tea stalls or tents were erected, were open for the duration of the festivals. Scruff subsequently started an online tea company, Make Us a Brew, produced his own range of fair trade teabags which used to be sold in department store chains Selfridges and Booths, his official website still sells the branded tea-related paraphernalia including teapots and tea-towels, but the tea is no longer sold as the Make Us a Brew company was dissolved in September 2013.
He is the joint owner, with his manager Gary McClarnan, of Teacup Kitchen, located in Thomas Street, Manchester. Most of Mr. Scruff's studio albums contain tracks about fish and other sea-life, which cut up recordings of voiceovers from children's stories and nature documentaries to create surreal and silly stories, they began with the track "Sea Mammal". It is the opening track on Scruff's first album; this was followed by "Wail" on his first album. Keep It Unreal featured the tracks "Shanty Town" and "Fish", the latter of which features samples from the likes of David Attenborough and David Bellamy; the album Trouser Jazz closes with another cut-up track, "Ahoy There!", noted as featuring an appearance from "Albert Ross". Scruff has stated. However, marine references continue in Scruff's work including the track "Shrimp" from Trouser Jazz, the title and cover art of his albums, Ninja Tuna and its companion release, Bonus Bait. Mr. Scruff
Frying the Fat
Frying the Fat was the first compilation album from the Grand Central Records independent record label, released in association with Fat City Recordings on 8 December 1995. "Jazz Hypnosis" - First Priority "Concentrate" - Aim "In Rhodes" - Rae & Christian "A Transformation" - First Priority "Dirty Dog" - Tony D "Fat Slug" - Mr. Scruff "Pure Arithmetic" - First Priority "Bang Bang" - Alex Howie "Diggin' Dizzy" - Aim "I Thought I'd Find You Here" - Alex Howie "Free Rollin'" - Mark Rae "Ways Of The Underground" - Funky Fresh Few "Still Blowin' Free" - Funky Fresh Few A second version of the album was released on 9 February 2004, with a different sleeve and different track list and order, most notably omitting the Mr. Scruff track. "Jazz Hypnosis" - First Priority "Concentrate" - Aim "In Rhodes" - Rae & Christian "Dirty Dog" - Tony D "Diggin' Dizzy" - Aim "Free Rollin'" - Mark Rae "I Thought I'd Find You Here" - Alex Howie "Still Blowin' Free" - Funky Fresh Few "Pure Arithmetic" - First Priority "Let The Funk Ride" - Aim "The First Cut Is The Deepest" - First Priority "Central J Parlay" - Tony D "Ways Of The Underground" - Funky Fresh Few "Bang Bang" - Alex Howie Grand Central Records compilations
A music genre is a conventional category that identifies some pieces of music as belonging to a shared tradition or set of conventions. It is to be distinguished from musical form and musical style, although in practice these terms are sometimes used interchangeably. Academics have argued that categorizing music by genre is inaccurate and outdated. Music can be divided into different genres in many different ways; the artistic nature of music means that these classifications are subjective and controversial, some genres may overlap. There are varying academic definitions of the term genre itself. In his book Form in Tonal Music, Douglass M. Green distinguishes between form, he lists madrigal, canzona and dance as examples of genres from the Renaissance period. To further clarify the meaning of genre, Green writes, "Beethoven's Op. 61 and Mendelssohn's Op. 64 are identical in genre – both are violin concertos – but different in form. However, Mozart's Rondo for Piano, K. 511, the Agnus Dei from his Mass, K. 317 are quite different in genre but happen to be similar in form."
Some, like Peter van der Merwe, treat the terms genre and style as the same, saying that genre should be defined as pieces of music that share a certain style or "basic musical language." Others, such as Allan F. Moore, state that genre and style are two separate terms, that secondary characteristics such as subject matter can differentiate between genres. A music genre or subgenre may be defined by the musical techniques, the style, the cultural context, the content and spirit of the themes. Geographical origin is sometimes used to identify a music genre, though a single geographical category will include a wide variety of subgenres. Timothy Laurie argues that since the early 1980s, "genre has graduated from being a subset of popular music studies to being an ubiquitous framework for constituting and evaluating musical research objects". Among the criteria used to classify musical genres are the trichotomy of art and traditional musics. Alternatively, music can be divided on three variables: arousal and depth.
Arousal reflects the energy level of the music. These three variables help explain why many people like similar songs from different traditionally segregated genres. Musicologists have sometimes classified music according to a trichotomic distinction such as Philip Tagg's "axiomatic triangle consisting of'folk','art' and'popular' musics", he explains that each of these three is distinguishable from the others according to certain criteria. The term art music refers to classical traditions, including both contemporary and historical classical music forms. Art music exists in many parts of the world, it emphasizes formal styles that invite technical and detailed deconstruction and criticism, demand focused attention from the listener. In Western practice, art music is considered a written musical tradition, preserved in some form of music notation rather than being transmitted orally, by rote, or in recordings, as popular and traditional music are. Most western art music has been written down using the standard forms of music notation that evolved in Europe, beginning well before the Renaissance and reaching its maturity in the Romantic period.
The identity of a "work" or "piece" of art music is defined by the notated version rather than by a particular performance, is associated with the composer rather than the performer. This is so in the case of western classical music. Art music may include certain forms of jazz, though some feel that jazz is a form of popular music. Sacred Christian music forms an important part of the classical music tradition and repertoire, but can be considered to have an identity of its own; the term popular music refers to any musical style accessible to the general public and disseminated by the mass media. Musicologist and popular music specialist Philip Tagg defined the notion in the light of sociocultural and economical aspects: Popular music, unlike art music, is conceived for mass distribution to large and socioculturally heterogeneous groups of listeners and distributed in non-written form, only possible in an industrial monetary economy where it becomes a commodity and in capitalist societies, subject to the laws of'free' enterprise... it should ideally sell as much as possible.
Popular music is found on most commercial and public service radio stations, in most commercial music retailers and department stores, in movie and television soundtracks. It is noted on the Billboard charts and, in addition to singer-songwriters and composers, it involves music producers more than other genres do; the distinction between classical and popular music has sometimes been blurred in marginal areas such as minimalist music and light classics. Background music for films/movies draws on both traditions. In this respect, music is like fiction, which draws a distinction between literary fiction and popular fiction, not always precise. Country music known as country and western, hillbilly music, is a genre of popular music that originated in the southern United States in the early 1920s; the polka is a Czech dance and genre of dance music familiar throughout Europe and the Americas. Rock music is a broad genre of popular music that originated as "rock and roll" in the United States in the early 1950s, developed into a range of different styles in the 1960s and particular
A record producer or music producer oversees and manages the sound recording and production of a band or performer's music, which may range from recording one song to recording a lengthy concept album. A producer has varying roles during the recording process, they may gather musical ideas for the project, collaborate with the artists to select cover tunes or original songs by the artist/group, work with artists and help them to improve their songs, lyrics or arrangements. A producer may also: Select session musicians to play rhythm section accompaniment parts or solos Co-write Propose changes to the song arrangements Coach the singers and musicians in the studioThe producer supervises the entire process from preproduction, through to the sound recording and mixing stages, and, in some cases, all the way to the audio mastering stage; the producer may perform these roles themselves, or help select the engineer, provide suggestions to the engineer. The producer may pay session musicians and engineers and ensure that the entire project is completed within the record label's budget.
A record producer or music producer has a broad role in overseeing and managing the recording and production of a band or performer's music. A producer has many roles that may include, but are not limited to, gathering ideas for the project, composing the music for the project, selecting songs or session musicians, proposing changes to the song arrangements, coaching the artist and musicians in the studio, controlling the recording sessions, supervising the entire process through audio mixing and, in some cases, to the audio mastering stage. Producers often take on a wider entrepreneurial role, with responsibility for the budget, schedules and negotiations. Writer Chris Deville explains it, "Sometimes a producer functions like a creative consultant — someone who helps a band achieve a certain aesthetic, or who comes up with the perfect violin part to complement the vocal melody, or who insists that a chorus should be a bridge. Other times a producer will build a complete piece of music from the ground up and present the finished product to a vocalist, like Metro Boomin supplying Future with readymade beats or Jack Antonoff letting Taylor Swift add lyrics and melody to an otherwise-finished “Out Of The Woods.”The artist of an album may not be a record producer or music producer for his/her album.
While both contribute creatively, the official credit of "record producer" may depend on the record contract. Christina Aguilera, for example, did not receive record producer credits until many albums into her career. In the 2010s, the producer role is sometimes divided among up to three different individuals: executive producer, vocal producer and music producer. An executive producer oversees project finances, a vocal producers oversees the vocal production, a music producer oversees the creative process of recording and mixings; the music producer is often a competent arranger, musician or songwriter who can bring fresh ideas to a project. As well as making any songwriting and arrangement adjustments, the producer selects and/or collaborates with the mixing engineer, who takes the raw recorded tracks and edits and modifies them with hardware and software tools to create a stereo or surround sound "mix" of all the individual voices sounds and instruments, in turn given further adjustment by a mastering engineer for the various distribution media.
The producer oversees the recording engineer who concentrates on the technical aspects of recording. Noted producer Phil Ek described his role as "the person who creatively guides or directs the process of making a record", like a director would a movie. Indeed, in Bollywood music, the designation is music director; the music producer's job is to create and mold a piece of music. The scope of responsibility may be one or two songs or an artist's entire album – in which case the producer will develop an overall vision for the album and how the various songs may interrelate. At the beginning of record industry, the producer role was technically limited to record, in one shot, artists performing live; the immediate predecessors to record producers were the artists and repertoire executives of the late 1920s and 1930s who oversaw the "pop" product and led session orchestras. That was the case of Ben Selvin at Columbia Records, Nathaniel Shilkret at Victor Records and Bob Haring at Brunswick Records.
By the end of the 1930s, the first professional recording studios not owned by the major companies were established separating the roles of A&R man and producer, although it wouldn't be until the late 1940s when the term "producer" became used in the industry. The role of producers changed progressively over the 1960s due to technology; the development of multitrack recording caused a major change in the recording process. Before multitracking, all the elements of a song had to be performed simultaneously. All of these singers and musicians had to be assembled in a large studio where the performance was recorded. With multitrack recording, the "bed tracks" (rhythm section accompaniment parts such as the bassline and rhythm guitar could be recorded first, the vocals and solos could be added using as many "takes" as necessary, it was no longer necessary to get all the players in the studio at the same time. A pop band could record their backing tracks one week, a horn section could be brought in a week to add horn shots and punches, a string section could be brought in a week after that.
Multitrack recording had another pro