8A - Wednesday, November7, 2012
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
backstage rap brawls
By JACKSON HOWARD
Daily Arts Writer
Hip hop is sophisticated now,
haven't you heard? Kanye West
interned at Fendi. Rick Ross
owns Maybachs - yes, as in more
than one. Birdman started an oil
company, and as if that weren't
enough, hegot a freakin' oil well
tattooed on his head. Google it.
Jay-Z knows Obama and travels
to Europe more times per month
than you will in your entire life.
Rappers are no longer rappers -
no, they're artists now, and hip
hop deserves to finally be relieved
of its stereotype as an immature
and pugilistic genre.
Well, notnso fast. No matter how
"sophisticated" hip hop is today, it
will never shed its most endearing
and self-destructive quality: the
craziness of the people involved.
From Ol' Dirty Bastard to DMX,
hip hop was founded on and will
always be associated with eccen-
tricity and public disregard. Rap-
pers, with a few exceptions, are
a feral, egotistical, strip club-fre-
quenting, weed-smoking, chain-
wearing group of troublemakers.
And no matter how'many Europe-
an countries they've visited, they
will never be able to completely
hide who they really are.
This insuppressible truth has
produced, for almost 20 years,
a combination that somehow
always seems to go wrong: rap-
pers and award shows.
The Source Awards, while
trouble-free for the majority of its
existence, will forever be marred
by two unforgettable events. In
1994, the inaugural year, legend-
ary New York rap crew Onyx
performed their song "Throw Ya
Gunz." The show started fine,
until thehorus, when the group
had a r
... I did
out actual guns and fired The 2004 Vibe Awards proved
t the ceiling. Obviously, the to be more eventful. Right before
went into panic, and the Snoop Dogg and Quincy Jones
sance ended early. presented Dr. Dre with a lifetime
an, really, Onyx? What did achievement award, a fight broke
ect? What was the process out on the side of the stage.
can only imagine the con- The story goes something like
on before the show. this:. As Dre was waiting for. the
man, I think we should do award, one Jimmy James John-
ing special tonight." son approached him for an auto-
h! Let's fire real guns on graph. Dre obliged, but before
The crowd will love it. It's he could take out a pen, Johnson
ly not extremely illegal or sucker punched him in the head.
at all." Within seconds, the entire G-Unit
descended on Johnson. Chairs
were thrown and the fightspilled
into the crowd. In the midst of
it, Young Buck of G-Unit stabbed
nd awards. Johnson in the stomach. The
police came shortly, mace was
sprayed and, never one to back
down, Dre returned to the stage
r 1994, The Source Awards and accepted his award.
elatively quiet period until Just as hip-hop award shows
t0 show in Pasadena, when were beginning to regain their
broke loose and ultimately validity, conflict arose in the
d the show for eternity. The beginning of October at the 2012
s aren't clear, but in the BET Awards between two of the
of the show, a fight broke industry's biggest stars. Young
the audience and quickly Jeezy and Rick Ross, who have
ed into a show-wide brawl. been subliminally beefing for
han 75 audience members years, started pushing and shov-
d the stage, and only five ing backstage. The fight escalated
5 awards were handed out. in the. parking lot, shots were
ndary West Coast art- heard and a shooter was arrested.
Quick was involved in the To be honest, I was impressed -
aken to, the hospital and I had no clue Rick Ross was in
rrested. Quik, forever the good enough physical shape to be
tist, had this to say of the throwing haymakers.
t: In the end, rappers will be rap-
tried to break up a fight, pers. Cappadonna, long time Wu-
e police tried to throw my Tang Clan affiliate, said it best.
s down in front of the world Speaking to MTV after the 2000
n't let 'em take me to the Source Awards, he lamented,
. In a white suit?!" "Brothers still can't get along.
dena proceeded to ban the Brothers gotta hold hands for a
for life, the show lost its while, man. Stop poppin' each
:tract with UPN, and after other like that, or else we ain't
:re show the next year, the never gonna get anywhere." Gan-
Awards were finished. dhi couldn't have said it better.
Matthew Dear co-founded Ghostly International, a record company based in Ann Arbor.
Dear talks A2 roots
lectic musician tains of Denver.
Dear, an electronic avant-pop
o return to the artist, has been on the road pro-
moting his latest album Beams, a
Blind Pig groovy, glossy, funky thing that
floats and glides, unable to be
By KATIE STEEN pinned down as having any one
Daily Arts Writer sound. In away, Dear will finally
be coming home on Wednesday
h oh, there's a tunnel. I'm to the Blind Pig in Ann Arbor,
to lose you in three sec- a place he holds near and dear
- followed by silence and after living here as a University
c redial- undergraduate and several years
Matthew past graduation. But while Dear
tthew has spent a substantial amount
was driv- of time away from the chubby
o Denver, Wednesday squirrels and Saturday foot-
meant 9 p.m. ball debauchery, he's more than
tains and, excited tocome back.
quently, The Bind Pit "It's amazing," Dear said about
zone tun- From $12 returning to Ann Arbor. "It's def-
through- initely going to be one of the top
he tricky terrain. Needless shows of the tour, just because of
Dear's interview with The the energy and the people there.
gan Daily was a bit rocky It's always fun to come back to
the circumstances. Never- the hometown."
s, Dear was able to provide While Dear also performs
sightful look into the steps under the monikers Audion,
success and into the moun- False and Jabberjaw, those are
reserved for his vocals-free elec-
It's no surprise that Dear has
several on-stage identities, given
the lyrics of Beams that admit,
"It's alright to be someone else
sometimes." But for concerts
under his own name, Matthew
Dear gets real.
SERIES"When performing as myself,
it's a bit more personal," Dear
said. "When you're doing some-
thing as Audion as a DJ, it's
more about escaping yourself
when you're going to the dance
floor ... You're kind of there to
escape reality. Whereas when
you're there performing with the
band, it's more about connecting
directly. When you're on stage
with a band, you're presenting
CP, FACC, FAHA something that's right from your
Administrator, This isn't to say that there
es won't be a substantial amount
of grooving in the crowd, on
Wednesday, Dear explained.
ITIATIVE "The last time we played (atthe
Blind Pig), there was such a great
energy in the crowd," Dear said.
"Pretty much the whole crowd
was dancing and totally rocking
out and having fun. I'm really
looking forward to just having an
Of course, the show is in Ann
Arbor, so Dear won't exactly be
partying with strangers.
"My old bass player and drum-
mer who performed with the
band in the very beginning will
be at the show," he said. "And
there might be a surprise encore
where they come up on the stage
and it all ends with a total free-
Beyond the nostalgia, Ann
Arbor has played a vital role in
Matthew Dear's career, serving
as a launch pad into everything
musical during his "grassroots-y"
"I met these guys at a record
store called Grooveyard," he said.
"I just put up a little poster that
said,'I wanna make music. Here's
my number. Call me.' And'I got
with some techno guys up there
so it was very person-to-person,
"There was such an amaz-
ing little group of people living
there at the time," he added. "And
it totally changed the way that
I made music and my ability to
make music. I think there was
an energy there that was exactly
what we needed as a label to get
But it wasn't enough for Dear
to simply make music in Ann
Arbor -'he went ahead and co-
founded Ghostly International,
a record label based here. So
how does one (or two, rather)
go about creating a label from
,scratch? As Dear explained, it
turns out that going to a good
old-fashioned college party may
be a viable first step.
Dear described meeting Sam
Valenti - "the true owner of
Ghostly" - at a house party
"He met me right around the
time when he was forming these
ideas about the label, and I hap-
pened to be someone who had
a total desire to put out as much
music as possible. So I was more
of the musical creative side, and
Sam was the foundation. It was a
Since then, Dear has certainly
succeeded in his music-making
desires. Now on his fifth album,
Dear has played shows from
London and Milan to the Detroit
Electronic Music Festival (under
his techno moniker Audion), and
he's showing no signs of slowing
JAMEs M. GALLOWAY, MD, FA
Acting Regional Director and Regional Health
U.S. Department of Health and Human Servic
TIHE MILLION HEARTSM IN
Wednesday, November 14, 2012, 12-1 p.m.
Horace Rackham Amphitheater
Students, Faculty, and Staff Welcome
H eart disease and stroke are the first and fourth leading
causes of death in the U.S., with heart disease being
responsible for one of 'every three U.S. deaths. Launched in 2011,
Million Hearts is a public- and private-sector partnership intent
upon preventing one million heart attacks and strokes by 2017.
Dr. Galloway will discuss this initiative and the critical role
pharmacists are playing to scale up proven clinical and community
strategies to prevent heart disease and stroke across America.
For more information, call the Office of the Dean, College
of Pharmacy, (734) 764-7144. Or visit the College Web site at
GLUED TO THE TUBE?
SO ARE WE!
APPLY TO WRITE FOR THE DAILY'S
TV/NEW MEDIA BEAT.
Request an application by e-mailing