Front cover boasts worldwide superstars Daft Punk. Editor-in-chief Andre Torres sat down with the French duo at Artform Studio record store/salon in Los Angeles and spoke to them about disco, funk, records, samples, and music history. Back cover features the legendary hip-hop crew De La Soul. In an it’s-about-time article, writer Kyle Eustice tells the story of their debut album, 3 Feet High and Rising. Continuing with the disco theme, we speak to disco mastermind Nile Rodgers, and we got the elusive Canadian synth wiz Gino Soccio to speak on the record for the first time since he disappeared! We also traveled to Detroit to speak to Dirt Tech Reck man Waajeed and to tell the story of the legendary Slum Village crew. Wax Poetics brings a little for everyone: we speak to Harlemite and new jack swing architect Teddy Riley, Cream (and Tony Williams Lifetime) bassist Jack Bruce, as well as Me’Shell Ndegeocello about her new album of Nina Simone songs. Also: Lady, Ava Luna, and BLKKATHY.
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Wax Poetics does it again. Purchase your copy here.
Issue 54 split covers celebrate two scenes— blue-eyed soul and Brooklyn MCs—brought together as only Wax Poetics can.
Cover one features the poster boy for the blue-eyed-soul movement, Daryl Hall. Wax Poetics digs deep into the scene with features on Bobby Caldwell, Donald Fagen of Steely Dan, Laura Nyro, and Ned Doheny.
Cover two sports legendary Brooklyn MC and Juice Crew alum Big Daddy Kane, backed with new Brooklyn mic killer Joey Badass. And we venture farther back in time to speak with the elusive old school BK rapper Jimmy Spicer.
Also featuring crooner José James, Keyboard Kid, Nosaj Thing, Clams Casino, and the Ghetto Brothers.
The RZA and Jesse Boykins III cover issue fifty-three of Wax Poetics. Pre-orders can be taken now at the Wax Poetics Storefront.
Like a highly trained Shaolin monk, this issue has many styles. And many of our featured artists are masters and leaders of their respective styles and movements. And most have combined multiple styles to create a new one. RZA put his two loves, hip-hop and kung fu flicks, together and created the Wu-Tang Clan, becoming its self-appointed leader and arguably the master of New York’s grittiest period of hip-hop. To sing the hook on Ghost’s “After the Smoke Is Clear,” RZA recruited William Hart, leader of the Delfonics and master of Philly’s sweet-soul period. Nite Jewel looks to the past for inspiration, whether ’80s synth pop or the recording techniques of experimental-music pioneer Brian Eno, who quickly rose to fame during his brief stint in Roxy Music, the art-rock band formed by painting student Bryan Ferry. Ferry, who was mentored by England’s most famous pop artist and collagist, likened Roxy Music to that of a collage: all of his interests— art, fashion, women, and music—mashed together. With two different phases of music, Bryan Ferry and Roxy Music would influence countless musicians and bands. Another influential figure whose name never fails to show up is the late J Dilla, who is pinpointed as influence number one by Bilal, who noted, “J Dilla pulled from all different genres, and he had a record collection like I’ve never seen before…rock, jazz, electronic, everything. And he mixed it all into what he did—which was hip-hop.” Bilal would absorb this multi-style influence and return the favor to his protégé, Jesse Boykins III, who is sharing his philosophy through his Romantic Movement, recruiting artists like Mara Hruby along the way. J Dilla’s music spurred multi-instrumentalist Miguel Atwood-Ferguson to interpret his songs for orchestra, enlisting Dilla cohort Karriem Riggins to add that beat. Ferguson finds himself as Los Angeles’ most in-demand arranger and recently collaborated with the Gaslamp Killer, who is leading L.A.’s turntable scene with his Low End Theory night. Leroy Sibbles was not only the lead singer of the Heptones but also the musical director of Studio One, where he brought a new bass style to reggae. Sinkane brings together many styles and genres—polyrhythmic Afrobeat and modern electronic—to create his unique, indefinable music that sets him apart on the dance label DFA. Danny Alias brought together his love of spoken word, parody and humor, promotion, and house music to create the brief but influential dance label Persona Records. Portland’s Pleasure was pleased with the label support from Crusader Wayne Henderson but always stuck to their guns and championed their own polished and funky blend of R&B and jazz. Last but not least, influential Bay Area rapper Mac Dre had two creative periods in his short career, including pioneering the long-lasting hyphy movement, a subculture that combined its love of cars, partying, music, and dance.
Dam-Funk, Sade, Lenny Kravitz and Flying Lotus all grace the cover of the latest issue of Wax Poetics. You can order this issue now directly from Wax Poetics.
There is a whole lineage of Black musicians that hasn’t fit the stereotypical mold: Jimi Hendrix, George Clinton, Bootsy Collins, Shuggie Otis, Prince, H.R. It’s within this space that Lenny Kravitz fits. While Sade found she could sit comfortably within the system and make things work extremely well. Gary Bartz didn’t want to be in a box. So if he wanted play funky music, let the outsiders call him a sell-out. Just a teenager, Betty Wright navigated the male-dominated industry, and has continued to stay in it, guiding others. When Cody Chesnutt was dropped by his label, he recorded an album in his bedroom. The majors are no longer the powerhouses they once were. Small, independent labels are giving artists incredible freedom to stretch out. The same label that allowed Madlib to grow artistically is now doing the same for Dâm-Funk, and it’s thrilling to see where he’ll go next. Flying Lotus started his own label to do the same for other artists, like Thundercat. Georgia Anne Muldrow, Jamire Williams, and MeLo-X self-release their material, not having to answer to anyone but themselves. And look at the type of freedom Quantic and Alice Russell have. Who else records cumbia and spiritual soul in Colombia? Or moves fluently between old and modern soul like Myron & E? This new era will be defined by unlimited artistic freedom never before seen. Let’s not waste it.
Nas and Danny Brown cover issue #51 of Wax Poetics. Dubbed “The Hip-Hop Issue,” Wax Poetics chops it up with some of your favorite hip-hop artists from the past and present. Nas, Danny Brown, Coke La Rock, Killer Mike & El-P and Kurtis Blow are just some of the artists you will find in the new issue. A limited edition cover has also been produced, featuring No Limit’s Master P and Shabazz Palaces. The limited edition cover can be purchased exclusively from the Wax Poetics web store.
For you hip-hop fans out there who do everything digitally, Wax Poetics is now available on iTunes for the iPhone and iPad. The app already has issue #51 available, and past issues (50-41) can also be purchased. Click here to purchase.
Coming this spring, mysterious rapper MF Doom will grace the cover of Frank 151′s quarterly issue. The issue will include all original content: illustrated Doom lyrics, articles from collaborators and exclusive photos. Peep a couple of the exclusive photos below. And make sure to log onto Frank 151′s official website for more updates.
Images are courtesy of Stones Throws & Frank 151
Click HERE to see alternate cover with Frank Ocean
Purchase issue HERE.
10th Anniversary Redesign
In December of 2001, Wax Poetics debuted its first issue to a small following of record collectors and “beat diggers.” Ten years later, Wax Poetics has carved out a niche for itself in the world of music journalism and expanded its audience to a worldwide congregation of music lovers.
Issue 50 marks our ten-year anniversary and does so with one of the most iconic musicians in the history of African American music, the one and only Prince.
We’ve also done a full redesign, making the magazine slightly larger-8 x 10.5 inches-and we’ve embraced a new paper stock. Wax Poetics will look a bit different on the newsstand, with a new mark making its debut in place of our old logo, but the magazine will continue to be a collectible objet d’art, something to be saved on your shelf as a musical reference manual, not recycled like other mags.
Wax Poetics has also returned to its roots as a journal and is back to being quarterly. The new price of $11.99 reflects not only radical changes in the publishing industry and the economy, but also the guarantee of continued quality from the paper stock to the writing and photographs. As always, our subscription prices offer a great deal of savings off the cover price (Canadian prices have been adjusted).
While we vow to keep Wax Poetics in print as a tangible entity, bucking the trend of ridding our culture of old-school reading products, we will also start offering a digital version of the magazine this year for the iPhone, iPad, Android, and other popular handheld devices.
To celebrate Wax Poetics ten-year anniversary, the one-and-only DaM-FunK has created an exclusive Prince DJ set, which includes an exclusive new track.
1. Prince & the Revolution – 17 Days (original version)
2. DāM-FunK – 17 Days (D-F Re-Freak)
3. Prince – Irresistible Bitch (Props Re-Edit)
4. Prince (featuring Andre Cymone & Pepe Willie) – One Man Jam
5. Prince – Wet Dream Cousin
6. Prince – Dirty Mind (1981 Live Version)
7. Prince – Soft & Wet (original version)
8. Prince – Ballad Of Dorothy Parker (D-F Extended Re-Edit)
9. Prince – Sticky Like Glue (Props Re-Edit)
10. Prince & the Revolution – All My Dreams
Wax Poetics Issue #50, purchase here
In my opinion, Wax Poetics holds the crown for best music magazine. They cover all types of music genres, and keep their articles interesting and informative.
While browsing through their website, I came across a few articles that would definitely be worth peeping. If you are looking to brush up on your music knowledge, click on the links below and get to reading. Enjoy and be educated.
- The Crate Diggers: The D.I.T.C. crew reflects on their careers and the late Big L
- Frank Ocean: Soul Caliber (from Wax Poetics Issue #50)
- Ain’t It Good to You: Jonny Sklute reflects on the origins of Good Records NYC
- Dedicated: Microphone fiend Rakim is back
- Elbow to Elbow: Crate Diggin’ at the Roosevelt Hotel
Looking for back issues of Wax Poetics magazine? Look no further. Wax Poetics recently cleared out a storage facility and found boxes of their most-in-demand issues, including the issue that started it all. If you are looking to expand your Wax Poetics magazine collection, head to their storefront now.
The man who debuted at no. 1 on the Billboard 200 covers the newest edition of RESPECT. magazine. Besides covering Cole, the new issue of RESPECT. will also feature: Common, A$AP Rocky, French Montana, Meek Mill, Big Sean and more. Head to your local newsstand on Tuesday, November 29th to pick up a copy.
Props to Elliott Wilson who continues to put out quality material.
Props to Rap Radar