Free Thanksgiving Funk Mix for Your Turkey Hangover

Thanksgiving at the Trolls by floodllama

Greetings all,
I hope you all had a great Thursday, regardless of what you did. Here at Frying in Vein, I am not trying to force any discussion on holidays, but we all know yesterday was Thanksgiving and whether or not you participate in the American tradition you can still enjoy a good old funk mix. This particular one was produced by an old friend of the Frying in Vein site, dj_pi aka Paul Karatsinides. You can take a listen below and/or click the widget to download.

Here it is, Thanks For Giving… Funk 45’s… Part II by dj_pi:

Interested in the tracklisting? Well, here you go, little babies:

Pace-Setters – Push On Jesse Jackson
Chester Randle’s Soul Sender’s – Soul Brother’s Testify (Part 2)
Creative Funk – Funk Power
Coque – People Let’s Communicate (Part I)
Sargent Kelly – I Like It
The Summits – It Takes Two
The Village Callers – Hector
The U-F-O’s – Too Hot To Hold
The People’s Choice – Hot Wire
Sidney Owens & North, South Connection – Sputnik
Fantastic Epics – Fun and Funk Part II

AVG: Zomby – Automatic

Saw a tweet from my favorite urban tastemaker magazine, The Fader, about this video and I had to check it out.

My first listen to Zomby was on a mix curated by Your Brutha brub, who is someone that should be on your radar if he isn’t already. He is definitely the most organized dude when it comes to his social media interaction AND he still uses MySpace faithfully.

I usually want to have a ton to added info, but I got some bigger things coming up for the site. Enjoy the trippy visuals and the Zomby sounds. If you like what you hear, dig deeper and search his catalogue.

Hey You! Rappers! Thanks for Killing MySpace

… for me.

MySpace screenshot by Steven Vance

It does not make much sense why I still have my MySpace profiles (all three of them). It is not like I use them anymore. I check them occasionally to remind me why I stayed away for so long.

Yet it was only the other day when it hit me what bothered me most about the once-popular social networking website. As I look at my “friends” on MySpace and I notice that 70% of them are artists themselves; most of them being hip hop acts. At one point, I was get 4-5 requests a day from rappers and producers to check out their music and cop “their hotness.” Whenever I would post promotional bulletins, they were only being acknowledged by those involved with the event, never non-industry people.

Sure, it was me that accepted all these artists, but I do remember being quite discriminatory for a while until I just got bored with the practice. At some point, I just did not feel that the time I was investing on the site was merited by the dull results I was getting. That was when I decided to get my OWN space like you see here. Granted, I still did not know what I was doing, but I knew it had to have been better than my MySpace work. I must say it was the best move I have made in quite a while. My presence is stronger than ever and when I finally get the second phase for Frying in Vein going [which is very soon], I am certain I will see respectable results.

While preparing for this piece, I had to get some perspective from some of my comrades. I knew my incendiary headline was just that, almost to a level of absurdity. The site is still buggy and loads like cold molasses on a lumpy surface with a 15 degree incline, but it is still kind of necessary to have. In terms of owning your brand on the search engine, MySpace always ranks high, so it came as no surprise when my friends were not as supportive of my baseless accusation.

My dude Ethan Holben aka DJ Contakt, former VP of Fat Beats Records, gave me some perspective over e-mail that drills the point home. My issue with rappers has nothing really to do with MySpace. The truth of the matter is, the reason why the content of this site has taken the direction it has is due to what Ethan says here:

(edited by me)To me, the problem with Rap and Myspace is GENERALLY ( I capitalize, because it is a generalization and isn’t true for everyone) the same is the problem with Rap and everything else. The importance of self promotion in rap has always been there, it’s part of the framework of the music and the culture. However, there was a turning point where it went from being a necessary part of the culture to a comedic parody of itself. I can’t pinpoint when this turning point was (maybe the indie movement in the late 90’s, or perhaps the rise of the 50 Cent style “mixtape” in the early 2000’s) nor can I give you the exact cause, that is an entire article in itself – however it did happen. There was a period of a few years when you couldn’t have a conversation with a rap artist that didn’t have the use of the now cliché phrases “grinding”, “on my grind”, “hustling”, “do my thang”, and all the variations at least once, if not ten times that. To me, Rap became obsessed with blatant self promotion, to many, that blatant self promotion appeared to be more important than the quality of the art. This obsession with “hustle” is essentially the opposite of building a “true fanbase” like your prior article. When you “hustle” you aren’t treating people like peers, you are selling to them and in essence creating only a fleeting transactional relationship.

Let me highlight something from Ethan’s perspective for you guys that I really want you to absorb

When you “hustle” you aren’t treating people like peers, you are selling to them and in essence creating only a fleeting transactional relationship.

When I advocate being a personable geek, I am telling you to care about who you seek to buy your stuff. For the longest time, folks have gotten away with this one-way arrangement of doing things and people are no longer accepting of it. THAT is why MySpace has died – too many stupid people, who do not understand that they are not special. You are not adding value to someone’s life by having “the hottest beats on Earth” or “the Dylan fire of 16” bar verses. I mean, you might to someone, maybe. You are never going to find that person if you are adding to a thick fog of spam though. You need to get a personality; something that will make you stand out from the pack.

Seriously folks, wise up! Stop jumping on every social networking site because you see a fake 50 Cent account with over 100,000 followers. You will never be 50 Cent by following. 50 Cent became who he was by being a leader in the hip hop space. His mixtapes changed the way we ingest rap today. The man does not care to jump on trends. He is still trying to recreate his best record! That is why he is rich.

If you must use MySpace, try to really connect with folks. Now that they have analytics, explore how a tweet to your MySpace can affect the amount of plays per day. See if integrating the same status messages across the same platforms is actually advantageous to you. Do your research, different demographics use different sites. It is true. You probably will not have the same friends on MySpace as you do Facebook. This is how you must think when using these TOOLS. These sites are not toys, so stop playing with them. Either get serious or quit.

Sorry… but this gets me a little riled up. Thanks for reading.

AVG: Streets of Detroit by The Nic(k)s

This feature is just productivity exercise. I want to remind myself that it is not hard to showcase quality content. Case in point, I must share this audio/visual gem featuring producer/eMCee Nick Speed, made by Nic Notion.

Basically, The Nic(k)s explore the deep blue collar connection between the industrial plants and the industrious beats that permeate Detroit hip hop music. Notion juxtaposes scenes of assembly line activity and Speedo working on a new beat. It is hard to tell which is the grimy backdrop – the music or the film footage. It is this kind of work that inspires me and keeps me going. In a world that forces us to reconsider our value every day, we must share in each other’s creativity to keep up surging forth.

Gain REAL Fans: 5 Steps to Getting to the 1000 True

Photo by kalandrakas

Would you like stark-raving mad fans? You know, the kind that will follow you across the country on tour and/or do just about anything you ask of them. Well, that is not going to happen if you come out the gate barking at them like a rabid Rottweiler.

In a world of push-up bra MySpace friend numbers, silicone Twitter followers and other plastic enhancements for your web presence, it doesn’t pay to be a Cherry. You have over 50,000 friends on a social networking site – so what? It does not mean a thing if you cannot get even 0.1% to pay attention to anything you say. Besides, there are way too many folks that are getting plastic surgery, which has diluted the potency of your hack. Every Ice T must have his Coco, I guess. I say “no, thank you.”

We are realizing that padding the numbers may not be as attractive as we might think, so now what do we do? How do we actually build a real fan base that we can leverage for real financial gains? Easy – all one has to do is be real and (somewhat) approachable.

That is the CliffsNotes version of it and probably not why you read up to this point. I hint at what it will take here on this blog quite a bit. Remember me talking about the Personable Geeks? Well, you just need to concede to being one and you will be well on your way.

5 Steps to Getting 1000 True Fans [in the Internet Age]

BKA How to Become a Personable Geek

This has to be said at the start. In order to be approachable, you have to be modest in character. In order to deal with building a fan base one person at a time, you have to be able to mentally absorb the fact that it takes a bit of time. A huge ego will kill your chances at gaining real fans.

Do unto others…
I am going to keep this simple. The Ethic of Reciprocity is a universal thing. People do not like commercials like they once did. I am sure you are no exception, so cut with the “buy my stuff” approach.

Work on your handshake
This goes with the concept of being a friend first, artist last. You can do this by just taking the time to get to know a person. Introducing yourself, getting their name and offering your hand to solidify the connection is a great start.

Ask “What can I do for you?”
John F. Kennedy’s famous quote from his speech can be used here, but instead of country use fans. Set yourself up to be able to help. I have suggested to a few of my artist friends that they will find more opportunities by giving back to the community than taking from it. We are bombarded with people making requests of our time. Sometimes it is the best feeling just to be asked, “Can I help?”

Be a friend
Once you have established a relationship with your new pals, keep up with them! Make sure you know what is going on in their lives. As a musician, this is a great opportunity to get inspiration for your work. Everyone has stories, so seek out some from the very people you hope will support you. At the same time, fortifying your relationship with a few good people is the most important thing about all this.

In summary, do not be “that guy.” Set yourself apart by being genuine and kind. While this approach is a bit slower than pumping a ton of money into juicing use your sexy attributes, it is the most rewarding and the payoff is bound to be more fulfilling than anything plastic surgery could ever provide.