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Greasing the skids

Berklee grad ditches career at a major record label for Boston and a beat-up, vegetable-oil-fueled van.
Things could have been different for Ben Maitland-Lewis.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  March 01, 2010


B. Dolan | Fallen House, Sunken City

Strange Famous (2010)
Although I've always found B. Dolan to be one of hip-hop's mightiest politically charged performers, his disc-length poetic pieces have confused (and even bored) the piss out of me.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 24, 2010


Holy Scrollers!

The future of e-publishing can be found in one of the world's oldest books.
It hadn't been a pleasant millennium so far for books. But then, lo this past month, Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveiled his company's new iPad, and there was much rejoicing.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 22, 2010


The (abridged) e-book of Genesis

How Apple, Stephen King, and Kindle begot a revolution
In the beginning . . . Steve Jobs created Newton, Apple's groundbreaking Personal Digital Assistant (PDA), which was introduced in 1993 to moderate reception.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 17, 2010


Donkeys kicking Timilty

Governor's Council
As if Democrats don't have enough problems with attacks from tea-bagging circus clowns, now one local pol is being targeted by fellow donkeys.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 17, 2010


Ivory and ebony

Jake One and Freeway aren't hip-hop's first multi-racial tag team
Hip-hop will never be post-racial. Pigment plays a major role at every level, and that's not always a bad thing.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 16, 2010


Two great flavors

Freeway and Jake One team up to lay it down
"When I said that I wanted to use 'What We Do' as a single," Freeway explains, "people said it couldn't happen because it didn't have a hook. You know how the rest of that one goes."
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 16, 2010


Tom Caruana Presents: Enter The Magical Mystery Chambers | Wu-Tang Vs. The Beatles

Tea Sea (2010)
There were mash-ups before The Grey Album . (They were called "hip-hop songs.") And there will be mash-ups in the future.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 09, 2010


Interview: Daniel Ellsberg

"The Most Dangerous Man in America" talks on the documentary about him and his time at the Pentagon
"By ordinary standards of presidents, Obama is a decent man. But those standards aren't good enough."
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 16, 2010


The war over peace

A decade after the 'Boston Miracle,' violent crime has again overtaken parts of the city. Can the miracle makers create a new peace?
In the early infancy of this five-week-old year, Boston has been rocked by four homicides and 10 non-fatal shootings. By the time this goes to print, there may well be more.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 05, 2010


Cease and desist

Operation Ceasefire brought peace to the streets, and then let it all slip away
In its five years from conception to unraveling, the Boston Gun Project's Operation Ceasefire became one of the most respected urban defensives in American history.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 03, 2010


Ape & Undu | Jaw & Order

Trapjaw (2009)
This is not your typical bi-racial indie-rap duo with a whiteboy who rips and a tandem token black guy who holds the honky's jockstrap.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  February 03, 2010


Fresh Vetz | Vet Status

Top Shelf (2009)
It's a bright sign for hip-hop when at least three promising subterranean sluggers ride flows comparable to that of the almighty Nas.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 27, 2010


Boston teen in Haiti stranded without a country

Jenny Ulysee was inside her stepmother's hair salon in Mariani, Haiti, when the January 12 earthquake caused a nearby building to buckle and collapse onto the roof of her family's business.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 27, 2010


Massachusetts: You might be living in a red state if

31 signs that Scott Brown’s victory is changing the face of the commonwealth for the worse
Scott Brown’s Senatorial victory is merely the latest sign that red tides are creeping upon our once-progressive Commonwealth. Don’t believe us? Consider that Kenny Chesney sells out Gillette Stadium every summer, and, of course, that wealthy Republican presidential hopeful with the fantastic hair was recently our Governor.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 25, 2010



More than 1500 miles from the epicenter of the Haitian quake, its effects rippled through Boston's teeming Haitian community
From the second that the Richter scale registered at 7.0 in Haiti, a desperate grief rippled through Hyde Park, Dorchester, and other corners of this region, which is home to the third-largest Haitian population in America.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 20, 2010


Man at work

Statik Selektah is so busy, it bugs him out
It's easy to manufacture illusions of rap stardom. Any MySpace whiteboy with a few grand can fill a mixtape with big cameos, and for a little more, guests will even shout his name out. But though such pay-for-spray practices have kept established artists eating they've also compromised the organic dynamics that once pushed the genre forward.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 20, 2010


MC Paul Barman | Thought Balloon Mushroom Cloud

Househusband (2009)
Note how the title of Paul Barman's third and latest sounds corny at first glance but deserves a "ha" — or at least an "I smell this dude" — on further contemplation.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 19, 2010


Scientology defector tells all

Many's Rivers to Cross Dept.
If every last allegation that Church of Scientology (CoS) defector Nancy Many charges in My Billion Year Contract is true, then her book should inspire several FBI raids and a Lifetime mini-series to rival any Charles Manson documentary.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 13, 2010


Coolzey | The Honey

Public School Records (2010)
Coolzey is not the next big thing. Or even the next medium thing.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 14, 2010


Fresh legends

Somebody pinch People Under the Stairs
Nine out of 10 rap legends prefer People Under the Stairs. (The holdout is a crackhead.) That's no joke — in my hundreds of interviews with dudes who brought the noise and funk before the big ship sunk ( circa 1997), California underground heroes Thes One and Double K have been as popular a subject as the exploitation of old-school luminaries.
By: CHRIS FARAONE  |  January 13, 2010

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