Wednesday, July 27, 2011

House Of Vibe & Chali 2na : Makin' Hip-Hop History

 The early '90s was a great time in rap music on the West coast, specifically L.A. and even more specifically the corner of Crenshaw & Exposition; a place called The Good Life Café. This mecca of creativity and it's new-school patrons took an academic approach to re-drawing hip-hop's architecture. In a wholly supportive atmosphere, The Good Life provided nourishment, not just for the body, but for the mind and soul as well, hosting workshops and open mics as a regular part of the curriculum; blatantly moving away from the gangsta posturing, misogyny, and other damaging stereotypes that had really thus far defined the West's rap game.

Kris Hawkins plays the guitar while Brew toasts on the m-i-c.

Chali 2na of Jurassic 5 and Myka-9 of Freestyle Fellowship were 2 of the scenes most active members. Last week at House Of Vibe's Westside Wednesday, they were re-united. With Chali firmly in control as the session's MC, he kept this 3-ring hip-hop circus moving as the video below clearly shows. As for the others involved - here's a very brief accounting; Ellay Khule (aka The Rifleman) is one of the original "lifers" who still use the original fast wordy style. J-Smoov and St. Mark were in a crew called 3 The Hard Way until J-Smoov went solo and St. Mark started Dark Leaf. Laidlaw (upper left corner) is Chali's brother, Deploi, Anon and Freewill are part of House Of Vibe / Westside Tribe. Freewill is also part of The Luminous Movement.

The video above is of House Of Vibe's performances of :
1-Welcome To The Fish Market (Chali 2na)
appearing on the mic in order is Chali 2na, Chali's brother Laidlaw, J-Smoov, HOV's Deploi, Freestyle Fellowship's Myka 9, Anon the inspirational MC, St. Mark, and Ellay Khule.
2-Mass Appeal (Gangstarr)/The Next Movement (The Roots)
Chali 2na, Laidlaw & FreeWill.

House Of Vibe Allstars - in this particular session were Anthony Brewster aka Brew (v, k), Greg Raymond (k), Corey Cofield (b), Deploi (rap), FreeWill (rap), Amy Lou (perc), Kris Hawkins (g), Shaunte Palmer (trombone), Sebastian Legar (trumpet), Jamon Laws (sax) and Walter Turner III (d)

House Of Vibe get down like this every Wednesday - only at Harvelle's in Santa Monica.

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