Sunday, May 24, 2020

[Episode 69] LABL Podcast - "Paying The Pioneers In Rap"

Listen also on:

We Welcome, Desmond "DJ DDT" Travis as the co host now of the LABL Podcast. Should pioneers of rap music receive a royalty percentage from newly established Rappers in the industry? Also, in the episode, DDT shared the opinion he stands strong on, for what he feels is the most important album to Hip Hop. Tune in to find out what, and see if you agree.

Nametag Alexander's "Work. Win. Repeat." The EP out now digitally, vinyl and CD.

Travis Slang - "Move Different"

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

LABL Q&A With "Marcus Sumrall"

"Sneaker Talk", Hip Hop, a hiatus from podcasting followed by a return to podcasting, was discussed with Flint, MI native Marcus Sumrall.

Questions by Nametag Alexander

NT: Alright, let’s tackle some icebreaker questions. If you had the opportunity to build, and run a record label with millions in the budget, who’d be the first five artists you’d sign? What three producers would you have on board, and why for each of your picks?

MS: I would have a indie rap label vibe, lol to make this more interesting i would build a compilation album for this project. Artists I would pick: Jay Z, BIG, Lauryn Hill, D'Angelo, and Kanye West. On production: Just Blaze, Pharrell, and Questlove, I always wished I could hear BIG on a blaze beat and I love just blaze production. Him and Jay Z with Lauryn on the track singing something crazy on hooks. Then she can hop on a track with bars too led by Pharrell and my Neo Soul bops with Quest my project would be a classic lol.
NT: You’d agree that you’re a sneaker connoisseur right? What’s the dopest pair of go-to sneakers you own?

MS: I’m just a guy that likes sneakers, lol no need for labeling 'Tag but my go to dope sneaker is black Infrared 6s it was a really well put together retro and timeless. 

NT: What’s the best pair of Air Jordans (colorway) to ever be released to you?

MS: Best Air Jordan is possibly the 11 black and red. My personal favorite 11 is the cool gray. 

NT: Let’s bring it back to the #FRMSCRTCH 5. What are your top five sneaker releases, and colorways?

MS: Air Max 95 Neon Green, Air Penny 2 Black/ Atlantic Blue, Air Force 1 all white, Adidas ShellToe white/ black, Air Max 90 infrared.

NT: Keeping it on top fives...what do you consider your top five classic rap albums, old and most current?

MS: Jay Z- Blueprint 1
BIG- Life after Death
Fly Union - The Greater Than Club
OutKast - Southernplaylisticcadillacmuzik
Snoop - Doggystyle

NT: I might have to just steal your #FRMSCRTCH 5 altogether...Top five shooting guards ever of the NBA?

MS: Kobe
D Wade
Reggie Miller 
Ray Allen 

NT: Was “The Question” by Reebok the only good Allen Iverson shoe? That seems to be the one the always re release and I’m positive he had more releases.

MS: The Answer was cold I had a pair and still want the White/Red/Gold pair I’m prolly gonna grab them from Goat 

NT: I never fully comprehended the buy and resell side of the sneaker game. I wouldn’t know where to begin, lol. I’d buy the dope kicks and want to keep them. Would you recommend it as a hustle for anyone looking to profit?

MS: If you have a insider it’s profitable, if you are chancing your luck on winning raffles and flipping it’s not the move. You need to have a very solid relationship with several people that work in places and stores because you have to take care of them and not just when you want a hyped up release.

NT: You had been on podcast hiatus for a while, but you’ve returned with #SneakerTalk. What was the reason behind the break, and what prompted you to return with a niche podcast?

MS: The break happened because life happened with my co host so we came to a stop.  The way we were podding it was a lot of work because we were guest driven and I had to line up a lot of schedules with my own, the studio, the guest and my homie so it was too much. I never stopped loving the podcast so I wanted to step out on my own and do something I care about and that’s where the Sneaker Talk came from and the quarantine made me stopped procrastinating. I needed something to take my mind off of all that we were dealing with in the world so if I can take an hour a week and kick it will cool people why not do it now.  I picked the niche because I have the newsletter and I felt like it was all on brand because I love sneakers, music and talking lol and I think I better than everyone else in the sneaker podcast space.

NT: Where can people check out #SneakerTalk? Where can you be found on social media? Oh...tell them about the newsletter too.

MS: #SneakerTalk is everywhere except Apple Podcast because they hating lol 

And the newsletter is just to update people on the releases of the week and most importantly sneaker steals nothing is better than getting a shoe you like below retail I get a rush lol and I add a quote for motivational purposes. I’m going to bring it back to because initially I thought it was a bad idea to promote people spending money not knowing where the next check was coming from but I’m going to restart that in the next month...and follow me at @MarcusSumrall on the Twitter and Instagram. 

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Travis Slang - "Move Different" (Prod. By J Quest Beatz) : Available now!

Detroit native, Travis Slang (MC and Producer of the collective Creative Notez) releases his new single titled "Move Different." It's available now to purchase and/or stream on all digital music providers. "Gritty hip hop for your hardcore playlists and mix show sets!" ~ DJ DDT

Song Credits:
(I. R. Travis, D. Russell); BMI
Produced by JQuest Beatz for Creative Notez
Recorded and mixed by DJ DDT for Creative Notez

Instagram: @travis_slang x @jquestbeatz313 x @djddt1
Twitter: @travisslang313 x jquest313 x @djddt
Facebook: Travis Slang

Sunday, May 10, 2020

LABL Q&A With "S.L. Jackson"

Solid discussion with Urban Fantasy Author, and Podcaster, S.L. Jackson about his debut novel, "Animal Instincts: The Urban Jungle."

Nametag Alexander: These two questions are random, but I like using them as icebreakers. If you had the opportunity to build, and run a
record label with millions in the budget, who would be the first five artists you would sign? What three producers
would you have on board, and why for each of your picks?

S.L Jackson: I could not tell you who I would sign, I can tell you the type of artist I would sign. I would sign three kid groups, that act like kids. I have a daughter and a host of nieces and nephews and its no real music for kids anymore. So I’d sign a kid rap group, rock group, and r&b group, I wouldn’t sign any producers, I’d commission producers for whatever projects we are working on meaning, I’d go get the DREAM to work on the r&b album for example. I would also use some of the budget to educate the kids and their parents on how the music industry works to ensure the kids/artist get paid for the rest of their lives off this part of their lives

Nametag: What is the number one classic Rap album to you?

S.L Jackson: I have so many classic albums in my head, but I would have to say it’s a tie for me between, Esham 1996’s “Dead Flowerz” and Brotha Lynch’s 1997 “Loaded” album.  Listening to both of those albums and to see the direction music moved in after that, both albums gave me that classic feel. But music is subjective, so one man’s classic is another man’s, “I’ve never heard this before.” 

Nametag: Let us speak a bit about your debut novel “Animal Instincts: The Urban Jungle.” First off, I will never look at
rabbits the same, or foxes (lol). However, provide a quick breakdown of what this novel is about for future readers.

S.L Jackson: “Animal Instincts: The Urban Jungle”, is really a story about family, life, loyalty, honor, and respect. It is set in the jungle’s underworld where the Jackson family of rabbits are in control. Power struggle ensues and wars are started and ended. My goal was to give you a prospective of being in the animal’s world. After you read the book, I wanted you to never be able to see an animal and think, “I wonder what they have going on.” People will understand more once they read it. It is a short read less than 100 pages, but enormously powerful impactful content. 

Nametag: On “The Connected Experience” podcast, you said the idea for Animal Instincts, was from a short story you wrote back in grade school.
As an adult, when did it click for you to revisit, and refine the story to what it became today?

S.L Jackson: To be honest Nametag, this story has been in my head since my fourth-grade creative writing assignment. It never left. It was just timing; I did not know enough about life to write it earlier. Some of the situations in the book I had to go through to be able to write them. Its an urban fantasy novella, but I had to tap into certain emotions to bring the story to life. Overall though, “Animal Instincts: The Urban Jungle” is a dedication to my lost loved ones, A lot of those characters are named after people I have lost and loved. Roles some of the character’s play are roles I seen people play at different points of life. For example, Groovy Fox is based partly on one of my favorite Auntie’s, Myra. She died before I could get her a copy of the book. But my Aunt Myra, was so smooth, so gangster, so calm, and beautiful, So I based Groovy off her, this was before my aunt passed. 

Nametag: What drove the decision to originally release this as an e-book? Will there be physical copies at some point?

S.L Jackson: I decided to do an e book first because I wanted to test the market. I did a survey in a way with people I know and just asked between e books/paperbacks. I had to see how book promotion and marketing works, print cost etc., Books are not like albums, the paperback audience and e book audience are not the same. The paperback is for sale now on my website, just released it. 

Nametag: About how long did it take to complete the writing for Animal Instincts?

S.L Jackson: When I really sat down and wrote it, maybe 4 weeks or so. I told everyone I talked to for months that I would write a book and it would become an award winning, best selling novel. And I did that because as of May 8th, 2020, “Animal Instincts: The Urban Jungle won the GOLD MEDAL award for “best short story fiction” at the 2020 eLIT Book awards. These are well established awards and in 2020 the best fiction shorty story they read came from Inkster Michigan’s own, S.L Jackson, now the next step is making it a best seller.  

Nametag: Very dope, and congrats! Will there be a sequel to the novel?

S.L Jackson: Yes, “Animal Instincts 2: A tale of 2 Jungles” is in the works. I am in no rush; this is my content so I will be taking my time. We are also working with HB Comicz to develop, “Animal Instincts: The Urban Jungle” into an animated series. It is an unexplainable feeling to see everything you manifested come to life, I am a walking inspiration, a highly educated urban fantasy author from the ghetto. 

Nametag: You have an established career in music as an MC and 1/2 of the group Identical. Is it easier to write song lyrics,
or easier to write a novel?

S.L Jackson: Writing both lyrics and novels come easy because they require different moods. When I was writing music, it came about by whatever I was feeling now, however writing novels requires pre-planning, outlines etc. those things come easy because I am often in some form of deep thought. 

Nametag: You have done music. You and your brother built The College of Hip Hop platform, share success with The
Connected Experience podcast, and you are now an Author. What other ventures are you looking to tap into that
you have not already?

S.L Jackson: To be honest Nametag, I want to get into farming and plumbing. When I was a kid my grandfather Ronald Legion showed me how to grow my own food, and maintain a nice size garden, and I seen my mom teach my daughter and nieces how to grow their own food, so I want to get back to that. Plumbing is because I needed a plumber one day and the rate that I was charged opposed to how fast he did the work made me want to acquire plumbing skills. 

Nametag: Now that's a move to make. Where can we find you online, and where can we purchase Animal Instincts:
The Urban Jungle?

S.L Jackson: You can find everything about me at my newly launched website. You can order, e books, paperbacks, and the new merch I have. I have a partnership with Juboop Clothing Company for my merch line, RESPCT URBAN AUTHORS. (#respecturbanauthors) I created that hashtag and turned it into a merch line. And all of that can be ordered by visiting my official website. 

Thank you for having me, always remember “I want for my brother, what I want for myself.” /G\