Kanye West Mashup

via del.icio.us/popular: Someone’s gone and mashed up Kanye West’s College Dropout disc, ala Jay-Z’s Black Album. 10 tracks, with nice album art to print as well. Get it while it’s available, before the lawyers step in and shut it down. Although this will probably be great press for Kanye’s Late Registration album, out Aug 30th. I know I’ll be going to the cd store early that morning.

“Throw your diamonds up like you’re bulimic”

Yesterday was the big Marc Ecko’s Getting Up festival here in Toronto. It was a 2 day event, but I only went to Sunday’s show. My good pal Vik was out for the day with me. It started at 1pm, but we showed up around 6 since it was raining and figured the less popular performers would be on early in the day. Kardinal Offishall was finishing his set as we walked in. Wandered around for a bit and caught the finals of the DJ Battle.

There was a room with a shoes display (rare Nike, etc) we looked at for a while. A guy from fixins.com asked to take a photo of me with my shoes. I was wearing my Gravis shoes but they’re pretty old and battered. I guess they have a photo gallery of people and their shoes. Hopefully it’s not a Do’s & Don’ts gallery where I’m a Don’t.

In the same room, they had some artwork, video displays of graffiti taggers, Kid Robot had books & toys.

What? What? Okay! Next up was Lil Jon & The East Side Boys. I’m not a huge fan as I find it to be just a lot of repetitive chanting with no real lyrics and I find the songs to all sound the same. He’s got a few hits that I like and the crowd got hyped spinning white cloths around in the air. Then somehow he snuck off stage, back through the crowd and appeared right behind us at the camera podium and did a slow song from there. A cool surprise to end the set.

Next up was DJ A-Trak, the 5-time world turntable champion. I’d read about him before and he retired from the competitions because he was winning everything and nobody else could get a shot at winning. He did some scratching for about 10 minutes. I could listen to that for hours. They had video of him on the big screen so you could see what he was doing as well. So fast. A-Trak is now Kanye’s DJ so Kanye was up next.

Kanye was great as usual. He burst on stage with Diamonds and got the crowd going. He also did another new track from Late Registration and it’s gonna be a hit for sure. He did Gold Diggers from the new album, along with a lot from College Dropout. He even messed up the lyrics on 2 songs and had to stop. Surprising to see Kanye mess up lyrics. Kanye said good night and left the stage when he was done. A-Trak played some closing tunes and then Kanye burst back on stage for Jesus Walks. A really great song, especially live. Marc Ecko came out on stage and asked who got goosebumps during the song. He also asked the crowd to end the violence on the streets. There’s been a high number of shootings in the city lately and said he wouldn’t bring the festival back if it continued. A nice thought, but I don’t think that’s going to cure gun violence.

Video Vixens contest was up next. Esther Baxter (Ms Freek-A-Leek!) was co-hosting (google her for sure). 13 women got on stage hoping to win a part in a rap video. They strutted their stuff, shook their stuff and then the crowd hollered or booed for each girl. A lot of booing….it was harsh. 5 girls got hollers, then that was trimmed down to top 3. Sonya (I believe that was her name – to the right on the photo) won the contest.

Last, but not least was Ludacris. He jumped out on stage and did “Number One Spot” (the Austin Powers song). I’m not a fan of this song…it’s like a joke song. But he did a selection of songs from all his albums, testing the crowd to see if they knew it all, or just his recent stuff. Luda’s always entertaining to see.

A great concert event. I definitely hope there’s more like this next year. This was the first outdoor rap concert I’d been to and I liked it a lot better than the indoor arena-style concerts.

Photo gallery from the show with all the photos.

what’s rss for?

I was at a BBQ on the weekend and a friend of mine had been reading this site (this post in particular) and he asked me…”what’s rss”. Good question. I frequently forget this stuff isn’t common knowledge yet and could use some explaining.

To quote the Wikipedia entry on RSS:

The RSS formats provide web content or summaries of web content together with links to the full versions of the content, and other meta-data. This information is delivered as an XML file called RSS feed, webfeed, RSS stream, or RSS channel. In addition to facilitating syndication, RSS allows a website’s frequent readers to track updates on the site using a news aggregator.

Yeah, yeah, yeah…spare me the tech mumbo jumbo…how is it useful to anyone. For most people, it makes like easier and allows you to read websites quicker and more selective. Instead of surfing from CNN to Yahoo News to BBC Online and over to MSNBC, you can subscribe to their RSS feed and read them from a single place – a feed aggregator. Think of it as a different style of web browser, more similar to an email program. When you subscribe to RSS, the news comes to you, instead of you going to the news. And you also choose what you want to see and how you want to see it. Select only the items you want to read and leave the rest. It makes it very fast to stay updated.

But it’s not just big corporate sites like CNN that offer RSS feeds. Any site, such as this blog, can offer rss feeds. That way you can read what’s the top news at CNN as well as what random details are happening in my life. See that bright orange XML image over on the right. That’s an indicator that this site has an rss feed and can be added to your rss aggregator.

To get started, grab an rss aggregator and get started. I recommend FeedDemon (small charge) or SharpReader (free) for Windows. NetNewsWire LIte for Mac or you can use a free online service such as Bloglines. This is great if you use a lot of different machines and check your news from anywhere.

So grab a rss aggregator, subscribe to my feed, or start your own blog for free at Blogger.

very random moment

I had a strange request on my way to work this morning. I was passing a semi-old lady who was walking away from me and turned back to ask me something when she saw me coming. She kept hollering at me trying to get my attention so I was expecting the common request for money or cigarettes. She looked like a sweet old lady, walking with a cane, so I responded politely to her attention-getting requests. And then came her delivery…

Hey mister, could you buy me a pellet gun?

I politely declined, somewhat in shock and burst out laughing as I continued walking and replaying what just happened in my head. No cigarettes. No change for the bus. A pellet gun.

I can’t imagine what she’d need a pellet gun for. Maybe she’s got pesky pigeons that crap on her apartment balcony? Maybe her neighbours are pissing her off? Perhaps she’s into gangsta rap and she needs to look the part. She didn’t look very hard with the cane.