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Music, Planet Rock

Planet Rock

The mentioning of drug use in rap lyrics has a long and slowly revealed history. In the beginning, drugs were only referenced in supply-side-economics terms -- the ghetto protagonist needed product to sell in order to climb out of poverty,…
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Music, Scratch Attack

Scratch Attack

It's midnight on a brisk February night, and a large, boisterous group of folks has gathered in the studio of Berkeley radio station KPFA-FM (94.1). Local DJ luminaries Marz, Pone, Flare, and others hover over the state-of-the-art turntables and mixing…
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Music, Riff Raff Riff Raff

Riff Raff

What trial-size shampoo bottles are to the weary business traveler, compilation albums are to the music fan -- efficient samplers, used on the fly and practically disposable. At least, that's how they're treated. Classic compilation albums rarely get their due…
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News, Feature

Mix Masters

Mix tapes, along with graffiti, are one of the last raw vestiges of hip-hop culture. While just about everyone has slapped some favorite songs on a cassette at some point without a second thought, mix tapes have become a growing…
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