Is Bob James Really One Of Hip-Hop's Godfathers?

You've definitely heard parts of Bob James' "Nautilus" chopped up, slowed down, and sampled in tons of hip-hop records, whether it was Ghostface's "Daytona 500", Danny Brown's "Pac Blood", or a whole litany of rap songs in between.

In a new interview with Noisey, the Fender Rhodes master discussed how he started making music, his favorite instruments, his current take on rap music, and much more. If you know your hip-hop history or if you're trying to learn up because his is a must-read interview.

Noisey: How’d you get into music initially?
Bob James: That’s an interesting question to ask an old man. To be honest, I don’t think I ever thought about anything else to be involved in. I came to that point earlier than most people do. But I guess it really started with piano lessons when I was four. My teacher saw I had a strong leaning toward music.

So did you go to college for music?
Yes, I majored in music. Around that time I started playing gigs and started realizing that jazz was going to be my thing. So I came to NYC to prove whether or not I can hang. I ended up staying here so I guess I could hang a bit.

Why’d you decide to make New York your headquarters?
It’s very intense here and very competitive. You have to be at your best to get attention. That drives you to be better than you originally thought, at least for some people. I’m sure is has the opposite effect on people as well.

How do you feel about the “Father of smooth/fusion jazz” title you get labeled with? Do you love it? Do you hate it? Or do you just tolerate it?
No and yes to all of those. It’s complimentary unless it’s people who are upset that jazz took a turn in that direction. I don’t like getting blamed for that. Thing is I’ve seen jazz go through many trends and influences and it’s still jazz. What seems to me to be the most reasonable way of thinking about it is the listeners and DJs need a term to categorize it or label it and that’s coming from them not the artists who created the music. That’s why I get these titles like the “Father of…” and the older I got I became the “Grandfather of…” and soon I guess I’ll be “Great-grand father…”

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The name of the podcast was birthed from the notion that creators transition from their 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. jobs to their "5 to 9." The first episode of the podcast has already been released and it features upcoming artist, G.L.A.M, speaking on her growth as a creative.


This partnership was created because the two brands "know creators will do whatever it takes to support their passion, from working a desk job to waiting tables they find a way to get paid and invest in their careers." Both adidas Original and SoundCloud invite any and all creators to submit their stories of how their day jobs turned into a "'Nite' hustle" for a chance to win the 'Nite Hustle' starter pack: a pair of adidas Originals Nite Joggers, three months of SoundCloud Pro Unlimited, and SoundCloud's premium creator subscription. The two brands believe that the starter pack (specifically the SoundCloud components) are the best tools and resources for creatives to reach their full potential. To enter, just head here.

SoundCloud and adidas Originals plan to bring creatives' stories to life, and give them a helping hand while at it.

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Alabama Deputy On Leave After Comments About Gay Teen's Suicide

An Alabama deputy has been placed on leave after making insensitive comments on social media about a teen who committed suicide after allegedly being bullied for his sexual orientation.

According to reports, the officer has been with the Madison County Sheriff's Office in Huntsville for 12 years and sparked backlash for referring to LGBTQ qualms as "a fake movement which requires no special attention but by persons with an altered ego and fake agenda."

"Liberty. Guns. Bible. Trump. BBQ. That’s my kind of LGBTQ. I’m seriously offended that there is such a thing such as this movement," the deputy allegedly wrote in a Facebook post. "Society cannot and should not accept this behavior. I have a right to be offended and will always be offended by this fake movement which requires no special attention but by persons with an altered ego and fake agenda.”

The law enforcement officer defended his statement as freedom of speech before it was taken down. It was made in reference to 15-year-old Nigel Shelby who took his own life Thursday (April 18) after being bullied for being gay.

In a statement, Monday, the Madison County Sheriff's Office revealed a deputy had been placed on leave, while Local sheriff Kevin Turner offered kind words to the friends and family of Nigel Shelby.

Turner said: “Bullying of any group or person in or outside of schools is unacceptable, and I welcome any and all efforts to raise awareness to bullying and bring bullying to a stop. The Madison County Sheriff’s Office is proud of the community support and engagement we have received over the years, and we look forward to growing those community partnerships.”


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Jay-Z's Foundation Is Helping Kids Visit Black Colleges

With accepted students days happening on college campuses across the country, the timing of Jay-Z's foundation's newest endeavor is right on the money. The Shawn Carter Foundation is teaming up with Toyota to launch an HBCU college tour for prospective students.

The week-long tour will take selected high-achieving students to visit 11 historically black colleges and universities located along the East Coast from Washington, D.C. to Atlanta, Georgia. While on this tour, selected students will be able to meet with college admissions counselors as well as former Shawn Carter Foundation scholars. Over 125 schools in the New York/New Jersey area have been invited to take part in some of the college prep workshops that will lead up to the tour. Then in September, administrator-selected students will tap into weekend ACT/SAT prep sessions that also touch on resume skills and dressing for success.

Jay-Z's mother Gloria Carter, 93.9 WKYS radio personality Angie Ange and Creative Writing M.F.A. Candidate Candice Wong (the latter two of whom are Howard University alumni) will kick off the 2019 Shawn Carter Foundation College Bus Tour on Howard's campus this week.

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