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Chillhop

I have a very deep love affair with KPop. I have been hooked since 1997 and it hasn’t let go. When I come for air, I try to explore other genres and lately Chillhop has been on the menu. Those frosty melodies and brain freezing bursts of bass, cymbal, and brass just make for a delicious eargasm.

History

Chillhop is often mistaken for Jazz Rap and Trip Hop. However, it’s roots are in Neo Soul and Electronica. According to Wikipedia, the BPM (beats per minute) of Chillhop usually varies from 85 to 95 BPM. Thus, it isn’t as slow as the languid Trip Hop of Tricky but is slower than the jazzy rhymes of Digable Planets.

There are many in this genre that site Japanese musician Nujabes as the father of Chillhop. He was influenced by 1980s Jazz Rap and began creating his own beats circa 1996. He is most recognized along with other similar artists such as Fat Jon for the music in the anime series – Samurai Champloo (2004). Eventually, Adult Swim broadcasted the series and began using Chillhop music in their bumps between programming and commercials.

Sadly, Nujabes left this world on February 26, 2010 (Age 36) due to a car accident in Tokyo. Nujabes is actually an anagram of his real name Jon Seba. Nujabes collaborated with other Japanese artists such as Uyama Hiroto, Shing02 (with whom he created the critically acclaimed “Luv(sic)” hexalogy), Minmi, and was also involved with America’s underground hip hop scene through collaboration with CYNE, Apani B, Five Deez, Substantial, CL Smooth, Fat Jon, and Terry Callier. He released three studio albums (Metaphorical Music in 2003, Modal Soul in 2005, and Spiritual State, released posthumously in 2011) and two collection compilations (Hydeout Productions 1st Collection in 2003 and 2nd Collection in 2007) (Wikipedia).

A hexalogy (from Greek ἑξα- hexa, “six” and -λογία -logia, “discourse”) is a compound literary or narrative work that is made up of six distinct works. The word apparently first appeared in English as a borrowing from German, in discussions of August Bungert’s Wagnerian opera cycle entitled Homerische Welt based on the Iliad and the Odyssey.

Nujabes influenced individuals around the world. It was not shocking to see the numerous tributes released in his honor.

After Nujabes

Chillhop still shines brightly and the genre is full of a wide array of choices.

Ghost Data

 

In Love With A Ghost

 

Tomppabeats

 

Esbe

Back To Life

Sometimes you have good intentions and then things just don’t fall in the place. This is the sad history of this blog. I got disillusioned and gave up on it. It was always in the back of my mind. After some some jostling of bugs out the ear and an unscrambling of brain matter, I have decided to dust of the cobwebs and start blogging again. I am not going to make any promises. I am just going to say, hope you stop by now and again for a bit of news and conversation. Ciao!

{Film Review} Tokyo Fiancee (Spoilers)

Tokyo Fiancee on Netflix is film about a young Belgian girl with a love affair for Japan. However, during the course of her stay in Japan, she attempts to learn more about herself and what she wants out of life.
She tries to adapt to Japan but finds herself lost and searching for something. She tries to find it through a relationship and through foraging in nature. Ultimately, she leaves because I believe the bubble around her (her fantasy of Japan) is pricked and pricked by realty. It forces her towards the question of can she change but we are kind of left with her quietly and sadly fleeing Japan for Belgium not knowing whether or not she understands things fully or where she wants to go. It’s an unsettling feeling and sad.
87019fb492fe6f03c3bdb29cf2ffb6eb_500x735I loved the existential crisis going on and the bright, understated sexuality the leading actress brought although I have to say the intimate scenes were awkward but I think the point of her acting was to make you feel her awkward and unassured feelings about what she had involved herself in. The lead Japanese actor was good but his character kind of ends up making her into a fetish.His parents, in particular Rinri’s mother, came off as weird and caricatures. I felt that was kind of creepy, and I wasn’t sure what to think about it. His reluctance to really try and make her stay made me wonder did he recognize her indecision and allow the situation offered by the events of Fukushima as an out that didn’t embarrass either of them, or did he not really care about her as one would hope in a relationship and she simply was a fetish to him. There are a lot of unanswered questions.

First to Read: Results May Vary

Results May Vary by Bethany Chase

27833513

ebook, 336 pages
Expected publication: August 9th 2016 by Ballantine Books

Book Teaser

She never saw it coming. Without even a shiver of suspicion to warn her, Caroline Hammond discovers that her husband is having an affair with a man—a revelation that forces her to question their entire history together, from their early days as high school sweethearts through their ten years as a happily married couple. In her now upside-down world, Caroline begins envisioning her life without the relationship that has defined it: the loneliness of being an “I” instead of a “we”; the rekindled yet tenuous closeness with her younger sister; and the unexpected—and potentially disastrous—attraction she can’t get off her mind. Caroline always thought she knew her own love story, but as her husband’s other secrets emerge, she must decide whether that story’s ending will mean forgiving the man she’s loved for half her life, or facing her future without him.

My Review (Spoiler Free)

I wanted to select a book that perhaps wasn’t the kind I would normally read. I was initially attracted to the title of the book, and my curiosity got the best of me. The book was flowed naturally (good pacing) and kept my attention from the well-dressed personalities of the characters to the charming backdrop of New York and Massachusetts. Sadly, they are two states I have not been to, but I feel through the writer’s canonrous wording that I was meandering between both places like I had been there before. I feel the dialogue between characters was natural and stayed true throughout the novel. It was not difficult to relate to any one character. Though the novel does not achieve a deepness like that of more venerable works such by John Steinbeck or Alice Walker, it makes up for it’s logical arrangement and entertaining narration. To simplify and reiterate – events make sense and the actions of each character, again, are natural. It is a slice-of-life novel that explores ideas in common but appealing vernacular. It is a familiar tale that we can relate to and it draws us in.

This book is definitely a good take to the beach novel or if you want a quick, nice read, perfect for completing over a weekend.

Disclaimer:

I was not paid to read this book. I participated in the Penguin First to Read program and was chosen to be one of the first to read and review this book.

Farewell Anton and Be Brave

We all die – one day, some random time, some random place. Sometimes we get a small heads up that death is imminent and sometimes we don’t. In the case of actor Anton Yelchin,  it was a freakish car accident and wholly unexpected. Dead at the age of 27, the headlines say before launching into how he died. Anton may have only been 27, but he was able to make his mark on the world through his abilities as an entertainer. Praised for his kindness and charm, Anton lives on in the memories of others and his work. Memories are where we all live. We are never alone. We are always here.

A youthful death makes us take longer pause than say the death of someone in their 80s or 90s. It’s not to say that someone older doesn’t have a fascinating back story or presence in the world but youth turned asunder by death makes us sense our mortality. It makes us recoil. It makes us think of the time we have spent on this earth and reflect if we have we made the right and best investments in ourselves and it. Life gives and it takes. It’s a consuming process that sometimes leads people down dark alleys filled with potential terror or down sunny, joyfully-tilted days. It can feel all a bit random.

Death doesn’t take a break. There have been many deaths from David Bowie to countless number of victims of ISIS’s insatiable insanity. As you age, you feel the cloak of invincibility slip away to a nakedness. It’s a nakedness that gives rise to either of two things 1) immobility or 2) freedom. The immobility grows when a person feeds themselves with fear and fear of change. It is up to us to fight our fear and live and live well. It’s ok to think about the future but live well and live for today. Living in the present connects us to all things. It’s mindfulness.

As each life is significant, each death is significant. We can learn from both, and we can become a better person. Anton’s death reminds us that life is fleeting. As Anton put much effort into his career as an entertainer, we too have a duty to ourselves which even in the face of fear, we must do it: live.  “Because,’ she said, ‘when you’re scared but you still do it anyway, that’s brave. (Neil Gaiman, Coraline)”

 

The Joy of Cosplay

13267918_798175490283269_5856146470781067457_nI am quite aware that some convention attendees do not have a favorable view of cosplay. Remember back in 2014, Nerdist reported,

“[..] some comic book artists who seem to be of the “get off my convention lawn, everyone who’s not spending money,” variety think that cosplayers are impeding sales. Known Star Wars artist Dave Dorman’s wife Denise Dorman recently wrote about how they’re losing sales and indirectly tied that to cosplay culture, and now former Batman artist Pat Broderick states cosplayers bring nothing of value to the shows.”

However, cosplay allows fan to celebrate what they love and allows them to create something too. Sure, there are going to be some people there that are just looking to hang out and not buy anything. However, this isn’t just indicative of cosplayers. I think it is a negative stereotype.

I had never dressed up for a comics convention as I always attend horror cons. However, my good friend wanted me to dress up as Sadness from Inside Out to accompany her Joy and her son. My costumes for my horror cons have been original ideas, not a specific character. However, Sadness is a character from Pixar’s Inside Out. I spent time and money crafting an image to do Sadness justice.

Roaming around the convention center was tiring, but I never got tired of hearing and seeing little kids light up and gravitate to us. Between the two days of the con, we took so many pictures. It was a little bit exhausting, but it felt rewarding sharing in everyone’s joy and fun. I visited many booths and bought what I could afford. I enjoy spending money with artists and vendors. In fact, I have bought more art than my walls can hold. I think some artists are unfair to treat cosplayers like their a nuisance or distraction to making money. To me, it shows me that caring for your fans are the least of your concerns and you care only to take their money. If you are that kind of person, I really don’t want to give you any of my money.

I feel if you want to be respected and valued, you need to return the sentiment in kind. Realize that even if people don’t buy something, your attitude can dictate if that person comes back to another convention and buys something from you on that occassion. I know it’s important to make a livelihood, and I don’t blame you for having concerns. However, selling something means interaction and if you come to a convention and can’t interact with people then you probably will have a harder time making money.

Anyways, Tidewater Comicon was filled with neat costumes, happy people, lots of vendors, artists, and a few celebs. It had a great vibe. It didn’t feel corporate like Wizard’s conventions. I would definitely come again. I spent a decent amount of money with vendors at this convention. It was fun! I can’t wait to go again.