It’s a given at this point that most actors who try to sing, rap, or create some unholy combination of the two should never be allowed within 20 feet of the mic. But Donald Glover, one of the most dependably funny actors on NBC’s Community (the above clip is just par for the course) is the exception to that rule. As the MC Childish Gambino, the DeKalb School of the Arts graduate has already released two solid mixtapes and is working on an EP.
In the meantime, he’s jumped on producer/future Drake collaborator Jamie XX’s Hype Machine-toping remix of English songstress Adele’s “Rolling In The Deep” and reminds us that he can rock the mic better than Eddie Murphy ever could. Check out the track and download it below. His verse doesn’t start until the 2:40 mark, but it's well worth the wait.
Meet EarthGang: the funky, rap duo bubbling in Atlanta's indie scene. They garnered attention last year with their debut mixtape, The Better Party, and such energetic performances as seen at Perfect Attendance during the A3C Festival. The release of the haunting single "Miss the Show" hammered fans' interest further. So I had to meet with Johnny Venus of the uber-talented and hilarious duo to inquire about their upcoming album Mad Men and to find out what exactly makes EarthGang tick.
Where did EarthGang come from?
Johnny Venus: The name came to me abruptly one day. It represents what we're made of and why we do what we do. It's for the people by the people. Our music is influenced by the the conscious and subconscious, and we create it to influence the like.
What's the inspiration behind your music?
JV: Life! Green pastures! Telling stories! Influencing people in positive ways and leaving lasting imprints in their memories. And of course, the spirit of pure creativity.
How did you both meet?
JV: We met in high school during a vicious rap battle sponsored by the Part-time Hall Monitors Guild. (laughs) I hope these jokes don't make us look like assholes. Seriously, we met in high school during a field trip in 10th grade. I decided to approach Doctor Dot with the proposition of starting the music group under the Shade Tree at Mays High School. He obliged.
What are your feelings on the music scene in Atlanta?
JV: It's lacking. Atlanta has lost it's identity due to the music industry. Partly because many non-native, "industry heads" have come down here and have changed the culture of our music scene and partly because the radio only plays a certain sound. The underground scene has become the same way. The hype is what determines the "dope" artists and that isn't always true. Conversely, events such as A3C, which showcase dope artists from all over the country have a certain reverence in the environment. I hear about shows all the time and it's usually the same nine or 10 artist who have ties to a promoter. The hood music scene sees radio as the only way through, so of course we imitate what we hear. But over all, the city needs something to call its own. Even artists that have mass nationwide and global appeal from the city are grouped into a category of music, not as artists from ATL. In the past, you knew when an artist was from the A. T.I., Bohagon, OutKast, TLC. Now they barely have an identity, just a "sound" that represents Atlanta. The world needs to know that Atlanta is more than a sound.
How did The Better Party come to be?
>> Melissa Etheridge loves being your American Idiot.
>> In case you slept through it, were out doing something more fun, or just plain didn't care the first time around, Nicki MInaj was on SNL. Let's all watch, now, and then talk amongst ourselves.
>> Stream Bright Eyes' new one, The People's Key, over NPR way.
>> RIP James Bond composer, John Barry.
>> Download the FREE Bobby Long MP3, "Penance Fire Blues."
>> Remember that time Jimmy Page went to Cuba? That was dumb.
356 West Ponce de Leon Ave. 404-371-9090.
Mon., Jan. 31 — Alejandro Escovedo. Free. 5 p.m. (The show at Eddie's Attic is sold out).
The Drunken Unicorn
736 Ponce de Leon Place.
Tues., Feb. 1 — Smith Westerns, Yuck, Mood Rings + Black Lips DJ set in the cafe with Ol' King Cole Younger and DJ Jihad. $8-$10. 9 p.m.
Wed., Feb. 2 — The Red River, Clap For Daylight, Ricer. $5-$7. 9 p.m.
Atlanta's music journalist Maurice Garland really does too much for this city. The man is constantly plugged into the latest sounds in hip hop, yet maintains a steady connection with Atlanta's long-serving rap royalty. This time, he's set us up with an interview from the one and only Kilo Ali, fresh off a decade-plus bid. Check Maurice's blog for his narrative on Kilo's Welcome Home Party, and jump over to Kilo's site to hear "Exchange", from his upcoming release Hieroglyphics. From the sound of it, Kilo is picking up right where he left off, and it's going to be a fun time watching his classic sound develop into the future.
If you didn't get a ticket for either of the sold out shows at Eddie's Attic, you can catch Alejandro Escovedo playing a free in-store over at Decatur CD on Mon., Jan. 31 at 5 p.m. As with most Decatur CD events, there will be a selection of higher quality beers for all to enjoy, if you're of legal drinking age, of course.
Full passes are $40 and will get you into all of the day time shows at 529, and night time shows at the Earl. Single day passes haven't been made available just yet, but should be coming soon.
It's hefty price tag, but it's a hefty line up. Get one before they're gone.
Download now or listen after the jump.
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>> James Blunt's mommy has a message for the haters.
>> Raise your hand if you like lyrics, Little Monsters!
>> Dear supposedly hedonistic rock stars of today, Charlie Sheen is SCHOOLING you! GET ON IT!
>> Culture Bully talks to Talib Kweli about music, duh.
>> Who's going to Lollapalooza Chile with me?!
>> NPR's Alt Latino THE BLOG has a nice piece on The History Of Rock In Latin America: Cuban Rock And The Revolution
>> Watch the terrible new video for Nicki Minaj's "Moment 4 Life," which, like most things these days, feat. Drake.
Spree Wilson's been a busy boy — in the studio, that is. After hooking up with L.A. singer/songwriter Esthero, the Atlantan has released their collaboration, "Don't Pass Me By," which plays like a sweet, simple lullaby and puts me in the mind of an R&B-based Postal Service.
Esthero produced and contributed vocals to the song, which will be on Spree Wilson's upcoming EP, The Never Ending Now.
ooooohhhh, I'm so excited!! I can't wait to see them together!
come on man you know you got a bromance. you probably still rock that OutKast…
Yes, 14 is the correct answer. I'll pass your info along to the group's manager,…
That was January of 2007, and they are 21 now, so I'm guessing 14?