Fighting Fire With Fire
The fallout from the recent Empower America-led attack on rap and other "controversial" music continues as heads still roll at Time Warner. But now partly TW-owned Interscope Records is mounting an offense: The label is suing gangsta-rap critic C. Delores Tucker, chairperson of the National Political Congress of Black Women, for her alleged interference with its distribution deal with Death Row Records. According to the Wall Street Journal, the suit claims that Tucker told Death Row execs that TW would negotiate and fund a new deal with the L.A. imprint if she could oversee the lyrics of future releases. Tucker says she only offered to negotiate a new deal on Death Row's behalf if it would agree to redirect toward positive lyrics. The suit is an obvious attempt to shut her up, of course. You may appreciate the sentiment, but isn't fighting censorship with censorship self-defeating at best?
After two years of gigging around town, Big Soul is saying goodbye. Once a Parisian DJ got ahold of the trio's demo CD, the band became officially "big in France." A dance remix of "Hippy Hippy Shake" is currently a club hit, the Frenchies le freaking to Big Soul's "thrash, hip hop, and '60s rock" sound. "They like Jerry Lewis, and they like us," says bassist Caroline Wampole. That led to a licensing contract with Sony Music Europe and a chance to tour the continent. Meanwhile, Big Soul recorded a new CD, Thank You San Francisco, on its own Wampagroove label. Celebrate its release (and say farewell) at a party Friday, Aug. 25, at the Paradise Lounge in S.F. Samples congratulates Big Soul on its success, but we'll all miss longtime SF Weekly employee, friend, and Big Soul guitarist Kelleth Chinn.
By Sia Michel