Saturday, July 29, 2006

What's important this week?

I am trying to experiment with writing like relevant pieces like alot of other more serious bloggers. But, really, I cant write on the Israel/Lebanon crises. It was really weird to me, yesterday Myspace was having issues and for a minute my accout was deleted. I was devastated! It seems like Myspace had issues last week, and yesterday somebody hacked into the system and erased accounts. But, I thought to myself, considering the death toll in Lebanon, the most important thing to me was my Myspace account? That contrast was weird to me. But really, what would I be without my Myspace friends? Strange indeed.

I used to hang out at the strip clubs out here in Maryland in PG County, and now that I dont anymore, I guess that era is over. Really it is. Apparently, the strip clubs was such a pressing issue that The Prince George's County Council has voted to adopt strict regulations for strip clubs, including requiring them to get a license. On the real, if you know as much as I know about this scene, and I dont know much, but this will just force them to be more underground more or less. Those places were nothing but holes in the walls and there were so few. Like I said, I dont really got to those spots anymore. But it is funny how the governments on the local and federal level are working so hard to legislate morality (or reinforce "traditional American Values") Traditional conotates "old school", so were these the values Americans had when they were lynching slaves? Hmmm........

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Death Row Records, No Limit and Finances....

When I was younger like in the mid 90s I always thought it would be cool to work for Death Row and No Limit records, small record labels who were in their prime in the mid to late 90s. I wanted to be an accountant. I think that if I was in there at the time, things for Death Row would have been different.

For No Limit, I remember Master P saying that there was absolutely no accountability of the money being spent when No Limit Records was big. Thats why at the time it all made sense to me when he said this when things started going bad for them. On video you would see all the fancy stuff....the limos, the Crystal, the fancy clothes and women. But, in reality, No Limit had absolutely no accounting system in place.

Most recently, the same thing happened with Death Row Records (see:SOHH:Suge Knight Loses Death Row To Bankruptcy)It's understandle how the statement by the bankruptcy judge was made:
Carroll said the accounting practices at Death Row were in a state of disarray, and pointed to testimony from Knight admitting he had not reviewed the company's financial statements in over ten years.

Being in accounting myself, this makes perfect sense that back then, it wouldve been great to be part of that process of putting Death Rows financials in order. For anybody entering the game, that should be the #1 concern.

It's relevant that the story makes the statement that this marks the "End of An Era". It truly is. Gone are the days that most of us who wanted more substance in the music complained about; the days of poppin' Crystal, expensive cars, the whole era of "Bling Bling" which was popularized by Jay-Z (though thats not all he was about, I admit), Puff Daddy and Mase, and then later Cash Money Records, Murder Inc., G Unit Records and just about everybody with a record deal and 1/2 a brain.

Excess was celebrated; it was all about "having things", throwing all your money around, and well, "Bling Bling". Financial responsibility was not in the cards, and out of this, a few people got paid, alot of artists got broke and had nothing to show for all the records that they put out and the videos they filmed, and as this whole ordeal shows, none of this seemed to be on paper. Its like going out to the club one night, spending and charging up a storm, and you have alot of fun, but you dont check what you got first.

So, to all the young artists trying to come up in the game, the best thing I can suggest is keep your finances in order. Whether you are a young battle MC who just won $500 dollars in a rap battle, an MC who got a fat advance with a record deal, and so on, keeping track of your finances is the most important thing.

A great place to start is with Suze Orman. She's got a great show about finances and stuff. Check it out.