WBEZ | Chief Keef http://www.wbez.org/tags/chief-keef Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Chicago police official: Congress Theater 'untruthful' on night of underage drinking http://www.wbez.org/blogs/leah-pickett/2013-03/chicago-police-official-congress-theater-untruthful-night-underage <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/congress%20theater_flickr_ian%20friemuth_0.jpg" style="height: 413px; width: 620px; " title="The Congress Theater, located at 2135 N. Milwaukee Ave., has been charged with five drug-related violations by the Chicago Liquor Control Commission. (Flickr/Ian Freimuth)" /></p><div class="image-insert-image ">A Chicago Police Department official has accused the Congress Theater of failing to cooperate with officers during an investigation into underage drinking at the venue.</div><p>Sgt. Joseph Giambrone testified that Congress staffers lied about serving alcohol when his unit arrived to investigate suspicions of underage drinking during a DJ Rusko set in the early hours of May 6, 2012.</p><p>Giambrone&rsquo;s testimony came during a disciplinary hearing at City Hall Tuesday morning, the second conducted by Chicago&rsquo;s Liquor Control Commission looking into alleged illegal activities at the Congress.</p><p>During his testimony, Giambrone described a call from the emergency room of Saints Mary and Elizabeth Medical Center in Wicker Park that reported several concertgoers &ldquo;of various ages&rdquo; arriving from the Congress Theater via private ambulance with symptoms of extreme intoxication, many of them &ldquo;barely breathing.&rdquo;</p><p>Giambrone said that when officers arrived on the scene, Congress managers Atieh Abdelhadi and Ahmad Mahidi met him outside the venue and denied serving alcohol during the show.</p><p>Next, Giambrone said he observed Mahidi talking on his radio in &ldquo;a language that wasn&rsquo;t English,&rdquo; and then witnessed Abdelhadi running ahead to unscrew taps in the lobby bar and place cups upside down over the spigots as officers entered the venue.</p><p>Once inside, Giambrone claimed to see employees &ldquo;activating tap devices&rdquo; and serving &ldquo;amber-hued&rdquo; liquid to patrons by the stage.</p><p>Giambrone said he was also present at the Congress on the night of April 13, 2012, when his unit responded to <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blog/jim-derogatis/2012-03-22/city-congress-theater-clean-your-act-97549">a large fight</a> during a Chief Keef show. The venue did not call 911 to report this incident; defense attorney Harlan C. Powell hypothesized that venue staffers may have tried to call out to police officers already on the scene.</p><p>Powell questioned the credibility of the city&rsquo;s investigation, calling the allegations against his client &ldquo;grossly prejudicial.&rdquo;</p><p>To support his claim, Powell brought up a meeting that took place between Giambrone and the Congress Theater following these incidents. Powell said that during the meeting, venue personnel said they understood that any calls made to the police by the Congress would not be brought up in disciplinary actions.</p><p>However, Deputy Hearings Commissioner Robert Nolan rejected Powell&rsquo;s argument, stating that the events at issue occurred before any alleged conversations took place.</p><p>Tuesday&rsquo;s hearing was originally scheduled for March 6. But Powell &ndash; <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2013-03/congress-theater-liquor-hearing-rescheduled-105941">the third attorney</a> to represent venue owner Erineo &ldquo;Eddie&rdquo; Carranza since his <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blog/jim-derogatis/2012-03-22/city-congress-theater-clean-your-act-97549">troubles with city agencies</a> began in March of 2012 &ndash; requested more time to review the case from Deputy Commissioner Nolan.</p><p>The next hearing is scheduled for April 30.</p><p><em>Prior reporting by Jim DeRogatis. Research assistance by Jennifer Grandy.</em></p><p><strong><u>Earlier reports about Carranza, the Congress and the Portage, from Jim DeRogatis:</u></strong></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2013-03/fate-portage-theater-remains-mystery-105970">March 8: The fate of the Portage remains a messy mystery</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2013-03/congress-theater-liquor-hearing-rescheduled-105941">March 6: Congress Theater hearing rescheduled</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2013-02/congress-theater-restoration-underway-it%E2%80%99s-got-long-way-go-105685">Feb. 22: Congress Theater restoration underway, but it&rsquo;s got a long way to go</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2013-01/congress-theater-liquor-hearings-begin-undercover-cops-testimony-104950">Jan. 16: Congress Theater liquor hearings begin with undercover cop&rsquo;s testimony</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-12/rally-save-portage-theater-we-know-it-104169">Dec. 3, 2012: A rally to save the Portage Theater &lsquo;as we know it&rsquo;</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-11/portage-theater-uses-graham-elliot%E2%80%99s-name-vain-104089">Nov. 28, 2012: The Portage Theater uses Graham Elliot&rsquo;s name in vain</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-11/congress-theaters-new-security-chief-ex-cop-troubled-past-103611">Nov. 2, 2012: Congress Theater&rsquo;s new security chief: An ex-cop with a troubled past</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-10/congress-theater-police-calls-rank-soldier-field-united-center-103569">Oct. 31, 2012: Congress Theater police calls rank with Soldier Field, United Center</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-09/how-did-things-turn-so-bad-so-fast-portage-theater-102606">Sept. 23, 2012: How did things turn so bad so fast at the Portage Theater?</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-09/new-owner-portage-theater-moves-evict-current-operators-102602">Sept. 22, 2012: New Owner of the Portage Theater moves to evict current operators</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-09/congress-theater-splits-development-partner-102451">Sept. 16, 2012: Congress Theater splits with development partner</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-09/portage-theater-what%E2%80%99s-eddie-102350">Sept. 11, 2012: The Portage Theater: What&rsquo;s Eddie up to?</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-07/congress-theater-partners-up%E2%80%A6-and-looks-expand-101199">July 26, 2012: Congress Theater partners up&hellip; and looks to expand</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-04/more-trouble-congress-theater-98249">April 14, 2012: More trouble at the Congress Theater</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blog/jim-derogatis/2012-03-28/critical-congress-security-headliner-brings-his-own-97696">March 28, 2012: Critical of Congress security, headliner brings his own</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blog/jim-derogatis/2012-03-25/congress-theater-responds-complaints-97597">March 25, 2012: Congress Theater responds to complaints</a></u></p><p><u><a href="http://www.wbez.org/blog/jim-derogatis/2012-03-22/city-congress-theater-clean-your-act-97549">March 22, 2012: City to Congress Theater: Clean up your act!</a></u></p><p><em>Leah Pickett blogs about pop culture for WBEZ. Follow her on Twitter <a href="https://twitter.com/leahkpickett" target="_blank">@leahkpickett</a>.</em></p></p> Wed, 27 Mar 2013 12:15:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/leah-pickett/2013-03/chicago-police-official-congress-theater-untruthful-night-underage Chief Keef sentenced to 60 days in juvenile detention http://www.wbez.org/news/chief-keef-sentenced-60-days-juvenile-detention-105003 <p><p>Chicago rapper Chief Keef must spend 60 days in juvenile detention for violating probation on a gun conviction.</p><p>Chief Keef, whose real name is Keith Cozart, was sentenced last year to 18 months&#39; probation after his conviction on aggravated unlawful use of a weapon charges for pointing a gun at police officers.</p><p>Earlier this week, Cook County Juvenile Court Judge Carl Anthony Walker ordered Cozart&#39;s arrest for a promotional video of the 17-year-old firing a semiautomatic rifle at a New York gun range.</p><p>The Chicago Sun-Times <a href="http://bit.ly/Wbi1I1" target="_blank">reports</a> Cozart cried as he pleaded with Walker not to sentence him to detention. However, the judge said he wouldn&#39;t tolerate Cozart&#39;s &quot;blatant violations of the court&#39;s order.&quot;</p><p>Chief Keef&#39;s first album, &quot;Finally Rich,&quot; was released last year to mixed reviews.</p></p> Thu, 17 Jan 2013 16:11:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/chief-keef-sentenced-60-days-juvenile-detention-105003 Chicago rapper Chief Keef facing jail for parole violation http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-rapper-chief-keef-facing-jail-parole-violation-104955 <p><p>Chicago rapper Chief Keef has been taken into custody after a juvenile court judge decided a video of him firing a semiautomatic rifle at a New York gun range was a violation of probation.</p><p>The artist, real name Keith Cozart, was sentenced last year to 18 months&#39; probation after his conviction on aggravated unlawful use of a weapon charges for pointing a gun at police officers.</p><p>The Chicago Sun-Times <a href="http://bit.ly/VJ1YUt" target="_blank">reports</a> Judge Carl Anthony Walker said the video showed a disregard for the court&#39;s authority. Walker scheduled a Thursday sentencing hearing for the 17-year-old Cozart.</p><p>Defense attorney Dennis Berkson told Walker his client never took the gun outside of the range and the target practice was supervised.</p><p>Chief Keef&#39;s first album, &quot;Finally Rich,&quot; was released last year to mixed reviews.</p></p> Wed, 16 Jan 2013 10:02:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-rapper-chief-keef-facing-jail-parole-violation-104955 Wrestling with the moral dilemma of Chief Keef's art http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-12/wrestling-moral-dilemma-chief-keefs-art-104407 <p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/chief%20keef%202.jpg" style="height: 620px; width: 620px;" title="" /></div><p>If, in the wake of the horrific happenings at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Friday, a soulless, amoral and blatantly sensationalist musician released an album glorifying the deranged mindset, unspeakably selfish and evil worldview and embrace of indiscriminate violence that led to the mass killing of 26 innocents, the condemnation of that dubious art would be instant and universal, regardless of whatever imagined merits it might have beyond its abhorrent subject matter.</p><p>On Tuesday, a 17-year-old South Side rapper born Keith Cozart but better known as Chief Keef will release <em>Finally Rich</em>, his major-label debut for the morally vacuous Interscope Records. The album is a bleak, nihilistic celebration of street violence, gang culture, drug use, disrespect for women and the worship of the almighty dollar above all humanistic conscience, arriving as Chicago nears the end of a year that&rsquo;s seen an epidemic of violent killings in African-American neighborhoods every bit as tragic&mdash;and preventable, if the political will was present&mdash;as those in Newtown, Conn.</p><p>This is not to equate the words of Chief Keef with the actions of the Newtown assassin. Yet neither can the lyrical messages of the Englewood rapper be dismissed as mere fantasy or &ldquo;street reportage.&rdquo; He clearly is on the same path of confusing the gangsta pose with violent gangster realities that infamously led to the deaths of Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls before him, and which had become a pathetic, played-out cliché in hip-hop even at that time, a decade and a half ago.</p><p>A police investigation into <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/chief-keefs-taunting-tweet-has-him-hot-water-102220">Cozart&rsquo;s possible connections to the shooting death of fellow rapper and Englewood resident Joseph &ldquo;Lil JoJo&rdquo; Coleman</a> is ongoing. And today, Cozart will appear in Cook County Juvenile Court, where a judge will decide whether he will return to jail for violating the terms of his probation for a conviction on the unlawful use of a weapon&mdash;he pointed a gun at police&mdash;by appearing at a gun range for an interview with the Pitchfork webzine last June.</p><p>Like many media outlets, the formerly Chicago-based Pitchfork is nearly as complicit in the rise of Chief Keef as Jimmy Iovine&rsquo;s Interscope Records or the long roster of rap stars and others who&rsquo;ve endorsed the young rapper because of his &ldquo;authenticity.&rdquo; (The album features guest appearances from 50 Cent, Wiz Khalifa, Rick Ross and Young Jeezy, fellow Chicagoan Kanye West has remixed Cozart in the past and the track &ldquo;Love Sosa&rdquo; features in the videogame <em>Grand Theft Auto 5</em>.) The hipster Web site has been ordered by the court to turn over the unedited tapes of that gun-range interview, which it posted but quickly removed after Coleman&rsquo;s shooting, and it&rsquo;s fighting that demand by <a href="http://www.chicagoreader.com/Bleader/archives/2012/12/05/chief-keefs-probation-the-ultra-lounge-shooting-and-more-music-news">citing its protections under the First Amendment and the Illinois Reporter&rsquo;s Privilege Act</a>.</p><p>On Friday, Pitchfork posted <a href="http://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums/17477-finally-rich/">a review of <em>Finally Rich</em></a> as laudable art, giving the album a brag-worthy rating of 7.5 on its vaunted 10-point scale. The logic of critic Jayson Greene is hard to follow: The album &ldquo;proves that Keef has a lot of potential&mdash;much more than his detractors might have hoped,&rdquo; he writes. Yet his descriptions of the artist&rsquo;s musical merits hardly are glowing&mdash;&ldquo;Keef mutters through a thick wall of processing,&rdquo; he notes of the rapping&mdash;and he&rsquo;s even less enthusiastic about the message. &ldquo;Chief Keef isn&rsquo;t a lyricist. At all. His lyrics on <em>Finally Rich</em> are almost entirely composed of rudimentary gangsta-rap boilerplate, which he treats more like a graffiti bomber than a rapper, tagging his beats with slogans meant for maximum impact and minimal scrutiny.&rdquo;</p><p>This critic&rsquo;s take: Chief Keef is a thick-tongued, mush-mouthed rapper with little grace and stilted flow who stumbles through generic, unimaginative, frequently plodding and numbingly repetitive backing tracks bragging with little imagination and forced conviction about his bad-ass self and utter disregard for anyone else in the universe. The cynicism is bottomless; in his view, one either exploits his own community or is one of the exploited. &ldquo;I&rsquo;m laughing to the bank/Ha, ha, ha/I&rsquo;m laughing at the slave&rsquo;s life/Ha, ha, ha,&rdquo; he raps. His attempts to shock with exaggerated tales of senseless violence were old decades ago, as noted earlier, already transparent by the time N.W.A lost Ice Cube and its political edge and gave us nothing but empty gangsta porn on <em>Niggaz4Life </em>in 1991. Forced to rate it on this blog&rsquo;s own scale, it ranks at exactly zero stars.</p><p>Of course, saying that carries the risk of being dismissed as clueless and chronically out of touch&mdash;a &ldquo;rockist&rdquo; (code for &ldquo;racist&rdquo;) who doesn&rsquo;t understand hip-hop culture unless it&rsquo;s of the positive (code for &ldquo;boring,&rdquo; &ldquo;feel-good&rdquo; and &ldquo;phony&rdquo;) variety that, <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-09/battle-soul-chicago-hip-hop-102642">as noted here before</a>, previously characterized much of the rap music that brought the national spotlight to Chicago in the past, courtesy of artists such as Kanye, Common, Rhymefest, Lupe Fiasco and Kid Sister.</p><p>To be clear, as a First Amendment absolutist, I believe Keef unquestionably has the right to say anything and everything he chooses to say. Stifling that speech to any degree is despicable, whether it&rsquo;s the court going after Pitchfork&rsquo;s tapes, or police apparently <a href="http://www.redeyechicago.com/entertainment/music/redeye--keef-manager-comments-unfair-20121213,0,623106.story">selectively targeting the street teams</a> who&rsquo;ve plastered the South Side with promotional posters trumpeting the release of <em>Finally Rich</em>.</p><p>Yet, given that, critics need more urgently than ever to consider not only the strictly musical merits of a controversial artist&rsquo;s work, but the moral ramifications of the worldview it champions or espouses. To do anything less indicates the real failure to understand and respect hip-hop, which remains an art form where the words absolutely matter&hellip; and arguably now more than ever, as the Chicago body count piles up.</p><p>If, in the wake of the horrific happenings at Sandy Hook Elementary School, an artist glorified that violence, condemnation would be universal. And so it should be for <em>Finally Rich</em>.</p></p> Mon, 17 Dec 2012 06:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-12/wrestling-moral-dilemma-chief-keefs-art-104407 The battle for the soul of Chicago hip-hop http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-09/battle-soul-chicago-hip-hop-102642 <p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/1Chief-Keef-550x537.png" style="height: 439px; width: 450px;" title="" /></div><p>Even after the phenomenal worldwide success of Kanye West, in recent years Chicago hip-hop took a back seat to the sounds coming from the left and right coasts, as well as the Dirty South. You know the knock: The Windy City is the home of backpackers, granola-eating hippies and feel-good rappers like Common, Rhymefest, Lupe Fiasco, the Cool Kids, Kid Sister and Psalm One who, even if skeptics begrudgingly granted their skills, just weren&rsquo;t &ldquo;real hip-hop.&rdquo;</p><p>That idiotic slight comes, of course, from the fact that if any one thing ever has characterized the diverse group of musically inventive Chicago-bred rappers who&rsquo;ve grabbed the national spotlight in the past, it&rsquo;s been the refusal to exclusively pander to gangsta stereotypes, the same old nihilistic celebrations of hopelessness, sexism and violence, instead collectively painting a much more nuanced, often more positive and ultimately more realistic portrait of the lives of the majority of young African-American men and women.</p><p>In the hip-hop underground, the rise of the troubled teenage rapper Chief Keef and so-called Chicago &ldquo;drill music,&rdquo; with its celebration of all those tired but still lucrative gangsta clichés, has been the major story of 2012. And thanks to Keef&rsquo;s repellant shenanigans&mdash;<a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-04/more-trouble-congress-theater-98249">from the use of a weapon in a run-in with police that first gave him bad-boy bragging rights</a> to his <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/chief-keefs-taunting-tweet-has-him-hot-water-102220">now-infamous Tweet about the shooting of rival Lil Jojo</a>&mdash;the &ldquo;new Chicago hip-hop&rdquo; is becoming a topic for the national mainstream media, with stories running side by side with coverage of the city&rsquo;s increasing gang problems and skyrocketing murder rate.</p><p>And let&rsquo;s not even go near <a href="http://www.theroot.com/views/chief-keef">the more exploitative end of things</a>, including Pitchfork taking Keef to a gun range for a video shoot and then <a href="http://pitchfork.com/news/47032-watch-chief-keef-freestyle-at-a-gun-range/">pulling the clip from the site</a> once things got a little too controversial and too real.</p><p>Disappointingly, West has given Keef&rsquo;s soulless rap his endorsement by including a remix of the 17-year-old&rsquo;s &ldquo;I Don&rsquo;t Like&rdquo; on <em>Cruel Summer</em>, the new and largely underwhelming compilation album from his G.O.O.D. Music crew. Not that Keef is signed to &rsquo;Ye&rsquo;s label: He&rsquo;s inked a multi-million-dollar deal with Interscope for his forthcoming major-label debut. As the man behind Dr. Dre, Marilyn Manson, 50 Cent and Eminem, and a tireless champion of cheap shock and desperately offensive schlock, we expect Interscope chief Jimmy Iovine to be a Keef fan. But we expected better from West.</p><p>In recent days, other established Chicago stars have reacted differently to Keef&rsquo;s rise. Common, who also appears on <em>Cruel Summer</em>, has called for a summit between the old-school rappers and Keef and the new breed. &ldquo;I feel like we just gotta sit &lsquo;em down and build with them,&rdquo; <a href="http://www.bet.com/news/music/2012/09/19/common-wants-to-host-peace-summit-with-chief-keef.html">Common told BET</a>. &ldquo;Talk to them, get some type of peace thing going. It&rsquo;s bigger than rap. Kids is dying. I would tell Keef and all of them cats, &#39;Man we gotta sit down and figure out how we&rsquo;re gonna get to a peace meeting.&rsquo;&rdquo;</p><p>Meanwhile, even as he&rsquo;s dropping his fourth studio album <em>Food &amp; Liquor II: The Great American Rap Album Pt. 1, </em><a href="http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1693272/lupe-fiasco-chief-keef-considers-retirement.jhtml">Lupe Fiasco is saying he&rsquo;s considering quitting rap</a>, largely because the success of artists such as Chief Keef disgusts him. The two rappers fought it out on Twitter after Lupe said the following in a radio interview: &ldquo;Chief Keef scares me. Not him specifically, but just the culture that he represents&hellip; The murder rate in Chicago is skyrocketing, and you see who&rsquo;s doing it and perpetrating it&mdash;they all look like Chief Keef.&rdquo;</p><p>Fired back the ever-eloquent Keef: &ldquo;Lupe fiasco a hoe ass n---a And wen I see him I&rsquo;ma smack him like da lil bitch he is.&rdquo;</p><div class="image-insert-image "><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/1Keef_0.jpg" style="height: 297px; width: 450px;" title="Chief Keef." /></p><p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/1lupe.jpg" style="height: 310px; width: 450px;" title="Lupe Fiasco." /></div></div><p>Will empty nihilistic drill music come to represent the new sound of Chicago for the world, flipping the script on what Keef&rsquo;s predecessors have built up as the city&rsquo;s hip-hop legacy? Is it part of the problem on the streets, or a symptom? And what are its merits and demerits on a purely musical level?</p><p>These are complicated questions that this blogger only is beginning to wrap his head around. Meanwhile, <a href="http://thedailyswarm.com/swarm/rational-conversation-fake-shore-drives-andrew-barber-chief-keefs-rise-amidst-chicagos-murderously-successful-hip-hop-moment/">the most cogent and insightful conversation on the topic that I&rsquo;ve encountered</a> to date was posted yesterday by the invaluable music-news aggregate <a href="http://thedailyswarm.com">The Daily Swarm</a> (which has its roots in Chicago). The latest installment of the site&rsquo;s &ldquo;Rational Conversation&rdquo; series, editor Eric Ducker talks Keef and drill music with Andrew Barber of the Chicago hip-hop website <a href="http://www.fakeshoredrive.com/">Fake Shore Drive</a>. Among his comments:</p><blockquote><p>The scene still has its supporters and stars. It&rsquo;s by no means dead, and there is more to Chicago than just the &ldquo;drill scene.&rdquo; That&rsquo;s what bothers me the most about the coverage Chicago is getting right now. All anyone wants to talk about is Chief Keef, but there are a ton of other artists here whose content is completely different. Artists like Rockie Fresh, YP, Spenzo, Chance the Rapper, Sir Michael Rock, and Kids These Days are incredible talents and deserve the same recognition. Around ten artists and producers from Chicago were signed in 2012; many of them sound nothing alike and have their own styles and movements. Record execs and A&amp;Rs hit Chicago like the gold rush this past spring and summer, and I think a lot of artists&rsquo; stuff will see the light of day on a major label. Now the artists just have to stand out, but all eyes are on Chicago right now, good or bad&hellip;</p></blockquote><blockquote><p>I can say that as far as cities go, Chicago has had a big year&mdash;its biggest since Kanye first emerged, and arguably the biggest in all of hip-hop in 2012. I just hope that when it&rsquo;s all said and done, the scene is remembered for the music instead of the controversy surrounding it.</p></blockquote><p>The interview is a must-read. And here is another, <a href="http://gawker.com/chief-keef/">a provocative think-piece from Gawker</a>. As for Keef&#39;s music being a must-listen... well, as I said, I&#39;m still grappling with that.</p></p> Tue, 25 Sep 2012 10:56:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/jim-derogatis/2012-09/battle-soul-chicago-hip-hop-102642 Romney 'unplugged' causing headaches for supporters http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/romney-unplugged-causing-headaches-supporters-102478 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP809456605997.jpg" title="GOP presidential candidate and motormouth, Mitt Romney AP Photo/Charles Dharapak" /></p><p><strong>Lead Story:</strong> Mitt Romney might stand a chance of winning this election &ndash; but only if he keeps his mouth shut until Election Day. First there was <a href="http://www.businessweek.com/news/2012-09-12/romney-criticized-for-handling-of-libya-protests-death">that misfire regarding the attacks</a> on the U.S. embassy in Libya last week, a reaction that drew criticism even from fellow conservatives. Then there was that less egregious whoopsie-daisy in which Romney <a href="http://news.yahoo.com/romney-middle-income-between-200k-250k-142150881--election.html">said &ldquo;middle-income&rdquo; means you make between $200,000 and $250,000</a> a year, just as the Census Bureau <a href="http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/income_wealth/cb12-172.html">reported</a> the real median income in the United States is $50,000 a year. Now <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/09/secret-video-romney-private-fundraiser">comes video</a> from a fundraiser earlier this year during which Romney unloaded on Obama&rsquo;s base. The speech is <a href="http://www.buzzfeed.com/andrewkaczynski/leaked-fundraiser-video-shows-romney-saying-47-of">full of quips</a> that could prove a headache for the candidate but none more damaging than <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnB0NZzl5HA&amp;feature=player_embedded">this</a>:</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/XnB0NZzl5HA" width="560"></iframe></p><blockquote><p>There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that&#39;s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what&hellip;These are people who pay no income tax.</p></blockquote><p>Snap. Setting aside the bit about income taxes and Romney&rsquo;s own issues with that, it&rsquo;s interesting to hear him admit that he can&rsquo;t win more than 53 percent of the popular vote. And buried in the video beyond that most sensational passage is a swipe at Latinos, which our own <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/achy-obejas/2012-09/romney-takes-swipe-latinos-secret-video-102481">Achy Obejas has an excellent take on</a>. Of course, <a href="http://www.mediaite.com/online/hidden-cam-vid-of-romney-talking-about-obamas-dependent-47-percent-of-voters-a-problem-for-gop/">as <em>Mediaite</em> points out</a>, had this come from a campaign insider or pundit, it would have been dismissed, &ldquo;Because, in campaigning and electioneering terms, it is 100 percent accurate.&rdquo; Romney <a href="http://gawker.com/5944076/mitt-romney-stands-by-comments-made-in-leaked-video">briefly defended his comments</a> and the context of the comments at a press conference Monday night.</p><p>The debates should be interesting.</p><p><strong>Also:</strong> It&rsquo;s going to be awful hard for Chicago rapper Chief Keef to claim his social media account was hacked this time. Keef is in hot water with photo sharing service Instagram for <a href="http://www.vibe.com/article/instagram-cancels-chief-keefs-account-after-sex-photo">posting a photo of himself receiving oral sex</a> from a young woman. Instagram subsequently banned Keef who then <a href="http://twitter.com/ChiefKeef/status/247411850352922624">wondered aloud</a> on Twitter &ldquo;Why dost thou photo app remove thy photos?&rdquo; except with more swearing. He then <a href="http://twitter.com/ChiefKeef/status/247764404047847424">expressed his admiration</a> for a particular kind of woman and probably set about getting into trouble yet again. . . until some sort of authority figure in this young man&rsquo;s life decides enough is enough and at least takes his phone away.&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p><strong>And then: </strong>There&rsquo;s trouble in Halas Hall. Anyone who watched last week&rsquo;s Bears-Packers game already knows that. But now there are sparks between players as one Bear has publicly criticized the behavior of alternately worshipped and maligned quarterback Jay Cutler. Cornerback D.J. Moore <a href="http://espn.go.com/chicago/nfl/story/_/id/8391206/chicago-bears-dj-moore-said-jay-cutler-outburst-was-wrong">called Cutler out</a>&nbsp;for bumping and verbally berating offensive tackle J&rsquo;Marcus Webb during Thursday&rsquo;s trouncing, calling the actions &ldquo;wrong&rdquo; (Webb hasn&rsquo;t complained about the incident himself). All the drama overshadowed the good news that Matt Forte&rsquo;s ankle injury <a href="http://sports.yahoo.com/news/bears-coach-smith-forte-does-163016545--nfl.html">is not as serious</a> as was previously suspected.&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p><strong>RIP: </strong><a href="http://www.avclub.com/articles/rip-john-ingle-character-actor-of-general-hospital,85051/">John Ingle</a>, character actor, from cancer at the age of 84. Ingle began his career as a high school teacher but began earning small TV roles in the early &lsquo;80s, eventually landing a major role on <em>General Hospital</em>. He&rsquo;s probably recognized most by non-soap opera fans as the principal from <em>Heathers</em>; most recently, he&rsquo;s appeared on NBC&rsquo;s <em>Parks and Recreation</em> and <em>The Office</em>.&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;<br />&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;</p><p><strong>Elsewhere</strong></p><ul><li><em>Newsweek</em> uses the latest outburst of anti-American violence in the Middle East as a <a href="http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-newsweek-cover-muslim-rage-20120917,0,382704.story">chance to go trolling with their latest cover</a>.</li><li>The <a href="http://archive.org/">Internet Archive</a> is <a href="http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390443720204578002592487339454.html?mod=googlenews_wsj">putting up a slew of news show clips</a> dating back to 2009, available to users the World Wide Web over.</li><li>The search for a man who <a href="http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2012/09/ohio-man-peeing-behind-barack-obama.html">took a potty break</a> on a hillside during a speech by President Obama came to a halt when the Secret Service claimed he was just an agent.</li><li>Marijuana is <a href="http://www.deathandtaxesmag.com/188617/colorado-and-washington-leading-toward-full-scale-marijuana-legalization/">closer to being legalized</a> in Colorado and Washington state.</li><li><a href="http://www.ajc.com/ap/ap/business/mcnoodles-to-be-launched-in-austria/nSDGN/">McNoodles</a> are now a thing.<br />&nbsp;</li></ul><p><strong>Looking Ahead:</strong></p><ul><li>Mayor Rahm Emanuel&rsquo;s request for an injunction against the teachers strike <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/city-no-ruling-teacher-strike-filing-monday-102465">won&rsquo;t be heard until Wednesday</a>, by which point an agreement may actually, finally, be reached.</li><li>The attorney for Adel Daoud, the 18-year-old charged with trying to blow up a downtown bar, <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-teen-accused-in-bomb-plot-in-court-today-20120917,0,615862.story">says Daoud was lured</a> into the plot by undercover agents.</li><li>Only in Chicago can a state lawmaker currently under indictment and already expelled from the state legislature <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/15215144-761/ex-state-rep-derrick-smith-leading-in-election-poll-despite-indictment-expulsion.html">still lead in the polls</a>.</li><li>As the Red Line gets rehabbed, the CTA is looking for art submissions to display at North Side stations. Apparently, shuttle buses will do as moving installations along the South Side.</li><li>I, for one, welcome <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/15215023-761/huge-burmese-python-found-near-waukegan-beach.html">our new suburban snake overlords</a>.<br />&nbsp;</li></ul><p><strong>Sports&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</strong></p><ul><li>A Toronto Blue Jays player is in hot water for <a href="http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/mlb-big-league-stew/yunel-escobar-eye-black-contained-gay-slur-photo-221529843--mlb.html">writing a slur aimed at gays</a> in his eye black over the weekend.</li><li>Sox Watch: The Pale Hose are now three games up on Detroit after <a href="http://chicago.whitesox.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?gid=2012_09_17_detmlb_chamlb_1&amp;mode=recap&amp;c_id=cws">they beat the Tigers 5-4 yesterday</a>.</li><li>The Cubs are <a href="http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20120917/BLOGS04/120919794/cubs-attendance-lowest-in-a-decade">heading to their lowest attendance year</a> since 2003.</li><li>The Blackhawks &ndash; and the rest of the NHL &ndash; may be locked out for who knows how long, but Jonathan Towes is staying active and <a href="http://www.csnchicago.com/hockey-chicago-blackhawks/blackhawks-talk/Toews-organizes-open-skate-with-current-?blockID=774883&amp;feedID=10334">organized an informal skate</a> with current and former Blackhawks players.</li><li>Jay Mariotti is still alive, living in Los Angeles, and <a href="http://chicagosidesports.com/jay-mariotti-cutlers-bears-still-suck/">ranting about the Bears and their fans</a>. Good to see he&rsquo;s moved on.</li></ul><p><br /><strong>Finally</strong><br />Though he died almost a month ago, NASA has now shared this stirring video tribute to Neil Armstrong.</p><p style="text-align: center; "><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/1pQKZc2AXW0" width="560"></iframe></p></p> Tue, 18 Sep 2012 09:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/romney-unplugged-causing-headaches-supporters-102478 While feuds simmer, no charges in Lil Jojo shooting http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/while-feuds-simmer-no-charges-lil-jojo-shooting-102423 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Keef2.jpg" title="Rapper Chief Keef (courtesy of the artist via Facebook)" /></p><p><strong>Lead Story:</strong> It&rsquo;s been over a week since <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/chief-keefs-taunting-tweet-has-him-hot-water-102220">the first news</a> of the death of local rapper Lil Jojo and the investigation into the involvement of rising local rap star Chief Keef and there&rsquo;s still no new news. Rumors of Keef being brought in for police questioning circulated on Twitter earlier this week but were never substantiated. Keef still insists that his account <a href="http://rapfix.mtv.com/2012/09/10/chief-keef-denies-tweeting-lil-jojo-lupe-fiasco/">was hacked</a> and later tweeted a more appropriate tribute to the fallen rapper. Another local rapper, No I.D. <a href="http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1693628/chief-keef-lupe-fiasco-feud-no-id.jhtml">weighed in on the feud</a> between Keef and Lupe Fiasco but just this week Fiasco <a href="http://www.bet.com/news/music/2012/09/13/lupe-fiasco-extends-olive-branch-to-chief-keef.html">seemed to be seeking a truce</a>. Another rap star, Fifty Cent, <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/news/15111696-418/superstar-rapper-50-cent-defends-chief-keef.html">came to Keef&rsquo;s defense this week</a>, pointing to the lack of charges against Keef as a reason to withhold judgment. And now local rapper Lil Jay <a href="http://allhiphop.com/2012/09/12/potential-violence-brewing-over-death-of-chicago-rapper-lil-jojo/">has remixed the Lil Jojo track</a> that allegedly led to his death, promising vengeance for Jojo&rsquo;s killing. Of course, with all this back-and-forth, what&rsquo;s lost is that an 18-year-old boy is dead and a 17-year-old rival is eyed as being connected to the murder; if nothing else, 2012 will be remembered for being the year of the gun in Chicago and Lil Jojo&rsquo;s murder the symbolic incident of the city&rsquo;s spiraling gang and poverty problem that&rsquo;s spurred the violence these same rappers embrace and even celebrate.</p><p><strong>Also:</strong> It was a bad, bad night for the Bears in Green Bay, the magic of the week one offensive explosion gone as the Bears offense sputtered and the <a href="http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2012091300/2012/REG2/bears@packers#menu=drivechart&amp;tab=analyze&amp;pbp=gc-pbp-cd">Packers pulled away 23-10</a>. The entire game was mainly a defensive struggle as neither Pro Bowl quarterback &ndash; the Bears&rsquo; Jay Cutler or the Packers&rsquo; Aaron Rodgers &ndash; developed a solid rhythm. A poor performance from the Bears&rsquo; offensive line had Cutler scrambling and tossing wild throws that led to several Cutler sacks (six, actually) and interceptions (four, actually), a bad case of deja vu for Bears fans. Dropped passes, including a sure touchdown throw bobbled by Brandon Marshall, didn&rsquo;t help, either. At least the team gets a few extra days off before their next game on September 23 when they welcome the Rams to Soldier Field.</p><p><strong>And then:</strong> In one of the more bizarre stories this week, Fox Chicago <a href="http://www.myfoxchicago.com/story/19540560/wanted-1-goat-herder-30-goats-at-ohare-intl-airport">unearthed a bid</a> at O&rsquo;Hare for a goat herder. After a little digging, they found that the city&rsquo;s aviation department is looking for someone to oversee a herd of goats to be used to keep grass and brush levels near the airport that&rsquo;s hard for mowers to access. Other cities that have already instituted such a program include San Francisco and Atlanta. It&rsquo;s a pretty great idea and probably pretty cheap. But one has to question whether or not this is really the right city for <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curse_of_the_Billy_Goat">goats</a>. On the other hand, let&rsquo;s see this bid go out just to see which alderman has the clout to get his brother-in-law&rsquo;s goat business a contract. And which alderman has a brother-in-law with a goat business.</p><p><strong>Released: </strong>The full two-minute trailer for the upcoming Steven Spielberg-directed Abe Lincoln biopic starring Daniel Day Lewis.</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/qiSAbAuLhqs" width="560"></iframe></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Elsewhere</strong></p><ul><li>Strange happenings in China were the next president <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/14/world/asia/xi-jinpings-absence-puts-communist-party-off-script.html?_r=1&amp;hp&amp;gwh=D2DE665D172CCBDB96932CF19343F6E5">is still out of sight</a> but not out of mind.</li><li>On the 150<sup>th</sup> anniversary of the Battle of Antietam, <a href="http://seattletimes.com/html/nationworld/2019140393_apuscivilwar150thantietam.html">an interesting look</a> at the sweeping reenactment.</li><li>New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg&rsquo;s big gulp soda ban in NYC <a href="http://gothamist.com/2012/09/13/bloombergs_soda_ban_victory_lap_big.php">has gotten the green light</a> and will go into effect next March.</li><li>Britain has a great new way to deal with unruly movie theater patrons: <a href="http://www.avclub.com/articles/british-theater-deals-with-noisy-moviegoers-by-hir,84959/">ninjas</a>.</li><li>And just because it&rsquo;s Friday, meet <a href="http://www.ajc.com/ap/ap/top-news/great-dane-from-michigan-is-worlds-tallest-dog/ph4PB/">the world&rsquo;s tallest dog</a>.<br />&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;</li></ul><p><strong>Looking Ahead:</strong></p><ul><li>The Christopher Vaughn murder trial, largely overshadowed by the Drew Peterson case, could <a href="http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/09/13/christopher-vaughns-sister-testifies-at-his-murder-trial/">head to the jury early next week</a>.</li><li>Don&rsquo;t hold your breath on state pension reform. State senate president John Cullerton says a vote <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/politics/clout/chi-illinois-senate-president-no-vote-on-pension-reform-until-january-20120913,0,7636977.story">won&rsquo;t happen until at least January</a>.</li><li>Even as the paper moves on from <a href="http://www.poynter.org/latest-news/mediawire/182837/chicago-tribune-staffers-relationship-with-journatic-threatens-to-jeopardize-our-credibility/">the Journatic fiasco</a>, the <em>Chicago Tribune</em> is still <a href="http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20120913/NEWS06/120919887/in-wake-of-journatic-tribune-reduces-number-of-triblocal-editions">cutting back on TribLocal sections</a>.</li><li>Despite the city&rsquo;s <a href="http://articles.redeyechicago.com/2012-09-12/news/33794614_1_analysis-of-preliminary-police-first-homicide-chicago-homicide">brief reprieve</a> from its violent year, things are still so crazy <a href="http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/09/13/rival-gang-members-hired-by-same-temp-agency-fight-on-break/">even temp agencies are unwittingly</a> setting gangs against each other.</li><li>The <em>Reader</em> <a href="http://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/mayor-emanuel-pushes-chicago-teachers-toward-strike/Content?oid=7412909">weighs in on the teachers strike</a>, exploring how the teachers reached this point of frustration with the mayor.<br />&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</li></ul><p><strong>Sports&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;</strong></p><ul><li>Sox Watch: With their lead over the Tigers reduced to just one game, the Sox will have to wait until Monday to earn one back the easy way as last night&rsquo;s game was <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/ct-spt-0914-white-sox-tigers-chicago--20120914,0,7425822.story">postponed</a> due to rain.</li><li>It was <a href="http://abclocal.go.com/wls/gallery?section=news/sports&amp;id=8809595&amp;photo=1">an emotional day for Derrick Rose</a> yesterday as he announced his new shoe, the Bulls star breaking down in tears while discussing his injury. But the good news? <a href="http://www.nba.com/2012/news/09/13/bulls-derrick-rose-knee.ap/">He&rsquo;s making great progress</a>.</li><li>There hasn&rsquo;t been much fuss &ndash; yet &ndash; over the fact the Cubs and Sox will <a href="http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20120912&amp;content_id=38297678&amp;vkey=news_chc&amp;c_id=chc">only play each other four times next year</a> in back-to-back two-game sets at each park in late May.</li><li>There aren&rsquo;t any signs yet <a href="http://espn.go.com/chicago/story/_/id/8375714/commissioner-mike-aresco-says-big-east-prepared-negotiate-notre-dame-buyout">of a buyout for Notre Dame</a> to exit the Big East early to head to the ACC, but if they get one, it won&rsquo;t be cheap.</li><li>Don&rsquo;t get too excited, hockey fans: things look grim as <a href="http://sports.yahoo.com/news/time-running-nhl-union-swap-083401305--nhl.html">a lockout looms this weekend</a>.<br />&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;</li></ul><p><strong>Finally</strong><br />Saturday Night Live debuts its new season tomorrow night and they&rsquo;ve finally got a different cast member to portray President Obama. Jay Pharoah, who&rsquo;s been painfully under-utilized since he joined the cast, <a href="http://blogs.wsj.com/speakeasy/2012/09/13/as-obama-jay-pharoah-could-bring-snl-the-change-we-need/?mod=google_news_blog">will play the Commander-in-Chief this season</a>.</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/djBUQOqgFMM#t=400" width="560"></iframe></p></p> Fri, 14 Sep 2012 09:01:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/while-feuds-simmer-no-charges-lil-jojo-shooting-102423 The Drew Peterson jury's unanimous side-show http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/drew-peterson-jurys-unanimous-side-show-102258 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/AP887490605328.jpg" title="This man wasn't even the worst part of his own murder trial (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)" /></p><p><strong>Lead story:</strong> For the time being, Drew Peterson is <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/jury-convicts-drew-peterson-3rd-wifes-death-102239">guilty of first-degree murder</a> in the death of his third wife, Kathleen Savio. I say &ldquo;for the time being&rdquo; because I have a hard time believing that the defense won&#39;t appeal based on how incompetent the prosecution&rsquo;s presentation of its case was. Almost every day, it seemed, the judge considered a mistrial motion, and the lone hold-out juror <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-final-holdout-juror-it-was-only-the-hearsay-that-convicted-him-20120906,0,4038517.story">admitted he voted</a> to convict based solely on the controversial hearsay evidence. Thankfully, of course, I&#39;m not an attorney, so I could be totally wrong. But an hour or so before the verdict was delivered, the jury, whose fashion shenanigans have gotten plenty of notice, sent the judge a note <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/US/drew-peterson-jury-asks-judge-meaning-unanimous/story?id=17162521">asking him what the definition of &ldquo;unanimous&rdquo; was</a>. I&rsquo;d understand if they needed to be reminded of the rules involving a hung jury. But deciding a man&rsquo;s fate at a murder trial and not understanding what delivering a &ldquo;unanimous&rdquo; vote means obliterates all hope I had of ever getting a fair trial. . . at least in Will County.</p><p><strong>Also:</strong> The saga and <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/14986406-761/anger-over-chief-keefs-tweet-mocking-rivals-murder-explodes-online.html">backlash</a> surrounding Chicago rapper Chief Keef continues to unfold. Thursday, the <em>Sun-Times</em> reported that slain rapper Lil JoJo <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/14964520-761/lil-jojo-tweeted-his-location-just-hours-before-he-was-slain.html">tweeted his location</a> shortly before he was killed; the paper also quoted the victim&#39;s mother, who blamed her son&#39;s death on his rap rivalry with Keef. Then&nbsp;<em>Pitchfork,&nbsp;</em>an outlet that had previously heralded Keef,&nbsp;<a href="http://pitchfork.com/news/47761-retracting-the-chief-keef-selector-video/?utm_source=feedburner&amp;utm_medium=feed&amp;utm_campaign=Feed%3A+PitchforkLatestNews+%28Pitchfork%3A+Latest+News%29">officially retracted</a> an episode of its &ldquo;Selector&rdquo; series that featured the young rapper <em>at a gun range</em>. The piece was a horrible idea; part of Keef&#39;s lore is his arrest for pointing a gun at a police officer. I had previously wondered how outlets who promoted Keef would reconcile that hype with his violent image. I guess now we know.</p><p><strong>And then:</strong> Yes, Barack Obama <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/convention-speech-obama-says-recovery-path-will-be-hard-our-challenges-can-be-met-102252">accepted</a> his party&rsquo;s nomination for president. Yes, his speech was heavy on policy and light on the typical oratory magic he&rsquo;s typically known for. Still, it was a solid speech.&nbsp;It&rsquo;ll be at least a week before polls reflect any change in perception based on the conventions, but having watched an inordinate amount of both, it feels like the Dems may have more momentum coming out of theirs. But there&#39;s still a long way to go and the debates will play a bigger role in pushing undecided voters than either convention.</p><p><strong>RIP: </strong><a href="http://www.suntimes.com/news/obituaries/14974973-418/wgn-traffic-helicopter-reporter.html">John C. Camden</a>, former helicopter traffic reporter for WGN radio at the age of 71. Besides being a traffic reporter, Camden was an Air Force veteran and served as a Cook County sheriff for many years.<br />&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Elsewhere</strong></p><ul><li>The nation&rsquo;s fastest speed limit is now <a href="http://www.latimes.com/news/nation/nationnow/la-na-nn-texas-commission-oks-85-mph-speed-limit-on-new-road-20120906,0,1672530.story">85 mph</a>&nbsp;in, yep, Texas. Yeehaw.</li><li>Apple&rsquo;s plan for world domination continues as the company <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/07/technology/apple-plans-to-challenge-pandora-in-web-radio.html?_r=1&amp;hp">looks to challenge Pandora</a> with streaming Internet radio.</li><li>The show&nbsp;<em>Here Comes</em>&nbsp;<em>Honey Boo Boo</em> <a href="http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/honey-boo-boo-ratings-bill-clinton-tlc-368469">tied Bill Clinton&rsquo;s DNC speech in television ratings</a>, which makes sense when you live in a country where a jury of your peers deciding a murder trial doesn&rsquo;t know the meaning of &ldquo;unanimous.&rdquo;</li><li>The Mystery Hum of Seattle <a href="http://boingboing.net/2012/09/06/seattles-mystery-hum.html">has returned</a>.</li><li><a href="http://lifehacker.com/5940319/how-to-block-annoying-political-posts-on-facebook">Here&rsquo;s a way</a> to block all of those annoying political Facebook status updates.<br />&nbsp;</li></ul><p><strong>Looking Ahead:</strong></p><ul><li>Chicago Public Schools have <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/district-picks-schools-churches-stay-open-if-teachers-strike-102242">announced which schools will be open</a> to housing students if and when the teachers strike begins next week.</li><li><em>The Reader&rsquo;s</em> Ben Joravsky <a href="http://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/daley-emanual-chris-christie-political-football/Content?oid=7362408">breaks down</a> why local Democrats may be the best friends local Republicans have.</li><li>Chicago Media Baron&trade; Robert Feder <a href="http://timeoutchicago.com/arts-culture/chicago-media-blog/15666306/lewis-lazare-happy-to-be-back-on-the-business-beat">catches up with Lewis Lazare</a> about his new writing gig.</li><li>Just because Illinois will go for Obama in the election doesn&rsquo;t mean Romney is <em>totally</em> ignoring the state, as <a href="http://www.chicagobusiness.com/article/20120906/BLOGS02/120909905/as-obama-awaits-his-big-night-romney-readies-chicago-area-trip">he plans to visit next week</a>.</li><li>Chicago Police have <a href="http://chicagoist.com/2012/09/06/police_transgender_policy.php">a new procedure</a> on how to handle transgender detainees.</li></ul><p>&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Sports</strong></p><ul><li>Brandon Marshall <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/football/bears/chi-bears-marshall-agrees-to-weekly-tv-gig-20120906,0,6860168.story">has a new regular appearance gig</a> at NBC 5. What could go wrong?</li><li>Derrick Rose is now <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/derrick-rose-new-face-giordanos-pizza-chain-102240">an equity owner in Giordano&rsquo;s</a>. It&rsquo;d be a lot more interesting if he was equity owner of Connie&rsquo;s Pizza.</li><li>Things got a little chippy <a href="http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?gid=2012_09_06_chnmlb_wasmlb_1&amp;mode=recap&amp;c_id=chc">between the Cubs and the Nationals</a> last night &mdash;&nbsp;the most spirit the Cubs have shown in ages.</li><li>It looks like those White Mamba rumors were half-true: He&rsquo;s retiring, but instead of becoming a Bulls assistant coach, <a href="http://espn.go.com/chicago/nba/story/_/id/8345043/report-chicago-bulls-brian-scalabrine-retiring-boston-celtics-broadcast-booth">he&rsquo;ll be a broadcaster</a> for the Boston Celtics.</li><li>Sports journalist Jeff Pearlman <a href="http://chicagosidesports.com/when-chicago-went-sour-on-sweetness/">unloaded on members</a> of the Chicago media over their criticism of his Walter Payton book.<br />&nbsp;</li></ul><p><strong>Fin​ally</strong></p><p>No matter your political alignment, one of the most inspiring moments of the entire year came at last night&rsquo;s DNC proceedings when former Arizona congresswoman Gabby Giffords, who <em>survived an assassination attempt</em>, led the crowd in the pledge of allegiance.</p><p style="text-align: center; "><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/cbFMHZprAmA" width="560"></iframe></p></p> Fri, 07 Sep 2012 09:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/drew-peterson-jurys-unanimous-side-show-102258 Chief Keef's taunting tweet has him in hot water http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/chief-keefs-taunting-tweet-has-him-hot-water-102220 <p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/keef.jpg" title="Rapper Chief Keef (courtesy of the artist)" /></p><p><strong>Lead Story:</strong> Recently&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-08/young-immigrants-line-creating-extraordinary-scene-navy-pier-101755">I mused about</a> how some local rap artists, specifically Chief Keef, are emblematic of Chicago&#39;s violence problem. Now, police are looking into possible connections between Keef and <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/14964520-761/lil-jojo-murdered-in-chicago-police-now-looking-at-chief-keefs-tweets-source-says.html">the shooting death of one of his &ldquo;rivals</a>,&rdquo; Lil Jojo (aka 18-year-old Joseph Coleman). Police think the shooting may be part of a gang war between the Gangster Disciples and the Black Disciples, to which Keef has been tied. So far, there have been no solid connections between Keef and the murder, much less any charges. But Keef did draw attention from police for <a href="http://twitter.com/ChiefKeef/status/243233095120199680">a tweet following Coleman&rsquo;s death</a>:&nbsp;&ldquo;Its Sad Cuz Dat Nigga Jojo Wanted To Be Jus Like Us #LMAO.&rdquo; Of course, Keef later played the tired &ldquo;my account was hacked&rdquo; card. The story doesn&rsquo;t end there, though. Last night, Lupe Fiasco was dragged into the argument after <a href="http://www.fakeshoredrive.com/2012/08/video-lupe-fiasco-talks-chief-keef-rockie-fresh-chicagos-hip-hop-scene.html/">last week admitting</a> that the violence espoused by rappers like Keef scares him. Keef <a href="https://twitter.com/ChiefKeef/status/243470699031830531">responded</a> yesterday with a clear, mature volley: &ldquo;Lupe fiasco a hoe ass nigga And wen I see him I&#39;ma smack him like da lil bitch he is #300.&rdquo; And thus the discourse continues everywhere, including the media that&#39;s put Keef on a pedestal to begin with.</p><p><strong>Also: </strong>Wednesday&nbsp;night, former president Bill Clinton&nbsp;<a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/politics/ct-la-pn-clinton-dnc-obama-20120905,0,4840516.story">gave an impassioned (and really, really long) speech</a>&nbsp;at the DNC that concluded with the formal nomination of President Barack Obama to be the party&rsquo;s candidate for president. No surprise there. But local viewers may have had an &ldquo;<a href="http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/o-rly">O RLY</a>?&rdquo; moment during his speech. Talking of cooperation between Republicans and Democrats and how it can succeed, Clinton tossed off a few examples,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/05/us/politics/transcript-of-bill-clintons-speech-to-the-democratic-national-convention.html?pagewanted=all">including this</a>: &ldquo;Ask the mayors who are here. <em>(Cheers, applause.)</em> Los Angeles is getting green and Chicago is getting an infrastructure bank because Republicans and Democrats are working together to get it.&rdquo;</p><p>Really, Bill? I had no idea that the new infrastructure trust was a collaboration between Chicago Republicans (who are so rare they might as well be unicorns) and Democrats. I thought it was just another example of&nbsp;<a href="http://www.chicagoreader.com/chicago/the-trust-fund-mayor/Content?oid=6036196">a mayor cramming a half-baked idea through the city council</a>, the consequences be damned. Like that successful parking meter deal.</p><p>The kicker: Immediately following that line, Clinton delivered his &ldquo;broken clock is right twice a day line&rdquo; and the camera &ndash; on MSNBC, anyway &ndash; panned to <a href="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v625/mdgilmer/rhamlaugh.jpg">a laughing Mayor Emanuel</a>. Because he always gets the last laugh. Dammit.</p><p><strong>And then:</strong> Alprentiss Nash, the man <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-08/yet-another-exoneration-reflects-ongoing-disturbing-trend-102101">just exonerated</a> of murder thanks to DNA evidence, was released after 17 years in prison for the crime he didn&rsquo;t commit. For his part, Nash seems to just be happy to be out of jail and doesn&rsquo;t appear to be bitter about his ordeal. In <a href="http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/local&amp;id=8799340">an interview with ABC 7</a>, he said, &quot;Now that I am free, why be bitter when life is so wonderful now?&quot;&nbsp;Nash says he&rsquo;s looking into going to culinary arts school and his attorney is weighing the options of a civil lawsuit against the city for wrongful imprisonment.</p><p><strong>RIP:</strong> <a href="http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/8343621/former-ravens-owner-art-modell-dies-87">Art Modell</a>, former owner of the Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens at the age of 87. While Modell is responsible for many things in the NFL&rsquo;s history &ndash; including helping to negotiate the league&rsquo;s television contracts and collective bargaining agreements with players &ndash; he&rsquo;ll always be remembered for relocating the Cleveland Browns to Baltimore to become the Ravens in 1996, breaking the hearts of Browns fans. It was a move that has allegedly since kept him out of the Hall of Fame.<br />&nbsp;</p><p><strong>Elsewhere</strong></p><ul><li><a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/06/world/europe/putin-pulls-off-his-latest-feat-flying-with-migratory-birds.html?hp">Vladimir Putin or rugged outdoorsman beer spokesman</a>? You be the judge.</li><li><a href="http://www.latimes.com/news/science/la-sci-nfl-concussions-death-20120906,0,842879.story">According to a new study</a>, former NFL players are at a much higher risk of permanent brain diseases than non-players.</li><li>Things are getting interesting between China, Taiwan and Japan, <a href="http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nn20120906a1.html">all over ownership of an</a> island that is totally not the island from <em>Lost.&nbsp;</em></li><li>Someone thought it <a href="http://movies.yahoo.com/video/ymovies-6393699/christmas-story-2-trailer-30507222.html">was a good idea to make a sequel</a> to <em>A Christmas Story</em> and it&rsquo;s mercifully going direct to DVD.</li><li>In 35 years, the Voyager space probe <a href="http://www.npr.org/2012/09/05/160609488/after-35-years-voyager-nears-edge-of-solar-system">has traveled <em>11 billion miles</em></a> and is close to the edge of the solar system where, I assume, thar be dragons.</li></ul><p><br /><strong>Looking ahead</strong></p><ul><li>Jury deliberations <a href="http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/09/05/jury-to-begin-deliberating-drew-petersons-fate/">are underway</a> at the Drew Peterson debacle trial.</li><li>Rev. Jesse Jackson <a href="http://www.myfoxchicago.com/story/19455795/high-school-seniors-speak-out-about-potential-teachers-strike">doesn&rsquo;t think</a> the teachers will strike while Rahm is <a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/boys-bus/emanuel-defends-trip-charlotte-while-teachers-strike-looms-102195">busy defending</a> his trip to the DNC. And the teachers? They <a href="http://www.suntimes.com/14955840-761/teachers-monday-strike-date-still-on.html">still say it&rsquo;s on</a>.</li><li>That local governments are <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/another-illinois-city-prohibits-teens-tanning-102193">having to step in and take a role</a> in preventing teens from frequenting tanning salons makes me look deep inside myself and wonder where we all went wrong as a society.</li><li>As if <a href="http://www.cnn.com/2012/08/31/health/chicago-hotel-legionnaires-disease/index.html">Legionnaire&rsquo;s Disease</a> wasn&rsquo;t a big enough worry, <a href="http://www.sacbee.com/2012/09/05/4787861/dupage-county-now-has-12-human.html">West Nile isn&rsquo;t going anywhere</a>, either.</li><li>Chicago Weather Wizard&trade; Tom Skilling says we&rsquo;re gonna get <a href="http://blog.chicagoweathercenter.com/2012/09/05/storms-wallop-chicago-area-overnight-more-threaten-wednesday-ahead-of-biggest-temp-pullback-in-four-weeks-by-the-weekend/">a cool-down</a> this weekend.</li></ul><p><br /><strong>Sports</strong></p><ul><li>Former Bears QB Jim McMahon <a href="http://www.csnchicago.com/football-chicago-bears/bears-talk/Sports-Illustrated-features-McMahon-real?blockID=768219&amp;feedID=10330">appears in the cover story</a> for <em>Sports Illustrated</em> next week talking about his head injuries sustained during his playing career.</li><li>The Bulls and coach Tom Thibodeau have <a href="http://espn.go.com/chicago/nba/story/_/id/8342029/source-chicago-bulls-tom-thibodeau-resume-contract-talks">resumed talks</a> to extend the coach&rsquo;s contract (as well they should).</li><li>University of Illinois junior Tatyana McFadden <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/breaking/chi-mcfadden-2for2-in-paralympics-20120905,0,5325635.story">is collecting gold</a> at the Paralympic Games in London.</li><li><a href="http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/09/05/usc-walk-on-loses-scholarship-to-make-room-for-linebacker-recently-released-from-jail/">Lane Kiffin proves</a> why he&rsquo;s one of the biggest jerks in college sports.</li><li>Sox Watch: Still one game up after <a href="http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/gameday/index.jsp?gid=2012_09_05_minmlb_chamlb_1&amp;mode=gameday&amp;c_id=cws">yesterday&rsquo;s</a> win. Panic level: 6.5 out of 10.<br />&nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp; &nbsp;&nbsp;</li></ul><p><strong>Finally </strong></p><p>The history of the world in just two minutes. [via <em><a href="http://www.thehighdefinite.com/2012/09/our-story-in-2-minutes/">The High Definite</a></em>]</p><p style="text-align: center; "><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="450" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/MrqqD_Tsy4Q" width="600"></iframe></p></p> Thu, 06 Sep 2012 09:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/marcus-gilmer/2012-09/chief-keefs-taunting-tweet-has-him-hot-water-102220 Long Hot Summer: The tension between hip hop and violence http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-07/long-hot-summer-tension-between-hip-hop-and-violence-101110 <p><p><em>Summer after summer, Chicagoans are consumed by violence and a seemingly exponential murder rate. And, it seems, summer after summer, we talk about the need for whole families, better education, jobs and police boots on the ground&mdash;yet, the cycle continues. This year, </em>Afternoon Shift <em>hopes to move beyond the headlines in hopes of better understanding the violence&mdash;it roots and possible remedy&mdash;through frank, forward-thinking, holistic conversations in a series we&rsquo;re calling, </em>Long Hot Summer.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/chiefkeef1.jpg" title="Chief Keef" /></div><p><iframe frameborder="0" height="125" scrolling="no" src="http://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fapi.soundcloud.com%2Ftracks%2F53856981&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=false&amp;color=ff7700" width="100%"></iframe></p><p>Hip hop and violence often intersect. Theirs is a tense and complicated dance where no one leads&mdash;either component can serve as a catalyst or outlet for the other. And Chicago now finds itself at the epicenter of violence and mainstream hip hop&mdash;the city&rsquo;s street sound is getting serious, unprecedented play as the murder rate climbs. Chicago has certainly produced marquee artists in the past&mdash;the Windy City is, after all, the home of Kanye, Common and Lupe Fiasco, to name a few. But artists from Chicago have typically been associated with rap&#39;s indie and conscious styles. In other words, Chicago has never had its street moment&mdash;until now.</p><p>As cheap internet access became readily available in Chicago&rsquo;s poorest neighborhoods, young artists came online in droves. They flooded YouTube with their rhymes and homemade music videos; they took to Twitter and Facebook en masse. Suddenly, sending a tape to Kanye wasn&rsquo;t the only option.</p><p><a href="https://twitter.com/ChiefKeef" target="_blank">Chief Keef</a> is arguably the biggest name in Chicago hip hop right now. The internet sensation&rsquo;s breakout video, <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2WcRXJ4piHg" target="_blank">&ldquo;I Don&rsquo;t Like,&rdquo;</a> at press time, had nearly 9.5 million views on YouTube. He <a href="http://www.fakeshoredrive.com/2012/06/chief-keef-gets-gbe-imprint-movie-deal-beats-by-keef-headphones.html/" target="_blank">reportedly</a> signed a deal with Interscope Records worth millions in June. Freelance writer <a href="http://www.spin.com/articles/chicago-rap-blazes-streets?page=0" target="_blank">David Drake recently profiled</a> Keef and other up-and-coming Chicago artists for <em>SPIN</em>.</p><p>&ldquo;Much of what has made Keef&#39;s controversial music resonate so widely throughout the city is that his young age and seemingly reckless lyrics &mdash; dense with references to local sets, cliques, neighborhoods, and gangs &mdash; appear to epitomize this very sense of having lost control of the younger generation,&rdquo; Drake wrote.</p><p>That uncontrolled, reckless vibe that&#39;s resonating amongst Chicago&rsquo;s young emcees is what concerns veterans like <a href="http://www.elchethemovement.com/" target="_blank">Che &quot;Rhymefest&quot; Smith</a>. The hip-hop artist and activist, who shares a Grammy with Kanye West, considers it a personal responsibility to educate younger generations about the potential impact of music&mdash;that rhymes can be used as a tool or a weapon. And he has no patience for the latter.</p><p>Rhymefest is hoping to drown out the negative notes with theme songs for life. In an effort to stem the violence in Chicago through music, his foundation, Power of Purpose, has teamed up with the Black Youth Project to provide a platform for positive plays. <a href="http://www.blackyouthproject.com/2012/07/calling-all-artists-sumbit-music-to-the-pledge-mixtape/" target="_blank">The Pledge Mixtape</a> will be a 13-song CD comprised of songs from various local artists hoping to take back their communal power through music. Artists like Mikkey Halstead, K. Fox and Rhymefest himself will provide tracks to bring attention to the tunes&mdash;but will they grab 9.5-million-views-type attention?</p><p>Rhymefest joins host Steve Edwards, music writer Jessica Hopper, Pastor Phil Jackson and emcee Teh&rsquo;Ray &quot;<a href="http://www.facebook.com/pages/PHENOM/169023961506" target="_blank">Phenom</a>&quot; Hale for an hour-long discussion about the relationship between hip hop and violence. <em>Afternoon Shift</em> will also hear from up-and-coming emcee, <a href="http://www.facebook.com/chancetherapper" target="_blank">Chance the Rapper</a>. To join the conversation, call <strong>(312) 923-9239</strong> or chime in on Twitter at <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/search/%23AfternoonShift" target="_blank">#AfternoonShift.</a></p></p> Mon, 23 Jul 2012 12:22:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/bez/2012-07/long-hot-summer-tension-between-hip-hop-and-violence-101110