Roleplaying has always been a huge part of hip-hop. Rap lyrics, so often autobiographical, blur lines between reality and fiction almost without exception, and any truly successful rapper has mastered the performance of at least one painstakingly engineered persona. Maybe it should come as no surprise, then, that so many rappers can really act. Unlike those few-and-far-between crossovers from other genres (Tom Waits, Justin Timberlake), rappers who can bring roles to life seem to be the rule, not the exception.
SundanceTV’s DREAM SCHOOL: NYC premiering Wed., Oct. 1 at 10/9c takes on a new class of students who have dropped out or been expelled from the conventional school system and offers them a real chance to graduate.
Sundance Channel announced today an impressive list of innovators and leaders from a cross section of professions including music, politics, film, science, journalism and more who will come together to create a DREAM SCHOOL for 15 troubled students in the network’s new six-part unscripted series premiering on October 7 at 10:00pm et/pt.
From Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Oliver Stone to astronaut Dr. Mae Jemison, these instructors will have one mission – to excite young minds and reignite their students’ desire to learn. An ambitious project where the best and the brightest in our culture teach kids who have been falling through the cracks, DREAM SCHOOL is designed to motivate troubled teenagers to turn their lives around. Pregnant, neglected, bullies or bullied; the kids all have one thing in common — they are dropouts. Now Sundance Channel is giving them a once in a lifetime chance to start over, but overcoming past failures and future obstacles will prove to be no easy task for both the students and their instructors.
Sundance Channel announced today the greenlight of a new original non-fiction series “Dream School.” Multi-platinum award-winning musician and entrepreneur Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson will executive produce under his G-Unit Films and Television banner and appear in the show. The series format was created by Jamie Oliver who will also executive produce under his Fresh One shingle. The announcement was made today by Sarah Barnett, Sundance Channel President. The series is slated to premiere in fall 2013.
As a lover of puns (an unfortunate quality of mine for my pun-hating friends), I love this entry at Lenscratch, which compiled this ode to puns, intentional and otherwise, snapped by various photographers with a sense of humor. I especially like the 50 Cent image (above), taken “on the mean streets of Portland by Neil DaCosta. The painting elevates it to the realm of “art,” but it does remind me a lot of the “sleeveface” phenomenon a while ago, where people photographed themselves holding record cover sleeves in a similar manner.
English 50 Cent – In Da Club from english 50cent on Vimeo. 50 Cent’s classic birthday party club song “In Da Club” goes high brow and gets translated into the Queen’s English. Proper English or not, I can still get into this song 200 thousand listens later.
Hip-hop stars rush at the chance to collaborate. You pick up a rap album and it seems almost always to be a duet disc with guest vocalists appearing on multiple tracks. Pop stars caught on to this craze too. Trying to gain street cred and a younger audience, performers as diverse as Madonna, Beyonce, and Maroon 5 have enlisted the guest hip-hop performer to appear on their discs. Hell, I even think Wyclef Jean and Kanye West have been on more records for others than on their own songs.