All posts by Uristocrat

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Prince – The Breakdown

Less than 24 hours after announcing his rekindled partnership with Warner Bros. Records, Prince released a new single titled “The Breakdown.” Under the new partnership, Prince has promised a new album, the release of previously unheard material and remastered content, including a deluxe version of his soundtrack album “Purple Rain” for its 30th anniversary. Listen to “The Breakdown” over at iTunes or above.

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GoGo Morrow Friends & Lovers Tour Philly, Baltimore, & DC Run

GoGo Morrow has accompanied Marsha Ambrosius on multiple dates of the latter’s Friends & Lovers Tour. The dynamic performer has wowed concertgoers at Philly’s TLA, Washington, D.C.’s Howard Theatre, and Baltimore’s Baltimore Soundstage with her captivating performances and stage presence. Her single, “Private Dancer”, has been a crowd favorite at all the venues GoGo has graced during her time on the tour.

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Nike Rocked By Rare Sneaker Theft Scheme

 

A federal criminal investigation has uncovered a “large-scale theft” operation inside Nike’s Oregon headquarters, a scheme that targeted valuable sneaker prototypes and involved a Nike product manager, his predecessor at the shoe giant, and a Florida businessman who resold the “extremely rare” kicks to buyers nationwide, The Smoking Gun has learned.

There is a big scandal going on over at Nike. Nike‘s Tung Ho and his predecessor, Kyle Yamaguchi – founder of eyewear label LOOK/SEE – have been named in a Federal investigation surrounding the resale and distribution of rare Nike “Look See” Basketball samples.

Tung Ho who served as a Promo Product Manager at Nike Basketball, had the authority to created limited edition basketball sample kicks under the pretense of giving them to athletes (Kevin Durant and LeBron James amongst them) for on-court wear, then intercept the shoes upon their arrival.  These sneakers were “player exclusives” for a wide variety of Nike endorsers, including LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, and Kevin Durant. Yamaguchi acted as the middleman, distributing the sneakers to resellers.

The two made over $200,000 distributing and reselling these custom exclusives. During a four-month period ending in March 2013, Yamaguchi wrote 13 checks to Ho–totaling $104,000–according to bank records cited in the affidavit. According to the affidavit, police were alerted to the thefts in mid-February by Nike security officials during a meeting at the company’s world headquarters in Beaverton. 

 

Read More at the Smoking Gun and the Affidavit

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Air Jordan XX9

Building on a history of pioneering innovation and craftsmanship, the Jordan Brand today unveiled the highly anticipated Air Jordan XX9 at a media event in New York. The 29th iteration of the successful Air Jordan franchise is the world’s first basketball shoe to be tailored for flight. With the launch of this year’s signature Air Jordan release, the brand continues its commitment to bringing innovation and style to the hardwood with the best on-court footwear and apparel for the world’s greatest athletes.

Each year, the Air Jordan launch serves as a platform for the Jordan Brand to push consumer expectations for the style and performance of on-court basketball shoes. Since 1985, the launch of the brand’s most premium performance product has debuted innovations such as Visible Air in the AJ III, carbon-fiber materials in the AJ XI, and most recently, Flight Plate technology in the Air Jordan XX8.

The Air Jordan XX9 is no different – featuring two revolutionary technologies: an evolved Flight Plate coupled with the first-ever performance-woven upper. This design creates a shoe that feels and plays as if it were tailored specifically to each athlete’s foot.

In a break from revealing the shoe in February in recent years, Jordan Brand introduces the Air Jordan XX9 this April to more closely align with the beginning of basketball season, says the brand’s President, Larry Miller,

“Our mission is laser-focused: We want to provide the absolute best performance products to our athletes, from elite high school athletes to professional players competing for championships,” said Miller. “By shifting to a fall launch, we ensure players around the world will have the very best in performance and style available as they prepare for the season.”

The performance-woven upper delivers superior abrasion resistance, along with an entirely new look on the outside of the shoe. The structure and fit of the shoe are engineered through Flight Web tunnels, and strategic panels of stiffer and softer flex to enhance natural motion. The absence of numerous layers and adhesion technologies creates an incredibly comfortable, sock-like interior lining with superior breathability. Using webbed straps that wrap the foot and integrate with the laces, the Flight Web fit system offers superior mid-foot lockdown that moves with the athlete. Woven channels in the upper enhance the Flight Web fit system, while a double-lasted heel helps dampen the impact on hard landings. Articulated padding in the collar adds to the premium, signature feel of the shoe and helps prevent the heel from slipping.

The Air Jordan XX9 also features the newest iteration of Flight Plate. Harnessing the energy of every step for explosive liftoff and optimal energy return, the evolved Flight Plate maximizes the responsiveness of the Nike Zoom Air units in the forefoot and heel through the use of a Pebax® moderator plate. The plate provides managed compression and deflection of the Nike Zoom Air cushioning units, creating a larger sweet spot for optimal performance. In this year’s shoe, the forefoot and heel are linked by a tendril – a small bridge of outsole – providing a smoother heel-to-toe transition.

CRAFTSMANSHIP

Built with premium materials and an innovative construction process, the Air Jordan XX9 acts as a North Star for the rest of the brand, introducing and perfecting technology that will set the precedent for Jordan Brand’s signature performance shoes. Paying homage to the brand’s rich history of premium products, the Air Jordan XX9 features Italian craftsmanship, and a product that early wear testers, such as Russell Westbrook, say raises the bar for comfort and fit right out of the box.

“We keep hearing from our athletes: Whether you’re a big guy or a point guard, you’re going to get that individual fit that really feels tailored for your game,” said Dave Schechter, Vice President and Category Footwear Leader of Jordan Brand. “We always try to ensure that when our athletes play in our shoes, they not only perform at their best, but they eliminate distractions. We think the Air Jordan XX9 offers a fantastic, custom fit that’s lightweight and breathable, but also locks you in and gives you the right amount of containment.”

READY FOR THE COURT

Committed to helping athletes take flight, performance is a core value for the Jordan Brand. While most signature shoes are constructed around a signature athlete’s foot, the Air Jordan will provide a tailored feel for every consumer. Be sure to keep an eye on Jordan Brand athletes during the post-season to see the shoe in action as competition reaches its peak.

The Air Jordan XX9 launches this September in two colorways— Black/White-Gym Red and Black/Team Orange-Dark Grey. Stay tuned to Nike Inc., and @Jumpman23 for more details.

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Major Lazer featuring Pharrell – Aerosol

Diplo and Major Lazer release a new video for a track from their upcoming album Apocalypse Soon EP.   The track comes featuring Pharrell on a new single titled “Aerosol.” Based on the song’s title, the Kyle dePinna-directed clip is a clever melange of a lyric video and an actual music video. Definitely something worth you while, so hit up the play button up top.

Get #APOCALYPSESOON now: http://po.st/ApocalypseSoonEP

Artist : Mike Giant
Director : Kyle dePinna
Assistant Director : Sean Dwyer
Editor : Kyle dePinna
Postprod & SFX : Abel14

http://majorlazer.com
http://www.facebook.com/majorlazer
http://twitter.com/majorlazer

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NYTimes profiles Sneakerheads “For Young Traders, a Market Where Air Jordans Are Blue Chips”

With sneakers slung around their shoulders and pockets full of cash, young boys huddle in hotel ballrooms and high school gyms, shouting and bartering as if they belong on a trading room floor.

“What do you want for them?” John Leonardo asked at one recent event in New Jersey.

“What’s your offer?” someone hollered back.

In a flurry of transactions, John, who is only 13 years old, bought, sold or exchanged 20 pairs of designer basketball sneakers and walked away with seven, four more pairs than he started with. His collection’s retail value climbed to $1,155 from $340.

Read the entire story at NYTimes.com

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The Forbes Five: Hip-Hop’s Wealthiest Artists 2014

Forbes once again gives us a list of the wealthiest artists in Hip-Hop and it has quite a few familiar faces.

This year, the top-five list of wealthiest hip-hop artists known as the “Forbes Five” includes Diddy ($700 million), Dr. Dre ($550 million), Jay Z ($500 million – see more about Jay Z and Made in America in 2 cities here), Birdman ($160 million), and 50 Cent at number five ($140 million).

Back in 2007, Sean “Diddy” Combs teamed with Jay Z and 50 Cent to create a song titled “I Get Money: Forbes 1-2-3 Billion Dollar Remix.” Less than a decade later, it looks like this was quite a premonition as these rappers are closing in on ten-figure fortunes.

Forbes calculates each rapper’s wealth using the same standards they use for calculating the wealth of the world’s billionaires and each fortune is “estimated.” The methodology for determing estimated wealth includes examining “past earnings,” the value of “current holdings,” “financial documents,” and speak to “analysts, attorneys, managers, other industry players, and even some of the moguls themselves.” You can check out the article here.

 

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An Illustrated guide to Etiquette and Tips to New York City

Nathan Pyle has written a great book for newcomers to New York City titled NYC Basic Tips and Etiquette.

Living in New York City for five years as a transplant from Ohio, illustrator and T-shirt designer Nathan Pyle was fascinated by the unique habits and unspoken customs New Yorkers follow to make life bearable in a city with 8 million people (and seemingly twice the number of tourists). In NYC Basic Tips and Etiquette, Pyle reveals the secrets and unwritten rules for living in and visiting New York including the answers to such burning questions as, how do I hail a cab? What is a bodega? Which way is Uptown? Why are there so many doors in the sidewalk? How do I walk on an escalator? Do we need be touching right now? Where should I inhale or exhale while passing sidewalk garbage? How long should I honk my horn? If New York were a game show, how would I win? What happens when I stand in the bike lane? Who should get the empty subway seats?  How do I stay safe during a trash tornado? Each tip is a little story illustrated in simple black and white drawings.

The book is available on Amazon and an animated version is available on iTunes.

See some of the excerpts from the book below:

 

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“The Boondocks” Mixtape available Featuring Killer Mike, the Alchemist, Lil Herb, Troy Ave, More

 “The Boondocks” will return following a multi-year hiatus on April 21. Here we have the full mixtape for the show below which features appearances from Smoke DZA, Lil Herb, Chevy Woods, Problem, Roscoe Dash, Two 9, Skeme, and more. It’s hosted by DJ Drama, Don Cannon, and Trendsetter Sense. Listen to the mixtape below:

The Boondocks Mixtape:

01 Killer Mike: “Boonies” (produced by The Alchemist)
02 Troy Ave: “Blanco” (produced by DJ Uneek)
03 Two-9: “Fat Toney” [ft. Reese] (produced by Chuck Inglish)
04 Earthgang: “Pascals” (produced by Unique Weirdooo)
05 Wara: “Slangin” (produced by Wara)
06 Chevy Woods: “Know Shit” [ft. Roscoe Dash] (produced by Roscoe Dash)
07 Reese: “Rileys Theme” (produced by Slade Da Monsta)
08 Anik Khan: “Stunt 101″ (produced by Mr Incredible)
09 Skeme: “Paint A Picture” (produced by Sean Momberger)
10 Michael Christmas: “Sometimes” (produced by Teddy Roxpin)
11 Jon Connor: “The City” (produced by DJ Khalil)
12 Charlie Red: “Greengreed” (produced by Charlie Red)
13 Lil Herb: “Whatchu Get” (produced by J Herd)
14 Childish Major: “Same Ole Sh*t” [ft. Smoke DZA & Matik Estada] (produced by Childish Major)
15 Sean Falyon: “Famous” (produced by Bah)
16 Tuki Carter: “Talkin Now” (produced by The Flush)
17 Problem: “Keep It Real” [ft. Badd Lucc & Casha] (produced by Los)
18 M Pulse: “Ed Wuncler” (produced by Keef Boyd & Lyle Leduff)

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Foot Locker To Restock Air Jordan Retros on April 19th

First, we reported the Eastbay Air Jordan Retro restock and now we hear that Footlocker will do the same on April 19th.  Many of the same silhouettes being restocked on Eastbay will also launch on April 19th at 8AM EST.  The sizing info is the same as Eastbay as everything except for the “Powder Blue” Jordan 3 and the “Infrared” Jordan 6 appears to be sizes 15 and up. 
Source: Foot Locker

 

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Mad Decent Block Party 2014 Mixtape

The Mad Decent’s Block Party is coming and is now hitting many more cities than ever.   Here we have a chance to preview the official Mad Decent Block Party 2014 Mixtape via a BitTorrent bundle that includes video and art as well as music. The mix includes premieres of new remixes of Diplo‘s “Biggie Bounce” and “Boy Oh Boy” as well as new jams from Sleigh BellsKeys N KratesDillon Francis and more. Stream/download below via BitTorrent. Tickets are on sale now for Mad Decent so get tickets here.

MDBP X BitTorrent Bundle
01 Diplo: Revolution [Music Video]
02 Dillon Francis & DJ Snake: “Get Low” [Music Video]
03 Tickets to MDBP14 [Web]
04 RiFF RAFF: “Dolce & Gabbana (Carnage VIP Edit) [Audio]
05 Diplo: “Biggie Bounce (Tony Romera Remix feat. Angger Dimas & Travis Porter)” [Audio]
06 Diplo & GTA: “Boy Oh Boy (Thugli Remix)” [Audio]
07 Mad Decent Block Party City Characters [Art]
08 Flosstradamus Desktop Icons [Art]
09 Big Gigantic: “Touch the Sky” [Audio]
10 Keys N Krates: “All The Time (Tove Lo Flip)” [Audio]
11 Sleigh Bells: “Demons (Diplo Remix)” [Audio]
12 Trippy Turtle: “Poison” [Audio]
13 Paper Diamond & Loudpvck: “Wylin” [Audio]
14 Major Lazer: “Lose Yourself (feat. Moska & RDX)” [Music Video]
15 Run The Jewels: “Run The Jewels” [Music Video]
16 LIZ: “All Them Boys” [Audio]
17 DJ Sega: “BSB (Booyah Stupid Bitch)” [Audio]
18 Claude VonStroke: “Lay It Down Re-Smoked (Ballast Remix feat. DJ Nehpets)” [Audio]
19 STRFKR “While I’m Alive” [Audio]
20 Free MDP Sticker [Discount]
21 Mad Decent Block Party Trailer [Video]
22 Wave Racer: “Streamers” [Audio]
23 Grandtheft & Thugli: “Heavy Hitterz” [Audio]
24 GRIZ: “Hard Times” [Audio]
25 MDBP 2014 Playlist [Web]

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Jay Z’s “Made In America” Festival to be Held in Los Angeles and Philly

Jay Z will make Los Angeles a host city for the “Made In America.” No word on if Philadelphia will still host but LA will be one of the host cities. Jay Z and Budweiser are reportedly set to announce the move for this year’s festival to the West Coast with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and other city officials. Jay has held the first two festivals in Philly.

No word on if Philly will still be a host city. We will see

Update:  The festival will take place in LA and Philly over Labor Day weekend as tweeted by Steve Stoute’s and Jay Z’s agency Translation’s twitter account.

Shawn “JAY Z” Carter, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino, Budweiserand United Way of Greater Los Angeles are bringing the spirit of “Budweiser Made In America,” to Los Angeles during the 2014 Labor Day weekend.

The two-day music festival began in Philadelphia on Labor Day weekend 2012 to benefit United Way of Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey and United Way of Lancaster County, and this year will deliver twice the amount of music. Live Nation will produce both the Philadelphia and Los Angeles two-day music festivals, delivering must-see performances on both coasts. Details and lineups for both festival locations will be announced at a later date.

Budweiser Made In America will be the first American festival to run simultaneously on both coasts. Performances from both Budweiser Made In America sites will be available for fans to view with live-streaming.

To purchase tickets for Budweiser Made In America 2014, visit the official site here.

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Pigalle x Nike 2014 Collection Preview

We passed the news that Pigalle would be collaborating with Nike on a new collection and now there is a preview of the collection here.  The collection is a very basketball-inspired capsule including  apparel, equipment and footwear, as well as two pairs of Air Force 1 silhouettes, one High and one Low, both of which appear to be tastefully worn down from extensive outdoor play.

Pigalle’s Creative Director Stephane Ashpool sat down with DAZED Digital to talk about his love for the game of basketball, working with Nike in the past and how their latest endeavor came about. After checking out the full interview here.

How did you got into basketball?

Basketball entered in my life when I was five years old, at primary school. There was just one basket, with a soccer game happening underneath it. I just took a ball and ran with it, and played for about 10 years for the Paris team, at the highest level. Though I didn’t want to join the NBA since I was 16, and I decided to concentrate on the studio since my early 20s, I still play all the time, every Saturdays and Sunday.

Basketball is a very stylish sport.

It is the most stylish sport, because it was always mixed up with the whole hip-hop culture. It’s a game that you play quite fast, you have momentum, your body’s quite open and you jump and run. Mixing this with the clothes and the music together, it gives something very interesting, definitely.

What can you tell me about community cohesion and multiculturalism?

Stéphane: Basketball is a free sport and sport is free in general. As soon as you have a ball you can play with us, you are in control and your skin colour doesn’t matter, and all those clichés. But those clichés are quite true actually when it come to sport. I was living quite a street type of life, but at the same time I had my parents who were artists and living surrounded by these amazing crazy stylish gay people so I am born into this different melting pot of ethnicity and culture: it’s really something I live for! I just answered that in rather a large way, but then again, I can speak about basketball in a large way.