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As the title of the article states, the event known as Hip-Hop Hates Breast Cancer was a great success this last Saturday night at Milwaukee’s Cactus Club.

What exactly is success you may be asking?  To me, success for the event started well before the night actually happened.  When I began organizing the event a couple of months ago, the artists that would be found on the bill fell into place with relative ease.  People weren’t just taking the attitude of “yeah, I’ll do it” but rather “YEAH!! I’ll do it!”  Going into an event with the artists as pumped about doing it as I was turned out to be a great blessing because it led to easy communication exchanges.  There were a few changes that had to be made to the lineup for the night, but that’s bound to happen as people remember other obligations…but all in all it was smooth sailing.

With that said, I have to acknowledge and thank the following:

Stricklin, AUTOMatic (and JDL), DJ Bizzon, The Hollowz, SPEAK Easy, Misen Lync, and Diva.

Another thing that you need to make an event successful is a venue that is supportive of what you are trying to do and the Cactus Club was exactly that.  When I struggled to find sponsorship to cover the facility and sound fee, the Cactus Club stepped up and said that they would take care of it themselves.  Now that is a great thing because it allowed 100% of the door money to go towards the benefit, thus maximizing the effort.  Some people may ask, “why did you pick the Cactus Club?”  It’s simple…they have GREAT sound, a great set up for shows, and hardworking bartenders. 

When you put all of that together, that makes for a great live music experience in my opinion.  I have to thank the Cactus Club and it’s people (including Alex the awesome sound guy) for all their hard work and for allowing us to rock another great show at their venue.

Yet another thing that led to the event being a success before the night took off was the willingness of the press and those interested in attending the event to talk about it so that buzz could surround the event and maybe catch the eye of some people who typically may not think about going to a Hip-Hop show, a Hip-Hop show in Bay View, etc.  It really creates awareness that there was an event going on in the first place, and that’s all an event organizer can hope for…people knowing that the event exists so that it can be placed on the brains of people and readily accessible to them when they flip through their mind’s Rolodex for stuff to do.

I have to thank to following media for their coverage:

Jordan Lee and 88Nine Radio Milwaukee; Dori, Kid Cut Up, DJ Bizzon, and WMSE; Geraud Blanks and the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel; Bobby Tanzillo and OnMilwaukee.com; Steve Hyden and Milwaukee’s AV Club/The Onion; Evan Rytlewski and the Shepherd Express; and ALL of the blogs like Run-MKE, etc.

Lastly, but certainly the MOST important group to thank, all of the people that showed up to the event.  All 138 of you that came and paid the $5 in exchange for some good music, and all the people that maybe weren’t able to make it but STILL told people about the event so they could go in their place…thank you!  Never in a million years would I have thought we’d double PLUS some what we did with the Hip-Hop Hates Multiple Sclerosis event in April.  We had 65 paying customers then, and I was hoping for 75 this time…and holy crap the Cactus Club got SLAMMED! 

With a few extra donations, we raised $700 for Susan G. Komen for the Cure…and that is a gift that’s going to be given to them in the name of the Milwaukee Hip-Hop community…artists and fans, regardless of what artists or fans didn’t show up to the event…it was a success for you, for us.

At the end of the night and in the hours after the event had finished, I was asked by several people “when’s the next one going to be?” and “what is Hip-Hop going to hate next?”  At this time, “I don’t know” is my answer to both questions.  The one thing that I do know is that I am not going to try to make the next one bigger and better and more, more, more.  Somehow, if that becomes the focus for me, the essence of the event is lost because it’s no longer about the music and community coming together with me and other to do something good…it becomes about ME, and that is NOT what I want.

All I know is that in the future, some time in the first or second quarter of next year, there will be another Hip-Hop Hates event.  It will be at the Cactus Club.  It was feature performers that put on a helluva show.  It will be fun.  It will go to benefit a good cause.

Again, I want to sincerely thank everybody that was involved in the night as a performer, worker, volunteer (shout out to LaShonda and Chris Hill, as well as Marquis and Resa Norris for holding down the door when I was running around “organizing” stuff), and ALL of you that came to the event or thought positive thoughts about it throughout the night!  If I missed anybody, please forgive me but know that I thank you too!

Warmest Regards,

JC Poppe

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Hip-Hop production has many styles and approaches.  This diversity of sound leads to many different avenues for the lyricist that often accompanies the producer’s work, to go down.

Trellmatic is a producer known for his soul sound approach to Hip-Hop production and is the guy behind the smooth sounds of the group AUTOMatic, a duo that also consists of emcee A.P.R.I.M.E., as well as providing tracks for many of the various House of M projects.

Coming off of the success of the new AUTOMatic release Transistor, it was time to see what makes Trellmatic tick.

Producing Hip-Hop is something that a lot of people attempt to do, but not many do it well.  It’s really a learning process from what I hear.  How did you begin your journey with Hip-Hop production?  When did you know that you absolutely had to make a beat?

Well, it all started at the age of 6.  For Christmas I received my first keyboard which was a Casio SK-1.  It had the 5 second sampling function.  When I heard my favorite songs on the radio or stereo, I used to hold the keyboard up to the speaker and press the record function on the keyboard and play out the sample amongst the keys.  I was so fascinated by this ability and from then on it was history.  I still have that keyboard ‘til this day.  As a matter of fact I just pulled it out of the closet right now!  The first time I knew I had to start taking producing seriously is when I heard  Jay-Z’s The Blueprint album and Little Brother’s The Listening album.

You are a guy who samples when putting together your beats.  Is sampling essential to the Hip-Hop experience?

Very essential.  Sampling is part of what laid the foundation for Hip-Hop and music alike.  People say that sampling is cheating and not creative, but to take a sample and recreate it into something totally different or give it a different meaning or perspective is not an easy process if done correctly.  Also, sampling is a way to keep the actual “song” that is sampled relevant through time.

Speaking of samples, there are a lot of producers that take offense at people airing out what records they’ve sampled within their beats, yet there are other producers who believe it’s better the air out what’s been sampled in hopes of leading people to find new records to chop up.  How do you feel about this issue?

I believe in airing out samples.  You know it’s funny, when I saw A-Plus from Souls of Mischief 3 years ago at Stonefly, I thanked him and his group for doing this very thing.

If it wasn’t for groups like Souls of Mischief,  Digable Planets, Black Moon, A Tribe Called Quest, etc. for putting sample credits in their cassettes or CD’s, I most likely wouldn’t be where I’m at today and wouldn’t have known who Donald Byrd, Bobbi Humphrey, Ronnie Laws, Lonnie Liston Smith, Fazeo, or any other of these great artists are.  Because of Hip-Hop groups doing this, it opened me up to a whole new genre of music that I hadn’t discovered in its entirety.

When you listen to your two albums with A.P.R.I.M.E., Audiology and Transistor, what do you hear sonically that sets them apart and/or ties them together?

Well, from a production standpoint I think the sound scape is much better than the first album.  My sound is a little more dynamic, but not too far out of the box, which I think still gives people a little connection to Audiology.  Lyrically I think A.P.R.I.M.E. has definitely grown as an artist.  His wordplay has gotten ridiculous and you can hear the confidence on this album, more so than the first.  Overall, I think Transistor has shown how we’ve matured as artists, period.

Who is the definitive Hip-Hop producer in your eyes and who is the most important musician to influence Hip-Hop?

This is a tough choice since I like so many.  If had to choose, the one that really had an influence on me to become a producer was Pete Rock.  When I heard Soul Survivor, I knew this was something that I wanted to do one day.  His bass lines were ridiculous.

What are your weapons of choice when composing a beat?

Dell Inspiron,  FLStudio 9, Cool Edit  Pro, Audition, Technics SL-D3, Event Monitors, Vinyl, YouTube, my brain, heart and soul.

Do you have any other music or collaborations in the works right now that we can look forward to?  If somebody wants to get a Trellmatic beat, how can one do so? 

Right now I have two joints on SPEAK Easy’s upcoming LP.  I have one joint so far on Frankie Flowers’ upcoming LP.  I have a joint on the upcoming Malicious LP.  I just did a joint for Mr. Miranda out of Arizona for his upcoming Tribute to Rick James EP.  I’m actually about to send some joints out as we speak to Kerse-1 and Qewl Miles.  Also, me and A.P.R.I.M.E. are in the process of putting together The Lost Stations which are a collective of songs that didn’t make Transistor and a couple of new joints, so be on the look for that at the end of the year.  If any artists are looking to get beats, hit me up at trellmatic@gmail.com or follow me on twitter @trellmaticmusic.

Milwaukee Hip-Hop is really gaining the respect of some people outside of the city, as well as new ears within Milwaukee.  As somebody who has several projects under his belt, how do you feel about the music, talent level, and respect within the MKE scene?

I feel that Milwaukee collectively has a lot of talented artists.  The one thing I don’t like about the Milwaukee scene is how segregated it is.  This unfortunately comes from stereotypes and misunderstandings.  I am fortunate enough to come across, and work with, some very talented artists from all genres of Milwaukee music.

Any shout outs?

Yes sir.  Shout to JR the Supastar (aka Scalez), Scott Knoxx, Rusty P’s, Black Elephant, Stricklin, King Hell Bastard, Malicious, A-Biz, UMG, SPEAK Easy, Frankie Flowers,  DJ JDL, DJ Mad Hatter, Kid Cut Up and No Request Sound, DJ Stephanie, Jank One, DJ Venus, House of M, Jihad Baracus, Reason, Dave Derrilykt, AudioPilot, B-Luv, Steph (aka Supasuga), Hanan, A.P.R.I.M.E., Soulmatikk, Gambit, Lou Tang, Ms. Cream, Tre Mag, CT, Dino, Razetastic, JC Poppe, Evan Christian, Nate from Green Tree, Nate the Bartender,  Mr. Miranda, and any other local artists, producers and musicians that I may have failed to mention.

Check out one of Trellmatic’s fresh new smoothed out soul beats called “As We Were”.

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Hip-Hop Hates is back again after a relatively successful event several months back to raise money to help eradicate the world of Multiple Sclerosis.  This time the fight is against Breast Cancer.

The event is going down October 23rd at the Cactus Club, with doors open 9:30PM.  The event is asking for a $5 donation at the door and donations of more than $5 would be welcomed and thanked profusely.

The lineup for the evening is quite excellent as well.  DJ Bizzon is going to be on the 1’s and 2’s getting it right all night.  SPEAK Easy & Misen Lync, The Hollowz, and AUTOMatic will be throwing it down on stage with displays of fantastic energy to match their dope Hip-Hop.  Headlining the night will be none other than Milwaukee legend, Stricklin!

This is going to be a great event for a great cause.  Everybody in attendance is encouraged to wear pink in some way or fashion.  If you can’t make it out for the show, you can also stop by to drop off a donation if you wish.

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From time to time I like to take a blog post to discuss some of the events happening in Milwaukee over the course of a week/weekend, that pertains to Hip-Hop, so that you can maybe become aware of something that you didn’t know about previously…and then maybe even go to it.

This Wednesday, Grassroots Wednesdays are continuing at the Mirmar Theater with the featured guest being Dukalion this week.  It is an open mic type of joint and is all ages, so young guys and gals that can’t do the club/bar scene yet, here’s an opportunity for you to start cutting those teeth on the microphone.  It starts at 8PM.  Here is the FACEBOOK EVENT page for it.

This Thursday, The NightKrawlers, XL Big, AUTOMatic, MC Starr, and Tefman, will be performing at the fantastic venue known as Mad Planet.  The one starts at 10PM and the cover charge is only $5 for a night filled with Hip-Hop.  This wouldn’t be a bad way to spend your thirsty Thursday.  Here is the FACEBOOK EVENT page for it.

This Friday, we have our Miltown Beatdown champion Lex Luthor attempting to lay the smack down on producers from all over the Midwest in Minneapolis at 1st Avenue.  The event starts at 8PM, carries only a $5 cover charge, and the legendary DJ Premier is the special guest of the night!  As far as beat battles go, Big Tune is a good one to make the trip up to MPLS to check out.  Here is the FACEBOOK EVENT page for it.  If you can’t make it, sent the kid your best on Twitter:  @lexluthormke.

This Saturday, Cigarette Break, the band that you have seen back numerous UMG events more recently, will be releasing some new T-Shirts at Chic Lounge, with the joint starting at 8PM.  The shirts were designed by clothing label FLHIGH BOY, and of course, Cigarette Break will be performing.  This is a free event and you can find out more information about it on the FACEBOOK EVENT page for it.

Well, there you have it…the rest of your week is planned out.

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This Saturday AUTOMatic (A.P.R.I.M.E. and Trellmatic) is releasing the follow up to their beloved first album so I thought that it’d be important to try to get ahold of the recluse to ask him important questions about the most important things in the word.

The show is at bSide, Saturday, starting at 10PM, with special guests JDL, The Night Krawlers, Element, and Raze helping AUTOMatic out throughout the night.  Peep the poster for some info.

A.P.R.I.M.E., is there any truth to the rumor that you are an advocate for used popsicle sticks being recycled into artistic sculptures, or do you hate the environment?

That is a false statement! Please reveal your source…I’d love to smear honey on them and toss a hornet’s nest at them. But, to answer your question, I’m a fan of sculptures made of toothpicks and used sunflower seed shells.

When you sit down to write a song, how many cans of Lysol do you spray into the air to damage the ozone layer, if any at all?

I used to go through two with each songs until I was beaten nearly half to death by a gang of angry native americans…which was odd because I thought that they were more peaceful than that. I didn’t even get a warning…

What does being a Mutant have to do with your ability to spin in circles while chewing bubble gum?

Absolutely nothing. My mutant abilities allow me to do cartwheels while drinking a bottle of YooHoo.

Why do you like dirt?

I’m gonna tell you a secret…you and your readers have to put this in the vault…if you mix dirt and water…it makes dirt…shhh.

If you could be any animal in the world, would you ever consider being a panda bear? I’ve heard that they are endangered and could heavily benefit from people morphing into pandas.

I’d consider it…for like…a minute, but I’d never be one. Pandas are endangered, so clearly, they’re stupid little dumb dumbs. I’d be a wolf because I saw New Moon and I’d be able to go shirtless to show off my rockin’ new bod for a whole movie.

What color that doesn’t exist to known man is your personality?

Electric Willow…but check with the good folks at Crayola to make sure that it really doesn’t exist.

You speak words. That’s not a question, but I think it was important to bring up. React to it.

Tis’ true. I also speak numbers…and flip flurps which is gobben bleeps to jizzle womps.

When you and Trellmatic hang out, do you ever save people’s lives?

There was this one time that we were out and this guys car spontaneously combusted in front of us. We were totally gonna help, but these girls were checking us out and it’s not really sexy, smelling like charred Jetta…so that would be a no.

We know that the world isn’t flat, and that it is indeed round. However, wouldn’t it be fun if the world was a triangle?

I think it would be a blast if the world was a hexagon…that would totally rock!

What is the most dangerous thing you’ve ever experienced while sleeping in a bed on a space ship that happens to be orbiting Saturn?

Aliens attempted to kidnap me…not even the little green space kind…the one that can’t get green cards…it didn’t happen, though. Thank God for utility belts.

Are you real?

I’m actually a hologram, an awesome one, but a hologram nonetheless.

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This weekend is a busy one in Milwaukee with a lot of options that is sure to satisfy you if you choose to participate.

Unlooped is hosting a listening part for Lunversol9’s new EP with a funky jam and DJ’s to follow the listening at bSide this Friday, listening starting at 9PM.  CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION.

I already did a post about the new TRUE Skool gallery night going on this Friday from 5PM to 10PM…which would be a great first stop for your night before you go to check out the Unlooped event…or the next event I’m about to tell you about.  GET INFORMATION ABOUT THE TRUE SKOOL EVENT HERE.

Pep, aka the DJ for the Hip-Hop group Malicious, is putting on his 2nd edition of an event he created called Not Your Average.  The new edition features House of M producer/emcee Raze, who recently put out a fantastic album, and e’lectric Warbabyz…whom I’ve never heard of before but the name is pretty intriguing.  FOR MORE INFO CLICK HERE.

That’s just Friday.  Saturday is busy as well.

Jonathan Frost is playing a concert with a live band on a boat!  Boat shows are a ton of fun and I know they have drink specials so go check out Frost with his new band, boat leaves at 9PM so you need to be there by 8:30PM.  THIS IS WHERE MORE INFORMATION IS FOUND.

Now for the event of the weekend, AUTOMatic’s album release party at bSide!  Mutants A.P.R.I.M.E. and Trellmatic are AUTOMatic and they do some fantastic classic feeling Hip-Hop and they have a new album coming out called Transistor.  The Night Krawlers will also be performing and Element and fellow Mutant Raze will be making special guest appearances.  GET MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE EVENT HERE AND MAKE SURE YOU ATTEND THIS ONE.

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Mutants A.P.R.I.M.E. and Trellmatic are the next ones up to bat in the line of House of M solo projects that will be released this year, and it’s an incredibly fantastic album by the name of Transistor.

I have had the privilege of being able to listen to the album for the past several days and it hasn’t come out of my CD player yet.  It’s a masterful throwback to the golden age of Hip-Hop, with smoothed out tracks and visceral lyrics.  I admit that my opinion could potentially be biased, but after you listen to it for yourself, I’m fairly certain that you won’t disagree with me.

Here is the first single from the album, a short but potent track that serves as a very nice teaser for what is to come.

“Once Again” –

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