Raineman’s Rant – Damn Kobe

The homeboy, Raineman, head writer at AroundtheBean.com and good friend of the Lime chimes in on the Laker’s early season struggles and the growing perception that it’s 5 time champion Kobe Bryant’s fault. Is Kobe’s inflated salary to blame, or does ownership need to take a look in the mirror and re-asses their spending practices? Raineman shares his thoughts below. What are yours? As always, please sound off in the comments section and/or tweet us @aroundthebean & @jplime.

I feel dirty typing this…but I am feeling sorry for Kobe Bryant. It is quite obvious with the hiring of Byron Scott, the signing of Jeremy Lin + Carlos Boozer (Yes…Carlos BOOZER) that The Buss Family has a plan. The plan is to blame Kobe “Bean” Bryant for absolutely everything wrong with their organization. And when they do “right” the ship…Kobe’s contract gives them even more time for the organization to align + lament with fans over what happened, and to point the blame at KOBE and his contract.

For some reason, the NBA is the only league where we do not put the feet of the DUMB owners to fire, and the public actually blames Kobe for taking the money that was offered to him? Because he should be a GM for his team as well as their star player?? Come ON people! They are even allowing Jeremy Lin to help them in setting up the “Blame Kobe” Game with his comments a few days ago.

I will keep this short because I do not want to continuously re-state the same obvious point, as this is pretty easy. Kobe Bryant is not the issue in Los Angeles. The OWNERSHIP and the dumbasses who are handing out contracts are to blame. Laker fans think that they will never have to deal with issues like these…but remember…even the Celtics went through it. RE-BUILDING. Either you Laker fans can choose to admit this…or you can choose to ruin EVERYTHING and forcefully jettison your only hope at prominence again within the next 5-10 years (YES I SAID 5-10 years. Don’t believe me?? See the Celtics post-dynasty in the early 90’s as an example. That shit takes TIME to build. Time, smarts, and luck).
Yes…the Celtics aren’t doing so well either…but we aren’t paying Kobe that $. Smiley face ! :)

Hip Hop Tribute Songs

With the tragic, untimely passing of the Sugarhill Gang’s Big Bank Hank last week, as per standard Hip Hop practices, it’s only a matter of time RIPbefore several emcees pay homage and show their respect for the fallen pioneer by way of lyrics on verses and possibly entire tracks. Rap music is no stranger to tribute tracks, as anytime a prominent Hip Hop figure passes away he/she is memorialized in song. As Naughty By Nature’s Treach states in the middle of their 2Pac tribute, ‘Mourn You Til I Join You’, “you ain’t got to worry about how long I’m gonna mourn you. I’m gonna keep your name in the streets.” This quote captures the essence of the Hip Hop tribute track, to keep the fallen soldier’s name, memory, and of course music alive, not only for those familiar with said artist today, but to introduce future listeners to these artists as well. With that in mind, today we’re going to explore Hip Hop tribute tracks. Some you’ll surely recognize, others you may not. As there have been dozens made over the years, the playlist below is by no means exhaustive, but rather a subset of tribute tracks that stand out to us here at JP Lime Productions. So get ready to reminisce and pour out a little liquor for our fallen greats because their memories will indeed live on forever.

First up on our playlist, a myriad of tracks made in the memory of the late, great Notorious B.I.G. While it’s not uncommon for multiple artists to pay homage to a deceased emcee, whether that’s in the form of a few lines on a verse or an entire track, it’s hard to think of anyone in Hip Hop who has had more tributes in Biggiehis name than Biggie. This should come as no surprise as Biggie was about to take the world by storm in 1997 with his second studio album, ‘Life After Death’ ready to be released before he was tragically taken from us, a murder still unsolved to this day. There are two “what could’ve been” careers in Hip Hop that resonate most with me, the second which I’ll tackle later, but Biggie’s is the most prominent. Many of the other emcees on this list had much longer runs before they passed away. Biggie was literally about to run Rap as its undisputed king and then he was fatally gunned down, leaving us all to wonder how far he could’ve taken his career, as well as the industry as a whole. The sheer number of tributes he’s gotten since he passed reflect this. Many call him the greatest of all time, and it’s hard to dispute that, but one thing’s for sure: based on how many artists go out of their way to memorialize Christopher Wallace, he is surely the most beloved figure in Hip Hop history. We’ll always love Big Poppa.

I’ll Be Missing YouPuff Daddy featuring Faith Evans

In Memoriam Lyric: “Even though you’re gone, we still a team. Through your family, I’ll fulfill your dream.”

Perhaps the most well-known and commercially successful of all tribute tracks, our choice lyric from Puffy conveys that genuine sentiment many of us feel when a loved one passes: spiritually, you will never leave my side, and in the physical, I’m going to do everything in my power to ensure your family realizes the goals and desires you had while on Earth. Still a touching track to this day.

Letter To BigJadakiss

In Memoriam Lyric: “People in power is queer. I could go on for a year ’bout how it would be if you were still here. The game got cheaper. Rappers is more commercially successful now, but the heart’s a lot weaker.”

While we don’t condone the use of the word “queer” to signify “corny” or “lame” (let’s leave all the sexual preference shade in the past, Hip Hop Nation!), our choice lyric stands out to us because amidst his expressions of missing Biggie, Jadakiss makes what to us is a very valid point about the state of Rap music. With 2009 being the track’s release date, Jadakiss, in a line full of resignation and angst alludes to how much Hip Hop has changed since Biggie’s heyday, with big money corporations, label executive, and radio types (“people in power”) having dumbed down Rap to the point where the “game got cheaper.” That Hip Hop as an industry has traded in its heart for commercial success clearly bothers Jadakiss, and given that he knew the Notorious B.I.G. well, we can surmise he mentions this because he knows it would bother Biggie just as much.

We’ll Always Love Big PoppaThe Lox

In Memoriam Lyric: “Right now, you and Pac in harmony, probably hugging. While everybody from Brooklyn to West coast is bugging.” — Sheek Louch

Our choice lyric from LOX member Sheek Louch is powerful because it directly addresses the mid-90s East Coast vs. West Coast “beef” that many in Hip Hop Nation, whether with merit or not, attribute to the deaths of both Biggie and 2Pac. The story of the two former friends turned foes is well-known, so we won’t rehash it here. Whereas the lyric theorizes that 2Pac and Biggie made amends in the afterlife and goes on to express the ridiculousness of those from both coasts that still hold on to the pettiness of that unfortunate time in Hip Hop, it’s hard not to imagine both men growing older, wiser, and taking the lead in ending the bi-coastal feud themselves had they lived beyond their mid-20s. That said however, the vivid picture Sheek paints about 2Pac and Biggie hugging it out in Hip Hop Heaven is indeed a powerful one, albeit very sad.

CLICK HERE for more Hip Hop tributes…

Sons of Anarchy, The Final Ride

SOA california


This article talks about the current season of the show Sons of Anarchy and as such may contain “spoilers”.  I’ve tried to limit the amount of detail from last night’s (awesome) episode and marked crucial points with [SPOILER] tags.  If you are a viewer of the show and are not currently up-to-date I would advise returning to read this once you’ve caught up.  Go ahead, I’ll wait.
Ok good, now we may continue.


This season marks the final ride for America’s favorite television biker gang, the Sons of Anarchy. Only four episodes remain in this its seventh season and both its popularity and its depth of story have only grown during its run. As with any hugely popular television series though, the potential pitfalls of its conclusion are hard to avoid. I was an ardent fan of both Breaking Bad and The Sopranos, the first of which concluded with perfect style and grace while the second stumbled its way to an unfulfilling ending, and not just with its (in)famous final episode. Lost is another series of which I am a huge fan but in its last season seemed to be looking for a final explanation way beyond necessary reason. Each show’s creator(s) faced the task of taking deep, morally flexible, ethically complicated characters and writing an ending to their stories, an ending grounded in the traits of those characters and the choices they would make. jump-the-sharkThere is a temptation to add a big final (unnecessary) twist (Lost), to add irrelevant and/or controversial character traits (Vito in Sopranos), to kill off main characters for shock value (Dexter, of which I was not a viewer but have heard much), to rush along outstanding plot lines (many shows) or, as the “Don’t Stop Believing” scene from The Sopranos best exemplifies, simply chicken out on doing anything definitive and leave your audience hanging. Some of these are examples of the television idiom “jumping the shark”, a term coined from a later season Happy Days episode when the Fonz ridiculously does just that, jumps over a shark while on water skis.

This seems a grim setup for talking about the conclusion of one of my favorite shows. In truth, I have enjoyed this final season and the whole series of Sons of Anarchy and credit its creator, Kurt Sutter, for a depth of character and general coolness factor that rank in tv’s upper echelon. The primary plot arch of its protagonist has been well-crafted, watching Jax Teller grow from a young man, into a father, then husband, then leader, and finally into either a tyrant, martyr or hero. Its group of core characters have grown fuller and more complex, more human while maintaining the irreverence and sensationalism that we look for in shows about gangsters.

VP_CHIBSSeeing Chibs take a more central role was a good move I think. A fan favorite, Philip’s badassness has sat in the back seat for much of the show’s previous six seasons. We saw some of his back story a few seasons back when SAMCRO journeyed to Ireland but really that was more the story of the Sons’ Irish background than a true study into Chibs’ personality. Once he took on the mantel on Vice President, the increased focus on his character was obvious. But his romantic involvement with Charming’s new sheriff and the necessity of his guidance along Jax’s warpath have provided some desired character development that, and this is important, is organic. It is the forced nature of some of the final season’s plot strokes that have given me trepidation, not necessarily their dramatic nature. As fans we yearn for the surprising, the violent, the characters going to extremes, it’s a big piece of why we watch a show about gangsters. So when a main character is killed, it may come as a shock (Opie) but it usually comes as disappointment only when that move comes from a place of contrived circumstances. The bar was set high by the series and Kurt Sutter early on and as such I (and I suspect most of its fans) hold it to an elevated standard, expecting its final ride to conclude in a way that is exciting but that also respects the integrity of its well-built characters and the intelligence of its fanbase.


Poem by Colin Killick

oddball and lime together6Today’s feature from our friends at Oddball Magazine comes from a Massachusetts area writer, librettist, and playwright named Colin Kilick. This compelling piece takes and honest look at guns and gun ownership. What are your thoughts? Sound off in the comments section or tweet us @OddballMagazine and/or @JPLime.

A gun is not a hammer.
Not a tool to be left in
its box,
Collecting dust until needed
A gun won’t let you forget where you put it.

A gun is a predatory lover
It hunts
Waits for your moment of weakness
Comes offering shelter
“Why don’t you come with me, baby
You never have to be afraid again.”

CLICK HERE for full poem…



Peterson Son

Our good friend Raineman, head writer at AroundTheBean.com makes a poignant case for the Vikings to get Adrian Peterson back on the field.  What are your thoughts? Be sure to sound off in the comments section or tweet us at @AroundTheBean & @JPLime.

Ok let’s get right into the rant…Can we all please cut the moral garbage and just let Adrian Peterson back into the league?? I totally understand why the Vikings would want to cut ties (the ONLY reason is that their sponsors are threatening to pull their $) and I do agree that what AP did was awful, but there is no debate regarding him breaking any NFL rules. On 11/4/2014, Peterson pleaded no contest to the misdemeanor charge of recklessly assaulting his 4-year old son. This is part of a plea deal which keeps him from serving jail time, and he is also required to complete 80 hours of community service. In short, the man has good lawyers. This justice dealt by the state of Texas has caused quite a stir, and also highlights the issues we face when we live in a society that pushes athletes as role-models.

CLICK HERE for more of Rayneman’s rant…

Nile Rodgers – Profile Of A (non) Hip Hop Producer

Nile Rodgers GuitarNot long ago we learned that legendary Chic guitarist and producer Nile Rodgers is working with equally legendary pop band Duran Duran on their latest album, expected to be released in early to mid 2015. This news once again puts Nile Rodgers, who’s coming off a wildly successful year having co-written the Daft Punk & Pharrell Williams über hit ‘Get Lucky’ right back in the forefront of the music industry’s conscious. As such, we at JP Lime Productions felt this was a prime moment to bring to focus the immeasurable impact that Nile has had on Rap music. That’s right, you read that correctly. Nile Rodgers, though not an emcee himself nor one to promote or feature Hip Hop acts has left quite the imprint on Rap music. How you ask? As one of the genre’s most sampled producers. Let’s take a closer look.

Nile Rodgers’ biggest sampling contribution to Rap came in the form of Hip Hop’s very first crossover single, the Sugarhill Gang’s Rapper’s Delight, which borrowed its baseline from Chic’s ‘Good Times’, a smash hit in its own that he co-produced. Below we’ve provided a by no means exhaustive list of Rap songs that borrowed from Nile’s production, and while we all have our favorites, none were more instrumental (put intended) in the flourishing of Rap music and Hip Hop culture as a whole than ‘Good Times’ becoming ‘Rapper’s Delight’. We can theorize that Rap music, a budding art form in the late 70s and early 80s, would’ve come to fruition at some point without ‘Rapper’s Delight’. The fact remains however that this particular track was the masses’ introduction to what this Rap music thing was all about. The smooth and equally funky disco groove on ‘Good Times’ was perfect for the fun rhymes and animated deliveries employed by the Sugarhill Gang on ‘Rapper’s Delight’, and the end result was the birth of commercial Rap music. No longer were Rap and Hip Hop an underground movement confined to urban Northeast U.S.A. While Rap had its naysayers then (and still does today, despite the cajillion dollar industry it’s become), there were plenty who liked ‘Rapper’s Delight’ enough to start paying attention and engaging themselves in the genre, whether as fans, artists, radio Dee Jays, or music industry types looking for the next big money-maker. For all of this, we can largely thank Mr. Rodgers.

CLICK HERE for more on Nile Rodgers’ influence on Hip Hop…

Licensed to Ill, a Retrospective

When Licensed to Ill dropped 28 years ago this week (11/15/86), it was a turning point not just for the Beastie Boys, but also for Rick Rubin, for Def Jam and for Hip Hop as a whole in many ways. The Beasties had hit the NY music scene a few short years before as members of two different hardcore punk bands and the genre that would become Hip Hop was still growing under the care of its first generation of Titans.

It was the song “Cooky Puss”, mostly an experiment in sampling centered around Adrock’s prank call to Carvel Ice Cream laid over drums and bass, that got the attention of then DJ Rick Rubin. With a background in hardcore and metal and a passion for all kinds of music then burgeoning in the NY club scene, Rubin’s super-producer powers began to bubble below the surface as he joined the group for a series of gigs and parties as DJ double-R. From there they would join Godfather Russell’s Def Jam ranks, go on tour with Madonna, gain the friendship and tutelage of Run-DMC and begin crafting an identity that remains singular and unique. Punks, not in the graduated, complicated sense that had evolved through the 70’s British rock but the half-drunk, slacker, don’t-give-a-fuck type made up not just the Beasties identity at their inception but a bassline for their characters even as they would grow and evolve through their career.young Beasties

Amidst their on-stage antics, the tongue-in-cheek degree of that persona is perhaps the Beasties most distinct characteristic, their sense of humor their backbone. It’s tough to know half of what the BB’s are referencing in their lyrics, some of it NY slang, some of it simply Beastie inside quirks. Goofy-but-serious, they provide themselves a certain lyrical latitude with lines like

“I got a girl in the castle and one in the pagoda,
And you know I got rhymes like Abe Vigoda”

But the important point is that these lines hit. Discernible or not, goofy or whatever, that punch is a quality the Boys’ vocals never lack.

In the middle third the album gets turned up a notch with a quartet of their biggest hits (“Girls”, “Fight for Your Right”, “No Sleep Till Brooklyn” and “Paul Revere”) followed by a fifth two tracks later in “Brass Monkey” which itself went gold as a single. Certified platinum less than three months after its release, still one of Columbia’s fastest selling albums, Licensed was certified 9 times platinum in 2001, good for sixth-best selling rap album of all time. In many ways, the story of Licensed is as much about Rick Rubin as it is about the Beastie Boys. His influence is the first sound one hears when the album begins, with the familiar and distinct drum of Led Zeppelin’s “When the Levee Breaks” comprising the beat for the album’s first track “Rhymin & Stealin”. It’s difficult to know if Rubin’s choice of song is poetic irony given Zeppelin’s own derivation of the track from blues musician Memphis Minnie’s 1929 song. He would then add the guitar from Black Sabbath’s “Sweet Leaf” four bars in for a dynamic combination. The LZ sampling comes back two tracks later on “She’s Crafty” with a rip from “The Ocean”. These tracks were at the forefront of the development of the technique as “sampling” and these uses of popular rock music only aided in opening up the genre to a wider (read: white) audience.

rrIn this article from Vulture earlier this year, Rubin talks about the effect Licensed had on sampling’s evolution:

Licensed to Ill changed everything. In those days, this was really before samples clearances. Nobody even knew how to do that stuff. During the making of Licensed to Ill, the sampler got developed. In the earlier songs for the album, there was no sampler, and everything where it seems like a sample is either DJ’ed in with records, or a tape loop around the studio, which was kind of cumbersome and complicated. Sampling didn’t really exist yet. So the idea that you could clear a sample, or a sample was something you could use on a record, that all came later. So they’re very renegade records.”

Though split from their roots and Rubin by that point, the Beasties’ sampling work on their second album Paul’s Boutique would be a landmark in the artistic and legal ramifications of one of the staples of the art form.

As Licensed opens with the aforementioned thump of Zeppelin’s drums on “Rhymin and Stealin”, the Beasties come with a heavy tone of their own, brash and (mock) threatening with lines about “terrorizing suckers on the seven seas”. From the very opening the Boys lay claim to the brashness, the bragging, the larger-than-life style that somehow feels reminiscent of a stomp from a Run-DMC adidas. There’s no mistaking that the newest members of Def Jam intended to make a statement:

“Most illingest B-Boy, I got that feeling
Cause I am most ill and I’m rhyming’ and stealin’”

And yet somehow lines like the one above are delivered (and received, for that matter) with the same seriousness as

“My pistol is loaded, I shot Betty Crocker
Sent Colonel Sanders down to Davey Jones’ locker”

And that right there is the secret ingredient of the Beastie Boys.


Rest In Power Big Bank Hank

Big Bank HankOn Tuesday, November 11th 2014 the Hip Hop community was saddened to learn of the death of Henry Jackson, better known as Big Bank Hank of the Sugarhill Gang from complications due to cancer. With his contributions to Sugarhill Gang’s most well known record, ‘Rapper’s Delight’, which was also the first Rap single to be released to the mainstream, it’s not an overstatement to say that we lost a true pioneer of the genre. Hip Hop Nation owes a lot to Big Bank Hank for his role in putting Rap music on the map, and for keeping us grooving to his fluid, fun rhymes on Rapper’s Delight, a true timeless classic that’s as fun to listen to today as it must have been back in the late 70s and early 80s. Rest In Power Big Bank Hank, we know you’re rocking that golden microphone in Hip Hop Heaven.


And from the time I was only six years old
I never forgot what I was told
It was the best advice I ever had
It came from my wise, dear old dad
He said, “Sit down, punk, I wanna talk to you
And don’t say a word until I’m through
Now there’s a time to laugh, a time to cry
A time to live and a time to die
A time to break and a time to chill
To act civilized or act real ill
But whatever you do in your lifetime
You never let an MC steal your rhyme”
So from six to six ’til this very day
I’ll always remember what he had to say
So when the sucker MCs try to chump my style
I let them know that I’m versatile
I got style, finesse, and a little black book
That’s filled with rhymes and I know you wanna look
But the thing that separates you from me
And that is called originality

(Big Bank Hank – Rapper’s Delight)

Big Bank Hank black and white

Jagged Thoughts #50: Don’t Let Your Notebook Become Your Joke Book

We at the Lime are proud to congratulate our friend Jason Wright of Oddball Magazine on his 50th edition of his poetry column, Jagged Thoughts.  We raise our pens in salute and wish him further success.

“Don’t Let Your Notebook Become Your Joke Book”

Sad I guess
Wondering if life is a treasure chest
Then why is my life such a mess
At the best I do I laugh at questions
Suggestions to be a better me
Is the answer to your questions
But i laugh at the prospects
And they send me to detention
I laugh at the prophets
But no ones paying attention
Old introverted extrovert
When will you see your worth
and find that the curse you have had since birth to disperse absurd words
To release my soul
Like a flock of
To answer you
Failure hurts
But when it comes to putting down the written word the syllables
Are invincible my love for the poets in my circle is irreversible
The fight I have to succeed is
And my stealth sick style on the mic
Is incomparable
I write for the 50th Jagged Thought
And here’s to another 50
Thank you all for being precious gifts
And being there right with me
Writing irresponsibly because the written word shook me
I was asleep and I woke up undeniably better then the old me
Because poetry to me is my therapy
And it’s free
To be able to
Kick synonyms and allegories
To the man in the cave
It was me
Before poetry
Enlightened me
And told me to believe in me
And then they will
So in the end thank you
I do this for me
To get through
But ignition is the key
To keep it real constantly
With poetry
Don’t lie to your notebook
Or it becomes your
Joke book
Reality sets in
And I’m on the train again
Playing my word games
With my head again
Making sense
A pen
A dream
A wish
Thanks for taking the time to read this
This has been
A lyrical bloodbath
And your the witness
A prince with the quill
With lyrical skill
What will be will be
If you keep the will
In lock
And key
What will be
Will be
Just believe in me.

Jason Wright is the founder and Editor of Oddball Magazine. His column appears weekly. He’s been doing this a while.

AroundtheBean: Five for Futon

AroundtheBean.com is the hottest new site for sports analysis and insight and we at the Lime are proud to present today their college football column ‘Five for Futon‘.  For some insight into what AroundtheBean is all about, check out Scholar’s recent interview with the site’s creator Kareem Desroches and stay tuned to JPLimeProductions.com for more from AroundtheBean and all things Lime.

Five for Futon: November 8th Edition
by Raineman

elephant headNormally I reserve my college football picks for the Twitterverse but the Judge asked me to stop by here and give my thoughts on how I will be a degenerate this Saturday:

Public service announcement, if you ever wanted to get yourself out of “cuffin season” aka the Holiday Gauntlet from Thanksgiving to Valentine’s Day where you are an insensitive bastard for dumping a girl, this weekend might be the one to do it.  3 Top 15 vs Top 15 games kick off between 7:30 and 8.  You have a top 10 game at 3:30 and then Oregon at Utah closes out what to date, will be the best Saturday of the year.  So- before you your girl makes you go for a hike or you get sucked into some terrible double date you do not want to go on, there is always time to call up your chicken and say, “Listen babe, I just don’t think this is going to work- I’m going to go drop a dime on LSU and hang out at the bar with the boys.”

On to the picks:

Notre Dame/ASU OVER 61 (1 Unit):

I really wanted to have the guts to take Notre Dame straight up in this spot- but after the screw job that I took in Tallahassee (one of my biggest losses ever on Notre Dame ML- I’m resisting the urge to get burned again.  I do love the over in this game however.  ASU’s offense can put up points against anyone.  The defense has been much better after putting up one of the worst performances ever on a Thursday night versus UCLA, but the defense improved by blitzing over 50 pct of the time.  This in turns, will play right into Brian Kelly’s (the best playcaller in the nation) hands.  I think the Irish will be able to adjust to the pressure and put up POINTS POINTS POINTS.

VANDY +14 vs Florida (1 Unit):

Both these teams stink if you ask me but Florida had their season last week versus a Georgia team that still had national title aspirations.  This game has let down written all over it and Derek Mason’s boys have been playing better off starting the season off poorly.  I’m going to hold my nose and take the points here.

OREGON -9 at Utah (1 Unit):

I feel like I’m cheating on the Utes here as they have made me a ton of money this year.  Michigan, UCLA, USC and ASU were all games that I hit earlier this year and the later games also brought in teases and parlays for me.  I love the Utes this year! The problem is Oregon might be the best team in the nation right now and with the improved offensive line play, I just don’t see the Utes being able to keep up with the probable Heisman winner Marcus Mariotta.  I’m sorry Utah.

BAMA -6.5 at LSU (1 Unit) and Bama/LSU UNDER 46 (2 Units)

Two things shock me in this world right now.  Alabama being 1-8 versus the spread as a road favorite in their last 9 and Forrest Whittaker playing a prominent role in Fast Times at Ridgemont High.  I really need to get over both.  Bama and LSU have both come a long way this year since Bama struggled at Ole Miss and Arkansas and LSU got whipped at home by Miss St.  The problem I see for LSU here is that Bama’s main weakness is in the secondary and LSU can’t throw the ball.  I think this is going to be a low scoring affair but I ultimately see the duo of Blake Simms and Amari Cooper making enough plays to cover but not enough plays to push that over total to 46.  ROLL TIDE!


Scholar’s interview with Kareem Desroches: