My Girl Wants to Take Naked Pictures. Help!

Welcome to Ask Willie D, Rocks Off's advice column where the Geto Boys MC answers reader questions about matters, in his own words, "funny, serious or unpredictable." Something on your mind? Ask Willie D!

Photo by Mario Jaramillo

Dear Willie D:

Why is there so much division in the world? Maybe I'm naïve but I am 53 years old, and I don't recall ever feeling so helpless about the state of humanity. Everyday all day all you hear and read about is crime, hate, confrontations, pain, and illness. Yes there is the occasional soft and fuzzy good story thrown in, but overall the world is a sad place.

There was a time when I trusted the police, but law enforcement in America seems to have lost its way in terms of respect for the citizens they serve and the badge they wear and our government is just sitting on the sidelines eating popcorn. I feel for the future generations to come. I'm a licensed gun owner, but I still fear for me and my family's safety. What can we do to fix this societal dysfunctionality?

More »

Slim Thug's Guided Tour of His Hogg Life

Photos by Marco Torres
Rappers Propain, Slim Thug, Chedda Da Connect and Killa Kyleon pose at the premiere of Slim's new documentary Hogg Life: The Beginning.
Slim Thug is exceptionally tall. I am not exceptionally tall. I'm moderately below average height.

The obvious had to be stated first. The complimentary statement behind that is Slim Thug backing into your foot when he's overwhelmed with joy immediately renders you still. You have to smile next to Slim Thug after he inadvertently steps on your foot because he's Slim Thug. If he's in a celebratory mood, so are you. That's how life sort of works around him.

Tuesday night people flocked to a Monroe Houston, a posh new club on Waugh, to watch not only a documentary but indulge in a brand new Slim Thug album. Club attire was proper; coming as you are was proper. Making sure you at least wore one piece of gold jewelry with the face of Christ on it was proper. The main aspect of seeing Slim Thug telling his story on four jagged screens is pretty interesting, even when on paper it shouldn't work.

More »

Part 1 of Slim Thug's HoggLife Hits the Big Screen Tonight

photos by Marco Torres
Slim Thug (center) walks with his Boss Life Management into Houston City Hall on Slim Thug Day, February 25th, 2014.
Some titles are self-appointed, and some that are earned. In Houston, nobody else has earned the right to be called "The Boss of All Bosses" more than Slim Thug.

"Since '98, I've been straight, started shinin' out the gate, reppin' that Nawf on tape!" he raps on the opening track of 2013's Boss Life. Slim has performed at Free Press Summer Festival multiple times, including last year's monumental "Welcome to Houston" set, and has even been awarded his own "Slim Thug Day" by Mayor Annise Parker. It certainly looks like Mr. Stayve Thomas has survived the recession.

More »

Dallas Trolls Say Their Hip-Hop Is Better Than Houston's

Photo by Marco Torres
H-Town's starting lineup, c. 2014
Oh, Dallas.

I respect you as a city, your hold on your (deceased) J.R. Ewing and Dallas Cowboys -- Dez Caught It! -- and rather unique flair for being the bourgeois, snooty brother in that Texas music trinity Houston shares with that hippie we all visit once a goddamn year in March.

However, as much as I respect you for attempting to beat your chest and proclaim that you have a better hip-hop scene than Houston, allow big brother "swamp city covered in fog" (what are we, the fucking Blue Lagoon to you?) to knock some sense into you. You don't. You haven't. You're trolling in the best possible way: to elicit a response.

More »

My Girl Is Just Too Damn Tall. Help!

Welcome to Ask Willie D, Rocks Off's advice column where the Geto Boys MC answers reader questions about matters, in his own words, "funny, serious or unpredictable." Something on your mind? Ask Willie D!

Photo by Mario Jaramillo

Dear Willie D:

I'm experiencing a case of where opposites attract then mismatch. My husband is an introverted homebody and I'm the outdoors extrovert. When we first met in our early 20's I thought we were perfect for each other. Now I'm not so sure.

I'm annoyed by going to social gathering alone all the time while he sits at home. I used to invite him to everything and ask him to do stuff with me, but I got tired of him saying no. So eventually I just stopped asking. Please tell me what to say to get him off the couch and out of the house.

More »

Bun B and Colleagues Contemplate Hip-Hop and Nonviolent Protest at the Menil

Photo by Nathan Smith
Bun B (left) addresses a rather large crowd at the Menil.
About 30 minutes before the Tuesday-night Conversation at the Menil Collection was scheduled to begin, all of the best seats stuffed inside Renzo Piano's low-slung masterwork were already taken. All of the bad seats, too. Still, people continued to press inside, sitting, standing or stooping in whatever space they could find. When even the museum's wings filled up and there was no more room left anywhere, folks finally just propped the door open and huddled together outside in the cold.

Not a bad crowd for a Tuesday night. But then, it ain't every Tuesday that you can catch Bun B holding court in the museum district, seriously discussing the interplay of hip-hop, religion and non-violence, for absolutely freaking free. That's what the shivering crowd outside the door showed up for last night when the Menil hosted a public conversation with Bun on the influence of Gandhi and Martin Luther King on hip-hop culture with a panel that included none other than Brooklyn truth-seeker Talib Kweli. Naturally, there was no hipper place in the city to be.

The less rhythmically inclined portion of the onstage panel comprised Anthony B. Pinn, Bun B's partnering professor from his religion and hip-hop class at Rice University, and Monica R. Miller of LeHigh University, who has written extensively about religion and hip-hop. Also on hand was Josef Helfenstein, the museum's curator of current exhibition Experiments With Truth: Gandhi And Images Of Nonviolence, which inspired the event.

There was no music, hip-hop or otherwise, played on Tuesday. The overflow crowd stayed as quiet and polite as it could while Menil board member Michael Zilkha introduced everyone onstage, but the room couldn't help but crack up when he was forced to pronounce "Big Pimpin'" in his distinguished-sounding accent. That more or less set the tone for the evening. The conversation would be serious, but also weird and fun. Gandhi and hip-hop? Surrounded by priceless, surrealist art? Hey, sure.

More »

The 14 Best Houston Rap Tapes of 2014

Tony Del FreshCo's Red October was one of the best releases of 2014.
At present count, over 3,600 words have been given towards looking back at 2014's year in Houston rap. Even if the year just ended a week ago. To sum, Houston rap not only added two radio stations in 2014, it saw a vast increase in radio play from some of its local favorites, a heavy influence of club/street related tracks and fourteen solid tapes that decided to bend but not break.

Some of these tapes wound up getting praise outside of the state, and the top pick was so celebrated that it reached heights that not even its creator(s) thought possible. In short, it was a damn good year for Houston on wax.

More »

Sauce Twinz Blowing Up, But Don't Call Them Rappers

Sauce Walka (left) & Drake / Tumblr

There's a large Christmas tree in the lobby of 24 Greenway Plaza. It seems artificial, adorned with numerous ornaments spanning from crown to base and faux gifts surrounding it. As colorful as it seems, it's not truly festive, not on this frigid November day.

To get into the lobby, first you need to ride an elevator up from a parking garage. Your prime destination is any of the radio stations, in particular the one on the upper floors, the one where 97.9 The Box is located. Today, all of the artists with local ties but without a vetted kind of establishment are receiving packets for the Los Magnificos Custom Car & Bike Show. It's almost like the first day of school where the teacher is giving out seat assignments. The constant question upstairs however is a simple one, "Have you seen the Sauce Twinz?"

Minutes later, the Twinz, Sancho Saucy and Sauce Walka, walk through the doors, quiet and seemingly down for a second. The night before, they partied like they normally do. Days after this, they'll be in a studio with Boosie, inducting him like they had done so many others into the wave of the Sauce.

More »

I Didn't Mean to Say "I Love You." Help!

Welcome to Ask Willie D, Rocks Off's advice column where the Geto Boys MC answers reader questions about matters, in his own words, "funny, serious or unpredictable." Something on your mind? Ask Willie D!

Photo by Mario Jaramillo

Dear Willie D:

This girl that I kick it with and I were having sex. When she told me that she loved me, because I was caught up in the moment I replied with my own not so true declaration and told her I loved her back. Now I feel like I'm in a committed relationship even though neither of us has confirmed anything. Since that night she tells me I love you all the time and I feel compelled to respond by telling her I love her also.

Even though I don't mean it I say it anyway or else it just feels awkward. How do I get her to back off, and take it slow without coming off as a jerk? I don't want to lead her on.

More »

The 12 Best Houston Rap Songs of 2014

Not from TX? Doughbeezy don't want to hear it.
"There was so much..."
-- Houston rap proverb

You could take that however you want but it's true. Houston rap offered so much in 2014 that it caused a slight delay in trying to properly rate it for a year-end review. That's right, a delay.

There are probably more than 1,000 Houston rap songs that filtered through someone's speakers in 2014. Only 12 of them will truly matter in the long run; or at least will mean something to you going into 2015. You will christen your children to these songs, you will carry them with you until you die and then your children's children can tell stories about how you did the whip to some of them. You heard them on either of the city's two traditional rap stations, which yielded more gravity towards local music on the airwaves than maybe in decades. It all worked, and we're all the better for it.

More »