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Serendipity greets Justin Rutledge

By Kate Marlow

The Canadian music circuit can, on occasion, be a small world after all. For Justin Rutledge, attending this year’s Folk Fest was a weird full-circle for him. Rutledge sat down with Gauntlet writer Kate Marlow and explained his past with singer-songwriter-activist Sarah Harmer, his experience at the festival and the new record he has on… Continue reading Serendipity greets Justin Rutledge

Flirting with fame

By Justin Lee

A couple of weeks ago, after finally managing to get my co-worker Dan to cover for me at work–thanks to some persuasive rhetoric and ol’ Dan’s merciful heart–I was set out to interview David Usher, one of Canada’s premiere rock stars. Talking to Usher made me realize why we envy rock stars to begin with.… Continue reading Flirting with fame


By Justin Lee

While Q-Tip choose to go the jiggy route on last year’s Amplified, the original five-footer from the now-defunct A Tribe Called Quest unleashes a debut that is nothing short of pure, untainted hip hop. Ventilation reveals Phife Diggy at his full-potential, as opposed to his more subdued performances back in the days of Tribe. With… Continue reading Ventilation

Funk fusion from T-Dot

By Justin Lee

In this day and age of carbon-copy pop, materialistic hip hop and the same re-hashed slop, T-Dot’s Pocket Dwellers come on the eclectic tip by fusing elements of jazz, hip hop, funk, soul, rock, reggae and drum-and-bass within their music. On their recently released full-length debut, Digitally Organic, the PDs create a musical gumbo that… Continue reading Funk fusion from T-Dot

Snow and sound fill Olympic Plaza

By Justin Lee

Pegged as an "urban street festival," DV8 lived up to the much-generated hype and even managed to outshine last year’s debut. Showcasing some of the top extreme athletes in Canada, the festival drew some 64,500 Calgarians to Olympic Plaza last weekend. The Molson-sponsored event also featured an all-star lineup of bands including headliners Sloan, 3… Continue reading Snow and sound fill Olympic Plaza

Like Water for Chocolate — Common

By Justin Lee

common sense (n) 1: sound and prudent but often unsophisticated. judgement 2: the unreflective opinions of ordinary men. Webster’s definition of common sense is anything but when it comes to describing one of the most prolific lyricists of his time; Chicago’s Common, formerly Common Sense, is one of the few MCs in hip-hop today that… Continue reading Like Water for Chocolate — Common

Can’t Take Me Home — Pink

By Justin Lee

At a time where the music industry is churning out would-be R&B divas by the minute, 20-year-old Philly-native, Alecia "Pink" Moore, stands out amongst the pack. From her spine-tingling vocals to her short, fuchsia-dyed hair, Pink is in a league-of-her-own. Can’t Take Me Home is the brainchild of prominent producers Babyface, She’kspere and The Specialists,… Continue reading Can’t Take Me Home — Pink

Underground no more:

By Justin Lee

"Hip-hop is not my life, but it has been a large part of it. There have been times I’ve loved it more than any woman. There have been times I hated it with the viciousness usually reserved for a cheating lover." So says Nelson George in his 1998 critically-acclaimed expose, Hip Hop America. George’s love/hate… Continue reading Underground no more: