HoodAlumns take on Tarantino’s classic

Do you feel like there is enough talent in the hip-hop industry? Think about it for a second. How many truly talented people do you know? That’s it, huh? Well, a group of artists want to change the game: The Movement presents “The Reservoir Dogs, The Mix Tape.”

Parallel to the characters in the 1992 classic “Reservoir Dogs” by Quentin Tarantino, where one insightful individual brought together several individuals to achieve one goal: to rob a jewelry store. One student had a similar idea to combine a rap group with two guest artists, to achieve another goal – to create a mix tape titled “Reservoir Dogs” set to be released Friday, January 20, 2006.

 These students, like many people, feel that the music industry has lost its touch. They wish to bring something real to an industry that seems to have forgotten what raw talent is. This mix tape converges elements from the movie, hot beats and lyrics combined to produce something fresh and original.

Their single, “You Serious,” was first aired on 90.5, Florida A&M University’s Flava Station in November 2005.

“We chose this song for our single truthfully, because it has the best beat – you can play it in the club,” says Brandon Gurley (G $tak), a third year engineering major from Chicago.

8-of-19 tracks are produced by G Willz and Dom and Bran. The remaining tracks contain a plethora of the latest beats.

 It was 1997 when Robert Richey (Rob Rich), a third year graphic design student from Palm Beach started rapping. His love for music didn’t change when he came to FAMU as a freshman in 2003. He met Landon Bronell (John Dough), also from Palm Beach and a third year broadcast journalism student, while living in Paddyfote. They discovered a mutual interest in music and created their own group called Paper Soldiers.

Every Rattler knows that the infamous Paddyfote is the perfect place to socialize and entertain. That is where the Paper Soldiers later met G $tak.

 “My man Geezy (G $tak) used to come through 212 with his DVC mix tapes,” Rich said. “Yeah, they heard mine and I heard their stuff and we were like ok, ok,” says G $tak. From there they started the group.

A year later the “HoodAlumns” (Dough, Rich and G $tak) began recording their first song. They define a “hoodalumn” as anyone who is a product of the hood, but is trying to better themselves.

 The HoodAlumns, in addition to two other artists, Mike Brown (Prime), a business major at Tallahassee Community College from St. Petersburg, and Antwon Jefferson (Young Scoot), a third year broadcast journalism student from Atlanta, came together to produce Reservoir Dogs in August of 2005 at Blu Colla Entertainment.

Street Entertainment and Excel Entertainment also played a major part in supporting and producing the HoodAlumns.

“There is a lot of talent within the inner circle of people we hang with – that’s why we put this project together,” Dough said.

Wholesome talent can definitely be a motivation; to put it to use and make a profit, but G $tak says talent is not the only inspiration for their work. Competition is key to why they are serious about their music career.

“We thought we were better than everybody else out here putting out music right now, why not bring the best together and put them on a mix tape.”

Plain and simple, right? Five students decided to use their talents and their interest in music to make a radical statement about what they believe in.

“Our album is a reflection of how we feel about the music industry as a whole,” Dough said.

 This album is their solution for a weakening industry, which some critics say is lacking real talent.

“When it comes down to pure unadulterated, untarnished talent, I don’t see it,” says G $tak. “A lot of people out here got a buzz out of some stuff they did, and not taking nothing away from that. They did their thing, they won their contest and everything, but they weren’t going against nobody. There was no competition, so we are here to bring the competition. So you either get on your grind and get it, or you out.”

Despite a prediction that they may have a few rivals after their mix tape is released, the HoodAlumns, Prime and Young Scoot welcome challengers who think they can outshine them.

Prepare for The Movement.  HoodAlumns, Prime and Young Scoot will do big things this year.

Contact Christy G. Bennett at christybennett1984@yahoo.com