Tag Archive: Election



Above: NEW song, “Goodbye Bush (Nah Nah Nah),” my ode to G.W. Bush leaving the White House! FREE download at http://www.4shared.com/file/81716173/f6ec79ea/APT_-_Goodbye_Bush__Nah_Nah_Nah_.html!

Also available on “The Next Black President” Mixtape – FREE Download at: http://www.zshare.net/download/5455995741ddef5e/

Lastly, you can now download the VIDEO to re-post on YouTube!
http://www.zshare.net/video/5453399977ea009e

This week’s video… er, I mean, today’s video… is for the song “Goodbye Bush (Nah Nah Nah),” produced by ME!

INSIGHT INTO A SONG:

First of all: Those of you who normally stop by my website know I tend to post up videos every Sunday.  Clearly, as I am posting this video, it is Thursday, meaning it’s not Sunday.  Therefore, you may be a bit confused. 

Allow me to tell you a fascinating story…

So, Tuesday was Barack Obama’s official swearing in as the 44th President of the United States of America.  Which also meant it was the day George W. Bush was finally LEAVING office.  I, along with the rest of the nation, couldn’t have been more happy about this moment – both for a Black man entering the White House, and a White man who was LOUSY at his job as “President” finally being given the boot!

After watching all the events unfold on TV, I started surfing the net.  A story popped up on Yahoo.com saying that, as Bush was being helicoptered out of the area, there were people in the crowd singing rock band Steam’s classic hit chorus:

“Nah, nah, nah, nah… nah, nah, nah, nah… hey, hey, hey… gooood-byyyyye!”

I thought that was extremely hilarious!  The more I thought about them doing that, though, the more I thought I could make it into a song. So, I went on YouTube to figure out the band that did it, then downloaded the song off Limewire.  I was hoping I could find the instrumental somewhere, but it wasn’t meant to be. 

Luckily, the opening part of the song has no words being said in it, so I was able to take that part of the song and re-loop it.   FYI: people think re-looping a sample is easy. WRONG!  I had to cut and paste a small part from another part of the song and paste it near the opening part where there’s drums but no other music so it would sound like a seamless loop, then I had to copy and re-paste the song in the right section over and over again, not to mention having to mix in the various parts where the “Nah nah nah’s” would come in… it took about 2 hours to make that “simple” little beat, people!

Once I had the beat done, I had a freestyle/writing session.  I wrote down some lyrics, then freestyled to the beat for a bit, and used bits and pieces from both to create the 2 verses of the song.  Then, I recorded them.  It took me a few takes to get the feel/flow down of the song since I didn’t want to just rap it all sing-songy.  There are lots of stops and pauses in the verses, so I had to record several takes before I got it right.

When it came time to do the talking part during the drum solo, I just freestyled it.  I didn’t know what I was going to say – all I know is, I wanted to summarize a few points: (1) That Bush did a bad job, (2) that his administration was no longer in power, and (3) that hope could now be restored.

I mixed and mastered the song as best I could… but somehow, the sound sounded a bit fuzzy.  I was going to work on the song some more before releasing it, but I knew that time was of the essence.  Now that Barack’s in office and the parties were winding down, I knew it would only be a matter of days before any song released about Bush or Barack would be of less importance/meaning.

So, I figured I’d post it up as is – after all, my videos as of late, while great, hadn’t been getting as many views as I’d like, so I thought not too many people would even hear it.  I was going to just post it up with a black screen saying “Free Download, Stop By My Website…

INSIGHT INTO A VIDEO SHOOT:

…but I couldn’t just do that!

I hate when I go to YouTube, and someone has a song up but no “real” video to go with it.  I figured that, even if I just posted up a video of me dancing to or miming the song, it would still be better than having the viewer look at nothing the whole time!

I didn’t want to do a big shoot or one that would take a lot of time (I’ll save that for this Sunday’s video), so I decided to keep it simple.  I placed my camera on top of a printer box I sat atop a stool in the kitchen next to the table, and proceeded to ACT A FOOL.

Since I didn’t know the words to the song completely – I had only just written and recorded it that day – I decided not to try and mouth words, but use my actions to (hopefully) match the words of the song.  Combine that with some out-of-date dance moves (Hammer Time!) and moving arm gestures, and voila! – instant video!

WHY I’M POSTING THIS ON A THURSDAY:

After I was done with the video, I placed it on YouTube.  I like for my videos to get views, and the page on this site where the “Obama Milli Remix Page” is, continues to get high views.  So, I placed the video/song atop all the pages with “Obama Milli” on it.

Lo and behold: while going out and about doing business today, my roommate/best friend from college keeps calling my phone.  I call him once I get home, at which point he tells me that the song has been posted on www.worldstarhiphop.com, a respected Hip-hop site who, during the summer, had also placed up my “Obama Milli” song.

I go to inspect this myself – yep, it was up there – and also look up the YouTube accounts I placed it on, both of which have a stream of viewers for the song (250 at the aptsongs account, over 600 and counting at the aptistheman account).  I also looked on the account I have where I have my songs available for FREE download – over 43 downloads and counting. 

Not too bad, considering the song’s been up for ONE day!

However, I hadn’t even considered adding this video to my “One-Song-a-Week” collection because (a) the video was REAL simple, and (b) it’s not Sunday. 

At the same time, though, that saying of “striking while the iron’s hot” rings true.  If people were singing the song I sampled for mine, both during Inauguration AND on the night Obama got elected (thanks for the word on that, B.C.!), and I have a song out now with that same sample in relation to Bush, I HAVE to release it while his name is still in the papers.

And, since I have a video related to all of that, I have to release it now and add it to the collection.  Plus, it’s already gotten more views in one day than some of my other videos have in the weeks they’ve been released – must mean I have a hit on my hands again!

Oh yeah – I also went back and re-mixed it so the vocals sound clearer.  For purposes of advertising that I have other material available, I also added some promo-stuff for “The Great Black Hope” onto the end of the song so people will think, “Wow, I should really buy this guy’s stuff!”  Gotta think of it like a business, people!!

That’s all for now – yes, there will still be a video Sunday!  See ya then!

-A.P.T.

E-mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com

MySpace: www.myspace.com/NotoriousAPT

Soundclick: www.soundclick.com/APT

It’s Christmas morning – 3:08 AM to be exact – and I can’t sleep.

Not that I wasn’t tired a few hours ago. I was taking a mini-nap about 3 hours ago when my brother came in from his Christmas party at his fiance’s parents’ house, thus waking me from my start-of-sleep.  I decided to surf the ‘net before I went back to sleep…

…and then a thought kicked in my head.  As I mentioned in a blog prior, I was sought out by a man named Rob Tillman to come up with a theme song for his web page (still in progress).  In the talks we’ve had back and forth, he mentioned that, given the number of repostings of my “Obama Obama” Lil Wayne “A Milli” remake currently on YouTube, it’s probably gotten well over 3  millon views.

So, being the type of artist who likes to know what type of audience he’s attracting, I thought, “hey, why not see how many instances I can find of people reposting their own home-made videos involving my ‘Obama’ song?”

3 hours later, and I just finished looking at a good majority of them. Man, oh, man…


Above: Two girls singing along to “O-bama O-bama.”

Okay, there’s a little something you should know about me: I tend to underplay my importance on other people’s lives.  I’m the person who will pick up and move at the drop of a hat without saying “goodbye” to people – not because I hate them, but because I figure, once I’m gone, they’ll eventually get over me having been there, and it will be like I wasn’t there at all.


Above: A girl running around in an “Obama” mask campaigning.  And guess what the background music is??

So, for me, when this “O-bama” song dropped and took off, I really, REALLY didn’t think it would last that long.  I thought it would be good for a few thousand YouTube views (not MILLIONS); that it might, if I was lucky, play on a few morning radio stations where they usually play parody songs (as opposed to getting play on WORLDWIDE radio stations); that a few people might visit my site and download it (over 8000 downloads of the song between the song itself, the “The O-bama Mixtape” downloads and sales of the song at 99 cents each); and that, maybe, just maybe, a famous person might come across it and hear it (as opposed to rappers, DJs, radio hosts and celebrities quoting my lil’ catch phrase ad nausea).


Above: Two kids from Chi-town rocking out in their… I dunno, basement?? – to the “Obama” song!

Furthermore, since I did the song almost as a joke, I had NO idea it would have any influence on the election at all.  It might sound cocky to say that, but in looking at the videos I just saw on YouTube, it can’t be understated that the song definitely got some butts to the booth to vote.


Above: Two teens at a high school in Las Vegas beat-box the “Obama” song!

And what did I see in these videos, you ask?  People of all ages, races, religions, and backgrounds… posting up home-made videos to my song.  I saw:

  •  A video of an older Latino woman listening to it on her computer
  • A video of two younger white girls dancing in their kitchen to it
  • Young kids in their den rapping along to it
  • Countless video blogs where people used the song as their intro
  • A video of a homecoming rally where a guy was dancing to my song in the middle of a gym
  • Countless videos with people wearing Obama masks, doing silly things on camera while my song played in the background
  • An awesome video of a guy trying to persuade young people to vote by hip-hop dancing to my song in his living room

I could literally be typing for another 30 minutes about the videos I saw posted that included my song.  Clearly, it made a MAJOR impact on people’s decision to vote for Obama! (BTW: CUT THE CHECK, BARACK!)


Above: A woman from France – FRANCE! – drawing a picture of Obama while my song plays!

So, what have I learned from all this?  One, it’s made me very, VERY confident in my abilities to be successful.  They (whoever “they” may be) say it’s hard to become successful, and even harder to duplicate it.  I don’t want to duplicate it, I want to go BEYOND what I’ve already done with this one song.


Above: At SVHS (I’m assuming that’s a high school), the “Obama” song was played during their homecoming rally!

Two, I’ve learned what it takes to make something that will affect a large group of people.  Even when I made the song, I knew that if there were people out there who (a) liked Obama, and (b) liked Lil’ Wayne, they would definitely like my song.  The secret, then, is to do a focus of the audience I’m trying to reach, and figure out what will best connect with them.  This relates not just to my music, but other things as well: books I want to write (or have written), ideas for inventions/products I may have, and so on.


Above: Jerrell Puttin, of “The Obaminators” dance crew, encouraging others to vote by dancing to my “Obama” song!

And three, I’ve learned that, regardless of how much I may try to downplay it sometimes, I do – and can – play an important role in the lives of others, both good and bad.  Personally, though, I prefer it to be on the “good” side – this is why I try to keep my music as upbeat and positive as I can.


Above: DJ Ice chops and screws “O-bama O-bama!”

As a sidebar: if there’s one regret I have, it’s that I didn’t get to perform the song live. Actually, I performed it live one time – at my brother’s 25th birthday party in July – but, aside from the countless times I did it in my apartment, I was working so much to support myself while in Atlanta that I didn’t find the time to go out and perform it.  Plus, with the way the train/bus system was in Atlanta, I wouldn’t have had a way to get home were I to go to clubs because most open mics started late (around 10:30 PM), and most of the buses stopped around 11 PM.  Kinda limits a person’s performing ability. 

However, I DO hope to be able to perform the song a few times once I get to L.A. – heck, once I get there, it will still be 10 days before Obama is officially sworn in, so I’m sure demand for the song will be back up (not that it’s gone down – people are still posting up new videos to my song to this day.  Believe me, I’ve already checked!)

That’s really all I have to say.  After seeing all those videos, I feel really good about myself, and even more positive about my move to California.  I know I’ll be able to impact even more people for the good once I get out there, and I look forward to seeing what develops.

MERRY CHRISTMAS, EVERYBODY!

-A.P.T.

E-mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com

MySpace: www.myspace.com/NotoriousAPT

Soundclick: www.soundclick.com/APT

Hey everybody!

First thing’s first: thanks to everybody that has watched/dowloaded my newest video/song, “Obama, Obama (a Remake of Lil’ Wayne’s “A Milli”).” In just 2 days it’s gotten close to 100 views, and since the Presidential election is a mere 4-1/2 months away, I can only see the song growing in popularity.

So, it dawned on me: part of the reason I’m doing this whole project is to get people to (b) become fans of my music, and (b) request me for gigs… yet, lo and behold, I haven’t left any contact info for people to get in touch with me!!  Duh, Aaron!

If you’re reading this and would like to send me fan mail, request me for collaborations, ask about me making beats for you (I do that too – more of my own beats will be used on songs in the future), or inquire about doing a gig, here is my official email address:

aptsongs@hotmail.com

Not too hard, right??  I’ll be sure to leave this email address in all my posts from now on.

Anyway, this site has really started to take off!  Now that I’m making videos on a regular basis, it’s becoming a bit easier to think of ideas for song visuals.  I still don’t have other people to help me out yet, but I’ve thought of some good ideas involving just myself.  I like to invoke stories into most of my songs, it’s just a matter of figuring out how to represent that even if I’m talking about another person in the song.

Next week’s song is already in the can, and the visual for it is going to be easier to edit than last week’s video, which took 8 hours.  Part of the reason it took so darn long is because I had to be able to match up the vocals of the song with when I said them on screen.  You’d be amazed how long it takes to sync up song vocals with on-screen wording – even the slightest little mouth movement has to be watched to make sure it’s being done right, and even THEN you can still mess up!

For next week’s video, though, I won’t be mouthing to the camera, so it should cut the edit time in half.  The song itself is an MC song, meaning there’s not a story to it, it’s just me talking about how good I am at what I do.  The visual, however, does have a story, and it’s going to be…. well, I ain’t giving it away yet, but it’ll be pretty good!

I’m actually glad I’m doing this whole thing now, as it gives me things to do during the day when I’m not at work.  I don’t really hang out with too many people in this town, mostly because the people I know are usually too busy at their job to want to hang out, and when they do hang out they do stuff I don’t find all that fun, i.e. drinking, smoking, more drinking, more smoking, and partying at places where they can – you guessed it – drink and smoke. 

And frankly, I find none of that stuff fun.  To me, it’s just a life-waster – it’s as if the person said, “you know what?  I’m trapped in my own life and have no goals for myself, so I’m going to spend my down time doing things that will numb me of life’s pain.” 

The sad part?  These people have life goals they once aspired to, and even now they might SAY they want to do something, but, in the words of Lil Wayne (and, for the record, I can’t believe I’m actually quoting this guy), “They just talkin’ bout it.”  They don’t plan to actually follow through with their imagined goals, so they don’t try to reach them.  I’d like to think that, even if this whole plan doesn’t work out, I’ll get at least a lil’ credit for TRYING.

‘Nuff said about that – I got some other sites to attend to, more music to make, and another video to map out.  Peace!

-A.P.T.

E-mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com


Above: The original version of “O-Bama O-Bama” (re-dubbed “Obama Milli” by the public at large)!

This week’s song/music video is called “Obama, Obama” (Re-produced by ME, Inspired by Lil’ Wayne and Bangladesh).

DOWNLOAD THIS SONG FOR .99 CENTS: A.P.T. Song: “Obama, Obama” – .99

AVAILABLE ON “THE A.P.T. LP”, ONLY 6.99: A.P.T. Presents: “The A.P.T. LP!” (Mail-order CD Version also available at link for 7.99)

AVAILABLE ON “THE GREAT BLACK HOPE” LP, ONLY 6.99 :  A.P.T. – “The Great Black Hope” (CD Version also available for 7.99)

LEASE THE “OBAMA” INSTRUMENTAL FOR 29.99: Click HERE for info!

And please, SEND DONATIONS – Click HERE For More Info!

INSIGHT INTO A SONG:

I’ve been a fan of “Weird Al” Yankovic since the 1980s.  His parodying of other people’s songs were always hilarious to me, and when I started writing songs I basically did what he did: took a subject, found a song that I could bastardize with said subject, and make the old song funny via my new song.

Eventually I started writing my own songs sans the parody, but every once in a while a song will come out that makes me think of a chorus or song lyric that makes it worth trying to remake the original.

It is with that thought that I present today’s song, “Obama Obama.”  It’s a remake (read: not a direct parody) of one of the hottest songs out right now, Lil’ Wayne’s “A Milli.”  I swear, everywhere I walk in Atlanta I hear cars passing by playing that song… but it hasn’t gotten old to me yet!

Originally, I was going to remake the song saying my initials in lieu of the words “A Milli” (i.e. “A.P.T., A.P.T., A.P.T., A.P.T….” yeah, it matches up – go ahead and try it!), but I didn’t think that would make the song funny enough in concept.  Then, one day at work, it just hit me: instead of saying my name, I could use Obama’s!  That would give me a whole LOT to write about!

People think making a parody song is easy.  WRONG!  I spent more time on this one song that on all the other songs I have on here so far (except for “Erectile Dysfunction,” which is a REAL parody and took a while to write).

Unlike an original song, a re-make/parody has to have other elements that will make people laugh.  The song structure has to be similar to the original, as does the beat, certain ad-libs, voice inflection… parodying is a JOB, people!!  As such, I had to listen to that darn “A Milli” song about 50,000 times this week before I could even start writing it!

And with the subject matter – Barack Obama – there’s so many angles I could write from.  I wanted to try and bring mention to as many Barack-related election issues as possible.  Not issues in the sense of “this is what Obama’s all about,” but more like, “these are some of the things that have been tied to his campaign.”  In the course of the song, I mention the flag pin thing, his middle name being Hussein, Pastor Wright, the KKK, and other things I won’t mention because I don’t want to give away the whole song here 🙂

Once I finished writing the song, I had to go back and try to mock Lil’ Wayne.  He raps like a skitzo on the song, constantly changing his flow and pronunciation of words, so when I recorded it I had to record each set of verse by itself, listening to Wayne’s version immediately before recording mine.  Truly, again, it was like a JOB, only fun!

Some Interesting Song Tidbits:

(1) Because I couldn’t find the original beat without the words “A Milli” being said over and over again, I had to re-make the beat from scratch.  I have a Fruity Loops program, and, after studying the original beat very carefully, I realized how simplistic it is: outside of the “A Milli” sample, the entire beat is nothing more than an 808 drum, a clap, and a tap drum, played in the same pattern ad nausea!  I can’t believe the original person got PAID for it – and probably a lot, too!

(2) Re-doing Lil’ Wayne’s voice is hard.  My usual voice is a little deep, but Weezy sounds… well, Weezy, and nasely.  That’s why my voice in this song sounds higher and more strained than usual.

(3) My favorite line in the song is the one following the line: “Rednecks saaaay he won’t beat John McCain…”  I won’t spoil it for you here, but needless to say, some racist White people have some very dumb reasons NOT to vote for Barack!

INSIGHT INTO A VIDEO SHOOT:

Coming up with a video idea for this song was even HARDER.  I didn’t know what I wanted to do, and there were many direction I could go.

My first idea was to act like I was a representative speaking on behalf of Barack, but I didn’t have a podium for a prop.  The second idea was to dress up like Lil’ Wayne – I almost did this, and was going to buy a dread lock wig… but when I called the costume/wig shop they said it would cost more than I wanted to spend.  Too bad – I think I could have pulled it off (except for me being light-skinned and Wayne being… well, much darker!).

By the time Saturday hit, I still didn’t have too much of a concept, other than I wanted to hang up a blue background with pics of Obama campaign signs behind me.  I also knew I didn’t just want to spend the whole video in one outfit.  I filmed the first segment with me wearing the blue striped shirt and black dress pants, and was trying to figure out what to wear next…

And that’s when it hit me: I could be three characters, each one representing a potential Obama voter!

When you see the video, the guy in the blue-striped shirt is the middle-aged working guy.  The second person – the one with shorts, a sideways hat, and a “Las Vegas” shirt – is an older teenager (18 or 19 – I can still pull it off for a few more years!).  The third guy – wearing a brown jacket-like shirt over a white shirt with brown slacks – is an older gentleman.  Looking back, I wish I had whited up my thin beard with flour… but his movements are slower than the other two, so hopefully it’ll be distinquishable.

I also decided to keep the camera in one position.  I got this idea from my last video, “Smile 4 Dad (Letter 2 My Father), where I did a small scene with me in front of a stone statue, and sliced it up to look like I was in different places chopped-up style.  The result is I am constantly changing into 3 people, while having it look like the rest of the scene is stationary.  GENIUS!

Some Interseting Video Tidbits:

(1) I use pictures throughout the video.  There is one girl you will see in various video pics – her name… will not be given out on the internet until I get the okay to do so, but she is a very good friend of mine and a HUGE Barack Obama supporter.  I wanted her to film a small part for me to include in the video and send it to me (she lives in another state), but she had to go out of town.  Luckily, she was nice enough to allow me to use some of her pics from one of the Obama rallys she went to.  It’s so nice to have friends that want to help out, so THANK YOU!!

(2) I printed out the Obama signs used in the background.  The one hanging by itself near the left of the camera starts out blue at the top, and starts turning pink at the bottom.  The reason: my printer started to run out of ink.  Such is the world of home-made music videos!

(3) Actual shoot time for this video took about an hour.  Actual edit time: about 8 hours.  Editing is NOT as easy as it looks.  I say that to say: I worked hard on this video, so SHOW IT TO EVERYBODY YOU CAN!!

That’s all for now – see you next Sunday!

-A.P.T.

P.S. Here are the lyrics to “Obama Obama,” as requested by… well, many people:

Intro:
A.P.T.!

Yeah I’m goin’ in…

Verse 1:
Call him “President,” he’s the next new President here
Senator, from Illinois, yeah
His criteria compared to John McCain just isn’t fair
Cause he’s  B-L-A-C,  so the eyes are on he
Through his pencil,  he write legislation, with the country on his mind
And he don’t coat ish, cause he ain’t got time
Every second, minute, hour, KKK wanna devour
He got guards ready to pop ‘em, with their ch-ch-ch-ch-choppers
Every brother, mother, sister, cousin, grandma wanna hump him
Even got Hilary Clinton on the side ready to jump him
Tell the Clintons “Ha ha ha ha,” couldn’t catch him, couldn’t stop him
They go by the party rules, if you can’t beat him, you can’t top him
Thought she’d smack him, couldn’t pop ‘em, Delegates, couldn’t cop ‘em
Bill Clinton couldn’t help her, too bad she couldn’t drop ‘em, woo!

Man, Obama‘s so Illlll…

Verse 2:
Obama goes here, Obama goes there
Sayin’ “Yes We Can” with wife Michelly, he’s hittin’ that derriere
He travel to Arizona, ready to cause some drama
Hopin’ McCain will comment, “Look at that bastard Obama
He’s too young, he’s too hip, Negros always ‘causin’ problems”
His pale-lookin’ face got him lookin’ like a goblin!
Mac-Cain, Mac-Cain, please don’t vote for Mac-Cain
First day up in office, talkin’ ‘bout some heart pains
Call the ambulance, QUICK! All you hear is sirens
His temper isn’t private – Dang, I hate a mad prick
Don’t you hate a mad prick? Plus, McCain’s an old prick
Barack’s a younger guy, So choose him, he’s the right pick
(Laugh) But if you choose the wrong pick
Your step-son’ll probably end up in Iraq quick!
His health clan plan is so immac’late
So even if your broke, and can’t afford to take a doc trip
You’ll be feelin’ much better – not sick
And, he’s okay, but his wife’s sick
And her back’s thick, And her walk’s slick
She’s a fly chick – I’d hit!

Man, Obama‘s so Illlll…

Verse 3:
He’s makin’ history like X, King and Douglas, and RFK
Obama, he’s that “new black,”  true that
Red-necks saaaay “He won’t beat John McCain
He don’t wear a flag pin, his middle name’s Hussein,” but
Who gon’ be dat boy dat doubt dat boy dey call “Obama”
Got Republicans sweatin’ like they up in Saunas (whew!)
Even McCain’s 90-something mama
Be ready to pull his lever every hour (Laugh)
And I’d rather eat a field mouse
Than to see John McCain in the White House
Vote Obama in, and I promise
He won’t turn back into some Uncle Thomas (Aaaaaa!)
No Aunt Jemimah or Southern Fried chicken
Call him “Chief Obama,” or “Mr. Keeps on Tickin”
Man, Pastor Wright’s comments couldn’t stop his tally
Even Oprah Winfrey said she was behind him
People, I say this country’s no hope without him
But he’s gotta go out and relate to everybody
He do what he do, like give his wife a hug and then a fist dap
Gotta do that stuff in public, so the hood’ll know that –
He’s black
Gotta use big words, white people love to hear it
If they hear it, they don’t fear him, they don’t know him, but they feel him
That’s real….

Obama… ‘08… White House, a-ha!

E-Mail: aptsongs@hotmail.com

MySpace: www.myspace.com/NotoriousAPT