This summer, you can't miss the new Wing Luke Asian Museum exhibition dedicated to Seattle's Asian Pacific American (APA) hiphop community. Opening July 5, It's Like That: APAs and the Seattle Hip-hop Scene will make several of the old trouts reminisce about back in the day, when Nestor Rodriguez (AKA Nasty Nes) was on the scene. Nes arrived in Seattle in 1970 from the Philippines and grew up one of the only Filipino kids in the Yesler Terrace neighborhood of the Central District. In one interview, Nes recalled his authenticity in hiphop culture being called into question early on--but he persevered through the BS and paid his dues in the community, and after establishing Rap Attack, the first all-hiphop radio show on the West Coast, in 1980, his credibility in the hiphop community definitely became elevated.

Rap Attack was a tremendous resource that helped put local artists on the radio airwaves. While some look to Sir Mix-A-Lot as the man who put Seattle hiphop on the map, what they might not realize is that there was a man behind Mix (besides his manager Ricardo, of course) who helped catapult several artists to places beyond their basements or the Pharmacy by making connections in other markets. Nasty Nes was a pioneer in this town, and his presence is reflected in the exhibit--along with several other pioneering artists from Seattle, like the DVS Crew. It's Like That focuses on, but isn't limited to, APAs who've put it down in the town in the past, and the people who put it down right now: members of the Massive Monkees crew, DJs Soul One and E-Rok, and MCs JFK and Karim from Oldominion, among others. "We have a local scene with a long history, and [it works] in contrast to how Asians are looked at in hiphop nationally, as novelty acts," said George Quibuyen, who besides being an employee at the Wing Luke is also an activist, poet, and MC in the group Blue Scholars. "In general, Seattle doesn't have that same attitude towards APAs. Asians locally have made a name for themselves, especially in the b-boy and DJ sectors. A lot of them relate to hiphop, having experienced similar oppressive conditions as the working-class black and Latino communities which the culture was born out of."

In other local news, the hard work that MC Insane and the crew at Fuzzy Lounge have been putting in is starting to show. Insane has made his presence felt at MC battles for quite some time through several battles in the Pacific Northwest, from the small events to the big ones like Brainstorm. Cats have taken notice: He and his crew at Fuzzy Lounge have landed themselves a slot performing on nine dates for the Vans Warped Tour. (Talib Kweli is also performing on the Vans Warped Tour, but need I go on about him?) While they haven't quite reached the level to be performing on the big stage, Fuzzy Lounge definitely have a good opportunity to plant some seeds by hitting up the West Coast leg of the tour, which starts July 4 in Vancouver, B.C., and finishes up in Sacramento July 13. The tour hits the Gorge this Saturday, July 5, and MC Insane and Foolchild will be performing at the Code of tha Cutz: Project B-Girl stage, if you happen to be heading out there.

KRS-One gave a fuming statement last week regarding his record label, Koch, releasing an unfinished album to the public, saying, "This is insane, this is insane, this is so egregious, this is so devious." Apparently the legendary Bronx rapper had a tribute song to Jam Master Jay that the label decided to take off, in addition to other songs that didn't make the cut. The label also incorrectly labeled the album Kristyles instead of Kristyle. Why Kris decided to wait until the release date to make a big stink is beyond me--I find it really hard to believe, given his track record, that KRS failed to realize these changes were happening before now. It goes to show communication goes both ways, and for all the shit artists talk about their labels in their songs, sometimes you have to think about the other side of the coin, and think about the artists dicking over the labels by not taking responsibility sooner and badmouthing them later. Whether or not that's the case in this scenario is beyond me, but it definitely should be put out there that artists can be bad guys too. SAMUEL L. CHESNEAU

REQUIRED LISTENING 1. Gang Starr, "Peace of Mine" (Virgin)

2. Ice Cube, "No Vaseline" (Priority)

3. Nas feat. Pharell, "Flyest Angel" (Ill Will)

4. Last Emperor feat. Prince Paul, "The Great Pretender" (Raptivism)

5. Main Source, "Just a Friendly Game of Baseball" (Wild Pitch)

6. Method Man feat. Ghostface & Streetlife, "Drummer" (Def Jam)

7. M.O.P., "4 Life" (The Roc)

8. KRS-One, "Can't Stop, Won't Stop" (Jive)

9. Jamal, "Fades 'em All (remix)" (Rowdy)

10. OutKast feat. Jay-Z, "Flip Flop Rock" (Aquemini)

Support The Stranger