As I’ve told most of you, the big news this week is that casting just began for the MTV/Rolling Stone reality show I’ve been writing about. I had figured that, since it begins taping in June, casting had already been completed – but apparently I was wrong. The lucky contestants will be staff writers for the Stone, and the winner will get a one year contract. Will I apply? If I have the time to get my shit together (the app. is due April 7), then I probably will.

Jann is out of the office this week, and they’ve been working on re-doing his office and bringing in a lot of new furniture, carpets and such – perhaps for the show? The office is already rather pristine and new, so it seems strange that they’re trying to make it look even more new.

A few weeks ago, I transcribed an interview with Brooklyn rapper, Papoose (I meant to post about this sooner, but it was mid-terms week). The piece on him ran in this week’s issue, under the top 10 artists to watch piece. If you read it, you’ll notice that the two quotes from him are basically along the lines of — (I’m paraphrasing here) — “I’m the best rapper out there right now,” and “my mix-tapes sell like drugs.” Seems a little cocky, eh?

Fact is, the entire interview was him talking about how amazing he is – all because he appeared on a Kool G Rap album back in the late ’90s. I was intrigued, though, because he said that he raps about a lot of social/political issues. He also said that he has a song on his upcoming album that he thinks will change the world. Now, of all of people, I definitely think that it’s possible for a song to change the world. However, with statements this bold – well, being the journalist that I am, I had to investigate and see if he could back it up.

I found him on myspace and downloaded the two songs with working downloads – “Address Me As Mister” (download), and “New Era” (download). And — well, I was incredibly disappointed.

Not only does he completely steer clear from mentioning any sort of political/social issue, he just flaunts his huge ego. Now, ego can be a good thing – I can admit that I’m more attracted to people who are a little cocky/confident than people who aren’t, and I was (still am!) a huge fan of Project Runway’s Santino Rice. Thing is, I have to see the reason for that ego. It’s one thing to sing about how good you are – it’s another to sing about how good you are without truly showing us.

It’s not that the songs are bad – it’s just that they’re a little much. Other rappers have been around for years – other rappers have collaborated with well-known rappers (the rap community is especially incestuous when it comes to collaborations). Don’t tell me you’re good just because you had a good song that people raved about (“Alphabetical Slaughter” is the track everyone raves about, but I haven’t been able to find it). On “New Era,” he talks about what a good lyricist he is, but then quotes Jay-Z. If you’re such a good lyricist, why are you quoting Jay-Z?

Now, I can’t judge an artist based on a handful of songs (I have listened to the others on his profile, I just couldn’t get the downloads to work). He does show promise – but maybe he should show us his good shit instead of just telling us that he is capable of making it.