There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
DJ Shadow’s Endtroducing made just about everyone’s 1996 cool-as-shit list. Among the highlights was “Why Hip Hop Sucks in ’96,” which answered that question with the sampled refrain, “It’s the money.” Maybe nothing’s changed. And, to judge from Shadow’s somewhat mournful Web digest entries (according to which, he is, among other things, just another “cool underground DJ” who can’t outsell all the “crappy records”), you get the sense that the turntableist hasn’t found much solace in his years on a major. And though his big-pocketed label, Universal, is pressuring him to tack a Shadow track onto another TV commercial, he seems reluctant. After suffering the indignity of a “down-tempo” assignation by some listeners (and he ain’t triphop either, he maintains) and seeing his obscure sampling sources digested and spewed back at him by DJs-come-lately, Shadow takes a slightly different approach on his latest, Private Press. Less funk-beholden on the sample side and rife with vocal snippets, the disc ranges in emotion—from moody (“Six Days”) to stomping (“Giving Up the Ghost”). Expect hiphop ragamuffins to be out in force, mellowed by expectation and reverence for a man still at the top of his game. Doors are at 8 p.m. Saturday, July 13, at Nation, 1015 Half St. SE. $21. (202) 554-1500. (Mark Williams)