Common

Evil Monito // Down With Us

Mr. Kim reading 944 What comes to mind when you hear the word “tastemaker?” Is it a celebrity? The cool guy in the back of the class with the shades and leather jacket? The girl with 10,000 “friends?”

For me, it’s a dude like Rickey Kim. Rickey is the new editor of 944 Magazine’s LA edition. In only a couple months, he’s changed the face of the magazine, putting Common on a cover that’s usually reserved for models, and adding a bit of Eastside culture to a very Westside rag.

But wait, there’s more. Rickey is also the editor of Evil Monito, a very cool, very progressive fashion and culture online magazine.

And he writes a personal blog at Mr. Kim Says.

And he’s a partner in riottt.com, a blog network for urban tastemakers.

And he’s a snappy dresser.

We recently had one of our occasional sit-downs, and I got to hear more about his visions for all of his various ventures. This dude has a lot going on, and he seems to be getting it all done.

What I think separates Rickey from the rest of the hipster set is his level-headed approach to being on top of everything new and cool. Most of the guys doing a lot less than him are so caught up in their own swagger, they become caricatures of themselves. Rickey keeps it humble, and it seems he never sleeps.

Brands who belong at the cutting edge should probably be doing business with Rickey.

Common x Jimmy Kimmel Show // On The Run

Common onstage at Jimmy Kimmel Couple weeks ago, I went to the Jimmy Kimmel Show to see Common perform. Thanks to Jimmy's sports booker, John Carlin for the green room and backstage hospitality, and to Juxt Interative CMO (and part-time Rebel evangelist), Josh Mooney for making it happen. Mooney brought Paul Sutton from 180 (agency for Adidas, Boost, etc.), and another dude called Duke Fightmaster — his real name, which was a topic of conversation every time we met someone new — who hosts an eponymous variety show online at dukefightmaster.com.

I think I’ve been locked away working for too long, but it really felt like a big night out.

John got us on stage for Common’s set. The curly head in the bottom center of the photo belongs to Danny Masterson, another guest that night. What you don’t see is that as I snapped this picture, Serena Williams is standing directly to my right, and Interscope’s Tim Reid to my left. Well-rounded group.

Common recently remarked that Obama will change hip hop. I hope he’s right. But it didn’t change his set. He brought the same kind of fire he always does, on this night with a live band. He even gave Pontiac its money’s worth, weaving them into a little intro freestyle to acknowledge that they sponsor the stage. I wonder how that’s paying off for them. They’re obviously getting impressions, but does anyone care at all - does it make a difference?