written by David Reid
Michael ‘House Shoes’ Buchanan has been apart of the hip hop community since the mid-90s. He transitioned from hip hop head, to resident DJ at St. Andrew’s Hall in Detroit, to owner of his own record label Street Corner Music. House Shoes, whether noticed or not, has acted as a strong backbone for the hip hop community by upholding integrity and workmanship as important values. He is infamous for his ability to recognize talent and is presently able to showcase such talent through Street Corner Music.
House Shoes is credited with introducing the art of James Yancey to the world by using his residency at St. Andrew’s hall to play, for unsuspecting ears, the sweet sampling technique of one of hip hops greatest. But he did not stop there. Over the years House Shoes used his position at St. Anderw’s Hall as a platform to reinforce a spiritual element to the music. His focus was not to play music to drunk people, well at least not all the time. Rather it was a more serious. For the participants, going to St. Andrew’s Hall on a Friday night was a beloved ritual. This type of attitude towards music oriented the choices of what would be played. Conscious lyrical content and killer production were the primary qualities needed if the music were to be deemed appropriate. House Shoes remained in this position for a few years building reputation along the way. Many events took place but to make a long story very short he eventually relocated to Los Angeles were he is currently living.
Never losing his spirit for introducing unsuspecting ears to great music House Shoes began his own record label called Street Corner Music. It began in tandem with a project called “The Gift”. After living in Los Angeles for a few year Shoes decided to begin releasing beat tapes from various, not universally known producers onto soundcloud. But he saw another opportunity. Shoes was hoping to reintroduce the value of owning a piece of music not only through the records but the linear notes and clever covers which imitate those previously released on Blue Note Records. Shoes would call producers he felt worthy of a record and work with their material to help shape the album. The Gift was a ten volume series, which have, for the most part, sold out. You can still cop the last in the series on fatbeats.com or check your local record store. They are worth the purchase.
But don’t worry! Being the man he is Shoes did not stop there. He released, and still is releasing, music off of his label. The two stand outs are Doc ILLingsworth and Swarvy. Two insanely talented musicians, the former from Detroit and the latter Los Angeles, who Shoes helped by providing them a platform to release their work. ILLingsworth released a music video for his song “Everhard” at the beginning of the month. Swarvy was placed on the top ten Artists to watch by an article in LA Weekly. You can listen to both on Shoes’s soundcloud linked above. And when your done listening you can go cop the records on fatbeats.com!