"My attitude is celibate...I just don't give a f**k"

- Kriminul

Here we are at the end of 2010, and for the first time ever the podcast features a special guest! Danny Drive Thru is a Manchester producer and DJ who has what can only be described as a burning passion for music as well as a bucketful of talent. I met him a few years ago at the scratch workshop A Kut Above The Rest where he was already ferocious on the turntables but in the years since then his production knowledge has really come along as well. He's not only released solo material but has been drafted in by names like Sneaky (Fingathing) and Chima Anya to bring his special flavour, and he's kindly come in for a chat and brought along a few tracks for us to hear!
You can keep up with Drive Thru on Soundcloud and on Twitter - good things coming for 2011!

Apologies for the voiceover sound quality; I know the volume moves around a bit, but it was tough for us to both work around the one mic setup!

PS - the very fly "Boomboxatron" t-shirt in the photo was designed by Selina from Jelly Empire :o)


Danny Drive Thru : Virtua Rap

We kick things off with a track from this month's guest, what can only have been a painstaking piece of work. This track was premiered at last year's C'mon Feet Xmas Party, and everyone (including me) lost their minds! Drive Thru had already made some noise with his "Virtua Ante Up," and this tune just took the concept to the level where no-one else should even attempt to do anything like it. Good way to open the proceedings! 

For those that don't know, the tracks being versioned here are; "Simon Says" by Pharoahe Monch, "Full Clip" by Gang Starr and "Shook Ones, Pt.2" by Mobb Deep - three certified classics!

Air Adam : 1-Up

Just keeping things on a similar sonic vibe with this one; I did this track a few years ago for the Game Over graffiti crew strictly using sounds from old 80s arcade machines! I keep wondering whether or not to get an MC on this one...

Erick Sermon : Stay Real (Remix)

90s business! Not too many people seem to know this remix but it's classic Erick Sermon, reworking a track from his first solo album "No Pressure." I think I first heard this back in Leeds on a wicked DJ P-Wiz aka Oddball (formerly of Breaking The Illusion) mixtape, so it brought back memories to pull it out for this episode.

Otis Jackson : It's All The Same (Hip-Hop Version)

Remixed soul number for you; Otis Jackson is famously (well, amongst record geeks) the father of Madlib and Oh No, and it's Oh No who brings the remix flavour on this single. Isn't family a wonderful thing? The other side of this 12" has a version labelled as the "R&B version" which I think is actually better, but wouldn't have fit into this spot!

GZA ft. D'Angelo : Cold World (RZA Remix)

Very appropriate for the current conditions! Coming back with another 90s remix, this time from the Wu's big power streak of monster solo LPs. This particular version is the A-side of the "Cold World (Remix)" 12", which also includes a mix by the legendary engineer Bob Power and the brilliant "B.I.B.L.E (Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth)" by Killah Priest.

1982 (Termanology & Statik Selektah) : Word Up

This is taken from their smile-worthy free EP which you should be dashing to another window to download right now! The combination of these two has been very fruitful in terms of quality material, and I hope it's something that continues into the future!

Danny Drive Thru : Hound

The man's back again with a warped bluesy beat, showing how he likes to get dark and dense with the sound. This beat is available for any MC who thinks they can tame it - get in touch via his Soundcloud if you're interested!

1982 (Termanology & Statik Selektah) ft. Bun B & Masspike Miles : You Should Go Home

One of the tunes I've played a lot lately; I just couldn't resist having two tunes by these guys this month. An added bonus is the great guest verse by the Port Arthur, Texas legend Bun B of UGK (who has worked with Termanology previously on "This Is How We Rock" and the hook by Boston vocalist Masspike is good enough to make me wish I had the skills to sing along :o) Probably the most obvious choice for a single on the album, but also one of the best tracks on there regardless.

Larry Gold & Carol Riddick : Loving You

Larry Gold is a legendary string arranger as well as a cellist and producer, known and respected for his work for everyone from McFadden & Whitehead and Teddy Pendergrass to Mary J. Blige and Kanye West. Carol Riddick is a Philadelphia born-and-raised soul singer who has brought her magic touch to artists like Jill Scott and Musiq, as well as her own material. The two combine on this gorgeous track from the "Larry Gold presents Don Cello & Friends" album; you've got to like this, no matter how hard you are!

DMP : Don't Wanna Give That Up

Virginia in the house! Been meaning to play this for aaages! Nottz' production on this is nice and silky, and the lyrics are fairly decent but I think they should have kept the metaphor going for a while longer before revealing the real subject of the track; for me, it becomes obvious too quickly. Still, maybe I'm grading harshly - good tune.

Marvin Gaye : "T" Stands For Trouble

If you know your 90s Hip-Hop, you might recognise a sample here, and either way, you've got to appreciate the quality of this killer instrumental soundtrack cut. If you don't know about Marvin Gaye at all, you should probably go stand in the corner and think about what you did. Anyway, I've mostly been playing the "Here, My Dear" album this month but this is from his top-class "Trouble Man" soundtrack - do yourself a favour and buy both.

Danny Drive Thru : Eclipsemoonsun

Another instrumental from this month's guest, and funnily enough we also had a lunar eclipse this month! Once again, available for MCs, get in touch with Danny if you're interested.

Blahzay Blahzay ft. Ol' Dirty Bastard : Danger 2004

No-one seems to know this remix - I've played it out a few times but sometimes it's hard to appreciate a track for the first time when you've had a few drinks, so hopefully you'll enjoy it here! ODB was famously sampled on the legendary hook of the original and so it's fitting to have him on this version; can't even remember where I found the vinyl but it's a treasured piece, just that extra bass is worth the price of admission!

Jigmastas : Let Me Hear It

Yes please! This tune's on the Tommy Boy Black Label "Hip Hop 101" compilation which is where I first encountered it, but a little shopping trip in London uncovered it on a 12" - the instrumental will definitely come in handy! As usual with Jigmastas, DJ Spinna is on production and the bassline master brings a bouncy, squelchy low end and some cracking drums to this one for Kriminul to effortlessly ride over. 

Doujah Raze : Irish Cream

Unashamed, straightforward, dope Hip-Hop, 2002 banger. Can't remember where I heard this first (probably on a download) but have had the 12" for a while and think it's one that every Hip-Hop DJ should have, even though it's not well known. Doujah Raze is a Virginian MC who's worked with Tribeca which is how I think I was introduced to him, and he just has a really confident flow on here. Production here is handled by someone called Rollen Salvenera; never heard of him before or since, but he smacks it out of the park and the scratching at the end is just ridiculous - I made a conscious decision not to even mix over it just so you could hear it as he intended!

Big Twan : One Time 4 The Lyricist

Love this - Spinna on production, hard vocals, and that Raekwon sample in the hook just completes it. This 12" is also worth owning for the wicked "Hellgate Rebel" which features Big Kwam on the mic and Tony Vegas of Scratch Perverts on the cut.

Alchemist ft. Twin : Big T.W.I.N.S (Instrumental)

Hard beat on this Mobb-connected number, Danny's next to me saying he's now amped up to go and make some beats that sound rugged like this one!

Chima Anya : Good Lord (produced by Danny Drive Thru)

This is a draft version, but Danny's kindly brought this along for you guys to have the first listen!

Remember to support the artists! If there's anything you like here, search out more of their material and try to buy the stuff you like the most - whatever the format! Seeing the artists live whenever they're in your area is probably the best way to put money in their pocket, so if you can stretch to it in these recessionary times then that's a winner :o) If you have Spotify in your country, it's a great way to familiarise yourself with a vast sea of tunes...

Direct download: Episode_19.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:00am EST


Shut The Truck Up


"I'mma show you how to do it."

- Royal Flush

It's that time again, fifty minutes of the good stuff coming from my collection! It's an all Hip-Hop selection this month, but I think pretty much everyone listening will hear a minimum of 4 or 5 tracks they've never heard before. Heavy on the B-sides, album cuts, remixes and internet tracks this month...enjoy!


Mr.Voodoo : Don't Do It

Tough tune from the former Natural Elements MC, taken from his "Let The World Know" 12"/EP - this is the last track of six (so a deep B-side) and is easily my favourite track on there. Voodoo did an outstanding job self-producing this one and combines the heavy beat with an all-out microphone assault!  

Cali Agents : Point Blank Range (Instrumental)

Roddy Rod of Maspyke brings us this extra chunky beat from the B-side of the "Neva Forget" 12" single, one I flicked past so much in the last few months while doing selections I thought I just had to include it here - I think it made for a nice blend with the opening cut.

Royal Flush : Do It

The power of suggestion? A more incredibly negative message is difficult to find, but it does sound good... Originally I heard this on Spotify but then found it on the Yosumi (break it down slowly) Records compilation "Game Over II" which is definitely worth picking up, along with the original "Game Over," which was notable for its liberal use of video game samples! Production here is by Domingo and DJ Rob, one of those beats you can't help but move your neck to!

Katch 22 : Lifestyles Of The Poor And Ruffneck

Heavy UK action from one of the best acts of their era, taken from their second (and double) album, "Dark Tales From Two Cities." If you can find it, pick up a copy! Katch put out three albums before disbanding, but Huntkillbury Finn (now HKB:FiNN) is still recording in a variety of styles and DJ Marga is doing some DJing again.

Underclassmen : Crush Competition

Huge B-side from this Swiss crew (A-side was "365 Live") - the MCs are originally from Boston so that explains the accents, in case you were wondering!

Das EFX : Gimme Dat Micraphone

I never took to the "Straight-Up Sewaside" LP as much as "Dead Serious," but very few groups were forced to so radically change their style between their first and second albums due to massively widespread biting! That said, this was the first track I heard off this album and I think it's a killer. I believe Charlie Marotta did the production on this and it has that kind of dense early/mid 90s heaviness that you often miss nowadays; home cooking vs microwave beats?

Trick Daddy : Thug Niggas Don't Live That Long (Instrumental)

A little something from Florida, taken from the soundtrack to the HBO series "Oz" - I got this on a sampler 12" so unfortunately can't tell you who produced it. Just a cool instrumental I've finally found a chance to play :o)

DJ Spinna ft. Shadowman : Drive

Spacey and bassy number from a producer who really is a master of the style, and as longtime listeners to the podcast will know, a favourite of mine. Taking on the vocal duties is Shadowman, from a crew called Old World Disorder who I can't say I know much about but he definitely does his thing on this track. You can find this one on Spinna's BBE album "Here To There," where he runs styles from Hip-Hop all the way through to House!

Saukrates, Self Scientific & E-Rule : Wonderful World

Taken from DJ Adam 12's "World Wide Originals" EP, I somehow either didn't hear this track or forgot it existed; dug it out this month and it fit perfectly! All the MCs come with quality verses over the dark beat, making this a definite underground gem. E-Rule/Erule is an MC who has powerful entry on my own vinyl wants list; if you see a copy of that record, buy it without hesitation as it's fantastic. If you're feeling generous, buy it without hesitation for me as a present :o)

Blue Sky Black Death : Lord Of Our Vice

Picked up the "Late Night Cinema" album on spec from Fat City in Manchester before it closed and it turned out to be a great purchase - a double vinyl package of big, dramatic instrumental Hip-Hop. BSBD are a West Coast (San Francisco & Seattle) production duo who seem to have that epic sound down to a tee!

The X-Ecutioners ft. Wayne-O : Raida's Theme (Remix)

I forgot I had this - probably because it was on CD :o) The original is good but the remix is definitely superior; the drums still smack but there's more space in the track to help the scratching stand out even more! You can find this on a 12" but this is from the Asphodel Records "Asphodelic" compilation - and is one of the standout cuts.

Kuartz : Hey Hey (Instrumental)

Kuartz is an up-and-coming Manchester producer who is one to watch out for; he's finding his style and he's extremely prolific,  cranking out beats for local MCs at a rate the rest of us can only wish to keep up with! He sent me a few things to check out a little while back and this was just the right time to slot this particular number in. Keep up the good work!

donwill + suhBURB : Salsoul

I *think* I first found this via FWMJ's "Rappers I Know" blog, which is well worth checking out. This track is from the combination of suhBURB on the beats and Tanya Morgan's Donwill on the mic, and in fact the "Suburban Sprawl" collaboration album it comes from is available totally free! Just click the link to get at the whole project.

The Kid Daytona : Never Be The Same

I first heard of this MC on the brilliant Juan Epstein podcast. From what I can make out, The Kid Daytona has come up under the wing of Cipha Sounds and has some powerful co-signs - keep an eye on this one.  The whole album is available absolutely free here - worth grabbing a download!

Theodore Unit : Wicked With Lead

Ghostface and Trife take the mic on this one, with K-Def on production. That break never gets old!

Foreign Exchange : Downtime (Nicky Troutman Bounce To The Ounce Remix)

Whooooooooo! I bought the "Connected" album (as you should too) on vinyl when it came out and this wasn't on there - I just chanced upon it on Spotify, apparently it's from an extended version which is available on CD. Nicolay kills it on the beat and Phonte (of Little Brother, for those that don't know) is on point with the flow as always, though he's also up for oxymoron of the month; "I'm roasting you f****ts 'cos I'm so diplomatic?"

Jay-Z : Change The Game (Instrumental)

The Bay Area's Rick Rock on production; probably better known for his work with people like E-40, this was one of his really big moves on the East Coast and to be honest, a beat that made me go back and check for more Jay-Z when I'd really not been the biggest fan up to that point.

Peanut Butter Wolf : The Chronicles (i will always love h.e.r)

From the first "Return Of The DJ" compilation, this isn't the most technical track on the album but I just love all the samples that he brings into this one! There's one that I think is incredible but have never been able to identify; first person to post in the comments for this article where it comes from wins a prize - seriously!

Please remember to support the artists you like! The purpose of putting the podcast out and providing the full tracklist is to try and give some light, so do use the songs on each episode as a starting point to search out more material. If you have Spotify in your country it's a great way to explore, but otherwise there's always Youtube and the like. Seeing your favourite artists live is the best way to put money in their pockets, and buy the vinyl/CDs/downloads of the stuff you like the most!



Direct download: Episode_18.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:00pm EST

Neighbourhood Live Hip-Hop Special, December 4th

If you want to catch me doing my thing, as well as seeing some top-notch live Hip-Hop performances, get yourself down to this event! The venue is the Ruby Lounge (Manchester High Street, nr. Debenhams) and for your £4/£6 entry (depending on when you get there!), you'll get performances from;

  • The Mouse Outfit : Live Hip-Hop band, making noise right now, and now incorporating Plato (Bedos & Pitch) - the entry fee is worth it just to see these guys!
  • The Natural Curriculum : Manchester party-rocking true school Hip-Hop - DJ, MCs, beatboxing; the complete musical package.
  • Whoami & Trebor : New production/lyrical duo on MyFirstMoth
  • Neighbourhood resident DJs - yours truly included!

As Camp Lo and Masta Ace might say; Uptown Saturday Night Live!

Category:events -- posted at: 2:13am EST

It's always interesting to know when putting out something like this podcast how far it's reached!

In keeping with the Hip-Hop attitude to representing where you're from, I'm using a combination of feedback from listeners and location information provided by my podcast host to produce a complete a map as possible of all the locations where downloads have been done from! The observant amongst you might have noticed the "Podcast On Tour" link in the right-hand panel; that also jumps to this map. Have a browse around, and if any of the pins in a very "general" (e.g country, state, province) area is you, let me know so I can correct it! If your town's not represented at all, let me know (ideally via a comment on this post) and I'll get it added!

PS - the colour/text on the pins has no meaning, just a way of getting round what looks like a bug in the mapping application :o)



Category:general -- posted at: 5:00am EST

Reserved For Future Use

"Took 'til now to understand it."

- Lisa Shaw

Fairly low-key month for me, but I'm pleased with the way this episode came together - finding the right tunes just seemed to come easily! Still not liking the upfaders on my old mixer, but I digress. Hope you like this month's collection!

RIP Gregory Isaacs and Eyedea...


Kurupt : Yessir

Heard this ages ago on the Spine Magazine blog and glad it eventually got a proper release. This was something like the fourth single off Kurupt's "Streetlights," which is insane as it's better than any of the others! Pete Rock is on the beat and it's a low-bubbling gem...the only thing I could say is some of the cuts aren't great and maybe a little too loud! Solid track all the same though.

Black Moon : Murder MCs (Instrumental)

On the B-side of the "Buck 'em Down" remix 12" single, this was one of the lesser-known gems from the Boot Camp Clik; DJ Evil Dee on production, bringing plenty of darkness with a side order of threat! Ok, I'm hungry now :o) This 12" has an awesome 1-2 punch, should definitely be in your collection.

KRS-ONE : Kill A Rapper

In a sense, staying with the theme from the last track...I only heard this for the first time this month when KRS performed it live in Leeds; grabbed me straight away and it stuck out as a good one for the podcast as most people won't know it. I don't know if this was at all inspired by the Chris Rock sketch that preceded it, but as it popped into my head as I was listening I thought I'd play them both together.

Group Home : Express (as labelled on 12" single, album names this "A Train X-Press")

From the beginning of what can only be called their "Post-Primo" period! The 12" I have this on is a little light on credits but I believe Li'l Dap produced this one himself and the eerie feel is bang on, as is his opening verse. Let me also say that he has one of the best voices in Hip-Hop, he could read my shopping list and it would sound ill :o) Melachi's verse isn't quite as good, but I think it's reasonable to say it's a step above his writing on the (still classic) "Livin' Proof" LP!

Nonchalant : 5 O'Clock (B.L.A.K Remix)

They don't make 'em like this anymore! Nonchalant was something of a one-hit wonder on the scene but this tune is just as relevant as when it was released 15 years ago. This particular version is taken from a 12" of remixes I found on a bargain bin shopping mission; lucky pickup!

Big Pun ft. dead prez & Prospect : The Rain And The Sun

This interlude is one of my favourite tracks on Big Pun's "Capital Punishment" LP despite the fact he doesn't rhyme on it! Featuring and produced by dead prez, after having heard this and "Selling D.O.P.E" frm the "Slam" soundtrack, I was pretty disappointed to find that their debut album sounded not much like either! Anyway, back to Pun - the late great Punisher came out in the late 90s absolutely melting down mics and while this track doesn't show his rhyme skills, I've got some things in my list of stuff to play for you in future months...for now just take this one and this too :o)

Lisa Shaw : Dim Light

Another great interlude, maybe not to everyone's taste but along with "The Rain And The Sun" it's one of the few 5-star tracks on my iPod. This is from her debut album "Cherry" and aside from being absolutely beautiful, is very fitting given the change in seasons we're going through here right now...

Air Adam : Reflex

Another beat from my archives, one of my favourites in terms of the vibe and manipulating the sample; really good for a listen I think but not one MCs were breaking their necks to jump on; a few too many changes in it perhaps.

Jay-Z : Friend Or Foe 98

Short, but not exactly sweet...killer tune though. Jay goes to his mental notebook for a grimy drug story, and DJ Premier smacks this beat crazy! I won't give away the original sample, but it's been worked just enough here to combine with the tough drums and become a monster...

Marley Marl & Craig G : Not A Word

Get 'em Craig! From the "Operation : Take Back Hip-Hop" album comes this banger; Marley Marl (one of the pioneers of sampling) with as vicious a beat as an MC could ever want, and Craig G in full-on smackdown mode against loudmouth rappers - fiiire!

Rasco : Back On The Scene

This just sprung to mind as having the right kind of sound to hold down this spot. The San Francisco native (maybe better known to some as half of Cali Agents) is just one of those solid MCs who's been putting in work for a long time. If you don't already know it, check "The Unassisted" too.

Freddie Foxxx : 8 Bars To Catch A Body

If you know Hip-Hop, that beat sounds familiar to you, doesn't it? You're saying to yourself "why is Foxxx rhyming over the 'Sound Of Da Police' instrumental?" Well I don't know all the facts but this could be an interesting story for the Hip-Hop history/trivia lovers! This track is from the original demo version of the "Crazy Like A Foxxx" album, produced by DITC - however, this version of the album was rejected and it was re-recorded with different production and the tracklist changed. Showbiz produced this and of course also "Sound Of Da Police" so what I think happened is that with the original Foxxx album shelved, the beat was re-used for what went on to be regarded as a Hip-Hop classic! Foxxx is one of the most relentlessly aggressive MCs in Hip-Hop, you won't hear him going through the motions on a verse - he's definitely not for the faint hearted!

Talib Kweli & Hi-Tek : Move Something (Instrumental)

From the era when Rawkus Records was making a lot of noise as the dominating force in the independent scene (on the East Coast, at least), and there was plenty of buzz around the label's artists as they prepared to burst out! This is one of the big tracks from that time that made some impact above ground a little bit - though I only just saw the video for the first time this month!

Onra : My Comet

First off, "Onra" sounds like the name of an Egyptian god :o) Anyway, he's actually a Vietnamese-Parisian producer who ,while often grouped under the so-called "future beats" umbrella, comes out with tracks actually containing rhythm, melody, and that certain "je ne sais quoi" ;o) This track is basically just bult around slowing and looping an old 80s R&B number and adding some effects and damn it sounds good!  Shout out to Danny Drive Thru for putting me up on this one originally!

Intro : Funny How Time Flies

One of those tunes that even in my "I hate R&B" years I still had to love; mostly because it uses the same break as Mobb Deep's "Temperature's Rising!" DJ Clark Kent is on the remix production here, and if I'd have played it a little longer you'd have heard a verse from Li'l Kim - but I know some people are already listening with screwed up faces, so we keep it moving swiftly to...

O.C. : Can't Go Wrong

Underappreciated dopeness! Taken from O.C's second album "Jewelz" which wasn't entirely warmly received when it was released but which seems to have picked up a bit of a following in retrospect, and rightfully so. As far as this track, it's nice to have a love story now and again, and a real one at that! DJ Ogee, who I must say I know little about, provides the dark, swirling production which somehow fits just right.

Common & Sadat X : One-Nine-Nine-Nine

Another Rawkus Records entry, notable for being part of the fantastic Soundbombing 2 compilation; in fact, I might have attempted to have a big of a cut/juggle with this if J-Rocc & Babu hadn't pre-emptively made anything I might do pale in comparison! Great bit of Hi-Tek production with the Chicago/Bronx connection doing the business on the mic.

J-Zone : Finale, Movement A (Instrumental)

Had to loop this to play a second time to make it long enough to use! Dope beat with serious bass from J-Zone's instrumental soundtrack (for a non-existing film) "To Love A Hooker" - worth picking up for something a little different! Zone is one of the most creative producers out and this is a better conceived and executed piece of than a lot of actual so-called soundtracks - which have the additional advantage of having a real film to follow!

Richard Ace : Stayin' Alive

You've heard this song many times, but not like this! I got this on a compilation called "Reggae Round The Clock" which I liberated from my parents' collection, but doing some looking around it seems that this was released in 1978 on 7". Couldn't believe this when I first heard it, and I've never seemed to have the opportunity to play it for anyone - until now :o)

Please remember to support the artists you like! The purpose of putting the podcast out and providing the full tracklist is to try and give some light, so do use the songs on each episode as a starting point to search out more material. If you have Spotify in your country it's a great way to explore, but otherwise there's always Youtube and the like. Seeing your favourite artists live is the best way to put money in their pockets, and buy the vinyl/CDs/downloads of the stuff you like the most!

Direct download: Episode_17.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:48am EST

It Would Appear I've Been Tagged...

"My name pops inside your head like Johnny Wishbone..."

   - Riddla

Probably the perfect time to use this photo :o) Been a busy but good month for me, hoped to get this out a little earlier but spend a bit too much time trying to tweak the sound! Hope you enjoy it anyway, dusted off some stuff I haven't played even for myself in ages...or at all for anyone else!

PS - in keeping with the title, I was going to just play 16 tracks, but couldn't resist throwing the last one in and messing it up ;o)


Terminator X ft. Chuck D & Sister Souljah : Buck Whylin'

Militant Public Enemy representation on this big early 90s track from Terminator X's first solo LP, "Terminator X & The Valley Of The Jeep Beats." The video was classic PE material too, and not the kind of thing you'd see on your average track nowadays!

Phat Kat : Don't Nobody Care About Us (Instrumental)

Detroit all the way - J Dilla beat, B-Side to "Dedication To The Suckers" 12", and to me the far better track.

K-Solo : Letterman (Pete Rock Remix)

Bam! Incredible Pete Rock remix, smashing the original with a big bat! Not only do you get the hard snare and P-Funk groove, but those trademark repeated horns in the hook combined with the cuts make this a 10/10 beat without question. K-Solo was part of EPMD's Hit Squad (this is in the days before every group had an extended musical crew), and also had the track "Spellbound" which was the source of a beef with DMX; both claimed they'd written it and been ripped off by the other. Here's the DMX version, just for comparison!

Sly & Robbie : Boops (Here To Go) & Boops (CJ Scratch Instrumental)

The legendary reggae rhythm section with their big chart hit from 1987 - I remember thinking this was amazing when I heard it as a kid and when I started buying vinyl years later I was ecstatic to find this cheap. Not only did the 12" have the original version but the other track featured here, an instrumental/scratch version featuring CJ Mackintosh, who was the 1987 DMC UK Champion. Although nowadays there's nothing technical about it, I love that transform at 11:06 - so fresh!

A Tribe Called Quest : Rap Promoter

Only short but one of my favourite cuts from "The Low End Theory," and one that performers of many stripes can probably relate to!

FT ft. M.A.F.I.A : Money All The Time

Time for a little aggro! This is from "The Anti-Backpack Movement" compilation on Tru Criminal Records, which tells you most of what you need to know about the lyrical vibe this is on :o) Production is by Buckwild of DITC and the beat really drives this track; that bassline is outrageous!

DJ Brasco ft. Frank 'n' Dank : Shut It Down (Instrumental)

French producer Brasco comes through with a banging track - Frank 'n' Dank didn't really kill this beat to be honest but I'd love to hear some freestyling over this. In fact, that might be an idea for a future episode...

DJ Skitz ft. Riddla : Vocal Workout

Skitz' classic "Countryman" producer project provides us with this track - I'm definitely going to play you more cuts from that album in the future though! He shows a lot of range on the album and on this laid-back piece he brings in London MC Riddla on the vocals. I've only just got Skitz' new "Sticksman" album in the post and I'm sure there'll be some tracks on there that'll appear on future episodes!

Faze-O : Riding High

Funk/soul classic from 1977, vintage from a fine year :o)  Much sampled but not heard often enough in its original form! I could write loads of trivia here, but why don't I let you hear it from the source?

Choclair ft. Frankenstein, Marvel & Kardinal Offishall : Internal Affairs

1998 All-Star Toronto material, produced by Day For Day. I don't have much trivia on this one, except to say I think I've used the instrumental on a number of mixtapes for myself, but somehow never got round to playing it for anyone else - until now :o)

Trishes ft. Cold Showda : New Wave

Picked this one up in Piccadilly Records in Manchester on spec and was pleased to find both sides of the 12" were solid! Trishes is an Austrian producer and Cold Showda is an American MC, so it just goes to show that quality material can come from anywhere!

DJ Premier : Sing Like Bilal (Instrumental)

Taken from the "Beats That Gathered Dust" instrumental vinyl, this beat may be familiar to those of you who have heard Joell Ortiz rhyme on it recently, but while doing the research for this show I also found that Reks had used it too - so I suppose it hasn't gathered as much dust as all that! Apologies for the weird stereo movement during the juggle - I think I need new needles!

Jeru The Damaja : D.Original

It's not one of those pretty pretty beats, and that's why it works! Jeru first came to most people's notice on Gang Starr's "I'm The Man" on the "Daily Operation" LP and while he was dope, I don't know how many predicted his huge 1-2 punch of albums that followed! First was "The Sun Rises In The East" that this is from, and then "Wrath Of The Math" (underrated?) I remember hearing this track on a mix*tape* right when it was released and it just smacked everyone in the face with its hardness. Gem!

Jigmastas : Stones

Produced by Nick Fury - you'd better do a good job producing a group if DJ Spinna is one of the members, and on this one he definitely gets it done.

Keith Lawrence ft. Rodney P : Style & Fashion

British flavour with the London Posse veteran Rodney P bringing his unmistakeable style to this track on Keith Lawrence's "Goin' True" EP; Keith's a veteran DJ with an underrated production CV (or "resume" for my US listeners!), not the biggest names necessarily but serious quality.

Krumbsnatcha : Take The Pain Away (Instrumental)

Sounds kind of Primo, maybe a little like Dilla, but it's actually a Nottz beat, from the B-Side of the "Killer In Me" 12". It's worth checking out the vocal version of this anti-domestic violence track too.

Little Brother : Nighttime Maneuvers (Remix)

Southern quality from North Carolina. The only Little Brother I've played on the podcast so far has been "Atari 2600" on Episode 6 and I'm finally getting round to playing a non-joke track by them! The original of this was on "The Listening" and was good but I like this remix from the "Chitlin Circuit 1.5" mixtape even more.

Please remember to support the artists you like! The purpose of putting the podcast out and providing the full tracklist is to try and give some light, so do use the songs on each episode as a starting point to search out more material. If you have Spotify in your country it's a great way to explore, but otherwise there's always Youtube and the like. Seeing your favourite artists live is the best way to put money in their pockets, and buy the vinyl/CDs/downloads of the stuff you like the most!

Direct download: Episode_16.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:16am EST

World Of Boxing

"This music is mine...but I'm giving it all to you."

- Space Lady

I had a different selection starting to pan out nicely but unfortunately my nice mixer with 3-band EQ mysteriously bit the dust so I decided that rather than try to force the same blends on my back-from-retirement mixer I'd go in a different direction for the month. Normal service will be resumed with a handing over of cash to the repair company, I'm sure...


Raekwon ft. Ghostface Killah & Blue Raspberry : Rainy Dayz

My favourite song on one of my favourite albums of all time, this absolutely stunned me the first time I heard it on a Saturday night in my bedroom up in Leeds, and I played it at least once every day for a good six months. I read a RZA interview once (in Fat Lace maybe?) where he said this is one of the beats he would have gladly kept for himself, and you can hear why. Blue Raspberry kills it with the vocals too - definitely my favourite Wu-singer! I think she did eventually record a solo LP but had kind of fallen out of the spotlight by then; I'd love to find a copy!

LA The Darkman : As The World Turns (Instrumental)

LA is a Wu-affiliate out of Michigan, though of course you don't hear him on this 4th Disciple-produced instrumental. Can't believe this track is over 12 years old already!

El Da Sensei ft. Pacewon, Diamond, Big Kwam : Live Shit

The ex-Artifact comes in with a slow and low number, the AA side on the "Got Dat?" single. The oft-underrated Buckwild of DITC did this beat and it shuffles along nicely with its horn and dirty guitar groove.

Blak Twang ft. Roots Manuva : Shhhoosh / ft. Seanie T et al : Shhhoosh (Remix)

I got Blak Twang's "19 Long Time" album at the same time as Gang Starr's "Moment Of Truth" - the Gang Starr was better of course but they were both getting heavy rotation and it was great to have a UK album that knocked like that. I never could hear the whole hook to this one properly, but I always remembered the line "backstabbin' me like Monica, whaaaa!" Yes, off-colour but that's part of Hip-Hop - saying some wild stuff that makes people rewind and say "no, he didn't!" The remix is a little hard to find but I decided just to slide in one of the many guest verses.

Dr.Dooom ft. Jacky Jasper : Call The Cops

From the "First Come, First Served" album, Kool Keith on a serial killer alter-ego vibe, bringing along Jacky Jasper who comes with a seriously off-key verse in keeping with the theme! I think this might have been a Kutmaster Kurt beat, correct me if I'm wrong!

Soul Supreme ft. Shuman : Shine It On 'Em

Had this 12" hanging around for ages (I think this is the bottom-billed of the three tracks on there) and this just seemed to be the right month to play it! Apologies for the sound quality - I think this vinyl and my needles don't get on! Soul Supreme is a producer out of Sweden who has cooked up some great beats. Tack! (that's Swedish for "thanks," not a dis!) As for the sample, easy one for those who remember the Eighties...

Da Beatminerz ft. M.O.P : We Run NY (Instrumental)

Big and booming, this instrumental is from a track which I believe had to be left off the "Brace 4 Impak" album due to clearance issues. The vocal is definitely worth having if you can find it, good solid shouty M.O.P!

Kurupt / Tray Deee & Slip Capone : C-Walk

Taken from Kurupt's "Kuruption!" compilation LP, always liked this one, got a West Coast bounce but not what a lot of people would class as a "typical" WC beat. Tray Deee went on to be in The Eastsidaz (alongside Goldie Loc) for those who remember. And the title? Well, that's talking about the Crip Walk, and if you need to look it up on Youtube, it's something you shouldn't be trying at home - or anywhere else!

Ras Kass : Understandable Smooth

Unreleased killer, thanks to an unclearable (and very dope) sample under those drums. Not a hard one to recognise, so I'll let you do the work ;o) Definitely one of my favourite Ras tracks, don't know who produced it but I take my hat off to them!

De La Soul : Big Mouf

Dug this one up late, it's from De La's "Are You In?" project, a mini-album/mixtape/running soundtrack which was produced in conjunction with Nike and slipped under most people's radars entirely. Took me a couple of listens to get with this track and now I'm wondering why it took even that long! I love the little edits and stops in the intro drums; reminds me of the kind of edits you might have heard the Latin Rascals or Shep Pettibone doing with reel-to-reels, razors and sticky tape!

Das EFX : Brooklyn To T-Neck

When I eventually heard of Teaneck, New Jersey, I thought "Ah, so *that's* what they were on about!" Das EFX are the only group I can think of that had their style bitten so badly (I'm not naming names, just go back and listen to releases around the same time) that they pretty much had to change it up after this album! Solid Scheme (Derek Lynch and the late Chris Charity) provide the funky instrumental, not Erick Sermon as a lot of people who didn't read the credits thought!

Willus Drummond : L.A Vacation (Instrumental)

Vocal version - not up to much. This - thumping. Got this on a 12" alongside J-Zone's "No Consequences" (quality tune). Sometimes it's just all about the beat...nice "Diff'rent Strokes" reference in his name though!

Agallah : Club Hoppin'

The shop I bought this from labelled it with something to the effect of this being something for the MTV crowd, but I don't think that kind of crowd would appreciate this beat - the real old-skool heads will recognise this break all the way! This is pretty atypical of Agallah's sound, but I like it and his energy definitely carries it strong - 24 bar final verse? I guess he liked the beat as much as me! (as an aside, the delivery of "you have no idea" in the hook is class.)

Space Lady : The Gift, Pt.2

Got to credit the man Johnny Dub for putting me up on this one when it came out, an ill 12" on GAMM records which works well in a Hip-Hop or Zapp-type mix. Apparently Space Lady is an alter-ego of someone in Swedish Hip-Hop, but as that's far from my specialist subject I couldn't tell you who. Watch it be Soul Supreme now :o)

The Beat Kids ft. Sadat X : Life Is A Juggle

Picked this one up for a listen just because I saw Sadat X was on it, and it was so unusual I just had to buy it. I can't find any info on The Beat Kids so I don't know what else they've done - I don't think I'd listen to a whole album's worth but in bite-size chunks, just right!

Afrodisiac Sound System ft. Raashan Ahmad : It's So Nice

Illlllll! Not sure why I picked this one up as I'd not heard of them but this tune is the best club tune I never hear in clubs - a nation of DJs are sleeping on it! 

Rodan : Ruler Of Day And Night (Instrumental)

I've got this on 12" but I hear it's on MF DOOM's "MM...More Food" album. Produced by M.Moreau & MF DOOM, of course based on a very well known sample for the soul crowd (even alluded to in the title), and one of those tracks that to be honest sounds better to me as an instrumental; I absolutely hated the rhyming on the vocal version, it sounded to me like a textbook example of ignoring the beat and just going off on one... *ducks DOOM fans*

Vikter Duplaix : Looking For Love  (Critical Point 58th St.Mix)

Despite the electro-bass on this one I think it needed the comedown from the last instrumental rather than being blended straight from the Afrodisiac Sound System tune. The original was a Marc Mac production but this remix is by the artist and James Poyser, and was done in the famous Electric Lady studios. Nice broken beat-type cut with a sentiment I'm sure a lot of people can relate to...


Remember to support the artists! Search out more material from those you like (if you're in a country where Spotify is available, it's a good cheap way), buy the vinyl/CDs/downloads you like the most and do go to live shows - it puts the most money in their pockets and keeps that live scene alive too :o)


Direct download: Episode_15.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:59pm EST

(27/52) Catchin' Wreck

"Backup plan's got backup..."

   - Redman

(Shoutout to DJ Greenpeace for the episode title - an old joke from back in the day!)

Just squeezing this episode in with minutes to spare - the choice of the first few tracks seemed to flow easily but it took me a long while to settle on what to include for the rest of the show. It goes from the sunny, to the abrasive, to the paranoid, and more besides, and all in under an hour - enjoy! 


Al B. Sure! : Nite And Day

Shout out to Al - he's put a lot of people on over the years! Depending on your musical background, this is one of those tunes which either you'll recognise straight away or never have heard at all. Just giving you a taster here, largely so you can appreciate the next tune...

The Federation : My Rimz

Fairfield stand up! Fantastic Bay Area track from the guys who brought you the term "Hyphy" - when this song plays even your bike turns into a box Chevrolet, just for a while :o) You can find this on the "It's Whateva" album - I don't know if it was ever on vinyl but you can definitely get CD and MP3 versions from your favourite web shop (unless that's 

E-40 ft. The Clipse : Quarterbackin' (Instrumental)

Bay Area again! Only the instrumental here, but will definitely have to give you some E-40 in a future episode - he's an underappreciated MC, certainly in the UK where he's not well known at all. This beat (by E-A-Ski and CMT) swaggers and knocks in a defiantly West Coast fashion, grab a copy of the 12" if it's up your alley; here's the video with the full tune.

Styly Cee ft. Midnyte : Kofi's Night

Maybe I'm biased because Midnyte dissed Michael Jackson, but this is included more for the fit of the beat than the lyrics! This is a track out of Nottingham, Styly Cee being a veteran of their scene - Midnyte may be too but I've got to be honest, I don't know too much about him! This was on a 12" on Son Records with "Joyrider" on the A-Side - got the vinyl but I've just noticed you can buy it on Bandcamp as a download.

Ali Shaheed Muhammad ft. Chip-Fu : Lord Can I Have This Mercy

I can't find where I originally read this, but one interviewer asked Ali about the metallic shaking noise ("like scissors") that runs throughout the beat, and he replied that it was the sound of chains - like slaves would have worn. That image has always stayed with me and comes to mind every time I hear this track, originally from his 2004 "Shaheedullah and Stereotypes" album. That bass is pretty serious, and Chip-Fu comes back from the Fu-schnickens days to deliver some decent material, although when he switches from singing to rhyming he seems to go off-topic?

Ta'raach : Yeah

Another one of the many gifted Detroit producers (as well as a very solid MC). Love this one, that repeated vocal sample every bar is *just* right, everything on the track just seems to fit together as it should. No real hook, extended (for this era, anyway) cuts at the end, nice change from the standard verse/hook/verse/hook/outro structure. I've been looking for a place to fit this one in for a while, so here it is - only downer is now I can't play it on the show again!

PMD : '87 To The Present

The "Parrish Making Dollars" part of EPMD with a sneaky little cut which I bet hardly anyone on here has heard! While Parrish is actually overlooked for his production and has cooked up many classics, this one was produced by the Ghetto Professionals (ex-Beatnut V.I.C and Mike Heron). Taken from the "The Awakening" album, picked it up cheap from somewhere - got a couple of good joints on there, worth a check at least.

Hijack : The Paranoid Schizophrenic With Homicidal Tendencies

Quite a title, and a departure from everything else on Hijack's certified UK classic "The Horns Of Jericho" (which you should have if at all possible, at the time of writing it's not the cheapest though). Hijack are simply legends on the UK scene for what they did in their day. At a time when UK Hip-Hop was written off by many, they made enough noise that Ice-T came over to sign them to Rhyme $yndicate Records, and this is when Ice-T was unquestionably one of the biggest MCs on the scene. Though eventually the crew split up to do all sorts of different things, the album is a landmark.

Tribeca ft. Doujah Raze : Throw Heat

"Who?" you ask? Tribeca is a Bronx MC and producer who's done some great stuff but just isn't well-known enough; he's done tracks with Pharoahe Monch ("The Life") and Camp Lo ("Sunkiss" and "Army" to name two) and I'd love to hear him producing for more MCs. I don't know exactly how to describe it but he's just...dramatic, or maybe forceful? He's not too shy to use quite aggressive programming or to play with the panning on sounds in a dynamic style, and I have visions of him pounding on the MPC pads like a drumkit!

M.O.P ft. Li'l Red : City

Discovered this tune last month and decided it absolutely had to be on the next episode - it's on the soundtrack album to the film "Paid In Full" which is worth seeing, by the way. I bought a digital copy of this and don't know who did the beat, but it's dope; I especially love the stuttering feel on the second half of each four-bar segment, the first half just sets you up nicely waiting for it every time. Great chorus as well!

PS - "Paid In Full" is worth seeing, but do read Azie Faison's "Game Over" which is the true story on which the film is very loosely based.

Redman ft. B.I.G, Big L, Big Pun & 2Pac : I C Dead People

This may be the only time you hear an Eminem production on the podcast! I've never taken to his beats at all but this one here works well with the concept of the spirits of the dead MCs filling in the lyrics. I got this on a 12" with some other Redman tracks but this is more readily available on Red's "Ill At Will Vol.1" mixtape/CD. Sorry about the sound quality - probably part bad pressing, part harsh cartridge?

Jimmy Page : Jam Sandwich

Yes, the Jimmy Page from Led Zeppelin - this is from the "Death Wish II" soundtrack which I picked up a while ago in the hope of finding some sample material but managed to find this track to play as a bit of a bonus! I had heard in the past that he's not a lover of Hip-Hop and doesn't clear samples but he did take that cheque to feature on Puff Daddy's "Come With Me," which goes to show it's all about the Benjamins...

Joell Ortiz : Project Boy

Something from this year for you; Primo on the beat and one of the foremost new MCs ripping the verses. It's dark, it's paranoid, it's brilliant. Me and my man Watch Deez disagree on the video for this though; I think it's genius and fits perfectly (and the style of the shots is similar to the style of photos I like to take), he thinks it could have been a lot better. What do you think?

Dark Sun Riders ft. Brother J : Rhythmous Flex

1996 banger! After X-Clan, Brother J linked up with this crew (not sure if he started it or not) and recorded the "Seeds Of Evolution" album from which this is taken. Those drums are just killing it - the producer (Ultraman) can always point with pride and say "I did that!" Those of you who are/have been turntablists or followers of that scene might recognise this from one of Mixmaster Mike's old mixtapes - I know a lot of people wanted to know what this was...

Black Milk ft. DJ Premier, Pharoahe Monche & Sean Price : The Matrix

Heavyweight lineup here - B-side to the "Give The Drummer Sum" single, and the best track on there comfortably. Detroit native Black Milk handles the crunchy digital production and opening verse but Pharoahe and Sean P kill this one. "Kryptonite...but I'm a Blood today, Latin King tomorrow?" Oh hell no, that kind of line puts other MCs into retirement!

Slum Village : Set It

Despite an incredible number of setbacks, Slum Village still exists as a group these days, though T3 is the only remaining founder member after the passings of Dilla and Baatin. This track is from the 2005 self-titled album, with just T3 and Elzhi on the mic. Elzhi is definitely the man on this one, filling in all the gaps left in Black Milk's spare, thumping beat. 

Lord Digga : K.I.M (Instrumental)

Formerly "Digga," now "Diggaman" so I hear, he got his start in Masta Ace's INC crew before branching out to make some noise as a producer on other projects; notably as part of the Bluez Brothers, who produced three tracks on Biggie's classic "Ready To Die" - the album version of "One More Chance" plus "Everyday Struggle" (heat) and "Me & My Bitch" (looove that beat). I can't believe when I first heard this track that I didn't recognise the sample straight away - it's right in your face once you hear the original...

Linton Kwesi Johnson : Liesense Fi Kill

Born in Jamaica, LKJ is very much an elder statesman of the UK Black artistic community and a living legend of poetry. I first heard this 1998 track on TV - as part of an all-star show celebrating the arrival of the Windrush back in the 50s - and just thought it was incredible. I didn't even think it would be commercially released and was pleasantly surprised to find it on vinyl during one digging mission, so here it is. Google some of the names mentioned for more info...

Remember, if you like what you hear then please do support the artists - seeing them live is the best, and buying the music on whatever format suits you at the very least demonstrates that there's a market for it. If you're in a country where Spotify is available, do get it - it's a great way to hear stuff and be a bit adventurous!

Direct download: Episode_14.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:16pm EST

Seeing Your Future

"If I die, my seed'll be ill like me..."

   - Ghostface

First birthday, yay! It's encouraging to look back on the back catalogue of episodes and see all the tracks I've been putting people up on...every time someone tells me they've chased up some stuff based on something from the podcast it's a great feeling.

I started this month in New York - fantastic trip, so many memories I'll carry with me. Shout outs to Pami, Jerry Beeks, Black Robb, Selina, everyone at Tools Of War, David, and both Crumbs Bakery and the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory for causing me to owe a lot of pull-ups and rowing machine time...


Mantronix : Needle To The Groove

An 80s classic given to me by the man Jerry Beeks on wax, so only right that I open up this month's show with it! Serious vocoder-type action on the outro, so just had to play the whole thing :o)

Brand Nubian : Don't Let It Go To Your Head (Remix Instrumental)

Not a typical Brand Nubian track but certainly sounds like the Neptunes production it is - never heard this outside my house, I don't know if that's because no-one knows it or everyone else hates it?

Lord Tariq & Peter Gunz : Deja Vu (Uptown Baby) (Pro-Black Mix)

Not a well-known remix - I've lost the info sheet I had with the record but I've heard Ayatollah produced this one; I like it just as much as the original, but in a different way. Trivia: I heard that Steely Dan took 100% of the publishing on the original for the uncleared "Black Cow" sample - once it blew up. One note though; "N****s in the Bronx call me Lex, 'cos I push a Lex, and I rock a Rolex, and I lounge on Lex', and I love sex?" No they don't. I bet if Peter Gunz dropped his wallet walking down the street, and someone picked it up and shouted after him "Hey Lex!" that he wouldn't turn round :o)

Gang Starr : The Place Where We Dwell

So many Brooklyn tunes I could have gone for (Biggie and Jay-Z's "Brooklyn's Finest" sprang to mind) but I settled on this short and sweet dedication to the borough from one of Hip-Hop's greatest duos; it was good enough to be sampled on "Crooklyn," so who am I to rate anything above it?

Onyx : Shiftee

The funniest thing I heard about these guys when they came out was from a Hip-Hop Connection reviewer who said their voices sounds like they had been "gargling with peanut butter!" The "Bacdafucup" album is definitely worth searching out for a listen if you don't know it and aren't easily offended, but it certainly won't get any play on Smooth FM...

Wu-Tang Clan : 7th Chamber Part II

Monster track at the end of the first Wu-Tang album - loved this from the first listen, RZA with the vicious bassline going through the ASR-10 Van Der Pol filter and guitar amp, the dirty drums...perfect base for the Wu MCs to get busy. They don't make 'em like this anymore...well, at least not with rhyming and the drums in time!

Cocoa Brovaz ft. Tony Touch & Hurricane G : Spanish Harlem

Low-key headnodder from the period when Smif-n-Wessun had to change their name due to a trademark complaint from Smith & Wesson. To be fair, I wouldn't want any legal trouble with a gun company myself... Hurricane G always seemed to be shouted out loads by EPMD but was rarely heard, and Tony Touch does some moonlighting here from his usual DJing and sounds better than 90% of the rappers I see on TV right now!

DJ Cam : Voodoo Child (Instrumental)

Non Phixion ft. DV Alias Khrist : 5 Boros (Remix)

That's DV Alias Khrist on two straight episodes now. Best name in Hip-Hop perhaps? The funniest thing about it is that I've never heard anyone call him just "DV" or "Khrist" - you have to say the whole thing :o) Anyway, I'm getting distracted - love this tune, the pianos make it sound grand, drums are banging, the vocal sample is appropriately dark and while the verses are very decent, I can't get enough of that hook!

Mega Banton : Sound Boy Killing (Smoothed Out Remix/Original Dancehall Mix)

One of those tracks from the 90s when it looked like dancehall was trying to stage an invasion into the US - didn't blow up huge but it was good to see some impact, and back then I loved the combination of dancehall vocals with Hip-Hop beats. Thank you Salaam Remi for the remix, but I just had to sneak a little of the original in there too.

Al Johnson & Jean Carn : Back For More

1980 track, but not an overpowering synth anywhere in earshot. Classy soul number, a really nice duet - someone must have sampled that intro, it's crying out for it!

Mary J. Blige : Be Happy

Even back in the day when I had little time for R&B, this track just could not be denied - 1994 soul flavour here from the Yonkers legend, with a Curtis Mayfield sample just riding nicely underneath. Hotness. 

GZA : Fame (Instrumental)

Not 100% sure who produced this - for some reason the vinyl of the single I have doesn't have any credits on it at all! Anyone know?

Nicholas R. Flawless ft. Camp Lo : Cheetah

This seems to never have had an official release, and I've seen different credits in different places for it - the vinyl has this as strictly a Camp Lo track but I think that's wrong. Anyway, I paid some horrible amount to get this on wax, and the sound quality isn't the greatest but that's always the chance you take with unofficial pressings - I think the track shines through all that though!

Braintax : Rational Geographics

Regardless of where he's based now, I always like to let it be known that Braintax started in Leeds! This is taken from "The Travel Show" EP, from the solo incarnation of Braintax, after the departure of DJ T.E.S.T, and a record which has been sitting undisturbed in my collection too long! A nice airy tune longing for a simpler, freer lifestyle, and maybe a bit of sun!

Pete Rock & CL Smooth : Sun Won't Come Out

...better not come here then! As an aside, this track gives us the second mention of Castro on the podcast, purely by accident! Hard-drummed, big-bassed trunk rattler from Pete Rock with CL Smooth doing what he does best - rhyming on a Pete Rock beat. Sadly, we've probably had as much of that as we're going to yourself a favour and run to buy "Mecca & The Soul Brother" and "The Main Ingredient" if you don't already have them - thank me later.

K-Def : The Magnum

One of the great underrated (if not completely unmentioned) producers/beatmakers, K-Def was half of Real Live and has done tracks for the likes of Ghostface/Theodore Unit ("Paychecks," biiiig!), Lords Of The Underground, ODB, and more. This is taken from an instrumental-only release, "Beats From The 90s Vol.2" - one for the Hip-Hop DJs to own!

Donnie : People Person

Amazing modern soul - the production/instrumentation works well with a singer who's got a fantastic voice, great lyrics, and doesn't fit the MTV mould. Thank goodness for that!

Please support the artists if you hear anything on here you like! Check stuff out on Spotify, and of course do buy the vinyl/CD/downloads, and go to see live performances whenever you can!

Direct download: Episode_13.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 6:20pm EST

Bright Lights, Big City

"Shine on me."

- CL Smooth

Twelve episodes, a complete year! Been a hectic month but managed to get just enough time to give you another podcast of audio goodness - here's to more of the same next year!


Ras Kass : Release Yourself

New track available for free on Bandcamp! The Carson, CA veteran MC links up with Rhettmatic of the Beat Junkies crew for an energetic, offbeat track from his upcoming "ADIDAS (All Day I Dream About Spittin')" album. After a difficult time with his career in the past he seems to be making moves with the new digital distribution model, nice to see some artists taking more control.

Twisted Rootz : Samurai Mind Control

Great beat from a young producer coming out of Manchester - we were both demonstrating at a workshop organised by In The Loop, and after we played each other beats as part of the session he passed me a CD; I played it in the car and this was the standout for me! You can hear more of his stuff at

Trigger Tha Gambler ft. DV Alias Khrist : Hitman For Hire

Does anyone other than me think of DV Alias Khrist as the East Coast, underground version of Nate Dogg? Anyway, been looking for this one for a long while ever since I heard it played on Radio 1 - by Westwood, I believe! Trigger attacks the mic with an approach similar to that on the aggressive classic "Broken Language," and whoever did the beat - I tip my hat to you! Got this on white label, so no credits on it at all...

Pete Rock & CL Smooth : Shine On Me

2002 single on Fat Beats, long after the original split between Pete and CL - just shows that whatever their personal feelings towards each other, they bring the best out of each other musically!

Plato : New Born

New Manchester duo who have just put out their first EP "Ease The Word," Plato consist of Pitch on production and Francophone MC Bedos on the mic. This is one of my favourite tracks right now; this was played on Agent J's Groovement show a few weeks ago when these guys were guesting and I bothered the hell out of them asking when it was going to come out! That beat...killer. Bedos' flow is ill but I have to admit my French isn't good enough to understand most of the lyrics!

Knucklehedz : All She Wanted

Erick Sermon on the beat, this is an early 90s funk bomb of the type they just don't seem to make any more - lyrics on the vocal version aren't anything spectacular but I could read my council tax bill over this beat and sound like the man :o)

The Squeeze #1 : Diamond & The Psychotic Neurotics - Stunts, Blunts, & Hip-Hop

Trying out an idea, basically trying to summarise the feel of an album. At first I thought this could be done in three or four minutes - pretty quickly found out otherwise! Every track from the album is in here somewhere, if only for a note or two in some cases. For the record (no pun intended) I've heard a DJ track end before with "so put that in your pipe and smoke it," probably on one of the "Return Of The DJ" albums; only sprang to mind when I'd finished, but it was also the only part of that Diamond track I could work out what to do with!

DJ Jazzy Jeff : BossyNova

Lovely summery track with a nice bit of low-end keyboard work from Jeff's "Return Of The Magnificent" EP - not on the album, so you'll have to look a little harder to get your hands on this one!

The Clipse : Mr Me Too

Shout out to Jon K (then of Fat City Records) for putting me up on this when it was very first released - spacey and bassy, love it. I think The Clipse definitely have mic skills and I do keep an eye on what they put out, but I personally could never look at them quite the same way after they dropped the line "Deep like the Hutu, you cockroaches" on the "Wamp Wamp" single...

All City : Priceless

Illlll! Pete Rock on the beat on this monster B-Side to "The Actual," I know some people who've had trouble finding a copy of this so here's something to get your head nodding on the way to wherever you go to make money!

ODB : Brooklyn Zoo (Instrumental)

Not a RZA beat as most people would assume, but the work of True Master - who also did "Fish," one of my favourite Ghostface tracks. This is definitely one of the all-time great Hip-Hop party starters!

Alicia Keys : Girlfriend

Based around the "Brooklyn Zoo" piano line, I hadn't heard this until recently; I was re-reading Joseph Schloss' "Making Beats" and he mentioned it, so I had a listen and thought it'd be worth including here for anyone else who missed it the first time round!

Platinum Pied Pipers ft. Neco Redd : 1 Luv 2 U

Waajeed of Bling47 on production, heard this floating around on MP3 for ages and then found a vinyl of it by accident while on a flying visit to the record shop - result!

Marco Polo ft. J*Davey : Relax

Not usually one for Hip-Hop remakes but this kind of works for me - nicely produced by Marco Polo and J*Davey gives a gender-reversal aspect to the original

The ARE : Eclectic Relaxation

Love the heavy, slumping rhythm on this cut from the free (and excellent) "Manipulated Marauders" instrumental album, which takes the original samples from each track on A Tribe Called Quest's "Midnight Marauders" and does something with them - sometimes close to the originals, sometimes not...definitely worth a download!

Thirstin Howl III ft. Sadat X : I Can't Dance

I laughed when I stumbled on this on Spotify and had to get a copy! I quite like having a bit of a dance in a club but records about not dancing are always amusing, this being no exception - Thirstin Howl III (of the Lo-Lifes, of course) always brings humour to the proceedings and he combines well with Sadat X here. Of course the track is based around Bowie's "Let's Dance" - if you ever wondered why that track is so good, the reason is that it was produced by the great Nile Rodgers of Chic, who is scientifically proven to be incapable of creating weak material!

Please support the artists if you hear anything on here you like! Check stuff out on Spotify, and of course do buy the vinyl/CD/downloads, and go to see live performances whenever you can!

Direct download: Episode_12.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 7:00am EST

Eleventh Heaven

"All praises due, if you know what I mean..."

- Guru

(By the way - no, that photo isn't Photoshopped - that's really how the sky looked that day!)

This is about as close as a lot of people have got to flying recently, the volcanic eruption in Iceland has stranded a lot of people, including some of my listeners - hope you get home safe soon!

As promised in the episode, here's the link where you can get the info on this week's Neighbourhood party - hope to see you there!

The sad news was just announced yesterday that Guru passed away, apparently after a long and painful illness. RIP Baldhead Slick...above the clouds...


J-Zone : Flight 212/Bullshit City

I thought I'd start off with something on the airline theme and could have gone a few different ways (Ice Cube's "My Summer Vacation" and "Altitudes" by Little Brother spring to mind). I love J-Zone, he's not only a fantastic producer but has more personality than the next ten MCs in line combined - humour and individuality on the mic are greatly underrated these days!

Air Adam : Ground Effect

Another beat from my vaults, got this one pressed onto a dub plate as I liked it so much! Burning things onto a CD to play just isn't the same...especially if you don't use CDJs anyway :o)

Mobb Deep ft. Noyd: Scam

Unreleased track from 2000, can't remember where I first got an MP3 of this but I love it - very dark and minimal, lots of little touches you might not pick up on straight away, very Mobb. After much searching I managed to find an unofficial vinyl pressing of it to play this month :o) There's a "Mark The 45 King" remix of this track on the B-side but it's nowhere near as good - this is the one.

Cormega ft. Ghostface : Tony/Montana

If you didn't know, the title comes from the fact that this track is by Ghostface (aka Tony Starks) and Cormega (aka Mega Montana); totally forgot about this one until I went for a good root in the collection. Is Mega's section about the Sprewell trade awkward or genius?

Blahzay Blahzay : Sending Dem Back

Of course when you talk about Blahzay you think about "Danger" and "The Pain I Feel," but I've loved this track since the man DJ Greenpeace hit me with a cassette of the album preview back in my salad days. Tanya Brewer is the singer on this, for anyone who wanted to know!

Faith Evans : You Used To Love Me (Ali Mix)

The original track is great too but this is a nice reworking, airy and spacey, giving Faith's vocals plenty of room. I edited the intro to this slightly to make it a bit longer and better for blending with, then used Serato to mix it live; got to love all this modern technology :o)

Jake One & Freeway : Know What I Mean (Instrumental)

The "Stimulus Package" album is hot right now and not only does it sound good but the packaging and ability to download an official digital version of the album and instrumentals perhaps point the way to how people can be persuaded to shell out for the physical copy of an album in these downloading times!

The Roots : Proceed V (Beatminerz Mix)

Philly. New York. Nice.

Johnnie Taylor : Somebody's Gettin' It

Taken from the 1976 "Eargasm" album, which has some top tracks on it. If you don't know who Johnnie Taylor is, you may just recognise this track which borrows from one of his tunes heavily. Picked this one up in Manchester's King Bee Records, great spot for digging for old vinyl and worthy of support, as are all good independent record shops - don't let them disappear!

Ultramagnetic MCs : Raise It Up

From the Wild Pitch era of Ultra, the "Four Horsemen" album is a quality 90s New York release - no frills, no R&B, just straight up Hip-Hop. Used to play this one heavily on cassette back in the days, but finally got a vinyl copy of this track on the "Hi-Phat Diet" compilation. 

Guru : The Anthem

It would have been too easy to go to the library of big Gang Starr classics here, and I'm sure there will be some fitting tribute mixes popping up all over the net this week. This is from the "Baldhead Slick & Da Click" album which was mixed overall but certainly had a few gems on it. DJ Roach on production here, and of course the one and only Guru Keith E handling the mic in his unmistakable style.

Outerspace : 151° (Instrumental) / The Cutthroats ft. Guru : Stop Looking At Me

Outerspace are part of the extended Jedi Mind Tricks family and part of Army Of The Pharaohs, and this serious beat was produced by 7L - I got it on a 12" with "Divine Evil" on the other side but it's apparently taken from the "Blood And Ashes" EP.

I just had to play that bit of the Cutthroats/Guru track - for light relief if nothing else!

Prince Po : Holla

Self-produced track from the former Organized Konfusion MC, from the "Prettyblack" album but also on the B-Side of "Mecheti Lightspeed" - that tune got a decent amount of play in these parts but I felt like this one was overlooked; yes, it's clubbish and all that, but is that a crime?

Joe Budden ft. LL Cool J & Dutchess : Focus (Remix)

Shout out to DJ A-Up who wanted to know about this tune when I played it out a few months ago! It's called a remix but the beat is just the same as the original, which is good since there was nothing wrong with it :o) Dutchess I don't know anything about I have to say, but LL is of course one of those guys who just kept on going and always seemed to be able to keep up as the era and audience changed; respect for that!

Missy Elliott ft. Jay-Z : Wake Up

Missy is definitely one of those artists who's done so many things you forget! I hadn't heard this tune for so long but heard it the other day while going through some things and then played it a few more times in a row!

1st Infantry : The Midnight Creep (Instrumental)

Nice crime-story Alchemist production: Havoc and Twin are on the vocal version of this, worth having I think!

The Coup : 5 Million Ways To Kill A CEO

Even if the revolution isn't televised, at least it'll have a soundtrack! 2001 track here from the deeply political Oakland duo (Boots Riley on the mic, Pam the Funkstress on the wheels); also notable for having the great Bernie Worrell on the Theremin!

Please support the artists whenever you can if there's anything on here you like; go to see them live, check them out on Spotify, and buy their output too!

Direct download: Episode_11.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 3:00pm EST

(10/52) Knowledge Cipher

"We be listening to beats to keep the cipher complete..."

- Guru

Going into double figures this month! I managed to fight off a nasty sore throat for just long enough to get all the voiceover done, and in response to Coxy I think I've turned my voice up so it's not so quiet compared to the music - I'm sure he'll let me know if I've hit or missed the mark!

Big shout out to Guru who as many of you know is currently in hospital after suffering a heart attack and (reportedly) being induced into a coma. Best wishes going out to you from the Hip-Hop Nation, get well soon!



Brand Nubian ft. Redd Foxx : Black Star Line

From the great "In God We Trust" LP - as much as I love this track, it's not my absolute favourite on the album - but then where else but here would I get chance to play an album cut about Marcus Garvey and have people actually listen?

Air Adam : Street Kingdom

An old beat of mine - for some reason I was in a club where Ja Rule's "Living It Up" (which I hate) was playing and thinking to myself how you could flip the intro and turn it into something with a very different feel, which turned out to be this. I might re-do it on the MPC sometime with new drums to make it thump a bit more, but then I'm not looking to sell this beat so maybe not :o) And the title? Well, that's from the incredible book by Doug Century - absolutely worth a read, or ten!

Greg Osby ft. CL Smooth : Raise (Ali Shaheed Muhammad Remix)

Jazz meets Hip-Hop here as it often does, but in this case you have a top player live on the track rather than sampled - the saxophonist Greg Osby was on Blue Note for years so you know his credentials are correct. This is one of those tracks where the version I knew isn't the one on the album; I first heard this on "Yo! MTV Raps" years ago and loved it, but the original version on the "3D Lifestyles" album just doesn't quite do it for me. Check the "Speak & Spell" sounds in the background too!

OutKast : Players' Ball (Remix)

The B-side of the "Players' Ball" 12" from their first album, before anyone had any idea of some of the craziness that would follow in later's pretty sped up but I like it like that.

DJ Faust : Mind Over Matter

Forgot all about this one competely - pulled from the "Fathomless" EP by Faust, Craze (before his incredible streak of world domination) and Shortee, released just when turntablism was starting to bubble up in the public consciousness. Faust isn't the first name that comes to the mind of many when they think tablism but he's certainly respected among those that know.

Large Professor : Liveguy Saga

Biiiiig! One of my favourite B-sides of all time! This on the flip of "Bout That Time" - which truth be told is pretty blah. This tune is serious though, and I'd consider giving my kingdom for an instrumental! Minimal, but not crazy minimal, just bumps nicely.

Zion I : Luv (Instrumental)

Amp Live bringing a killer beat - very underrated producer for sure. Search out the vocal version of this as it's a very good track, I've certainly given it lots of play before. In fact, look out for any Zion I stuff you can pick up...

Easy Mo Bee ft. Gang Starr : Soul

You don't know it do you? Ha! Well, it's all about sharing so you do now :o) This was originally released on Easy Mo Bee's little-known "Now Or Never : Odyssey 2000" album, a producer-driven project from the man who brought us, amongst other things, the mighty "Flava In Ya Ear" which is one of my all-time favourite beats. I had this track on the album, bought the 12" hoping to get an instrumental and then found they'd accidentally missed it off - gutted!

Que D : In Your Face

Dilla on the beat which was probably the reason I picked this up originally to give it a listen as I didn't know much about Que D beforehand - even now, all I really know is that he's one of the MCs out of Detroit in the extended Slum Village/Dilla family, and he rides this beat well.

Strange Fruit Project : Soul Clap

Texas Hip-Hop with a difference! Got this for a bargain price the other day - put it on the listening deck in the record shop and decided I had to have it. The group of course are named after the famous song.

En Vogue : Hold On

90s classic, dug this one out after forgetting I had it in the first place! I heard Kid Capri use this on a mixtape once, so if it's good enough for him it's good enough for me ;o) Oh yes - check the sloppiness of the snare on beat 4 of each bar! Didn't notice that until I had to mix into it...

M.O.P : G-Building (Instrumental)

Self-produced, D&D studio-recorded, thumping banger from the Brownsville hardrocks. One of my favourite MOP beats and also blended nicely with the En Vogue cut - who'd have thought?

Michael Jackson : Pretty Young Thing (Demo) (U-Tern Edit)

Newness - well, where new=old but little known :o) This has been slightly re-edited for length but the main composition is unchanged; this is the original demo version of "PYT (Pretty Young Thing)" by Michael Jackson. The song was later massively reworked into a more untempo number by MJ, James Ingram and Quincy Jones, and it's that version which appears on the Thriller album. On the one hand, I *think* I prefer this version, but on the other,  listen to the instrumental of the album version...when those voices come in on the lead-up to the hook it's just illlll...

Aya : Put Your Faith In Us

Another Naked Music killer, taken from Aya's "Strange Flower" album. I've been absolutely caning this song on Spotify lately so it was only right that I buy a copy and let you hear it too. For some reason I kept thinking it would have been great if Michael Jackson had recorded a version of this song; it sounds like the kind of thing that would have fit him like a glove (no pun intended). Also notice what it does to the tension in the track to have no kick drum on the first beat of every bar - subtle but effective!

Tim Dog : Step To Me (Instrumental)

Maybe not the obvious track to go into from the previous one, but where would the fun be in being predictable? I thought the drum break sounded good here and also provided a springboard to launch into the next track...

Eric B & Rakim : Teach The Children

Second track on the oft-overlooked "Check The Technique" album, definitely worth a pickup if you've not already got it in your collection. That little four-bar change in the piano riff in the first verse starting at the line "I approached it slow..." still puts the chills up me eighteen years since I first heard it. Lyrically, when I listen to something like this, and then some of the alleged rappers coming out now...well, maybe they should have spent more time listening to stuff like this and less playing video games...and yes, I know that makes me sound like an old man.

Wildchild : Code Red (Instrumental)

Oh No on production, this was flipping wigs like crazy in Manchester when it came out a few years back and as soon as all the DJs found out what is was, we all bought it and played it heavy; it's been a while so time to bring it back!

Gang Starr ft. K-Ci and JoJo : Royalty

When this came out I'll admit I was skeptical about having K-Ci and JoJo guesting on a Gang Starr track, but it works and it's a classic. Production-wise, DJ Premier kills it with an amazing sample chop which sounds impossible even when you hear the original track. Guru brings his unique flavour on the mic, and it's the complete package!

If you do hear anything you especially like then do get in touch and let me know, and please support the artists - find more output of theirs on Spotify to get a feel for it, go to live shows if you can (that's where they really get paid) and buy the stuff you like the most!

Direct download: Episode_10.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 2:10pm EST


True Blue

"Gazing at the worldly things like a showcase..."

   - Killah Priest

Podcast podcast number nine... been a quiet month for me but a bad month or so in music with Teddy Pendergrass, Sha Lumie and Apache all passing away due to illnesses. Appreciate your favourite artists while they're here!


Ghostface Killah ft. Raekwon & Cappadonna : Camay

A love song, Wu-Tang style, from Ghost's "Ironman" album, which is actually still my favourite album of his! This samples the late great Teddy Pendergrass' "Can We Try?"

Jamal : Fades 'Em All (Pete Rock Remix Instrumental)

One of those beloved 90s Pete Rock remixes pretty much unknown to those outside the Hip-Hop scene. Jamal was one of the MCs in the kiddie-but-not-kiddie group Illegal whose album "The Untold Truth" had one of the most amazing lineups on the beats you can imagine - Lord Finesse, Erick Sermon, Diamond D, and did they pull that off? And while I'm asking questions, anyone know what Malik is doing these days?

Sunz Of Man : No Love Without Hate

An old favourite of mine from the extended Wu camp, I got a RealAudio (remember that?) file of this from the net, recorded it to tape and had it on my walkman heavy - perfect soundtrack to those nighttime walks trying to get my head right. Not sure how other people will feel about this tune but this is almost the poster child for the podcast - a track I loved which I never get chance to play anywhere!

Scritti Politti ft. Lee Majors & Mos Def : Tinseltown To Boogiedown (Pete Rock Variation)

Green Gartside & co have always had an affinity with Black music so it's not totally surprising to see this collaboration. Some of you will remember the track they did with Shabba Ranks ("She's A Woman") and Roger Troutman worked with them on the "Provision" album, there's a nice bit of trivia for you. I love Scritti Politti actually, will have to play some more in future - not even remixes, just straight up 80s pop styles!

Masta Ace & Stricklin : The Hitman

Produced by Create & Devastate, a nice little 2006 12" release, shouts to Reptile of the Assmatics crew for putting me up on this one when it was first released. I've just given this one a little edit to make it two verses and then instrumental just to let the beat ride by itself for a few bars :o) Not sure if the producers have done much since but Masta Ace continues to put out good music today a full twenty years after "Take A Look Around" - how time flies...

Da Beatminerz ft. Sha Lumie : Hip-Hop (Da Essence)

Truth be told this is not my favourite Beatminerz production by a long way, but I always liked the lyrics and they're even more striking now with the passing of Sha Lumie this year. "Stay in tune to the game 'til my heartbeat stop..." Those who knew him and have spoken about him publicly will say that he certainly did.

Hyenas In The Desert : Concubinez (Instrumental)

As far as I'm aware these guys only released one EP on Chuck D's Slam Jamz label and then pretty much disappeared. There were a few decent tracks on it but this was the clear winner, just a big pounding tune which moves a big sound system (get a copy and try it)!

J Sands : Southern Lady

This is one I do actually play a bit in clubs, taken from the "Hip Hop Love Soul" compilation on Fat City; I love that quasi-Charleston flavour with a bit of added bump! Someone called Beats Fa Daze (90s-style phonetic spelling there) did the production on this one - can't find credits on any other releases, but would be interested to hear more!

DJ Jazzy Jeff ft. J-Live & every DJ ever : Break It Down

There's another version of this floating about with a different beat which I don't think suits it, but this is the one on my vinyl copy of DJ Jazzy Jeff's "The Magnificent" album on BBE and I'm glad for it! Teacher/MC/DJ J-Live skips in and out of the beat and there's a huge roster of DJs on this track giving you a few quick cuts each; great idea! Bet there were a few wreck crossfaders behind this one...

MC Serch : Here It Comes Again

From the "Return Of The Product" album comes the much-improved version of "Here It Comes," drums galore and the former 3rd Bass frontman on the mic in his pre-executive days. You barely hear any Hip-Hop this speed these days - whether that's a good or bad thing depends on your taste!

Fun-Da-Mental : Tribal Revolution (Homeland Mix)

A UK 12" from an Asian and Black crew which I picked up for a bargain price many years ago, before I was DJing - this is an instrumental, and a good one, but their lyrics are always political and forthright, which is to be respected!

DJ Shadow ft. Chris James : Erase You

A track I initially overlooked from Shadow's "The Outsider" album, only to discover it when my iPod was on shuffle one day. This is some of the most outrageously good drum programming you'll hear anywhere, a brilliant production job all round to give it that live performance feel - right down to what I assume is an artifically-inserted feedback squeal partway through the vocals, have a listen out for it! Chris James of the band Stateless (Leeds stand up!) is the featured singer and I'll be checking for their own material.

Gaelle : Separate Rooms

Does anyone remember a late-90s house track called "King Of My Castle" by Wamdue Project? Well, this is the same vocalist, several years later and with some very silky production. If you like this kind of thing at all, you must buy her "Transient" album because not to put too fine a point on it, it's pure quality. I've been waiting for a chance to slot this tune in and this segment of uptempo tunes fits nicely.

D-Train : You're The One For Me

80s classic! Big club track from 1981 (no, I'm not old enough to have been clubbing back then, unless you count eating Club biscuits or clubbing people with soft toys), keyboard overload with a real sanger over the top, no Autotune here! 

Exile ft. Ta'raach : Move On 'Em

80s through the looking glass :o) Exile flips a strangely familiar groove, adds some serious Moog and lets Ta'Raach get busy on the mic on this selection from the "Dirty Science" album.

Nature : Don't Stop (Instrumental)

Trackmasters production on this instrumental of a track from the "For All Seasons" LP. Nature's lyrics on the vocal version of this are a little forgettable, but he will always get props from me for his opening of Noreaga's "Banned From TV." 

DJ Spinna ft. Jigmastas : New York

Monster tune with one of those sample usages that makes you wonder why you never thought of doing it! I'm a big Spinna fan but it was my man Gez who originally let me know about this one by sending me a link to the video which immediately made it into my list of all-time favourites; just check the camera, editing and colour work! I think I'll do a post on favourite Hip-Hop videos of all time in a blog post sometime...

As I say every month, if there's stuff on here you like then do support the artists - look into their catalogues and buy some of their work and/or go to see them live! Whatever you can do, it all helps fight back the forces of wackness...

Direct download: Episode_9.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:31am EST


"Weapons of mass percussion."
- Invincible

Happy New Year! Welcome to the first episode of the decade, 50+ minutes of audio gems for your headphones, car, shop...

Big event of the month has unfortunately been the tragic earthquake in Haiti - if you have a little spare cash, please donate to any of the many organisations trying to help out there.

Fugees ft. A Tribe Called Quest, Forte & Busta Rhymes : Rumble In The Jungle
One of those tracks which did make noise even commercially right when it came out but then seemed to disappear altogether; very underrated track as far as I'm concerned. Sample is of course Abba's "Name Of The Game" - I heard somewhere that this was the first time they ever cleared a sample, so the Fugees beat Madonna to the punch on that by a long way :o)
Mobb Deep : Extortion (Instrumental)
Havoc on production on this instrumental of the track from the "Hell On Earth" album.
Portishead : Revenge Of The Number
I know hardly anyone listening knows this one :o) Top remix of Portishead's "Numb" (so the title isn't pronounced how it looks) from the Rebirth Of Cool Phive album, also on the B-Side of the "Numb" 12" I think. The original is great and so's this...I wouldn't necessarily say better but different and just as good.
Nas : Book Of Rhymes
An underrated gem from the "God's Son" album, Alchemist on production. I don't know if these are definitely rejected rhymes or not, but I love the idea and execution, right down to the sounds of flipping pages. The 'new' verse where he talks about being jealous of his baby daughter is gold.
Mos Def/Pure P : Ms. Phat Bootleg
As you can probably guess from the title, this is a remix of Mos Def's "Ms. Phat Booty," from Pure P's "On My New York Sh*t Pt.2" 12". A bit summery-sounding for the vicious cold weather we've had lately, but maybe that's a good thing...
Air Adam : Relief (Instrumental)
Something from my archives (originally titled "Seer" until Manchester singer Aileen wrote lyrics to it), keeping the vibe gentle for a few before turning up the heat on the next track!
Ta'raach & Invincible : Bombs Away
From Waajeed's "War" LP on Fat City Recordings, big stomping track. Ta'raach is definitely dope on this but Invincible just smashes it with her mic time. Detroit come through with a winner.
Marco Polo ft. Large Professor : The Radar (Remix)
A thing of beauty - hardcore, unapologetic Hip-Hop. Hard drums, dope rhymes and some excellent cuts courtesy of DJ Linx who I've never heard before but whose name will certainly ring bells for me now. Attention music industry: more like this please!
Kardinal Offishall : Husslin'
Coming in from Toronto is the firestarter himself! He's a very underrated MC who has the ability to blend the Caribbean style with classic Hip-Hop and can hold his own on the mic with anyone; if you heard Episode 1, you'll have heard him sharing vocal duties with the incredible Pharoahe Monch, and in a situation where many MCs would have been annihilated he showed he belonged! If you can get a copy of "Firestarter Vol.1 : Quest For Fire" then pick one up - and if you can get vinyl instead of CD, they're worth a fair bit now...
Tek : Nothing's Gonna Change
Gerrard C. Baker on production, for the record - not heard of him previously but this is on the B-side of the "Number 1 Sound" single - "G Walking" rounds out the selection of reggae-flavoured Hip-Hop on that essential 12".
O$$ Bo$$ : Wu-Ting
Dancehall riddim borrowing from ODB's "Shimmy Shimmy Ya" and Wu-Tang's "Wu-Tang Clan Ain't Nuthing Ta F' Wit." The vocal track on the other side of this 7" ("Camel" by Dolce & Gabbana) doesn't add anything at all to it truth be told, so the instrumental gets the nod - and usually gets a great reaction when I play it out!
Slick Rick ft. Raekwon : Frozen
From Rick's 1999 "The Art Of Storytelling" LP, his first full project after his release from prison in 1996 - it should be noted here that he was eventually given a full pardon. In the 80s he was fly and here...still the same! Raekwon guests on this and represents well - maybe after/if the rumoured Kool G Rap & Raekwon album happens, these two should do a project together? "We Will Rob You" was just a tease... (and as an aside, check out this video which came up in the same Youtube search, and watch from 20 seconds in - an inspiration maybe?)
Ice Cube : Jackin' For Beats
I feel really old realising this tune is 20 years old this year! This is the first Hip-Hop track of this type I can remember, taking beats from popular Hip-Hop records of the time and stringing them together for this instrumental. The last beat is X-Clan's "Heed The Word Of The Brother," sampling Zapp's legendary "More Bounce To The Ounce" which was also famously used on...
EPMD : You Gots To Chill
...back in 1988. Nothing much to be said about this classic single but if you want a smile brought to your face, watch the video :o) They don't make 'em like that anymore!
DSP ft. Chill Rob G : Bullshit
From DSP's "In The Red" album on Ninja Tune, only came across this recently despite it coming out in 2002 but there's some interesting stuff on there and this stood out for me - nice to hear Chill Rob G in the modern day! If you didn't know, he was badly ripped off on Snap's "The Power" - summary of the story here.
Freddie Foxxx : Hey Ho (Instrumental)
Oprah's favourite Hip-Hop track...well, maybe not! 2004 12" on Wildlife records, Amed on production and on the vocal version (which you can also find on the "Street Triumph" mixtape), the always-abrasive Freddie Foxxx aka Bumpy Knuckles on the mic.
The 3rd Generation Band : Because Of Money
1973 track from a Ghanaian army band, the African flavour is in full effect but you can here the influence of funk/soul of the time. I got this on a great compilation called "Ghana Soundz," if you're into something a bit different it's worth picking up!

Remember, if you like any of the artists' work you hear then please try to support them in whatever way you can! Showing that the quality material has an audience willing to put their hands in their pockets to show support will help the constant struggle against the cheap knockoffs that currently take up the radio and TV time...
Direct download: Episode_8.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 5:45am EST


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