Aug 31, 2010
"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)