There was time in east coast hip hop, just after the days of tight jeans, white Reeboks and silver boom boxes on shoulder and just before the flashiness of bad boy records, puffy and glamorous hip hop. This is when the rough, rugged and raw side of east coast hip hop began to emerge into the spotlight. The videos of the time consisted of harsh amplified emotion by artists who resembled street soldiers usually in dark places, looking ready for war. Wu-Tang first emerged in this era and was able to stand the test of time, other groups like Das Efx, Heltak Skeltah and Gravediggaz fell off in the mid-late 90′s when flashy hip hop re-emerged. This side of hip hop lives on but doesn’t get much credit because the songs certainly don’t hold up in the club ready, bling manufactured world hip hop has become. The instinctive raw emotion of hip hop began here.
1. KRS One – Sound of Da Police
2. Run DMC – Down with the King
To be fair, I think even if I was a professional rapper, I would be a bit stunned by Tom Green busting out a sick flow out of nowhere. I highly doubt he’s that good, and probably prepared and practiced for a while beforehand, but even so, the man does have skills. If the first two verses don’t impress you then his third verse will for sure blow you away, which is just nasty. The best is Xzibit’s reaction the whole video, just completely astonished and probably embarrassed that he is getting schooled.
Big L was and still is considered one of the most prolific hip hop artist in the history of rap. He strung together words that can only be described as amazing and his song Ebonics is widely regarded as one of the best rap songs of all time. Born in Harlem, Big L was first discovered by Lord Finesse in a record store while rhyming and was soon after featured on his 1992 hit “Party Over Here”. He later signed with the D.I.T.C Crew (Diggin In The Crate Crew) on Columbia Records and went on to release his solo debut Lifestylez ov da Poor & Dangerous, in March of 1995. From 1997-1999 Big L worked on his second release, The Big Picture, but sadly, he would never get the chance to see it completed. He was gunned down in Harlem, February 15, 1999. Big L was murdered on W138st in Harlem and was shot 9 times, twice in the face, he was 24. Gerard Woodley one L’s childhood friends, was arrested in May for the crime, but soon after released for lack of evidence. At the time of his death, L had two brothers in prison and a spokesman for the NYPD said there is a good chance L was killed for something his brothers had done, or were believed to have done.
His death remains unsolved.
This documentary gives a closer look into the legend that has grown around Big L’s amazing talent.
The flag has dropped and the Chris Brown come back has begun. Today a new Chris Brown song debuted featuring Lil Wayne called “Transformer” produced by Swizz Beatz. Whether you like it or not, you will be hearing this song all Fall of 2009, so get used to it. To be honest, if Chris Breezy keeps putting out music like this he has the green light to punch out every girl on Earth, one at a time for all I care. Chris Brown is extremely talented and has some golden pipes, now as long as he doesn’t chokeslam any ladies for a year or two he should be a regular at the top of the charts. What I want to know is do people really still not like this kid for what he did? I understand it was an awful thing to do, but are you really not going to listen to his music because of his past? Hey news flash everyone you listen to Michael Jackson(no need to inform you), Dr. Dre, Elvis Costello,and Rick James so get over it. And yes you read that correctly, Rick James kidnapped, beat, and tortured a girl for over 6 days, his career turned out O.K., Chris Breezy should be fine.
In a past interview a reporter asked Lil Wayne why he and Eminem never did a track together he replied, “I don’t know why we never did a song together, maybe he’s scared to get in the booth with me ahhhhhhhhh.” Not word for word but I couldn’t find the exact quote, but its a long those lines. Well Wayne you finally got on a track with Eminem and he completely destroyed you and everyone else on the song. I always wondered why Eminem didn’t get on more remixes and feature on other rappers songs, well its apparent that it is kind of embarrassing to have a guy feature on your song and just totally dominate ie. Jay-Z – Renegade. The internet is really buzzing and the overall consensus is that Eminem remains in a league by himself. Who are these other guys in this song anyway.
Eminem’s official response to Mariah Carey’s song taking a shot at him, “Obsessed”. ”The Warning” fires back like the Em of old when he first came on, just ruthless. Of course you knew this would shit on anything she put together. I almost feel bad for Nick Cannon at this point, he gets slammed in this and we all know he has zero chance at taking on Eminem lyrically. The only thing he could do at this point is try to fight him, it’s his only hope.
Credit to agent jeff meola for turning me onto to this immediately when it dropped.
Eminem’s long awaited fifth studio album, Relapse, is due out on the 19th of this month and after getting a sneak peak, I am here to tell you, it does not disappoint. How was I so blessed to have a copy of the album a week early? My younger brother stayed up until 2 in the morning downloading a leaked copy. Umm, I mean, I heard this guy on the train talking about it, wait, umm, never mind. I just know. This is Slims first album since 2004′s Encore, which was a commercial success, but a creative failure compared to some of his earlier albums. This album is straight 1998 Slim Shady LP. It is dark, witty, fast, and filled with phrases and word combinations that can only make you smile with bewilderment and think to yourself, am I witnessing the greatest of all time? And the short answer to that question is simply, yes.
For the past few years, Eminem has dedicated most of his time to producing for many of the artist on his Shady Records Label. He went through a dark period of depression and drug addiction after the passing of his best friend and mentor, Proof, and he stated he wasn’t sure if he would ever record another album. In early 2006, after Em had been released from rehab, he started to work on recording new material. There was speculation that a studio album was in the works, but it was unconfirmed, as Em continued to produce and act as a mentor and leader to the others in his camp. After featuring on other artist’s songs, Eminem discovered he really liked a lot of his new material, and kept recording with Dr. Dre. They have stated that over the past 2 years, about 100 songs have been recorded and mastered. 100! These are Tupac numbers. Lil Wayne numbers. This is especially exciting knowing that at some point these songs will be leaked and spread around the internet. With the conclusion of Relapse, the only 2 people who had the finalized master copies were Eminem himself, and Dr. Dre. The record label didn’t even have a copy to review until 1 month before the scheduled release date because Eminem and Dre feared it being leaked to the internet.
This album was produced entirely be Dr. Dre, with the exception of 1 song being produced by Eminem himself. Em said that he left the production up to Dre because he wanted to concentrate fully on his lyrics. He also said that he challenged the Doctor to create more complex beats, in order to force Eminem to elevate his rhyming ability. Imagine that, Eminem is actually telling Dre that his beats aren’t challenging or complex enough. I’ll bet my life that he is the only person in the world who can get away with something like that. Eminem’s lyrics hold the tone of someone who is so excited to be rhyming that they almost cant rap fast enough. Sound familiar? It should. Eminem’s biggest problem in his earlier days was rapping so fast people almost couldnt understand him. You can hear in his voice that he is so full of energy that he could rap for days. He introduces a new style, which is almost rapping in a Southern tone, which is refreshing and different. I honestly can’t say enough good things about this album. Can you tell Im excited?
Even with the internet, and the ability to get this album for free online, I urge everyone who has even the slightest love for hip hop to go out and spend the 15 bucks on this album. I am here to tell you that this will be the best album released in at least the last 10 years, with a track list that is enjoyable and playable from front to back, like all of Eminem’s albums. Supporting what is real and true to music is what is important, and given the hard work and length of time that was put into this album it only seems right to have the hard copy on hand.
Plus the cover art is amazing.
OK, for my first post on ZP i have to add some more commentary to my boy Riz post about how awful hip hop is in recent times. I want to make it clear that the only reason we write these posts is because we are hip hop fans, and we want to get it back to what it used to be, so don’t get it twisted like we’re hating on the game, it’s just that hip hop can use some serious mouth to mouth. I wonder what Flex is thinking when he’s dropping his patented bomb and some dude named Maino comes on? Really Flex, all of you old school cats who dj on Hot97 can not be impressed with this.
First things first, why is rap more about shitty beats and T-Pain auto-tuner singing than actual content and lyrics? You seriously can not tell me that any rapper you hear on the radio can even hold a flame to anyone coming from the late 80′s early 90′s movement, unless they are still from that golden era, still rapping today. Even then, you can’t convince me that Nas right now can even hold a flame to Nas in 2001′s “Stillmatic”, let alone his classic “Illmatic.” 1994 was hip hop’s pinnacle year, and pretty much since 2001 nobody seems to care about content or lyrics anymore…why? I do think the influence of dirty south rap has done terrible things for the game…when i think of shitty rap songs, for some reason Ying Yang twins come to mind, i don’t really know why…i also think a lot of it has to do with the fact that these guys just don’t give two shit’s about rap, they just want money…everyone is out for the money, but most cat’s at least respected the game…simply put, this new breed doesn’t.
Now don’t get me wrong, i do like listening to mindless pop so i can rip it up in the clubs as much as the next person, but let’s keep it at that…mindless pop. me and my boys don’t mind listening to Weezy F. Baby every now and then because the dude is just a ridiculous persona, there’s no denying his charisma and stage presence, which are commendable attributes of a rapper, but i don’t think anyone’s flying off the handle saying his lyrics are classic. he’s just a funny ass, interesting dude.
I was talking with my boy about the current state of hip hop and he came up with a very interesting theory. Follow me… seeing that music is an ever-evolving art form, rap has currently evolved into it’s 80′s glam rock phase, if you compare what rap is doing now I think it’s pretty comparable to what rock was doing in the 80′s, basically just going off the charts with some out-of-this-world trash that is merely a phase, again there can be a few gems in there, but very few and far between. The auto-tuner is a great example of this, i can appreciate artists pushing the envelope and trying out something new, but when something doesn’t work, just put it to rest…let’s not use this in another rap song…ever…again.
I also think it’s pretty telling of our times when one of rap’s ‘rising star’s’ is this douche Asher Roth. I’m sure you have all heard his awesome, original new song “I Love College.” ok, so let’s take a look at verse one of this great song.
i wanna go to college for the rest of my life
sip bankers club and drink miller lite
on thirsty Thursday and Tuesday night ice
and i can get pizza a dollar a slice
so fill up my cup
lets get fucked up
im next on the table
who want what
i am champion at beer pong
Allen iverson Hakeem Olajuwon
don’t even bounce, not in my house
better hope you make it
otherwise you naked
“who want what?” what the fuck are you talking about dude? “i am champion at beer pong, allen iverson hakeem olajuwon.” ummmm, hey, douche, that doesn’t even rhyme!! regardless of that point, i hate to burst your bubble, and no disrespect to AI, but he doesn’t have any rings bro, he’s not champion of anything, so just fucking stop it, please. let’s start off with baby steps…how about rap songs at least make sense to get things moving in a positive direction.
So, for now i’ll stick to my ipod and wait for the return of Em to at least shake things up, or Dre’s much anticipated “Detox” to knock down the doors again. Until those albums get released, if they ever even hit the shelves, I guess I’ll be waiting for rap’s version of Nirvana…
Turn on your radio, and tune into your local hip hop (shitty rap) station, and listen for a minute. If you have any real sense of musical taste, you will be acting like Alex from Clockwork Orange, after he is “reformed” of violence. Todays music is something to get sick over, and if you are a hip hop fan from the mid 90′s and earlier, you probably constantly feel like your ears are bleeding when your forced to listen to the radio. The main problem is that its hard to pin point exactly when and where things got so shitty. Was it when rappers started to use that funny mic shit? Was it when everyone wanted to be Jiggy? Maybe it was when rappers stopped filming videos in apartment stair wells, and started shooting them in the front seat of Lamborginis and Phantoms. Theres probably a million different things your can attribute it to, but honestly, the main factor, undoubtably has to be….college kids and college parties. Hear me out. I am not crazy. I dont think.
Think back on your greatest college party memories. If they are anything like mine they go something like this. Tons of middleclass white kids, a heap of cheap alcohol, and super loud rap music to get things live. When your in college, what else do you really care about other than getting drunk, hitting on girls, and jamming to loud upbeat tunes. When party rap hit the scene and became huge, it was engulfed by college students who could give two shits about the lyrics, but were only concerned with how good the beat was. Rappers didnt even care about the lyrics. They started just throwing stuff together, knowing it didnt matter. Example.
” You can find me in the club, bottle full of bub, momma I got what you need if you into taking drugs, Im into having sex, I aint into making love, so come give mea hug if your into gettin rubbed”
What the fuck?
So lets recap real quick. Rapper from Southside Jamaica Queens, whos been lit up with 9 gun shot wounds, is rapping about giving people hugs, while at the same time admitting he isnt about that soft love making, but would rather opt for the hardcore animal fucking. Contradiction? Fuck it, the beat was hot 50!
How about this one?
Now I ain’t sayin’ she a gold digger (When I’m in need)
But she ain’t messin’ wit no broke Niggaz (She steal me money)
Now I ain’t sayin’ she a gold digger (When I’m in need)
But she ain’t messin’ wit no broke Niggaz(I gotta leave)
Get down girl, go ‘head get down (I gotta leave)
Get down girl, go ‘head get down (I gotta leave)
Get down girl, go ‘head get down (I gotta leave)
Get down girl, go ‘head
Who wrote this? It seems like its an argument between 2 80 year old black dudes in the south during the turn of the century.
What tends to happen is that people start to like these songs based strictly on the memories that they are associated with. People like shitty rap music, because it reminds them of the time in college they funneled 5 beers consecutively, pumped that hot new Nelly album, puked, rallied, did shots, fingered a chick in the hallway, and woke up covered in Elios pizza. By all accounts, you have to chalk that up as a solid night, but does an entire genre of music have to suffer because rappers started to make party albums?
I cant really call it. Ill just do my part to support good hip hop while occasionally sneaking in the time to pound beers and freestyle with friends over a Weezy beat. Fuck it. Im only human. YA HEARDDD.