Volume 7: Soulman 2000:
A Look Back At
The Last 100 Years In Hip Hop|
January 15, 2000
originally planned for this to be a millenium-end special addition of The
New World Of Beats, featuring highlights from the last 1000 years
of hip hop. That was until I realized that this is not the end of the millenium. This millenium isn't really over until the END of the year 2000- that'll be the end of 2000 years, or the end of two milleniums. I think that's how it works, right? Well, whatever. I'm sick of all this Y2K shit anyway, so I ain't gonna be a part of it. Plus I don't remember all the details of the great moments in hip hop's last 1000 years anyway (MC Honest Abe getting bucked down in the place to be, Martin Luther King's classic mc battle with Malcolm X, Julius Caesar throwing wack emcees to the lions, etc.).
instead I'm just gonna cover the things that I think I know are ending on
December 31st, 1999- year, decade, score & century. Print this shit
out and store it in your time capsule, kiddies, so that future
civilizations can know what The Soulman thinks was hot hip hop-wise in the
20th century. And please keep in mind that none of these lists are
neccessarily in any kind of order...
TOP TEN JOINTS OF 1999: Y'know, while going over all of the songs that came out in 1999,
I've come to one conclusion: Hip Hop '99 really sucked. Well, maybe not
sucked- I guess there were a lot of songs that I liked this past year.
Just not many that I LOVED. You know, the type of joint that you hear on
the radio for the first time and just go into a damn coma... you can't
move, can't speak, a long string of saliva dangles from your bottom lip as
your jaw hangs down below your belly button... then you finally snap out
of it and yell "oh SHIT!!! What the hell is THAT???" (For further
reference, check The Soulman's Top Ten "Oh Shit" Moments In Hip Hop
History elsewhere in this article.) Regardless, I guess these are my
favorites of 1999...
SOULMAN'S TOP TEN JOINTS OF 1999:
1. Mos Def: "Miss Fat
2. Lyrics Born & Poets Of
Rhythm: "I Changed My Mind" (Spinna Remix)
3. Beatnuts: "Watch Out
4. Mos Def featuring Talib
Kweli: "Know That"
5. Group Home featuring Gangstarr:
6. Gangstarr: "Full
7. Screwball: "Seen It
8. Scritti Politti featuring Mos
Def: "Tinseltown To The Boogie Down" (Pete Rock,
Psycho Les & Ali Shaheed Muhammad mixes)
9. Slick Rick featuring Raekwon:
10. Ghostface Killah featuring
Raekwon: "Apollo Kids"
THE SOULMAN'S TOP 10 "OH SHIT" MOMENTS IN HIP HOP
All of these are important moments in my life as a hip hop
fan, recollections of my first time hearing certain classic hip hop songs
that made me say "Oh shit!!" for one reason or another. The memories
are as vivid today as they were all those years ago...
1. The Sugar Hill Gang "Rapper's Delight",
I'd been going to parties for awhile at this point, even though I
was a little snotty nosed kid, so hearing cats rhyming wasn't anything
new- really, it wasn't even a big deal. And Fatback's "King Tim III" was
getting play on college radio, so even hearing rap on record or on the
radio wasn't totally foreign. But when I heard that "Hip, hop, the hibbit
to the hibbity" shit on NY's WBLS one afternoon, my first thought was "Yo!
They're playing a tape from a party on the radio... okay." Then came the
realization- "That wasn't a tape. That's a RECORD. Damn, this shit is
getting serious!" I had a feeling that things wouldn't be the same after
2. Run DMC "Sucker MC's", 1983
record came out I felt that rap was gonna die very soon- the old school
cats were making terrible records, running around in high leather boots
and sadomasochistic spiked collars, all Jheri-curl juiced out and shit.
Planet Rock beats had replaced those slow, hard breaks as the sound of
choice. To put it simply, shit was wack. Then one day I was sitting in my
cousin's kitchen listening to Lady B's AM radio show in Philly when she
said something like "Check out the beat box!" Then came those infamous
intro snare taps... boom-BAP-BAP-BAP-BAP-BAP-BAP-BAP... sounded like
Orange Krush's classic "Action" break on steroids. Then the rhymes- "Two
years ago / a friend of mine..."
This was the ILLEST
thing I had ever heard in my life!! Run's rhyme wasn't revolutionary... it
was just all that fly shit that cats wanted to hear. Nobody was making
records like that. In fact, just like when I'd heard the Sugar Hill record
four years earlier, I thought it was a tape. The beat dropping out while
the deejay scratched, the fact that it was just a BEAT, no music... no,
I'd never heard a record done like that before. But it was sooo fresh. I
now knew that hip hop had a future.
3a. LL Cool J's live freestyle over the
"It's Yours" beat, Philly, 1985
LL had already given me 2 "oh shit" moments- his
1st record "I Need A Beat" (which I bought on the same day I bought UTFO's
"Roxanne Roxanne") and his 2nd record "Dangerous". The latter I actually
thought was the greatest display of emceeing I'd ever heard at that time-
couldn't understand why nobody was really feeling it, yet they were loving
The Triple Threat MC's & Fresh Gordon. Oh well... Anyway, I think
people began to figure out what I already knew- that L was a bad, bad man-
when they heard his freestyle recorded live at Philly's After Midnight and
debuted exclusively on Lady B's radio show (by now on Power 99 FM). I
remember just sitting by the radio in a state of shock... here I was, a
fledgling wannabe emcee and I'd just heard something that made me want to
go back to the drawing board. Sure, it's easy to look back now and say he
wasn't saying a damn thing and sometimes just using big words that he
didn't even understand ("my voice matriculates like a grand piano"...
okay, L, just what school did your voice and that well-educated grand
piano of yours matriculate at???). But to put it in perspective for some
of you younger cats who only know L as a Milk Dud headed, sitcom actin',
pop hit rapper, Cool J was the Canibus or Eminem of his day- that kid that
exploded on the scene with rhymes galore, making people think that he just
might be the greatest of all time.
3b. LL Cool J performing "Rock The Bells"
for the first time ever, Philly, 1985
L debuted this at The Uptown in Philly
right before the "Radio" album came out- he was red hot from the success
of "I Can't Live Without My Radio" and his cameo in "Krush Groove". The
place went crazy when he performed "I Can't Live...", but he ended his set
with a new song that no one had ever heard before. "LL Cool J is hard as
HELL! Battle anybody I don't care who you TELL!" He then proceeded for the
next three-plus minutes to rip into an absurdly dope jam that we later
knew was titled "Rock The Bells". But you know what? The crowd just stood
silently and watched while he debuted this song. And when he left the
stage, no cheers- nothing. I think I was the only person in the crowd who
knew he'd just heard something incredible.
4. Run DMC "Peter Piper", 1986
waiting on the new Run joint, wondering if they could come back with it in
the midst of "Cool J Mania". I heard "My Adidas" on the radio- Darryl
& Joe rapping to a swing beat a la Doug E. Fresh was kinda strange to
me, yet it was still that hardcore Run shit that we all knew and love. But
heads told me that the other new cut, "Peter Piper" was the one. So I
bought the 12", took it home, put the needle to the wax and then proceeded
to lose my muthafuckin' mind. Jam Master Jay rockin' "Mardi Gras" over an
uptempo 808 beat? Rapid fire nursery rhymes from the Kings from Queens? Oh
yeah, I lost it. I musta been bouncing off the walls of my shabby North
Philly apartment for the next three days playing that record over and over
5. Rakim on "Eric B Is President", 1986
heard people talking about Ra, there was a little street buzz going on
about the record, but I still hadn't peeped it yet. So I finally catch it
on the radio- as soon as I heard the beat, I knew this had to be the joint
that everyone was talking about. Then that voice came in. Understand that
at this moment we were at the height of the LL / Run / Beasties "screamin'
and yellin'" style of rap, so to hear this laid back dude rhyming was so
out of the ordinary. As a true old schooler it wasn't anything new to me-
most emcees were cool with their delivery back in the day. But in 1986,
Rakim's style was the exception. When he ended his last verse with
"thought I was a donut, ya tried to glaze me"... I knew I'd just listened
to the next great emcee. What I didn't know was that years later he'd be
widely considered as the greatest ever. Hell, I doubted that "Eric B Is
President" would even be more than a minor hit! I loved it, but I didn't
think the masses would get it. Guess I was wrong, huh?
6. Public Enemy
There were so many "oh
shit" moments from PE back in the day that I can't really pick out just
one. "Public Enemy No. 1" was wild to hear at first because of Chuck D's
voice moreso than the noise factor- hell, I knew about The JB's "Blow Your
Head", the irritating sound was no big deal to me. Same with their use of
"The Grunt" for "Rebel Without A Pause" (PE wasn't even the first to use
that sample- some other rappers, who I can't remember, had already used
that whistling sound). I guess the biggest "oh shits" for me were "Bring
The Noise", "Night Of The Living Bassheads" (which amazed me with the
sheer amount of sampled bits that were tossed into the mix), "Welcome To
The Terrordome" and the severely slept on "B-Side Wins Again". Another PE
"Oh Shit" moment would be my first time hearing the "Shut Em Down" remix,
but that's more a Pete Rock "Oh Shit", I guess. I still remember that dude
AJ Shine on WKDU in Philly playing the record and afterwards saying that
it was only "a-ight". Of course the phones lit up with listeners who loved
the record. The Pete Rock era had officially begun.
7. Big Daddy Kane "Wrath Of Kane",
out when I heard "Raw", "Set It Off" and a lot of Kane's early joints. But
for some reason that "Wrath Of Kane" shit just hit me- I think the speed
of it all combined with the quirky little parts, like dropping the music
out in the middle of the song and Mister Cee on the turntable fucking with
the pitch near the end of the song. It's funny how today Rakim is exalted
and respected yet Kane doesn't get the same kinda love. But at the time
this joint came out Big Daddy was THE hottest thing in hip hop... nobody,
not Ra, not KRS, not Kool G Rap, NOBODY was fuckin' with King Asiatic.
Unfortunately, after this record the big fall from grace began...
8. A Tribe Called Quest "The Scenario
The original version of this song was my favorite jam on
"The Low End Theory"- I would've never thought that they could outdo
themselves. But the remix, in my opinion, took it up yet another notch,
thanks in big part to Hood, the nasty ass nigga who set the whole thing
off but tragically died before the record could even be released. The
beat, a simple yet amazing amalgam of Kool & The Gang, The Emotions
& The Ohio Players, grabbed me instantaneously- in part because they
flipped the "Blind Alley" break the same way I'd done it a year earlier on
one of my unreleased joints. Yeah, you know it... great minds think
9. Ghostface Killah, "Daytona 500",
think I even know another person who likes this song, but to me it
captures the essence of hip hop as it was circa 1987- hyperactive old
school beat, lightning fast lyrics and some scratchin' as an added touch.
Okay, so what if you don't like this one... hey, these are MY "Oh Shit"
moments, not yours!
10. Mos Def, "Universal Magnetic",
The kick and snare intro was ill in itself, but when that
Sean J. Period beat came in and Mos started tearin' it up... yo, that shit
took me back, kid. Nobody makes records like this anymore!!! And it's
understandable, because I don't think I heard this record played once on
the commercial stations here in Philly. A record like this would've been
the biggest thing on the streets back in the glory days of hip hop. I
don't think I've had an "Oh Shit" moment since.
TEN ADDITIONS TO MY COLLECTION
DON'T MIND MENTIONING) IN 1999
Aretha Franklin's Greatest Hits lp (Columbia)
2. Mos Def "Black On Both Sides"
3. Living Funk "Let Your Mind
Take The Place Of Your Body" 7" (Funk Music Unlimited)
Harvey Scales "Sun Won't Come Out" 7" single (Mercury)
5. Ernest Van Trose And The McDaniel, Mary Street
Band "Popcorn Push Push" 7" (RCA)
Burke "Rising To The Top" 12" single (RCA)
Punto Sur "Juguette Caro" lp (Jaguar)
Conmen "4" cd
9. Lenny Kravitz
"5" cd (Virgin)
10. The Fatback Band
"Let's Do It Again" lp (Perception)
MOST UNDERRATED HIP HOP B-SIDES
& ODDITIES: 1979-1989
These are records that I thought were ridiculously dope when
they came out, but for some reason didn't get much run. Most of these are
b-sides, some are just kinda obscure and unfairly overlooked.
1. Public Enemy "The B-Side Wins Again" (12" version)
No, it didn't. But it should have.
2. Salt N Pepa "Part II At Warp Speed"
Ill 1986-ish ghost written rhymes over live drums and classic
3. Great Peso & Mr. Nasty "It's Time To
Peso from the Fearless freestylin' with his brother.
4. Fearless Four "Fearless Freestyle"
Top notch old school lyricism.
5. LL Cool J "Dangerous"
Big words spoken ferociously over slow, thunderous drum machine
6. Boogie Down Productions "Essays In
KRS meets The Meters.
7. Grandmaster Caz "Get Down Grandmaster"
Caz just never sounded comfortable in the studio, but with Ced Gee's
beats this was still nice to me.
8. Grandmaster Flash "Freelance"
Flash cutting up the classics: "Apache", "Mardi Gras", etc. Even with
those second rate Furious 5 understudies on the mic, how could you go
9. Treacherous Three "Gotta Rock"
Funny, but the b-side to this record, Kool Moe Dee's solo "Turn It Up"
was the one that made some noise. Still, the underappreciated a-side was
the lyrical forerunner to what all the Rakims, Kanes & KRSes were
doing in the late 80's.
10. Slick Rick "The Moment I Feared"
Yeah, I know it's not a
b-side or obscure. But this was my favorite Slick Rick studio recorded
song (not counting the live versions of "Treat Her Like A Prostitute",
"Davy Crockett" and "Vanessa Williams"). Most people liked "Mona Lisa",
"Childrens Story", etc., but this was my shit off of Rick's 1st lp.
Check the style, then listen to Naughty By Nature's "OPP" and you tell me
where Treach got that rapid-fire flow from.
TOP TEN ALL-TIME
1. Melvin Bliss, "Synthetic Substitution"
2. The Honeydrippers, "Impeach The President"
3. Lafayette Afro Rock Band, "Hihache"
4. Lee Dorsey, "Get Out Of My Life Woman"
5. Bob James, "Take Me To The Mardi Gras" / "Nautilus"
6. The Whole Darn Family, "Seven Minutes Of Funk"
7. Incredible Bongo Band, "Apache"
8. James Brown, "Funky Drummer"
9. Graham Central Station, "The Jam"
10. Skull Snaps, "It's A New Day"
* Webmaster's Bonus Pick: The Turtles, "I'm Chief Kamanawanalea"
SEVEN NEW MILLENIUM
& The Sounds Of Joy
7. Bob Azzam
TOP TEN FLICKS (NON-PORNO) IN MY VIDEO
Fists Of The White Lotus
Of The Drunk Mantis
9. Menace II Society
10. Scared Straight
MEMORABLE RECORD SHOW
1. The $400
I found this odd looking record, Bob Azzam & The Great
Expectation, in a junky-ass record spot in Delaware. There was a little
drumbreak on it, but I didn't think it was all that. I took it to the next
record show to see if people knew about it. I showed it to The Vinyl Dogs,
they weren't up on it. Then I showed it to Buckwild and he was like "OH
SHIT!! Where did you find THIS??" Then he goes on to tell me that it's a
mega-rare record that he'd found multiple copies of out in California, and
that he'd used it on one of his tracks. Next I showed it to PM Dawn's
Prince B, and he damn near lost his mind. "How much do you want for it?"
he asked. "Not for sale", was my reply. To which Prince said "Every man
has his price", and then proceeded to offer me crazy amounts of dough for
the record. His highest offer was $700! Of course, now I'm ready to sell,
but it comes to our attention that Diamond has just bought a repressing of
the same record from Bob Gibson, whose table is right across from mine,
for about $325. So I ended up giving it to Prince for $400, which is still
my biggest sale ever.
Bumpy Knuckles Keeps It
One time I was diggin' next to
Freddie Foxxx, a/k/a Bumpy Knuckles, and he asked the dealer how much a
certain record was. The guy told him the price, which was pretty damn
high, to which Freddie looked at him and said, "I oughta slap the shit
outta you with this record for even sayin' some shit like that to me"!
Neither me, the dealer, or anybody else in the near proximity had any
doubts that he'd do it, too!
A Gift From The 45 King
I had a slightly beat up copy of the
Giant record at one show, and DJ Mark The 45 King wanted it. "It's a
little crunchy but it plays", I told him. He listened to it and decided
that it was cool, even with a few crackles. I gave him a good price on it,
and he was so happy that when he gave me the money he also slipped
something else into my hand... a somewhat bent-up-and-worn-looking joint!
I didn't have the heart to tell him I don't smoke- hey, it's the thought
Movie Stars Dig, Too
A surprise visitor to my table on one
occassion was film actor Matt Dillon, looking for some South American
records, I believe. He walked up very inconspicuously with his baseball
cap pulled down low- I didn't recognize him, but my partner Abdullah did
right away. "Hey, you're...", but before "Dullah could even get his name
out, Matt put two fingers to his lips and said "Shhhh". He asked if we had
what he was looking for, we didn't, and he smiled and quickly dissapeared
into the crowd. I don't think anybody else even noticed who he was.
"He Was Gonna Wet That
This particular morning at the
record convention was real hectic- lots of producers and collectors buying
lots of records. I was busy pulling shit out of my crates to play for
people and making transactions, but out of the corner of my eye I noticed
right in front of my table a certain well known producer, who I've decided
not to name, was highly agitated at somebody. There were some words being
exchanged, but I was too busy selling records to pay close attention to it
all. After everything died down, Abdullah says to me, "Oh shit, did you
see that? He was gonna wet that kid!!" I'm not 100% sure of the details,
but what I heard was that this upset producer had put the other cat up on
the Oliver Sain "On The Hill" sample, which he was about to use for an
upcoming single. The other guy turned around and used the sample on Craig
Mack's "When God Comes" remix before the mad producer could use it. Rumour
has it that when they ran into each other at the record show, the angered
beatmaker pulled something out right there in front of my table and made
dude give up some loot! Now, like I said, I was mad busy when all this
happened so I didn't see any of it, so if any of my facts are wrong please
forgive me. But that's what I was told went down...
The first and only time I met Onyx was at one of the worst
record shows I ever did. The Soul & Disco show had moved from the
infamous Roosevelt Hotel to a spot on Union Square. Somehow that location
didn't pan out either, so they had to relocate it to some shabby ass
gymnasium. Nobody knew where this place was at, so the crowd was
ridiculously small and I made next to no money. The only thing that saved
me was that Abdullah, who was a friend of Fredro Starr, told Freddy and
Sticky Fingaz to come to the show for beats. They were doing their own
production for their second album and they needed some joints. The things
that I remember most about the Onyx cats to me were 1) they were mad short
to be portraying such a tough guy image, and 2) Sticky damn near broke my
fingers when he shook my hand! This was before he started going around
with no shirt on- I had no idea that he'd been gettin' his swoll on. I've
been known to hurt a few hands myself, but Sticky had my shit cripped up
for the rest of the day! Luckily he and Fredro bought a big stack of
records from me, so it was worth the pain.
SOULMAN'S 25+ FAVORITE HIP HOP
ALBUMS OF THE 20TH CENTURY
1. Ultramagnetic MC's "Critical Beatdown"
2. Live Convention '82
3. Live Convention '81
4. Public Enemy "It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold
5. Ice Cube "Amerikkka's Most Wanted"
6. NWA "Straight Out Of Compton"
7. Pete Rock & CL Smooth "Mecca And The Soul
8. Main Source "Breaking Atoms"
9. A Tribe Called Quest "The Low End Theory" /
10. Gangstarr "Moment Of Truth"
11. Diamond & The Psychotic Neurotics "Stunts,
Blunts & Hip Hop"
12. Showbiz & AG "Runaway Slave"
13. Jungle Brothers "Done By The Forces Of Nature" /
"Straight Out The Jungle"
14. De La Soul "3 Feet High & Rising"
15. Dr. Dre "The Chronic"
16. Afrika Bambaataa "Death Mix"
17. Eric B & Rakim "Let The Rhythm Hit
18. Boogie Down Productions "Criminal
19. Wildstyle Soundtrack
20. Mobb Deep "The Infamous"
21. Beastie Boys "Paul's Boutique"
22. The Beatnuts "The Beatnuts"
23. Mr. Scarface "Mr. Scarface Is Back"
24. Common Sense "Resurrection"
25. Chef Raekwon "Only Built For Cuban Linx Niggas"
EGOTRIP'S BOOK OF RAP LISTS
For my money, this tome is the Sugar Ray Robinson of hip hop
books- pound for pound it beats all the rest of 'em to a Jake Lamotta-type
bloody pulp. Except for maybe that "Hip Hop" book by Steven Hager from
back in the early 80's- that shit was dope, too. Any way, these are some
of my favorite ancedotes and eye-openers from said publication-
1. Run DMC in those plaid jackets that
were so so def in NYC in the early 80's.
2. Raekwon's debut album is actually
titled "Only Built For Cuban Linx Niggas" (the word Niggas is replaced by
three dots on the album cover). I didn't know that.
3. KRS was gonna be down with the Juice
Crew, and the whole "Bridge Wars" thing was planned out and staged by Kris
and Shan to make money. Shouldn't really be that surprising, but it's
still like... damn.
4. The hook on Tribe's "Elecric
Relaxation" is "Relax yourself girl / Please settle down". Really? I
thought that last part was some French shit.
5. Kool Moe Dee's 1999 rapper report
card... an A for Mystical but only B's & B+'s for Jay Z, Nas, Black
Thought, Common, Big Pun, Red Man, Mos Def, Ras Kass & Canibus? And a
B for Puffy?? PUFFY???? Moe, you're a lyrical legend but do you know what
time it is? Tell me do you know!
6. Kool G Rap did a verse on the original
version of Big Daddy Kane's "Raw" that ended up being removed. No! Who has
a tape of that original version?? I need that shit!
7. KRS' original vision for the BDP
"Edutainment" lp cover: Malcolm X stabbing George Washington's
8. Debi Mazar's old school recollections.
I didn't realize she was a b-girl!
9. The "7 Costly-Ass Artists To Sample
From" piece. They could've included James Brown, Jimi Hendrix and Bob
James too, from what I understand.
10. "Most Expensive Hip Hop Records".
I've sold some of those for a lot less than the prices that they have
listed. If only I'd have known...
11. Biz's favorite things includes a
Barbie Doll collection!
12. "Eric B Is President" was initially
supposed to be an answer record to Janet Jackson's "What Have You Done For
Me Lately"! So that's why he's beefin' with wifey in the last verse, huh?
INVENTION OF THE MILLENIUM
The airplane and the computer were contenders, but I gotta
say it's that little rubber piece that they're putting on dustpans
nowadays- helps get up every speck of grime even better than using
old Baja Marimba Band or JJ Fad album jackets!
E-MAIL MUST GO THROUGH
My name is Patrick
Johnson. I am a sophomore Broadcast Journalism student at Howard
University. I host a show devoted to hip hop on our campus radio station
WHBC 830 AM every Tuesday and Thursday nights from 6 to 8 pm. I am now
working on a mixtape and I would simply like to say I am a fan of your
website and would like to know when can we expect another update. Also
your tape covers are also and have made me raise the bar (or my bar) in
terms of what I would like to do for the cover of my tape. Also you are
probably as I am a huge fan of album covers and I want people to be just
as impressed by the album covers as they are by the content of the tape. I
have yet been unable to buy one of your tapes (this college thing leaves a
brother broke) but I hope to be able to soon. As for now the knowledge you
provide on your site is priceless and has more than sufficed. From one
crate digger to another thanks.
I found your site thru the Turntable Lab
You prolly dont remember me. I think last time I talked to you
was thru regular mail ( 4 or so years ago) and I might have had the MC
name AM/PM, not sure. I put you on to that "Behind The Rain" record
by Gato Barbieri. I still have the MC Clayskee tape with you rhyming
on it. Haha, anyways I wanted to drop you a line and say whats up.
Peace / respect,
Meddafore / Dallas Short
Oh shit is right! You actually have that MC Clayskee joint
featuring Soulman a/k/a Phill Most Chill on the mic spittin' the ill,
nasty x-rated lyrics??? You got a rare classic there, my man. (Note: since
I recieved this e-mail Meddafore was involved in a serious accident- the
whole World Of Beats fam wishes him a speedy recovery.)
Comment to your Dusty Fingers Article-
It's interesting that he
(whoever he is) says it's not a money or ego thing. I mean he also
doesn't clear the samples (or does he???) and throughout the article he
claims that he's "pissed off at all these simple minded producers using
disco and bullshit records". Well why doesn't he enlighten us by
making hot records instead of just making a comp? One would argue
it's much harder to transform a bunch of grooves and breaks into 3 minutes
of floor shaking than to just find beats - I mean he doesn't even do most
of the digging, he has people looking for them for him. My opinion
is that all them cats who make comps would trade all their knowledge and
their entire collection to be able to say, " yeah, I made 'One
Love'." Don't be mad cats use obivous shit, just say that making
comps is the only connection you will ever make to being associated
to being creative in Hip Hop or "I can't make hot records so I make hot
I understand your point. Although I'm not out to defend the
"Dusty Kid" because I have some mixed feelings about this whole comp thing
myself, I will say that he has done some very hot tracks but got fronted
on by artists who liked the tracks but wouldn't use them because a) they
didn't want to pay him fairly or b) they preferred giving the production
work to "name" producers or members of their own little clique- you know
how that goes, I'm sure. So why not put out his own records with his own
beats instead of comps? He actually has done some records in the past but
I believe he got tired of dealing with knucklehead mc's and shady business
people. I guess he feels it's easier to just put out a comp, sit back and
collect the money. At least that's the impression I got from talking to
this cat. (Note: an interview with Georges will appear in an upcoming
World Of Beats, so look for it.)
You did it again with another World Of Beats. I really
enjoyed reading this one (vol 6) and of course all the other World Of
Have you thought about maybe interviewing producers like
Madlib, Peanut Butter Wolf, Cut Chemist, DJ Shadow and Chief XL from
Blackalicious? Yes, I do understand that you will interview people you
think are interesting and those above producers I think are very much so
that because they all do their own thing and continue to put out top notch
hip hop. Also I want to say that I'm another one of those beat heads who
started buying the Rap Sheet years ago because of your World Of Beats
articles. I got to say I learned a hell of a lot years ago from you,
Soulman, about drum breaks. Thanks for all those beat titles you
gave us... and still do .
I'm totally feeling the new Blackalicious lp
NIA .. Why can't other fool's put out quality from the heart shit like
that?? Anyway I don't wanna bitch on... you get my point. Merry Xmas and
all that good stuff,
Vinko, from Australia
Yeah, I'd love to interview those dudes you mentioned. If our
paths ever cross I'll definitely try to hook something up. Stay tuned. And
does anybody know of any sites on the 'net where I can hear the
Blackilicious album? Everybody's saying that it's the shit but I can't
Mos Def: Miss Fat
Booty (and the whole "Black On Both Sides" LP) / Aretha Franklin "One
Damn, my apologies to Dante a/k/a The Mighty Mos for
inferring that his album should possibly be retitled "Wack On Both Sides"-
far from it. This is undoubtedly one of the best hip hop long players I've
heard since... well, since the Blackstar album. The shining jewel of this
set is the lead single, "Miss Fat Booty", which for some reason didn't
move me when I first heard it on some website. Mos' story is so well woven
(although I still didn't catch the ending.... help, anyone?) but the track
by newcomer Kool G is sick, sick, sick. Made me run out and cop the
original, queen diva Aretha Franklin's "One Step"- a joint from her early
Columbia days that's feather light compared to the later Atlantic super
souled-out shit, but still nice as hell to vibe on. "I know I can't afford
to stop / for one moment / 'cause I'm just out of reach of your
fingertips..." Hell yeah, lady. I'm playing this more than the Mos Def
shit right now!
Common: The Sixth
Wasn't diggin' Primo's quirky off-kilter
chop job on this at first, but the shit grew on me like the white fuzzy
stuff on that year-old grapefruit in the back of your frig. Common +
Premier = how can you go wrong?
B-1 & Large
Professor: Put Yourself In My Place
Kool G (see the
Mos Def piece above) strikes again with another soulful banger complete
with sampled vocals. "Put yourself in my place / and you wouldn't do the
thiiiings you do..." yeah, that's my shit. B-1 holds it down with a nice
bit of emceeing and is helped out by the best performance by Extra P,
a/k/a The Large Professional, in years. Good to see he can still bring it.
Count Bass D: On The
Reels / Violatin' (Remix)
Nice return after the
underground classic "Violatin'" single. Beats, rhymes, scratches all el
perfecto- like hip hop's supposed to sound. Mighty V.I.C. kills the beat
for the remix, and that line "I think it should be Big Joe and Fat Pun"...
yo, that's some classic shit.
DJ Paul Nice:
Definition Of Nice
All y'all break record cats might
know Paul from his "5 Fingers Of Death" joint, but don't snooze on his
single on Bomb Hip Hop Records featuring AG, Babu & Gennessee all
puttin' it down correctly. The "Re-definition Of Nice" remix re-utilizes
the classic "Do It Baby" break, but the a-side is especially nasty
beat-wise. Cop it when you spot it.
All the cuts on this new ABB single
are, as usual, dope shit courtesy of those Dilated dudes. I have a special
place in my heart for "Annihilation", though, because I love the record
that they sampled and chopped up and used for the beat. What record is
that, you ask? Wouldn't you like to know! Secret Squirrel rules are in
effect for 2000- deal with it. In the meantime, mark March 28th, 2000 on
your calendar- that's when the long awaited Dilated lp on Capitol drops.
MF Doom: LP
Probably my favorite shit as of right now, but I can't
find the album!! I'll speak on this later, after I get a copy.
THE ROOTS: That new
shit I just heard on the radio
They didn't say the name of it when J-Ski played this on
Philly 103.9 last night, but the shit is CRAZY! Thought, Dice & Malik
wildin' out on a real hip hop track- chopped-up, ultra lo-fi All The
People drums and an ill piano. The honey dip sangin' on the chorus seems
madly out of place on such a hardcore song, but even that can't fuck it
up. I wouldn't go so far as saying that these cats should altogether drop
the live band sound, but they most def need to rock to more traditional
hip hop tracks like this one.
I'm also diggin' the unreleased "Quicksand Millenium" now playing on the okayplayer.com website.
IN THE WORLD OF BEATS
HELLO! MY NAME
Jorun (a.k.a. Forrest Dank) Joseph Serra
CLAIMS TO FAME (Look
What I Done Did):
First hip hop producer in east coast Canada to release a
hiphop comp that features all east coast Canadian hiphop (1993). Before
this, it was unheard of. Also opened for Run-Dmc, Michie Mee, Public Enemy
between 89-93... and the first beat collector in the east coast of Canada
(I cleaned out most of the dope spots before anyone else here could).
IT ALL BEGAN LIKE
I first started collecting beats in '86 when I was in a crew
called "Down By Law"... my M.C. would bring me records from his parent's
collection to cut up ("Black Caesar", "Fred Wesley & J.B.s"., Maceo
& Macks,...etc). I started noticing current artists sampling parts of these records. I gained the interest
soon after but I got heavier into digging after De La's first l.p.
FAVORITE SHIZNIT TO
Jazz, rare soul 45's from around the world, kid's records, bachleor pad music....
WHAT JORUN WAS
REPORTED TO HAVE DONE ON SEPT. 28, 1999:
Makin beats and gettin stoned with Jody (dimepiece from around the way).
IS THAT YOUR FINAL
ANSWER: ASS OR BEATS?
Pshhhh! Ass! But I'd never give
up beats for a piece of ass. Beats are forever....ass comes & goes...
Julio Finn Blues Band, Roberta Flack & Friends, A few Sun Ra l.p.s.....
FAVE EQUIPMENT TO FUCK
Akai 614 (4-track) and Tech 1200's.
BEST CITIES FOR
Halifax, Bedford, and Moncton N.B.
HAS PRIMO'S "CHOP
SUEY" STYLE STARTED TO GET STALE YET?
MOST LOOT PAID FOR A
PIECE OF BLACK PLASTIC WITH A HOLE IN THE MIDDLE:
for the Duralcha 45 and a second copy of Melvin Bliss (both seperate).
WHO'S REALLY BOUT IT
BOUT IT- NO LIMIT OR CASH MONEY?
I don't listen to No Limit or that other shit... I don't have a t.v.
so I can't see video shows and I don't buy that crap, so...
Cymande (all l.p.s), all Roy Ayers l.p.s, especially "Coffy"
and "Everybody Loves The Sunshine", Kool
& The Gang "Kool Jazz", Sabu Martinez "Jazz Espagnole", Walter Wanderly "Rain Forrest".
RECORD DEALERS I DON'T
LIKE VERY MUCH:
Bob Switzer at Taz Records (he can be pretty
'anal' without provocation) and any female that answers the phone at Fat Beats.
YOU KNOW THE DRILLY,
DUN- HOW MANY RECORDS YA GOT, AND CAN I HAVE SOME OF
I currently have about 5000-6000 records. I always do trades.
TOP TEN BREAKS OF ALL TIME:
1. Cerrone: "Rocket In The
2. Iron Butterfly: "Get Out Of My Life Woman"
3. Skull Snaps: "It's A New Day"
4. Silhouettes: "Fonky First"
5. Lafayette Afro Rock Band: "Hihache"
6. Love: "Doggone"
7. Marc Paulo: "Um Amore Seu
8. Manzel: "Midnight's Theme"
9. Les McCann: "Harlem Buck Dance Strut"
10. 21 Guitar Hits:
The start of a new millenium unfortunately also brings an
ending- the untimely demise of Footwork Illadelph here in Philly. It's sad
because this was the only spot in town that really championed the cause of
underground hip hop. I just hope that someone else will pick up the torch
and try to help keep the indy scene alive here. Peace to Big Rich, my girl
Steph, Trane and everybody for always looking out for me and pumpin' my
tapes out before anyone else did... For those interested in ordering
Soulman tapes, no need to e-mail me in advance anymore if you don't want
to. Tapes are $10 each, $25 for 3. So, for example, if you wanted 5 tapes
it would be $45, if you want 6 it would be $50. Get it? If you don't get
it just go ahead and e-mail me to be sure, I'll let you know the deal. And
add $3 to any size order to help cover the mailing costs... Also, Soulman
World Of Beats Vol.1 is about to be discontinued due to the fact that I
don't like it anymore (the same reason that the infamously rare Soulman 60
Beats joint was discontinued). If you want it to complete your collection
or something, order it now or forever hold your peace... And there's only
a small amount of those Bonus Beats tapes left, and once they're gone will
never be reprinted. So do whatcha gotta do and do it quick if ya wanna cop that joint... In a related note,
CDs are almost here! I'll let y'all know soon when they'll be available...
That's enough for now. We'll be back in a minute with some
more of that good shit. Until next time remember that persistence
overcomes resistance, and any fool can learn from their own mistakes but it takes a
wise guy or gal like yourself to learn from the mistakes of others.
e-mail the Soulman