Wednesday, September 29, 2010

2Pac--"Old School"

"What more can I say..." This is the perfect song for those who find themselves reminiscing about the foundation of hip-hop, the "old" New York, and/or Pac at his finest. Though 2Pac is infamously known for igniting what would become the East and West Coast hip-hop beef, "Old School" truly demonstrates his love for the East coast, especially New York, its people and culture.  Listen in as 2Pac passionately rhymes and reflects back on historic times in New York history. "Old School" is one of my favorite 2Pac songs; he talks about New York as if he were a kid in a candy store--skelly, stick ball, and italian ices. A true classic!

2Pac (center) with Busta Rhymes (left) and Treach (right) 

Excerpt for the Wannabe Expert
Remember poppin and lockin to Kurtis Blow, the name belts
And Scott LaRock the Super Hoe back in Latin Quarters
When Slick Rick was spittin La-Di-Da-Di
Gamin the hoochies at the neighborhood block parties, I remem-ber
breakdancin to Melle Mel
Jekyll and Hyde, LL when he Rocks the Bells
Forget the TV, about to hit the streets and do graffiti
Be careful don't let the transit cops see me
It ain't nuttin like the old school!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Roberta Flack--"The Closer I Get to You"

I had to post this as it is a classic! Not only does Roberta Flack have one of the most amazing voices but Donnie Hathaway compliments her so well on this song. This is a truly beautiful song lyrically.   Roberta's got pipes!

Excerpt for the Wannabe Expert
The closer I get to you
The more you make me see
By giving me all you've got
Your love has captured me

Over and over again
I tried to tell myself that we
Could never be more than friends
And all the while inside
I knew it was real
The way you make me feel

Lying here next to you
Time just seems to fly
Needing you more and more
Let's give love a try

Robert Glasper--"J Dillalude"

"J Dillalude"

Any person that loves jazz and hip-hop will truly appreciate this song.  Jazz pianist, Robert Glasper, pays tribute to the late J Dilla with "J Dillalude" by using a compilation of Dilla's original productions to create this jazz piece. Today, Glasper is considered one of the most talented hip-hop/jazz musicians.  To add to that, Dilla's legacy and impact on the game only magnifies with each year that he is gone.  This song is perfect because it seamlessly blends the unique sounds of two extremely talented artists.  Also, let's not forget that jazz and hip-hop go hand-in-hand. What more could you ask for?


Monday, September 27, 2010

Miike Snow--"Black and Blue"

I was recently introduced to Miike Snow by a really close friend of mine and fell in love with "Black and Blue." I must admit, I'm not the biggest fan of pop music, but Miike Snow caught my ears with this one.  "Black and Blue" is the kind of song that makes you jam out at home with the stereo blasting because  no one is there to remind you how ridiculous your dancing is.  At the same time, it's the song that will give you the craziest impulse to rock out regardless of who is in your vicinity.  Miike Snow made me an instant fan with this one, check 'em out!

         Excerpt for the Wannabe Expert

How long has it been, shall we get into it again?
Excuse, our disgrace we've had no time to paint the place
The dog is always barking at the mailman

I won't waste your time with my revelation
Hello my friend, I see you're back again
Hello mystery, don't bother to explain
How bout maybe, its all been in my head
Hey well I'm tired of this black & blue, black & blue

My dear, come again, your voice is fading out and in
Out of the laundry bin, I found my innocence again
The dog is always barking at the mainman

I won't waste your time with my revelation
Hello my friend, I see you're back again
Hello mystery, don't bother to explain
How bout maybe, its all been in my head
Hey well I'm tired of this black & blue, black & blue

Hello my friend, I see you're back again
Hello mystery, don't bother to explain
How bout maybe, its all been in my head
Hey well I'm tired of this black & blue, black & blue

Sunday, September 26, 2010

9th Wonder--"Brooklyn In My Mind" & Curtis Mayfield--"Love To Keep You In My Mind"

"Brooklyn In My Mind"

"Love To Keep You In Mind"

It is no secret that Curtis Mayfield is a musical genius (and God).  However, hip-hop producer 9th Wonder puts his own genius on display here with "Brooklyn In My Mind." 9th Wonder samples Curtis Mayfield's "Love To Keep You In My Mind" while getting Mos Def, Jean Grae, and Memphis Bleek to collaborate on this Brooklyn anthem.  Mos is consistent as usual, meanwhile Memphis Bleek puts together a surprisingly impressive verse himself.  Here we give the audience a taste and mix of past and present for contextual purposes. It's also important to note that 9th is a hip-hop professor--literally.

Excerpt for the Wannabe Expert   
"Brooklyn In My Mind"
Mos Def:
They don't know the language he shout in the anthem/the beat translate and make the world understand son/my voice like magic, my flow fantastic/in summary I'm real ordinary elaborate...
Memphis Bleek:
It's all love where I come from/to keep it real shit I used to cut school on the block B.I.G. come from/but in the stu try to come with flow/at fifteen I spit something that impressed HOV, and here I go...

"Love To Keep You In My Mind"
Curtis Mayfield:
Through loving you I seem to feel a spirit 
Deep inside of me 
Preciously guiding me 
My woman of all women, dear to me  

Forever love me 
For I need you constantly 
And still, you hold me close indeed 
Helping to keep this love I need 
Feels so much like your touch divine  

Drinking and getting high on wine 
Wanting to love you, all the time 
Just love to keep you in my mind 
Just love to keep you in my mind

Friday, September 24, 2010

Sam Prekop--"Faces and People"

One of Chi-town's own, Sam Prekop is best known for being the lead vocalist of The Sea and Cake, an indie rock band that was established during the mid-90s.  With "Faces and People," Prekop delves into several music genres to create a really smooth and mellow song that uses remnants of electronic music, indie pop, and jazz to make a piece which is aesthetically pleasing to all ears. Sans lyrics, it is a true treat for those who appreciate instrumental interplay.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Big Daddy Kane feat. Biz Markie--"Just Rhymin' With Biz"


Simply a classic! I can honestly say that this is one of my all-time favorite hip-hop songs.  This is, in many aspects, the foundation of the punchline-crazed rap that has flooded contemporary hip-hop. You are in for true treat if you are one that likes to laugh at clever lyrics. Peep how Biz rocks it!

Excerpt for the Wannabe Expert
I'm the rap promoter
I start to motor
Tour from New York to South Dakota
Drink ginger ale or root beer soda
Never get the girls with the underarm odor
Put me on water, I'm a good floater
When I run for prez, you best be a voter
Once knew a girl by the name of Rhoda
I watch Star Wars just to see Yoda
Or R2-D2 driving down the BQ
When I buy franks, I make sure they're Hebrew
When I entertain, and love to treat you
Love to see a girl in a nice tight see-through
Take her to the crib, turn on the beta
Watch a good flick by Arnold Schwarzenegger
Maybe Commando or the Terminator
Peace party people, ha ha see you later!
Big daddy, huh huh, my man my mellow
Get on the mic cause you know you eat jell-o

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

J. Cole feat. A.L.--"On Top of the World"

Arguably one of the best up and coming artists in the game today, J. Cole is a beast.  He is not only a lyrical genius but his stage presence is infused with a confidence and swagger that separate him from the rest. Listen closely as he goes in on this track with A.L.  J. Cole is destined (and determined) to be atop the hip-world, it's just a matter of time.

Excerpt for the Wannabe Expert
"These words go together like a verbal collage/It's murder how the words'll collide/And bring you further from where murderers lie/And maybe you could see a mill, no not no burgers or fries/But give you food for thought, my nigga this is Gerber rh-rhymes/Servin' up lines for your child like mine, nigga this live/So you think you seen a style like mine, it's a mirage/But I, I'll be a Blige like Mary J/Then show you how to strive, when it die like everyday/And nigga stay in court like Perry Mason or Gary Payton/New shoes up on his feet like every/week, his mom's interrogatin'/Like where you been? Who you been with?/Scared he runnin the streets/with them freak and them nitwits/Look up in his face, she see the fatherly resemblance/Read him more than a book/Scared he inherited way more than just looks/But uh, mama I'm on top of the world/Uh!/I'm on top of the world/I'm on top of the world..."

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Little Brother--"Curtain Call"

This is the closing chapter to the rap duo Little Brother, which features rappers Phonte and Big Pooh.  They have been very consistent over the years, and Phonte continues to prove that he is among the most talented artists in hip-hop today.

Excerpt for the Wannabe Expert
"It's the removal of a fixture a complicated picture/and not even Clarissa could explain it all/You're mad with me? Tough titty get a training bra...Never leave the game just changed the way I play the cards"