De La Soul’s debut album. Definitely not for everyone, as it’s pretty ambitious and it may seem unorthodox, but it’s definitely worth a listen. Plus, its got some classic songs on it that you may already know and enjoy... Watch: Me Myself & I
Kanye’s first album, back when he heavily incorporated sped-up soul samples and those Dr. Dre-“Xxplosive” kicks/snares he talks about on that “Last Call” track. Still my favorite album by him to date, though he’s definitely come out with some quality material since then. Even some of those songs on 808’s and Hearbreak have grown on me… Watch: Spaceship
I’m defintely not the most enthusiastic about electronic/house/techno/etc, but this album is fantastic. I slept on Justice for a while, and honestly, I hadn’t heard of them until I played Grand Theft Auto IV. They’ve got a great remix of Lenny Kravitz’s classic "Let Love Rule" out… Watch: D.A.N.C.E.
The Legendary Roots Crew’s second album, prominently featuring both Black Thought (2nd best name for a rapper ever, behind Gucci Mane) and Malik B. It’s a very jazz/be-bop influenced album, with simple melodies and great rhymes - this joint is a HIP-HOP album, plain and simple. Do You Want More?!!!??! is also interesting if only for the fact that Scott Storch was their keyboardist at the time… Watch: Proceed
Kenna’s sophomore album, produced primarily by Chad Hugo, with two tracks being handled by the other half of the Neptunes, Pharrell Williams. This album is very catchy, and isn’t necessarily what you might expect from the Neptunes - alternative, electro-pop, R&B-influenced music. I got put on to Kenna’s music last summer after reading Malcolm Gladwell’s Blink and I’ve been hooked ever since… Watch: Say Goodbye To Love
My favorite ATCQ album, and, in my opinion, one of the greatest hip-hop albums of all time. From beginning to end, every track (except for God Lives Through) is great. A lot of people say Low End Theory is the better album because Midnight Marauders is too pop (whatever that means), but I respectfully disagree. The video for “Electric Relaxation” is fantastic… Watch: Electric Relaxation
This is one of the illest albums you’ll ever hear - 9th Wonder is in rare form and Murs drops a lot of gems on this one. It runs very short at just over a half-hour, but it’s for good reason: Murs and 9th would rather skip the filler & skits you hear on so many rap albums nowadays and cut to the chase. The result speaks for itself… Listen: Walk Like A Man
The sampling on this record (production was handled by No I.D., AKA the dude Jay-Z shouts out on the D.O.A. track) is great. In fact, the song this album is most famous for, “I Used To Love HER” samples “The Changing World,” a track off the George Benson album we discussed above. The rhymes on this album are pristene, and make me a little disappointed with some of the material Common’s come out with recently. I understand he wanted to diversify his song catalogue a little, but nobody wants to hear a 50 Cent dance album, right? Stick to what you’re best at… Watch: I Used To Love HER
Chet Baker is one of many artists who’s careers/lives were shortened by drug abuse. It’s a damn shame, because he made some hits in his day. She Was Too Good To Me is a classic album that belongs in every collection. It’s a very mellow album that should definitely relax your mind… Listen: Autumn Leaves
Part II will definitely should be posted tomorrow.
“In a culture where one out of four girls and women are either raped or sexually assaulted – and where manipulative men routinely traffic vulnerable women into the sex industry – it is not okay that BET allowed this to happen.”—Byron Hurt
In the post below this, I linked an AllHipHop.com article that addresses the controversy surrounding the ignorance on display at the BET awards. It surprises me that they’d actually apologize, but since they had such a large number of people witnessing the coonery that was put on display that night, I’m glad they did. It’s about time some of these rappers caught an L for their ignorance.
For those of you unaware, the performance that BET is pissed about is the “Every Girl” performance featuring Lil’ Wayne, Drake and some of their little buddies. The grossest thing about the performance was the fact that Lil’ Wayne’s 12-year-old daughter and her friends were on stage while daddy-dearest was singing about "fucking every girl in the world." Disgusting.
Everything was wrong about that performance - from the failed censorship, to the fact that it was a part of the night where they were supposed to be honoring Michael Jackson.
Here’s a run-down of some of the blogs I most frequently visit. I’ll probably add more as I remember them. It’s really late right now:
The CTI Never Sleeps - A dope website for sampling vintage Jazz records from the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s. Definitely worth checking out.
Hip Hop Isn’t Dead- Cool blog with track-by-track reviews of Hip-Hop albums, as well as some posts about Hip-Hop culture in general. Follows a review format I wholly intend on ripping off whenever I review an album.
Basketbawful - Basketball blog that extensively covers the NBA - all the good and the bad. But mostly the bad.
Kanye West’s Blog- An eponymous blog penned (or not, depending on who you ask) by Kanye West. Its pretty cool - he posts a bunch of new music for free, great pictures of innovative archicecture and design, and some fashion stuff.