Sunday, July 31, 2005
BIG POKEY - HARDEST PIT IN THE LITTER (1999)
big pokey po-yo podiena. coming from the southside of houston like everyone else, third ward, holding his ring finger in his with the thumb in the 'sittin sidewayz' video-- "parlay in the trey, bang marvin gaye, yellowstone where i stay." check any picture of him, dwarfing anyone else in it, fucking HUGE, "niggas know i'm three thirty on the scale, all about my motherfuckin mail"-- playing football for the abilene christian college wildcats and doing exercise science and health on a scholarship and doing twenty minutes at a time on westside connection flows for screw's headed to da league tape in 96, when he was in nfl camps (i heard oilers or cowboys), leaning and replacing his electrolytes drinking powerade and yellow hydrocodone. dozens of classic flows on the grey tapes, where you can wreck a hundred flows and still never make a name off it (wood, grace, al-d, mike d, half a dozen more), but pokey does, outshining the giants like pat and keke and e.s.g.-- going back and forth with keke for twenty minutes on their plots and schemes flow (a tape that's usually hanging at number eleven on the my top ten, up around three or four when i'm actually listening to it), trading three or four, five, six bars before interrupting each other, ending it when keke falls off on the flow and you hear pokey in the background calling, MOE!! MOE!! MOE!! and big moe comes in with an improvised hook before keke starts in again with a story about getting jacked coming out a stash spot and po gets his confidence back.
pokey's promotional eight by ten black and white is hanging on the wall behind the cash register at q.c. tapes and cds on albert street. right at the corner of 5th avenue, across from the army surplus store, go in through the ENERGY DOCTOR jacuzzi place that's connected to the automatic transmission center with the faded greasy parrots and palm trees painted on the windows. tucked in a connected side room, selling the same tupac/native pride shirts as the bannock shack at 5th and cameron used to sell, triple 5 soul hoodies, local underground rap on consignmnent, corny vancouver and winnipeg underground, midwest underground like tech 9ne and do or die, SUBWOOFER FOOD car audio cds, master p and silkk, and all the late 90s houston albums that always kept re-appearing on the shelves after i bought it. all the houston shit that even chain stores up here have sixteen copies of: keke's platinum in da ghetto, troy's sittin fat down south and back to ballin, the leprechaun (still playing that in my car, just today with on point turned into the mid 30s with my pantlegs vibrating), throwed yung playa by yungstar. that black and white shot of him backlit by warehouse glass with the sun coming thru, polo fleece with the plain crisp white shirt under it, head tilted with a short chain and a fat piece around his neck, universal records on one side of his name and chevis entertainment on the other. got his deal, fucked it up and lost it before paul wall and mike jones were on their first swishahouse tapes (and eventually down with wreckshop on salih williams beats, even, way 'back then').
INTRO / HARDEST PIT -- that obscene cover with him leaning back with a frothy mouthed chocolate pit on a leash, surrounded by dogs and tall CITY DOG POUND walls. so the intro is the story of the hardest pit in the litter, " that dog THOED: mama tiger striped, daddy red nosed," getting bought by some briefcases of cash niggas that pull up in a coupe. sliding into that sped-up 'you're nobody' beat, pokey telling you it goes down for real instead of puff reading psalm 23, expecting to hear "niggas in my faction..." to lead it off instead of "take a trip with me til i infiltrate your noggin." that twisted up lyrical houston rap that everyone wants, "if you swing i'm bobbin, even if i'm dogged out mobbin / on the dope corner in my jordans / niggas is starvin and need to get they game sharpened / out their robbin bound to get they days darkened / i keep my fo-fo barkin for them lames larkin / and them bustas plottin on me in the valet parkin." easy b.i.g. comparison that you always hear with pokey, yeah, introducing that thick flow with the slight rasp, everything coming up from his fat neck, that similar, i don't know, sway, pattern, oldtime southside playa shit with polo fleece and versace sunglasses looking and sounding a lot like big in coogi sweaters and versace sunglasses.
RANGE ROVER ft. BIG STEVE -- "let the top drop in the bentley az-ewww-urrr / mafioso and po-yo is wreckin fo sho." big steve aka grandpappy mafioso from the woss ness click, dropped my testimony the same year as hardest pit, two cadillacs and steve in times square on the cover, some kind of lost classic with that e.s.g. and pokey song, shot himself the same year cause flip says r.i.p. on his southside still holdin flow. real hard mr. scarface is back drums and cheap keyboard stuck perfect between westcoast gangsta whine and sucking dick on the dancefloor atlanta gay european disco whistle. "snappin they backs and bleedin mics on wax / in fact a bunch of crack took me to my stacks / now relax and feel the heat from this verbal impact."
REPATATION -- that real oldschool-sounding swagger like everyone was doing in houston if they weren't doing fake westcoast gangsta type rapping. talking about the s.u.c. rappers that sounded like they were listening to slick rick and whodini and big instead of b-legit and c-bo-- rapping with those stacked on top of each other lines, recite them to yourself with a really exaggerated 80s new york style, that certain style of i'll-take-your-girl song like pat doing 'why you peepin me,' talking like their hometown but, you know, spelling out names and talking about verbal and lyrical and playa haters and polo and foreign cars. "cream coogi longsleeve blendin in like weave / as i strive to achieve and see my digits incline / in my prime right now, vocals slicker than slime."
BALL N PARLAY ft. LIL KEKE, MR. 3-2, BIG MOE -- this is one of those houston classics like 'swangin and bangin' or 'tops drop,' one of those songs all the djs coming out of nowhere to drop houston classics mixes hosted by magno and kyleon are going to have on there three or four times. all about one of those hooks, WHETHER SUNNY OR GREY WE GON BALL AND PARLAYY PO UP DRANK AND SMOKE HAY. songs about saturday afternoons, getting to the spraywash and riding up and down main street jamming 'flossin season' before going to your girl's house, walking around the show and shine in happy valley with hot dogs and yellow mustard and genial old men's impalas and thunderbirds shined to glass, leaning in under hoods to point out those old glass windshield washer bottles and thru windows to look at upholstery and radios.
WHO DAT TALKIN DOWN ft. BIG STEVE, LIL E -- listen, pokey doesn't even get a verse on the track, just doing the hook for big steve while he goes and goes, taking a break for lil e to come in. but steve, everything balanced on every line, memorize it the first time thru, hitting cruising speed by the end of the first bar... "eleven in the mornin, i jumped up in my foreign / popped up, cocked up and my trunk was yawnin / showin high in my ride, widebody finesser / grippin grain down gessner, bout to bust a kompressor / tvs, vcs, that's the way it go down / screens fallin, big ballin, sittin low to the ground / see we floss like true, keep the weed and juice / tall chevy sittin heavy in the two door coupe / mash mode, top to roll, bun b, with a longhaired freak / marqueses in the piece, turn the heat up / cause niggas get jacked, they some cheaters / take the form of blockbleeders / drippin paint off the feeder street / sweepers and tecs, big benz and the lex / five pointers in my ear, fifteen on my neck / big face and checks, navigators and rovers / twenty inches to the floor with my v12 motor."
DOGPROOF ft. C-NOTE, WILL-LEAN -- "dogproof cause we wrapped it." courtney and the chemist from the botany boys doing a dope game track for pokey right before their clover pieces would mean nothing except that they were part of flip's team. pokey with the hardest verse on that sad slow music, coming down extra thick and raspy after will-lean kinda shrill and harsh (and i just realized after playing it sixteen times and straining my brain to pull up who will-lean sounds like on this-- cee-lo! keeps hitting the perfect tone and accent on his voice). "from fifty packs to a vault, gained a massive clout / see, i'm in and out, makin boys a believer / hittin like hurricane alicia givin the block a seizure / motorized stashspot in the four door honda / and this bitch name kianna, she a thoed dope runner."
WHERE I'M FROM (HUGGIN THE BLOCK) ft. Z-RO -- classic lineup off pokey's not really classic at all mobstyle-thru-wreckshop album da sky's da limit, the one with that fake source cover. hard cheap beat with everything on it sounding put together sorta wrong, but two legends with classic verses.