Tuesday, November 30, 2004

my top 20 favorite Baltimore hip hop/R&B singles of 2004 (including collabs and remixes with out of town artists)

1. Paula Campbell - "Take You Home" (produced by Jarod Barnes)
2. Comp - "Harder" (produced by Chocolate City Music)
3. Mario - "Let Me Love You"
4. Bossman - "I Did It" (produced by One Up)
5. Mullyman f/ Freeway and Black Lo - "From The Heart" aka "The Streets" aka "Buck On Em" (produced by Clinton Sparks)
6. DJ Debonair Samir/Young Gunz - "Friday Night" remix (produced by Samir)
7. Paula Campbell/Terror Squad - "Lean Back" remix
8. Bossman - "Oh!" (produced by Rod Lee)
9. Comp f/ Notorious B.I.G. - "Get Ya Mind Right" (DNA Remix)
10. Hulio Shallone - "This Is My Hood"
11. Hulio Shallone and Nature's Problem f/ Lil Flip - "That Ain't Nothin'"
12. Red Dot and Backland f/ Whyte Out and Bone Crusher - "Bedda Not Say Nuthin'"
13. Mullyman f/ the Clipse and Fam Lay - "Got It" (produced by Rod Lee)
14. Live Wire - "Hurt 'Em" (produced by Rod Lee)
15. Bossman - "Off The Record"
16. Bossman and N.E.K. - "Face Down" remix (produced by Blaqstarr)
17. C. Miller - "Mean Mug"
18. DJ Debonair Samir, Tim Trees and Paula Campbell - "Breathe" remix
19. Comp f/ Lil Mo - "Be Wit Chu"
20. Q - "No" (produced by Rod Lee)

Labels: , , , , , , , , ,

Monday, November 29, 2004


Mario f/ Jadakiss and T.I. - "Let Me Love You" (Remix)
Totally unexpected paranoid electro beat courtesy of Scott "too hood for Lil Kim" Storch, my homeboy Mario singing the same lyrics with slightly different inflection, playing up the creepy/intense factor that was already there, while 2 of the hardest put down their standard 8 bars, both flying by too quick for me to catch any quotable lines.

Keshia Chante - "Bad Boy"
Maybe the first R&B tune on dancehall's jock since the recent-ish boom that's actually a perfect synthesis, no out-of-place Sean Paul or relatively obscure dancehall guy cameos, just nice straight melodic R&B with some dub-y filter tricks and catchy "back up reverse reverse" bits. Sounds better every time I hear it, always in the context of the pastel-crazy video during the midday shows on BET that come on before Rap City.

Alicia Keys - "Karma"
Man, I used to think when I liked an Alicia song that it was a fluke, but now this is like 4 or her last 5 singles in a row (counting "My Boo") that I've enjoyed (the odd one out being "Diary"). Tense violin, lyrics that actually have something to do with the title, unlike the Lloyd Banks single of the same name, beat breakdowns on the "I remember when" parts that are way more effective then they have any right to be.

t.i. ft. daz - my life

a-town veteran, started at eleven
went and bought an eightball
i was stayin' down ever since
that's why it hard to find another rap nigga better than
the bankhead resident, west side represent
pimp squad mobster, grand hustle president
heart of a lion and the nuts of an elephant
trap muzik heaven-sent, you hatin and it's evident
you tryna stack presidents, i'm tryna set precedents
the comparisons insulting my intelligence
cause real recognize real and real you ain't never been
and never will, i catch you where you chill
holla at you where you live, nigga fuck a record deal
i graduated out the yay to stack a couple mil
who woulda figured it'd be a rap nigga i'd have to kill
my patnas tellin me, shorty you have to chill
but i'm not into hatin, with the steel what it is
still dopeboy trap muzik, worldwide lovin it
haters see the spyder and they wanna put a slug in it
fuck it, i'm a g, i been a rider, i ain't stutterin
you better get your mind off mine and start hustlin

slotted between the pharrell singing the hook/swizz clowning/featuring lil kim tracks, there are amazing moments like this. t.i. adjusting the tempo but never the content, tuning it down to his slow and serious flow to ride nowherenothing beat cooing in the background. and daz roars in to tear it up with angry fuck the haters and fuck the world verse, very nearly outshining t.i.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

cam'ron ft. jim jones - the dope man -- new york rappers couldn't really tap into a specific gangsta past, call out the names and places. there were plenty of connections, you could write a book on that shit, but you had to know what to listen for if you wanted to get it. 50 wrote the quran and murder inc countered by digging up supreme for video cameos-- but--still. that's why these dudes are doing this imagined westcoast shit, a throwback to a time and place that never existed, squealing synths and blood pageantry. instead of shouting out 1980s nyc crack kings, they're flipping some very simple shorthand. they're reading f.e.d.s. for research and playing san andreas on the flipdown screens in the pink range and shouting out freeway rick and his bricks of crack the size of manhole covers and paying tribute to the williams sister that got shot in compton and romeo from the steve harvey show and bragging about getting robbed in cali, mobbed in cali. and, shit, jim jones outshines cam again.

t.i. ft. bg - what they do -- i was obsessed with that street niggas track off bg's last album. bg and t.i. had hot chemistry and they can both do that s,lowkey unapologetic gangsta storytelling. this is good but on a different tip, squirty horn loop chopped really tight, hard drums. and both coming with a different style than on their last track. t.i. does his usual explanation of his come-up and bg does drug math verse talking about, i know people! i get nice deals
get em five dollars, sell em ten dollars a pill
i know people, get keys for thirteen
if i fuck with ya, you get em for sixteen
i know people, get em three hundred a pound
give em to ya for five hundred if you my round
i'm a hustler, holla at me uptown

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

(conveniently, a picture of lew hawk and paul wall together)

rasaq and his squad posted up in northside club, holding down the chest-high formica table along the dancefloor, drinking beers and watching the floor with their back to the rest of the place.

walks in: paul wall, lew hawk accompanied by obscure houston mixtape rappers, click members and various hangers-on. spot: rasaq and his crew chilling, drinking. walk: up. words: exchanged. "sup, rasaq?" "paul? what it do, man?" "sup, rasaq?" "lew? fuck outta here with that friendly shit. you need two niggas need to lean back twice like roy jones jr." "oh shit bitch, it's on."

the matchup is:

heavyweight lew hawk, easy hundred pound weight advantage on the boy rasaq, one of the few dudes to sell even fewer records than rasaq. upset because: rasaq tore him up on bootleggers special 1.5, devoted a couple tracks to exposing him, telling stories about sharing a place with him, about lew hawk getting a teardrop tattoo under his eye and getting it removed and his skin bleached after he got clowned for it.

that little bitch paul wall freshly switched from goofy flow matched to his snoopy t-shirts, matching watch to fancying himself a real street nigga, rolling with pimp squad click, talking about "you can catch me squeezing glocks / pullin triggers and evading the cops / you don't want to see the squad raidin the block / so i suggest you vacate the block." like your boss t.i. said about someone else from houston, "turn into a gangsta when your vocals hit the protools." upset because: behind-the-scenes bullshit when the color changing click was taking off, paul telling cham not to put his brother rasaq on, and the behind-the-scenes beefing paul and cham have been keeping off records.

their click, eight deep.


rasaq, weighing in at a frozen butterball over a hundred pounds, white hanes hanging off of him like a little kids ghost costume for halloween.

his click, five deep.

lew and paul and company jump on rasaq, focused on snatching that piece and chain. that piece and chain-- those giant platinum lizards on long-ass chains that cham and rasaq unveiled a couple days before the big deal was announced.

rasaq and his click jump out of there, hit the parking lot and roll out to grab the guns (AND DO WHAT WITH THEM??). but the cops were already at the club. rasaq gets knocked for a felony gun charge, cham bails him out with major label money.

so, it's official. cham vs. paul. (AND [allegedly] SLIM THUG vs. FLIP COMING SOONER THAN MIKE JONES [i'm not half sure that's going to happen])

Real On Purpose Entertainment presents The Movement, Volume #2 - voted best mixtape in the City Paper's 2004 Best Of Baltimore issue. Double CD, 57 tracks, all different artists, almost every MC in the city that's made a name for themselves and a lot that haven't. No song titles, just track numbers and artist names, but it's mostly freestyles anyway. Some highlights:
Disc 1
1. Ogun
Ogun is the guy who put it all together, so of course he's right up front, big hyper intro, putting the city up, getting shoutouts on every other track.
2. Tim Trees
There's this quality to his rhymes, he switches up his patterns like every other line so that the flow isn't really consistent, but he scoops his voice into every single change up and recovers perfectly so that it sounds completely natural, and he just keeps going and going. NYC-sounding piano beat, don't know if it's original or something I should recognize.
Hook: No club shit, no club shit, no club shit, it's strictly gangsta shit, no club shit, no club shit, no club shit, it's strictly gangsta shit
verse 1: yo, this is the one from the man that y'all weak niggas love to hate, the street nigga with the blood of a snake, I creep niggas with 38's, red mask ang gloves so a nigga can avoid a case, motherfucker if I smack you, you'll cry, if you smack me, you'll die, with a black eye, pack 5, buck shots and hollow tips fly, hit that, split that, rip that guy, catch me slipped I, I don't get that high, I picks the joint up and puts down that la, yes I, am the one you don't wanna try, slugs burn through ya head like a perm, no lie, don't know me, then please keep my name out ya mouth, 'cause I'm known for punchin' lames in they mouth, you don't wanna get banged in ya mouth, that shiny metal thang in ya mouth, you don't wanna feel that rang in ya mouth, listen up, bitches, Wayne in the house, I do G shit that y'all faggot rap niggas claim you about, you want it you got, got a gun nigga then pop it, I'm a pimp in this game and y'all whores is outta profit
verse 2: the only thing y'all niggas poppin' is E's, talkin' shit but you not gon' squeeze, want beef, nigga, holla at me, got that brand new gloc off me, my little niggas keep choppas, B, break you off somethin' properly, slow your roll, niggas musta heard "Bankrolls" and got it twisted, I ain't spit that for y'all rappin' ass niggas, mayne, I spit that for y'all pigeons, I pull toast, most get ghost with the swiftness, I ain't got a Benz but I'm on the road to riches, can't ya see, y'all muthafuckas need me, niggas hatin' mine, blind to the facts like Stevie, I make this look easy, y'all niggas is cheesy, you can't fuck with TT, throw beef, come see me, if I stand, gloc in hand, rock you, my block, we gon' pop pop blam blam your sedan, I'm not your man, so I won't regret it, you get hit the fuck up and left wet instead, niggas ain't learn from Pac and Big, so now I gotta pop his wig, I ain't wanna rock his head, but he bust me to the point once it's on, Farakhan passed on ya kid, I don't think you know what block this is, you don't wanna wind up wakin' up in a Johns Hopkins bed, in debt, owin' me a pound of flesh, a pint of blood, leave set, cuz, you ain't a thug, ain't you ever felt the pain of a slug, you know that point blank range bang bang, nigga (fades out as he keeps going)
7. Backland
On some obscure Neptunes beat that I can't recognize, that high, hiccupy voice, classic example of the Baltimore accent where "oo" vowel sounds are pronounced in a weird way kind of like "ew" but not quite, he really emphasizes it when he ends lines with words like "do" and "you".
8. Comp
Over the Jay-Z "La La La" beat, he does this cool trick where his voice starts sounding angrier and more intense when it gets to the chorus part where the distorted synth comes in, and as soon as it disappears he calms down.
15. N.E.K.
North East Kings are Bossman's crew, but I don't know why this track is credited to them when I'm pretty sure he does all the verses on this, and he's got more name recognition as a solo artist than the group does at this point. But anyway this is nice, kind of a better attempt at a club track than the song I was talking about the other day.
16. DJ Danny Class/CLAYWAY
Little Clayway is kinda big around Baltimore, posters for his album everywhere, always doing radio spots, but I've never really felt the stuff I've heard. This is alright, though, smooth flow, some funny lines like "I gotta keep the benjamins, so if I treat you to dinner we can sliiide up in Bennigan's".
17. PX
Goofy semi-straightforward conceptual track about "dickrider's disease" over a gothic beat with "Hail Mary"-type bells (Major Noise does a song over the actual "Hail Mary" beat on track 9).
23. Tate the Arsenal
Dude shouting blocky rhymes in that angry white rapper voice like when Eminem gets brolic. There's one in every city.
Disc 2
1. Intro (Maleka)
"What's your name, what's your name, what's your name? Maleka How old are you? I'm 8. And where you from? Baltimore. So what is your talent, what are you about to do today? Rap. You gonna RAP? You can rap? And how old are you? 8. Alright, check it out, I want you to take your time (8!), speak your mind, what you got to say to the people? Wassup. Yo, yo, yo, it be the one and only, y'all ain't ready for me, I been rhymin' freestylin' since the age of 3, this is not a test, so yes I'll rock your world, and you cats lookin' shook 'cause I'm an 8 year old girl, I been doin' my thing on the M-I-C, first person get crowned from Bmore, see, I get down and gritty, if heads wanna battle I'ma-- HOLD UP HOLD UP what's your name? Maleka And how old are you...
Disc 2 is more consistent but there's not as many recognizable names or standout tracks. There's this terrible static that starts to gradually increase during the last 20-30 minutes of both discs, like they must've tried to burn 80 minutes of music to discs that aren't supposed to hold that much or something. It's not that bad at first but it gets worse and worse until the last dozen tracks on both discs are pretty much unlistenable. But most of the bigger names are frontloaded anyway.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,

Monday, November 22, 2004

50 cent - disco inferno -- BRAND NEW 50!!! it's easy to be frustrated by 50 saving his dark wordplay shit for mixtapes. he was coming for a minute with amazing guest verses, the game track, the snoop track. this is kind of a different deal. he's doing that breezy, smiling flow, which is still beautiful to hear, dominating the track on his verses and the smooth hook. beat sort of like a funkier, spacier flip of on fire, "the flow sound sicker over dre drums, nigga / i ain't stupid, i see doc then my dough come quicker," delicate flute outro.

50 cent - the good die young -- the 50 mixtape stuff is still underrated, i think, even though it's what blew him up and he got lots of love for it at the time. this was on power of the dollar. the same beat as that um monica (i think) single that came out a couple months after, just that plain loop with the drums hooked up.

first shit happen to stretch, then to pac and big
i'm convinced it can happen to anybody, kid
so i get vest up when i get dressed up, in the hood it messed up
niggas runnin round shoot shit up
if it's don that you drinkin, fill up my cup
if you gossipin about me, shut the fuck up
why niggas acting hard when they know they but
well gettin robbed ain't a good time to press your luck
duke listen, if you move, i'ma hurt you
you'll get your chance to shine later, patience is a virture
right now, what you need to do is get me the cash
forget about your boss being mad, just save your ass
be a good boy now, go and get your stash
i saw you throw it next to the garbage can like it was trash
aight, run along before i shoot your ass
i hate to do this to you but i really need the cash

g-unit - mind playing tricks on me freestyle -- yayo the hustler narrating the story of 50 getting shot on the geto boys beat.
it's a regular day and a regular routine
til i hear this tragic news from up out three fiends
your man 50 just got popped nine times
and i heard through the grapevine it's all cause his rhymes
in front of his grandmoms, standing on the lawn
wearing no teflon, i wonder if he gone
i know in my heart i wanna cry
havin thoughts in my mind that my man gonna die
as i frantically run toward 50 spot
i panic b, peep like 50 cops
it was something dts and homicide
with yellow tape blocked off on both sides
with four fivv shells on the floor
the dts ringin doorbells, goin door to door




For both lists you can go over 10, if you need to. They'll count, but would count less than #10, so you don't get more votes and can't stuff the ballot box. Understand?

Everything from the last year (or close enough, within a month) is fair game. You can vote for mixtapes, R&B joints, street singles, remixes, whatever.

Hit us with some comments, too.

You've got until Dec. 15.


Sunday, November 21, 2004

Bossman - "Off The Record"
NEW HEAT debuted on K-Swift's show the other night, first single from the album Law & Order" out December 21st!!! Bossman going all introspective Pac via east coast flow/production like all NY cats do these days, complete with an "Against All Odds" jack on the chorus, airing out family drama, daughter havin' seizures can't get the proper treatment, being on the outs with Cash from N.E.K., industry bullshit, talking to (major?) labels but they only want a single, etc. 2nd verse he addresses people blowing out of proportion the Jadakiss diss on his last mixtape -- on a "Why" freestyle he says "why is Kiss' album wack but this song so hard?", which is kinda funny because he freestyles over 2 other beats from Kiss Of Death on the same mixtape (I have a post about the mixtape coming soon) -- kind of retract/clarifying it in a half-assed way, kissing Kiss's ass while saying he still thinks the album's wack but then no albums have been good since 50's or Kanye's, etc., bullshit backpedalling like that. 3rd verse talking some weird shit about the Bible, but he keeps the perfect mood all the way through. Shit is crazy, dude is so official right now.

Bossman - "Give 'Em Some"
Kind of a club, but not as in Baltimore club music, just generic club rap song, boring semi-slick beat. He can stick with the introspective shit.

According to the Bossman website he's doing a big birthday bash show here in Baltimore on Wednesday:


Friday, November 19, 2004

New Beanie/Peedi video! And after I was just sayin' the other day I hoped there was a video for "I Gotta Have It" on the way. No Twista, though, it splits off into another song instead of his part.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004


I reached out to Comp to do a interview a while back right before I realized I didn't have any free time and went about 3 weeks without a single day off, so I had to put it off for a minute. But last week I finally returned his call and we made plans to meet up. At first we tried to meet up at the Burger King in Mondawmin Mall, but I was running late getting there and I missed him. He was cool about it, though, and a few hours later we met up in the parking lot of the 7-11 on Reistertown Road and ended up doing the interview in the front seat of my busted ass Ford Taurus. He's a real cool dude. His favorite movie is Hook. I had a camera but I forgot to get any pictures and then was kicking myself as soon as I went home and remembered. But anyway here it is.

Government Names: So what's the situation with Def Jam and the album right now?

Comp: We gettin' our meetings right now with L.A., big L.A. Reid, so we havin' our little meetings right now about the first quarter. 'Cause I'm ready to get out there in the first quarter, honestly, that's when we gettin' ready to do our thing. But as far as outside of them, I'm just makin' myself a priority, with them and to the world, tryin' to make the best music I can, puttin' out joint after joint, you know I got to come on many perspectives, mixtape out right now that me and my man DNA put together. So I'm really just grindin', I'm in the studio. I've been workin' with Liveson, you know, D-Block producer, I'm about to do some things with Alchemist. I'm really just tryin' to keep movin'. Get them hits, you know?

GN: Yeah, I was wondering what the situation with Def Jam was, because there have been rumors, back in August, Allhiphop.com printed a rumor that when L.A. Reid came in he was gonna drop a bunch of new acts that Kevin Liles had signed, and you were one of the names they named.

C: Yeah, I saw that joint, they said I was dropped. But did you see the one they ran the day after where they corrected it?

GN: Nah.

C: See, nobody sees that one!

GN: I guess everybody sees the bad news and not the good news.

C: Well, I still got my deal, I'm still signed to Def Jam.

GN: I know Liles is from Baltimore, did Kevin Liles sign you personally when he was still with the company?

C: Well, no, I'm signed through Chocolate City. Tony Austin of Chocolate City Music signed me to a production and then we do Def Jam, so it's like, you know how Ja Rule is on Murder Inc/Def Jam, I'm on Chocolate City/Def Jam.

GN: The City Paper feature a few months ago said the title of the album is The Boy From Baltimore, is that still the title?

C: The album title is My Thoughts. You know, Comp means Clever On Many Perspectives, ain't nothin' like competitor or anything like that. The name really comes from, you know, first I started writin' my little joints in a composition notebook, then I started typin' my joints into a computer. Honestly, the name just means that no matter what I'm rappin' about, I feel I speak clever on it. You can tell I know what I'm talkin' about, because I can put you hip to things if you don't know what I'm talkin' about, and even if I'm talking about something you're familiar with, I'm hittin' the nail on the head at all times. That's what I feel I'm gonna do with my music, that's what it means.

GN: How did the situation with the video game come up, how did you get into Def Jam: Fight For NY?

C: I just been grindin'. Hey, I was on the first one, I just wasn't a character, and they had my music on there, a song called "Stick 'Em," and a song called "Do Sumptin'," which was also on the Cradle 2 The Grave soundtrack. And by the time the second game cam out, I had did the video with Ghostface and Jadakiss, you know, "Run," and the Johnson Family Vacation soundtrack.

GN: Yeah, what happened with the Ghostface thing? Because I remember, you were on the 12", you were in the video, but people didn't seem to know you were on the song, I would tell them you're on it, but nobody outside Baltimore seemed to know you're on it. And then when the Pretty Toney Album came out, you weren't on it.

C: Yeah, I'm not even on the album, that's so...I don't know what went on. That situation wasn't like pally, it was more on business. Like, I just met Ghostface when I went to do the video, it wasn't like we were really too friendly. But them dudes is real cool. But I met them, I had to open up for them. I did actually get to meet these people, talk to 'em. You know, I met two of my favorite rappers. I mean, c'mon, Ghostface! One of my favorite rappers is Styles, and I mean, I met Jadakiss, god, that's my man. My favorite groups is Lox, Clipse and Bone Thugs-n-Harmony. And then you got Wu, but damn, Ghostface.

GN: And Ghostface did an interlude on your new mixtape, right?

C: Yeah, I got a drop from him. He came down here, and when he was down here I showed him mad love. He was in my hometown, I had to, you know what I mean, Baltimore. They cool people, I just wanted to show y'all that I appreciate it. But man...I thought the shit would be on the album, you know what I mean? I didn't even know until it dropped and man...you know what? I had a lot of people here that are just startin' to collect, even though it's nothin' big for them, it's huge for me, and I'm like the only thing poppin' here, so every little thing that I do right now, people was collectin' memorabilia. And they saw me on that, and they was like, "yo, whassup? I bought the album, and you not even on it, I'm mad", you know what I'm sayin'? You know how that get, shhhh.

GN: How about the track you did with Cam'ron, how did that come together?

C: We went and got him on the album and I'm just, I'm a big...like, Santana, he one of my favorites, I'm a big Dipset...you gotta understand, I'm a big fan of these guys. You know, I'm 18, and I'm from Baltimore, like...we only see these guys on mixtapes, on TV, you know what I mean? So I'm like, goddamn, I just went from seein' these guys and now these niggas know me, I got 'em in my phone, you know? They real dudes, I get to holla at 'em. The thing about that is, they seein' me, they seein' my grind, Jim Jones, that's been my man, that's who I really been tight with. Everybody knew me from doin' the song with Cam, and the song got hotter than I thought it would, they put it on his bootleg album. When they put out the bootleg of Purple Haze, they put "Fire" on it, and I'm like damn, that's so crazy. It's my joint, but even for bootleggers to do that, I think that's crazy.

GN: Who produced that, was that the Heatmakerz?

C: Nah, my man Big Will made that, shout out to him for that. But honestly, for my album, I ain't got that many features. I got Lil Mo on the album, on "Be Wit Chu", I got Layzie Bone for "Get 'Em". I did 2 joints with the TrackBoyz, I got snippets of those on the mixtape, you know, you just get a verse, and then on the album you get to hear the whole thing, I don't wanna give it all away.

GN: Who's in the Bang-A-Rang Gang?

C: It consists of Boy Troy and my main Zist. It's bigger than that, but that's the main people, that's my Young Buck and Lloyd. I been doin' this with them since I went to school, I went to school for this, I was a sound engineer. Bang-A-Rang Gang really consists of, you know, we takin' the little theme from the whole Peter Pan thing, but the thing is, it's just a bunch of young dudes, but they handlin' everything in grown men matters. They fed each other, they woke each other up, there was an organized gang, you know what I mean? Like they really live like parents but they was kids, you feel me? And that's just how they was gonna ride out for each other, I just like that. You know, before they go to war, they like "Bangarang!", that's how you know it's about to be on! For real, but that's my man Boy Troy, young Zist, a couple other people in the clique, that's Bang-A-Rang Gang. If you ever see me perform, my hypeman onstage with me, you see my man Jersey Jump Street.

GN: Yeah, I haven't seen you live yet.

C: Well, if you ever go to Sounds In The Hood, check my man Rome out, you know, Edmondson and Monroe, you can get the Fresh Fest 2004, your boy performin' on there, everybody was on there, Backland on there, Bossman on there. Matter fact, the Mixtapes Legend joint comin' out, it's a DVD, so you can catch my show, the last joint I did here at the Thunder Dome, there was a lot of promotion for that one, posters and everything. There's a lot of footage of me on there. I got another mixtape that's comin' out that's gonna be a DVD also, you get to see me perform, and hopefully you just come out. I'm actually about to go out here and holla at my man DJ Taz next Thursday, you know, Nashville, Tennessee, and do a little joint out there. It's gonna be crazy.

GN: So you just been networking, getting with a lot of mixtape DJs. I saw you did one with Kay Slay a while back?

C: Yeah, he did my old mixtape. It was so crazy, he did my 2nd mixtape, Kay Slay. And then my 3rd one was hosted by my man DNA, you know, Street Wars.

GN: I know you did stuff with P-Cutta too, he's from D.C., right?

C: Yeah, he's from down there, and DNA's from here.

GN: Who else are you working with from here in Baltimore?

C: My man Bishop, and Spit-1 Productions, I been workin' with them cats a lot. They produced a joint called "Comp," that's on the Def Jam game, they produced a joint on my album called "Bang." I just been tryin' to work with everybody, wherever the hot sound comin' from, that's where I'm at. You know what I mean, if you make a tough ass beat tonight, I will be over at your house tomorrow morning, with a bag of Salsa Doritos, extra sweet Lipton ice tea. It doesn't matter where it comes from, what the equipment is, it's the sound. You never know where it comes from.

GN: One thing I noticed listening to you is that you kinda got 2 different voices on records. On "Run" and a lot of freestyles you got that kind of loud, animated style, shouting and everything, but then on stuff like "Harder" you got a more laid back style. Was that something where at some point you changed your style, or are you always trying different things with your voice?

C: Well, different tracks, different approaches. You understand, I don't wanna keep givin' you the same, I just wanna mix it up, I just wanna use my voice in every way, whether it's if I'm sayin' "YES YES!" or if I'm just sayin' things like this. I just wanna switch it up, but I don't wanna confuse the people. But you know the difference, because you heard "Run," but then you heard "Harder," and it's like, wow. You can see what I can do, that's what Comp means, Clever On Many Perspectives.

GN: How about that track with Notorious B.I.G., "Get Ya Mind Right", how did that come together? I know the Biggie verse is from the Aaron Hall song, but who made it into a new song and put you on it?

C: My man DNA, he put that together. You know how they do, it was real exclusive, they got ahold of it, you know how that go. The whole thing, honestly, at first, I didn't wanna do that shit, you know? But the whole thing is, I'm in the business of publicity. And the whole thing is, can you be on a track with B.I.G. and hold your own? Can you be on a track with hiim and make a song out of it? You feel me, can you make this somebody's favorite song? And I felt as though I could step up to the challenge. And that's all I was doin', takin' a jab at it, because this is what I do.

GN: Is there anything else you wanna say to people?

C: Look out for Comp, no matter where you see the name, check him out, because I'm givin' 150%, no matter what I do, whether's it's the single, mixtape or Christmas jingle, you feel me? Make sure you check me out on the website, CompWebsite.com, I will be in a city near you, and look out for the Bang-A-Rang Gang, second star to the right, fairy dust in the pouch. Shout out to everybody in Baltimore, my man Backland, I think he gettin' better, you know, he was in a bad car accident.

GN: Oh yeah? I didn't know about that.

C: Yeah, man, I don't know who the fuck, some fuck hit him, drivin' too fast or somethin'. It was a minute ago, but the nigga been healin'. He in a wheelchair. That's my man.

GN: Yeah, I remember seein' him on TV, was that 106 & Park?

C: Yeah, 106 & Park champion, he was the nastiest dude, man, you remember Backland.

GN: Yeah, and he had that song with Bonecrusher on it.

C: Yeah, he had his little cameo. And you know, we just tryin' to bubble together, that's all we tryin' to do.

GN: Yeah, it seems like we got so much talent in this city, somethin's gotta happen.

C: For real, man...Bmore, 4-1-Oh no you didn't, land of the legendary throwback Baltimore Bullets in your face, neck, chest, whatever you wanna call it. That's where we at, right in front of 7-11, that's how real it is.

More Gov't Names coverage of Comp here, here, here, here, and here. Look out for the album in '05, you know I'll keep you up on it.


Tuesday, November 16, 2004

nas - coon picnic (these are our heroes) -- one of the things that made the highpoints on mid 90s nas albums so stunning was the way they came out of nowhere. like the way-- what's the last track on i am...? everlasting love? something like that. the way that comes up on you after trudging through, like, coast to coast a.m. paranoia tracks and a failed doubletime experiment and the dmx feature (nastradamus is the album that gets no love, not even from nas himself but, i don't know, i always rated it pretty highly. i am.. is the only real failure out of all the stuff he's done)-- you get to this amazing closing track, some storytelling shit with sound effects and breathtaking, nicholson baker of rap details and it blows your mind. okay, but this, coon picnic, he's figured out how to get serious with it, do the boring and necessary stuff, but make it sound loose, and joke around, get rid of the grim plodding beat and rock some i've got a story to tell shit.
the title explains what he's going to be talking about, sort of echoing the stuff the things he's been saying in interviews.

master used to breed us to be bigger, to go play
athletes of today in the nba, make me proud
but there's something they don't say
keep getting accused for abusing white pussay
from oj to kobe, aww let's call em toby
first he played his life cool just michael
now he rock ice too just like i do
yo, you can't do better than that?
the hotel clerk who adjust the bathroom mat?
now you lose sponsorships that you thought had your back
yeah, you beat the rap, jigaboo fake nigga, you
you turn around then you shit on shaq
who woulda knew, mr. goodie two shoes?
he love a little buttcrack, got enough cash
little kids with they bus pass who look up to you
to do something for the youth, stupid spook
but you let them use you as an example
they would rep, but our heroes got they hands full

nas - u.b.r. (the unauthorized biography of rakim) -- going to be on street's disciple. made me buzz with that emotional tingle that i love nas for providing.
he's spitting that read-along flow, breaking it down like he did on last real nigga alive, switching it from just a do your history lecture to a really amazing track. taking that reactionary bullshit seriously but making it dope. beat heard through cold steel alley door of club, filtered out to just hard bass and handclaps on top. (i'm sure i fucked some things up when i wrote it out but i think i got it close)

the unauthorized copy
dedication, to my children, my child, destiny jones
to my niece and nephews
shari, malik, jabari
the world is yours
first off, i wanna thank god
and i wanna thank everybody for helping me with this
couldn't do it without you
chapter one, january 28, 1968,
born into this world, william griffin the great
chapter one, wyandanch, long island
scientific rhymin, invented a new style when
he met with eric barrier from east elmhurst
the melody they created was the first, burst
on the scene, 1986, with clap to this
87, dropped a classic disc
the facts is, the tracklist was like full
the vocals, the beats according to marley marl
recorded in my hometown, queensbridge
that's why it's so relative
this biography was unauthorized
i spit it how it was given to author nas
william changed his name at sixteen to rakim allah
cause clarence 13x had new york on lock
gods on every block, jams in every park
i remember kurtis blow sayin it can't get better than this, til
run dmc blew my brains to bits
from leather boots to shelltoes to the stan smiths
to dapper dan kicks
first million dollar deal ever in rap
18th letter did that
from 4th and broadway to uni to mca
we follow the leader to harlem's apollo theatre
supreme rap and the fifty that don't rap
brought queen dream, strong island, wolf pack
paid in full, hot, they was on
and rakim had his first born
with the next line i'ma be easy
his wisdom's name is fifi
epmd put a record out that was dope
tensions spread, and i quote:
sounded like the answer to the i ain't no joke track
for a second they ain't look good
little tension buzzing from wyandanch to brentwood
misunderstood, all forgot at sixteen when i met freddie foxx
toting burners, the whole coast's most concern was
how was rakim flows made christian convert with muslim ways
let the rhythm hit em was the third lp
a sophisticated, mean one
before similar voices with kings son
a few others, but sooner or later the game was ra's kingdom
at sixteen son was watching him
mesmerized, respect, not jocking him
was so amazing, besides
he came onstage with lasers in his eyes
walk with me now, unauthorized biography of rakim
mother was a jazz singer
nephew to r&b legend ruth brown
paid in full
follow the leader
let the rhythm hit em
don't sweat the technique
that's the end of the group
went off on solo
dropped the r, to the 18th letter
then, i think, something, the master
was signed to aftermath
scheduled to release an album-- oh my god-- with dr. dre
the album was dismantled, because of creative differences
the end
until the new beginning
next book: krs-one

Monday, November 15, 2004

Why Baltimore Is The New South

OK, not really (although Scott Seward's Why Baltimore House Music Is The New Dylan is a good read in spite of all the batshit theorizing and forced parallels), but I had a pet theory for a while that maybe the only way Baltimore would blow up and get respect in hip hop was if it cultivated a quasi-Southern image kinda like what St. Louis has done (fun fact: Baltimore is at almost the exact same latitude as St. Louis). It seems like every year another couple cities come up in a serious way and get a national reputation and a few artists signed, but Bmore's still waiting. Of course, at heart it's an East coast city, and it will always be in New York's shadow and probably not even on Philly's level. And radio here is still very NYC-centric and records only make their way here from the South once they've already been everywhere else. Baltimore MC's all love the Lox and do freestyles over Roc-a-fella beats. But Baltimore is still weird and provincial in a lot of the ways that places in the South are, the cheap production style, the twisty accents. And Bmore club music is as isolated and eccentric as screw music or anything they got in the South. Anyway, here are some recent songs from Baltimore that all sound Southern in some way or another:

Hulio Shallone - "This Is My Hood"
Maybe it's Shalone, maybe it's spelled some other way, I dunno, but Julio's from Nature's Problem, who had a hit a couple years ago, "Shake It Shorty", and they had a song with Lil Flip not long ago. This song has been pretty big the last couple months, #1 on 92Q on and off. It's got the throbbing dirty south bass and he has a hoarse, gruff voice like Game, awkward double time flow like everyone had in the 90's when they'd do token bounce tracks, sings along with the trumpet fanfare on the hook, "this is the hooooood, and in the hood we wild out, this is the hooooood, that's what we do". And he just dropped a remix w/ new hook/verses over the Pitbull "Dammit Man" beat.

Live Wire - "Hurt 'Em"
I've seen people invoke typewriters to describe Timbaland-style busy clicky hi-hat patterns, but that's not what I'm talking about at all when I say that the percussion sound that hits on the 1, the 4 and the 7 of every measure of this song and goes a couple bars unaccompanied at the very beginning sounds just like someone stabbing one key on a rusty old typewriter. There's a busy hi-hat pattern too, but mainly it's that rusty pounding that drives the whole thing. Rod Lee is great at pulling out sounds like those for his beats, flat little clacking things that are perfect on club tracks but sound a little cheap and silly on hip hop production. But now that everyone's convinced that Lil Jon is an expensive brand name they want to hear stuff that makes his beats sound slick by comparison like "Knuck If You Buck" and "White Tee", which is the exact perfect climate for Rod Lee to become a super producer outside of Baltimore. The hook has kind of the same "hurt 'em" chant as on another song RL produced, "Spit Part II" by Tim Trees, but otherwise not the same. The only sound besides drums and Live Wire's voice and Rod's voice on the track is this little 3-note riff, it's all the same note, I think it's a G, during the verses it's just a little hum of bass, during the choruses it goes up an octave and turns into a brass synth patch.

C. Miller - "Mean Mug"
Not to be confused with the corny new Xzibit song. This is pretty convincingly Southern, I thought it was some up and coming hit from somewhere else until I found out it was local. At least I think it's local, this is another one I don't know much about, don't know if I got the guy's name right. It's ok, loud and ominous with a grumbly low-voiced chorus kinda like "Headsprung".

Labels: ,

Sunday, November 14, 2004

ol dirty bastard ft. c-murder and e-40 - anybody / reunited -- the dj played half of shimmy shimmy ya and half of got your money tonight and said peace to odb and the whole wu and advertised a cappadonna show coming up, tickets twelve dollars in advance, fifteen at the door. then brooklyn zoo on latenight community radio underground hip-hop show. fuck prison and crack cocaine. anyone who's willing to risk their life and do and say things that no one else wants to do or say should be granted special protection from god or whatever. after years of getting fucked over, fuck dying of heart failure in a warm, carpeted room surrounded by people that want you to get rich and safe. the trials and tribulations of russell jones is the only odb cd i ever got, the cd he didn't even know had been released. anybody has this weird, amateur beat, really simple, guitar plucking line under it. straight, plain odb verse with nodding lockstep, sound quality explaining that it was never meant to be on a record. c-murder verse following the guidelines, explaining who he is and who he's on the track with. e-40 on the hook explaining "three soldiers from the east, south and west" and talking shit to fill out the last minute. and reunited is the same sort of deal, i guess. same lowkey amateur beat with super conventional odb verse, no guests. neither of them really pop like the big songs but they're pretty good.

Saturday, November 13, 2004

Beanie Sigel - "Feel It In The Air"
The first to drop of the five (!) videos Beans shot the week he got sentenced, kind of mellow but not really slick enough to sound like a hit. The video looks real good, though. Heavy D did the beat, but it's not on some weird Cake-sampling shit like "Guns'n'Roses", it's all cheesy Miami Vice sax blowing and super weak hi-hats. I really hope they got a video for "I Gotta Have it" coming next.

Jin - "Senorita"
So is the idea that he's defying Asian American stereotypes by, uh, doing a song full of Latin American stereotypes? Huh? Maybe O-Dub can field this one.

Foxy Brown - "Yeah C'mon"
Pet theory #284 about how the Neptunes fell off: that it all started to go downhill when they dropped the Triton presets and started sampling live drums all the time and quantizing them less or in weird ways to make it sound a little off and more "live". It used to be they'd throw all these old school funk signifiers up, but the sick synth sounds and drums would keep it sounding like, well, the Neptunes. Now they do shit like this where the James Brown biting is so well done it almost sounds like a straight sample and I thought it was for a minute until I recognized that the yelping voice in the background was Pharrell. Foxy sounds more and more like Shyne lately, if anyone wants to start a rumor that he's ghostwriting for her from behind bars, go ahead and run with that.

Keyshia Cole - "I Changed My Mind"
Before Kanye really blew up and started working with anyone besides rappers, I figured his style would be really good with R&B, but aside from the Alicia song, most of the R&B he's done in the past year has been fair or mediocre. This is great, though, stuttery claps and the "Get By' drums, one of the only kits he has that really bangs, and the way the sample weaves in with the vocals is lovely.

Nelly - "Na-Nana-Na"
This and the Aguilera song probably won't help Sweat from sliding further and further down the charts from Suit, but I'm really feelin' this. Real amped up and kinda evil sounding Jazze Pha beat, slightly creepy little girl voices on the hook.

Terror Squad - "Take Me Home"
It looks like Dre from Cool & Dre is the next producer whose plan for getting shine is to be all in the videos and doing obnoxious hooks. I kind of like the "this is, this is, this is" thing he does at the beginning of "New York", though. It's funny that they also did the beat for Angie Martinez's "Take You Home", which flipped a different old song with a similiar lyric/concept.

What the hell is up witih Allhiphop.com? They always put lyrics and random shit in the title bar of their front page, but I can't figure out why right now it's the names of 4 random towns in Delaware - "Bear, Dover, Middletown, Seaford" - which I probably wouldn't have even realized if I hadn't lived in DE for 10 years. And then the Cam'ron song they have up in Real Audio mentions Delaware in the 2nd verse. WTF?

Friday, November 12, 2004

...we heard that T.I. was jewel-jacked in New York. Apparently, the rapper was without security. We hope it’s not true.

? run up on, while stepping into towncar after release party in downtown manhattan hotel, by hoodied and masked up men running from indigo cherokee double-parked on the corner. holding tiny black pistols at waist height and one of them pulling that big crown piece on dick length chain off his skinny chest, grabbing off the freshly copped jacob watch and diamond rings, digging in pockets for the sheafs of bills he flashes in the videos. the valet running in to dial 9-11 while t.i. spitting out his rose gold and diamonds grill into a blackgloved palm.

? bursting into hotel room, two men dressed up in casual tourist-y gear, one carrying suitcase and one with a gun in waistband. directions to put hands on top of head, sit down on the bed. one covers him, snacking off room service plate (turkey sandwich, kosher pickle, curly fries), while the other loads up empty suitcase with chains, rings, watches, cash, cds, clothes. talking about, give us time to get out before you call the cops, snitch nigga.

yeah, remember when it happened to flip in dc? "street niggas don't respect that clown." yeah. and t.i. talking shit like p on the infamous prelude, talking like he's superman, seven time felon, untouchable.

but really, fuck it. the last time i got robbed was in some grimy house, following these two girls who my friend knew, who were going to cook some coke for him, with a ziploc bag of about a half ounce worth of gleaming pure cocaine crystals freshly scalpeled off a brick. the way it works here is: you get the stuff and pay a middleman to cook for you. so. girl: "shit, it's totally cool, you guys can look around or whatever. don't worry, we ain't gonna rob you." i say, "nah, nah, we're cool. we'll just sit right here and wait." then, sluggish gangsters with a shotgun and lots of threats, berating us about trying to fuck these girls and telling us they're fourteen. but everything went down cleanly. one of the girls stood beside me and rubbed the small of my back and whispered in my ear that she'd make sure nothing happened to me. it was cool on some handshakes and gee whiz it's our fault and we fucked up and they got their shit and we left. fuck it. it's scary as hell and it fucks you up.

ja rule ft. black child - gun talk -- i listen to this radio show on the weekend called sound advice. it used to be that it would just happen to be on, but i got into it seriously. this guy with a deep radio voice, pediatrician voice, lively and warm introduces new classical recordings and compares them to old recordings. he might have four different recordings of one song-- it's cool to hear everyone taking on the song in a different way. then he breaks them down with strange, unique adjectives for each, thousands of adjectives. you can listen for the silvery tones, whatever. it's not poetic at all, the way he does it, applying all these beautiful adjectives to music but just using them as plain, straight words. this is the sort of record i'd play for him if i had the chance, the sort of record i think he would like and the sort of record that would really suit his way of talking about records, i think.
all of the good stuff we hear from new york city now is on these amazingly complex and orchestrated beats, layers of drum, piano, hum, keyboard moan, whistles, videogame gun sound effects. and everything blindingly clear, bright, nauseatingly loud, overloaded imax shit with paper vomit bags if it gets to be too much. ("fuck your knuck if you buck, this shit cost a trillion dollars and took six years to make." -- and swizz fucking up t.i. by lacing him with humiliating sabotage beats with funny drums and soca whistles)
and ja, used to riding the creamiest, most expensive beats, comes okay, bragging about his company laundering mcgriff money and mdma addiction. and black child, hoarse, hitting drug spots with his crew in impalas.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

listening to paul wall and chamillionaire get ya mind correct

houston rap stretching the you don't grind you don't shine idea into motivational hypnosis cassette and accompanying infomercial. paul says: ya got a lot of lazy dudes out there want to shine but don't want to put in no work, want to ball but then they gon sit on the couch and watch tv all day. and: people who ain't sayin nothing always talk the most. you got two ears and one mouth, that means you gotta listen twice as much as you talk.

as much grime as possible stripped away, sounding as clean and expensive as possible. all those soft houston beats pitched up a bit and tempos pushed up to enhance the sparkle and squeak and turn the blanket bass into coherent strikes, so you can jam it in your car and hear the rappers and shiny sound effects over the roar from the trunk.

explanation of chamillionaire. you've got to hear this to understand why cham still gets so much love and sells so many albums. yeah, right, he fell off hard and mixtape messiah was weak as hell but he sounds like a billion dollar rapper on get ya mind correct. he dominates, rides anything, and hums and sings on the hooks and intros. there's nothing conversational about his flow, it's all real rapper flow, getting into this doubletime groove and never falling out of it unless it's intentional. that's why the beats need to be clean and fast. and even though he's trying to front like some southern canibus or something now, it's amazing to hear him spit some candy paint/diamonds/girls shit. he says: never brag about my rims was my mindframe/ but then my 20s turned to 22s and my mind changed.

explanation of paul wall.

they think i work for kellogs, mouth full of frosted flakes
i wreck the mic like if ya drivin and lost ya breaks
my mouth got ice shattered with princess cuts swollen
i'm the ish like if i had an uncontrollable colon
i'm throwed but you can catch me mackin somethin that's chocolate
sippin on some lemon squeeze with a cherry on top
game damager, i take trips up to canada
so many cars i got more keys than a janitor
crawlin low like tarantula, here i come grab ya camera
even though i'm a rookie i'm still far from an amateur
it's the trunk dismantler from antoine drive
but catch me via satellite over on cancun live
my screens fall similar to coconuts
i'm tryna keep my wallets fatter than oprah's butt
i'm sittin crooked and throwed, ride squatted and slowed
it goes down but yall already know ha ha

but imagine it over medium tempo loping beat with little plucks of fake strings and crinkly paper bag drums. and really enthusiastic but genuine delivery, bobbing his head in the booth and smiling and cham and the engineer and the entourage behind the board and doing all the attendent actions for the right lines.

explanation of paul wall and chamillionaire. the color changing click mixtapes eventually turned into too much of a contrast between way too complex cham punchlines and paul relying on "i could catch boppas if..." lines but i think this is close to perfect, just the right balance. cham with that insanely competent flow and those smooth hooks and paul with the slow funny shit, like a good commentator/color team.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

DNA and Def Jam Presents: Comp - Bang-A-Rang Gang Mixtape Vol. 1 featuring Lloyd Banks, Layzie Bone, Notorious B.I.G., Lil Wayne and interludes from Ghostface, Beanie Sigel and Jim Jones

You can see a larger version of the image here. I actually haven't heard all of this yet. You can order it off his website, and I tried but my order didn't seem to go through, and I've never had any trouble with PayPal before, so I'm not sure I can reccomend getting it through there. But anyway, I'm interviewing him this week, so if any editors out there want a Comp feature for their rag, get at me, otherwise it'll all be here as a GOV'T NAMES EXCLUSIVE sometime soon.


Tuesday, November 09, 2004

Another random video-related observation: today I saw a new cut of "Nolia Clap" on Rap City; the original version had just the Wacko/Skip parts of the song, and then cut to "What's Up" for a Juvenile verse, but for some reason BET always cut it off at the end of the "Nolia Clap" part so that Juve wasn't in it at all. The only time I ever saw the "What's Up" section was the handful of times I saw it on MTV. I guess it bothered Juvie that he wasn't really in the video at all after the song blew up, so now the video ends with new footage of him doing his verse, looks like in Houston surrounded by various Rap-A-Lot and H-town dudes. Kinda too little too late, though, I mean the song/video's already pretty much run its course. (It's kinda funny that on Juve's 2 biggest hits in years the hook and most memorable verses are by someone other than him. And after all the hype about him needing to get back with CMR to make hits, neither is a Mannie production).

Monday, November 08, 2004

Video Trendwatch, pt 3: Confrontations between the artist and a group of clones/twins/doubles wearing different clothes (Destiny's Child "Lose My Breath", Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz f/ Lil Scappy "What U Gon' Do").

Sunday, November 07, 2004

i will explain crunk juice here.

the first problem: people think he's really fucking funny.

he is funny. but.

people want to hear lil jon being funny. we get to hear him on a minimal conventional goofy neptunes beat with pharrell. jon roars in the background and then comes in talking about shake what your mama gave you and getting ready for bored ying yangs twins verses. we get to hear him on rick rubin rock thing. straight raw guitar riff with jon talking about "like my bitch always on my fuckin back talkin bout i need to get a fuckin job and shit talkin bout i need to pay my fuckin child support and shit bitch i'm out here tryna do all that shit but shit doesn't always go my fuckin way sometimes you need to get the fuck off my back and let me learn how to get this shit on my own. why don't you just stop fuckin with me? why don't you stop fuckin with me? WHY YOU FUCKIN WITH ME??? STOP FUCKIN WITH ME!!! DON'T BE FUCKIN WITH ME!!! STOP FUCKIN WITH ME!!!" people want to hear funny self-conscious call and response songs based on aww skeet skeet skeet skeet.

all of the skits are chris rock straight recycling his standup material about how funny get low was, but delivered shrill and peppered with "i'm here with lil jon" shoutouts.

there are weak as fuck slowjams. usher, luda and jon on a totally out of place track with straight r&b drums and piano and no bass and soft focus sung/rapped verses about love. and jon singing on the end about taking baths together and making the switch from friend to lover. and some shit with r. kelly on midtempo dense rattles/crackles/whistles/hums/woahs/drums and another ridiculous luda verse. and some pimping anthem with snoop. but remember: slick, filthy slowjams on the end of kings of crunk? devin and oobie!! collapsing walls of bass and still beautiful, oobie all breathy on it. remember?

and all the good tracks, the hard tracks, the real tracks on the front. all the bad stuff comes after them.

there's bo hagon with calls to throw up your click, city, state, country, whatever on slow, punishing shit beat with drums replaced by videogame chk-chk guncocks and groans stretched out into rockslides and delicate soundtrack to slow motion time lapse photography flowers blossoming pings of the most beautiful noises ever.

there's ice cube and lil jon's geography lesson. NOW WHEN YOU HEAR YOUR CITY OR STATE BEING CALLED YOU PUT YOUR MOTHERFUCKIN MIDDLE FINGER UP IN THIS BITCH!! those best drums in the world drums-- can't wait for the real album so i can hear this in my trunk and stomach-- and cute synthesizer experiments.

there's the necessary 8ball and mjg track with squealing guitars and rough drums and BUSS A NIGGA HEAD TO THE WHITE MEAT chorus and raps about pulling pistols and taking watches.

there's gangsta boo on a dj paul/juicy j bite. jon takes his lord of the rings choirs and howling sandstorms and slows it down to da superproducers tempo, adds windows start-up bells, his eastside boyz doing fake three six verses about pills and club riots, extracts slowroasted horror, lays on screwed and chopped gangsta boo verse about leaving cocaine.

no one's sure what to think.

lil jon ft. bun b, jada, nas, ti, ice cube - grand finale -- three eighteen in the morning, just got off work, listening to shit loud enough to rattle my headphones. hard, cold, generic lil jon beat, sounding like the jada/styles track from kings of crunk but with new whistles and rumbles. hard, cold, credible gangstas with the same verses they always do.
bun b leading off with the hardest shit on the track but impact lessened by the four minutes until the end of the track.
say, we blowin doja in the basement in that underwater garden
with heroin in the back shed, dryin til it harden
makin hash up in the oven, with yayo on the hot plate
drank and fry in the freezer, it's obvious we got weight
i sell that hard work, that soft work, even that wet work
built-in clientele so we ain't gotta network
we always got work, so we ain't gotta get work
and if you ain't gettin your work from us you bout to get jerked
the yayo experts, we been whippin the yola since the crackers decided to take the coke out coca-cola
the extended riff on work, proof he's taking that dipset affiliation he shouted on end of the road seriously.
jada sounds amazing on beats like this, sounded amazing on his kings of crunk track, doing darth vader flow with punchlines about cash and murder.
dense, lyrical t.i. going at, i guess, flip, but never by name, just shit about how he got kinfolk in every city and how it's lame to say another man name.
nas giving me more hope that street's disciple is going to be another nastradamus. it's one of those smooth free association verses, flipping tightly rhymed lines that's just one word after another and sliding down into phrases to tie them all together.
ice cube, ehhhh. "keep it flippin like flapjacks," "sweaty like asscracks," "vanish like star trek." "ice cube is the shit on this motherfuckin grand finale"?

trick daddy - wanna sang -- three forty in the morning, smiling and tingling and drying my eyes with dabs in corner from sleeve. jesus. makes me feel genuinely excited about the stuff i'm doing. like, shit, i know, i totally know i can get the stuff done that i want to get done if i really believe in it, and i have to believe in it because that's the most important thing left in the world.
wassup, lil man? what's wrong with you, why you looking so sad?
(beautiful happy oh my god sesame street beat kicks in)
man, i went to school today and the teacher told me i couldn't be no rapper!
say what? why she tell you that?
she told me i had to be something that's more realistic, like a construction worker or something!
man, construction workers ain't realistic! you can't be out there sawin all day, what? holla at them, man. just keep on going to school, getting your education, that way you can be anything you want to be.
(blindingly happy optimistic chorus comes in, kid singing: I JUST WANNA SING, CAN I SING YOU A SONG, I BET YOU LOVE IT. cracking kids voices coming in, saying, "i just wanna sing, i ain't asking for much)
and trick come in riding over that beat so perfect, hopeful and saying he just wants a crack at it, prove the critics long and he'll do anything. saying he wants to be a legend one day, win a grammy, so he can prove you can be anything you want to be, even if you can't sing or whatever. saying he wants to sell records like the bee gees did and write a book and he can do it all if he gets a chance.


Friday, November 05, 2004

let's get back to the music, I ain't with all that

This shit is depressing. For all the good work we do here, our highest hit counts ever are for the last post and the Catchdubs parody. I know controversy sells, but damn. It's good that we can air this stuff out but that's not that I'm here for, I don't like all this self-conscious sniping at each other. You guys can keep posting comment after comment down there but I'm gonna push it down the page some. It's November and all this month I will be BEATING YOU OVER THE HEAD WITH THAT BALTIMORE SHIT. That's a promise.

DJ Debonair Samir, Tim Trees and Paula Campbell - "Breathe" rmx
Samir of the "Uncle Fucker" club track and "Friday Night" remix fame puts together a Bmore all-star track over the beat from the Fab hit, with Paula singing other words (freeze, please, TREES!) over the titular sample. TT flows hard over a much more expensive sounding beat than I'm used to hearing him on, that wonderful grimy voice, something like a cross between 90's mushmouthed Juvie and that tight, constipated tone of Trick Daddy or maybe Bun B. Repping Bdamore Records, the unit man, only MC in the city who's sold over 10k independently (which, yeah, isn't shit compared to dudes in some other cities, but it's something), 3 or 4 different songs that have hit #1 on the 92Q request line, still running shit even though his last CD kinda flopped.

Mario - "Let Me Love You"
I wasn't feeling the song he did a while back with Cassidy, so I'm relieved that the official first single/video for the 2nd album is this gorgeous grown up love jam. Gel&Weave were OTM in pointing out the downward portamento synth phrase that reminds them of 80's Stevie, although for me it more brings to mind Lionel or maybe "What's Love Got To With It". Either way, very 80's, but in that subdued, not purposefully retro way, like that Carl Thomas/LL song, except that sucked and this is good. The way he sings the word "hurts" with the perfect wounded emotion is great, although I don't know what he means when he says "you're a dime, plus 99", it sounds like he's mixing metaphors there. I know there's a lot of skinny oung dudes in the R&B game right now, but don't front on Mario, he's better than anyone who was in or is related to anyone who was in B2K.

Bossman and N.E.K. - "Face Down, Ass Up"
I think I mentioned this song in passing after I saw Bossman live a couple months ago. A lot of local rappers have tried to cash in on the popularity of Baltimore club music by trying to do rap/club fusion tracks, but they're usually not very good, mainly because the tempos are so fast and noone sounds good rapping over that unless they have a crazy Twista type flow, and even Twista sounds better over slow beats. But this is nice, stolen 2 Live Crew hook and lots of chants and repetitive parts, which is good because club music is 90% hooks and repetitive samples anyway. And a spooky synth line kind of like "Knuck If You Buck" is spooky.

Hazmatt - "31 Flavors"
Every rap station has at least one guy on the on-air staff who's trying to make it into the game and thinks it'll be his shortcut, that he's gonna take the Chris Luva Luva route to fame. At 92Q it's this guy. Always rapping on the ad spots and show intros and freestyling with whoever famous passes through the studio. His flow is actually kinda nice, he's got the friendly kind of voice like, again, early Luda, and he picks really good beats to flow on, like "Everything's A Go" and "Bad Boy This, Bad Boy That". He's kinda dorky looking, though, at least the one time I saw him battle in person. Now and then he slips one of his own joints into a DJ set, like this, kind of a generic take on the played out sex/ice cream metaphor.

Labels: , , ,

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Me and Forty were listening to a couple of cuts of mine one day, and he was like "Man, you spittin that real turf shit, that is some real turf talk right there." Forty Water just blessed me with that raw handle. I ran with it and got tatted up like four days later.

in picture on previous page, flashing half of a gold grill in mean mug/back alley shadow, showing off sick wid it records piece on too long chain. and in album pictures and magazine ads with him it's smiles and like pencil crayon-shaded picture of him leaning on bmx under broad oak tree with wellbuilt treehouse (shingled, sturdy door).
e-40 taught him to rap. that's his cousin.
he tries that tight flow sometimes, spools himself up on the intro, lips snapping shut on the end of every word to get rid of any extra, involuntary syllables. but he can slow it down and dig in, not just spinning himself out on the beat like 40 does, let's it flow a bit.
the beats are rick rock or sound like it. arcade game background, crispy drums, bubbles of clean bass all flipped in one loop.
lots of e-40. mac dre, san quinn, guys from federation.

24 feeling way og - with e-40 and goldie gold from federation (the dude with the golds on the bottom).

the soil

bundle bush - weird sound loop beat and street soldier rap, "hit the liquor store, get a coke white shirt / back to the ave gettin off my count / tryna make a million dollars off a quarter ounce / pull some loot from your thigh, support your high / flaggin down every dopefiend that roll by."

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

esg: ladies and gentlemen, ladies and gentlemen, i'd like to propose a toast. everyone twenty one and over grab ya drinks. if you're underage grab ya kool-aid cause it's still playa. but check it out: this one here is dedicated to everybody who had it hard in they life, cause homey i know i struggled but you know what man...


remember esg and slim thug on tinny houston crunk, represent both sides of houston TEXAS / ten thousand downpayment on ya LEXUS / man i spent that last week on my NECKLACE / see i got my own label it's goin DOWN NOW / got everybody bouncin like i'm BOW WOW / something something gettin paid for the SUMMER / watchin kings of comedy in the HUMMER, paper bag crinkle drums tapping, queer keyboard curlicues, for one long chorus. and now on full, clear beats that sound better at regular speed and couldn't be slowed down, some shit with blinding bright horns and little kid choirs over swooshing strings and record crackling noise, scratching in b.i.g. hooks, drums fat and round and vacuumed clean.

still got the nasal houston flow, which sounds kinda weird riding slow, clean beats, sounds a bit like the new nerdy lil wayne. he does the sort of past his prime, sold his lexus because he couldn't afford to trade it in every year and bought a stable of box chevys on thousands of dollars rims, introspective gangsta thing that everyone loves, narrating his rise in the game, getting put on by some hustlers in his neighborhood -> losing football scholarship -> jail -> record deal, and doing some out of breath tracks about the evils of the world and dead friends and staying hopeful.

he's got the fat pat verse he's been sitting on, put down on shiny keyboardy houston beat with the little kids singing hook. he's got a bunch of tracks with slim thug, "i never been robbed, my hogg click thick like the mob / we got spots in every state and nobody got jobs / we goodfellas, a staff full of buyers and sellers / we'll supply what you need, you just need to tell us / never scared of the feds, i just keep on tickin / i catch a case every month but ain't none of them stickin." beautiful down south r&b track with ideal. shit with some young rappers from his click. some traditional sippin and smokin shit with bun b, "there is only three rules when you sit in my car / one: don't ash in my car, two: don't spill your barre / three: don't touch my radio cause i'm bangin my screw / and everyday in port arthur p.a. this is how we do."

Monday, November 01, 2004

mac dre, r.i.p.

shot up and had his van rammed off the road in kansas city after doing a show. another rapper in his crew, dubee, was driving and managed to get out half alive and get help. supposedly it might have been some dudes trying to get some other dudes that rolled with dre. 95live has a tribute up right now, check that out.

mac dre with jay tee, baby bash - just a touch of game

mac dre with yukmouth and sauce - get stupid, go dumb

that's all i've got but check that tribute and go download some other shit, maybe go get one of his albums if you can.

courtesy of anonymous donor in comments section:

life's a bitch

thizzle dance

crest shit

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?