“the first records that i played never played me, and i can still play them today because they stay true”
I’ve been thinking a lot about 90s hip hop… partially because i’ve had Tribe’s People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm on repeat for the last few days, but also because i often look to the “good ol’ days” of Hip Hop for inspiration. (Disclaimer: i don’t believe that Hip Hop culture or rap music were “pure” during the 90s. In fact, i believe that many artists promoted the exact same stuff i dislike now, only in baggier clothes. I do, however, think that there was more variety than there is now. There was Tribe and Bahamadia to balance out some of the more violent and misogynistic elements.) Because of that, i’d like to share some tracks that crossed my mind and entered my ears in recently. They remind me of why and how i became so passionate about rap music and Hip Hop culture. I play them today and they don’t let me down!
A Tribe Called Quest — “Rhythm (Devoted to the Art of Moving Butts)”
Greetings! Welcome to the 1st Tru Skool Tuesday of 2013! This week i wanna feature artists who have tread similar geographic spaces as me, particularly VA and Philly.
First up is this great video from Philly-honed producer, emcee, singer, and band leader, Hezekiah. I love this video and song. They capture the beauty of a city that is largely characterized by it’s “philth.” Better yet, he gives the Philly grime an aesthetic quality that i feel when listening to some of the best 70s soul singers!
I’ve been a long-time fan of the Soul Students. After not hearing much from the various artists from that collective, i was very happy to see this video. Directed by Stephen Miles (aka Dicap), it demonstrates how some of my favorite artists have grown over the years!
I recently met Richmond native, Eso Tahreek, here in Philly where he now resides. The internationally respected producer-emcee has a plethora of DOPE work that the will definitely benefit the hip hop world when released. As you wait for those tracks, check out Eso’s Soundcloud page for a taste of what’s in store!
Hip hop is a cultural force that never ceases to amaze me. From artists creative use of words to create their “raps” to the ever-evolving use of samples and original production, there is always something new and exciting happening. I find this to be most true when i find/am introduced to emcees and groups that originate from places outside of the United States.
One example of this is Wagëblë who’s “name connotes the communal meeting place for the people to discuss the issues that affect their lives; the group’s philosophy originates from the name’s associated acronym, Wax Aduna Geddu Ettu Baatin Lemu Elek, which essentially means that Wageble feels that their calling is to speak truth to the world about the essential spiritual knowledge of life in order to ensure a positive future.” This Tru Skool Tuesday includes a couple examples of Wagëblë’s music and message. Check them out and enjoy!
Oddisee is coming to Philly thanks to our good friends, Record Breakin’ Music! The DMV producer/emcee has been a staple in my hip hop collection since i first heard him and Kenn Starr… back in ’02 i think? I wish i could remember the name of the track. A friend gave it to me, because it was “real” hip hop that i could play on my radio show! Anyway, i digress…
This installment of True Skool Tuesday includes a few of my favorite Oddisee tracks. If you’re in Philly, then look for me at the show on 10/24.
This song solidified my obsession with Muhsinah, so it must be included in today’s post. Thanks Oddisee!
Lupe Fiasco is one of my go-to guys for clever lyrics and “dance friendly” positive hip hop music (yes, i like Lasers). After teasing me with tracks like “SLR” on his Friend of the People mixtape, i was happy to give Food & Liquor II: Great American Rap Album Pt. 1 a listen. This week’s Tru Skool Tuesday features a few of my favorite tracks. Thanks Lupe!
The tracks are some of the random tunes that i’ve been playing over the last few days. The Mulatu track was a pleasant surprise from an email list that i don’t remember signing up for! LOL. Friends put me on to Ian Kamau and Sa-Roc. I’m always happy to support them and hope that you’ll do the same! Enjoy.
Peace & Blessings! This edition of TST is inspired by my hip hop crate, DJ DuiJi 13 (he’s always reminding me of the jewels), and my man Ryan from VSU! Try not to hurt your neck as you listen to these hip hop throw backs!