Question from Nick: “I was wondering if you know what the beat is that the UMC’s freestyle over on Stretch and Bobbito’s radio show. I am pretty sure that Stretch put together beats, so it may be something he created. Regardless its classic case of how good stripped down drums and bass can sound.”
Answer: I don’t recognize it as an instrumental from an existing song from that era though it could certainly have been from a more independent release that would have flown under my radar then. I do think it’s more realistic that it was a Stretch [...]
Continue reading UMCS, CHARLES BRADLEY, AND OTHER QUESTIONS ANSWERED
My recent deluge of work means a drought in posts but I’m finally back. Pardon the kitchen sink but I got a lot to cover.
First off, my early runner for “album of the year” goes to Laura Mvula. I’ve been singing her praises for a while but had been looking forward to finally reviewing the U.S. release of her Sing to the Moon for NPR. I feel like any kind of superlatives I might throw her way will be woefully inadequate. Listen to this, the first song on the album. If you’re not awed…well, maybe you’ll [...]
Continue reading MAY SHOWERS: LAURA MVULA, LADY, BIZ MARKIE, AND MORE
Question from Damien: “I was wondering today…who introduced the RnB/Soul side to the hip hop? The one we can hear in Mos Def’s or The Pharcyde’s tracks? Was there any tension about this at the time, some kind of opposition between the aggressive tone of some early 90′s releases and the smoothness of some others?”
Answer: There’s two separate questions here so let me tackle the first.
First, it’s a bit odd to try to talk about how R&B was “introduced” into hip-hop insofar as rap music’s roots come out of soul via funk via disco. I mean, “Rapper’s [...]
Continue reading NOT SELLING OUT, THAT’S A NEGATIVE
Bob and the Mob: It’s a Shame
From 12″ (Holiday, 1989)
What’s not to like about this?
Spinners’ sample? Check.1
“Synthetic Substitution” drums? Check.
Sometimes, it’s just that easy. (That said, every time I hear how they flip the drums, the phrase “individual with intellect” keeps popping into my head).
And before Monie Love, no? ↩
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I was asked to contribute to this KCET video piece on photographer Mike Miller. My segments were shot at the Record Jungle in Montebello, aka my favorite record store in L.A.