Let’s start this Hip Hop list right shall we, CNN dropped War Report 2: Report The War and it was what we needed. I for one really never thought Nore was hot even when he was that dude but the last few years he just seem like he’s a hell of lot better. I remember not even really checking for this album and then hearing songs from it being put in the mix by DJs online got me into it. I hunted the album down and in the end I went to an always reliable route…Amazon. The sound of the album was still Boom Bap New York Hip Hop but the sound did have a bit of what you were getting out right now as well. The Faith Evans assisted (I wondered what was up with her.. Not really) “Hood Pride” could have been on the radio just from the sound alone. “The Corner” really was something that could have been on the radio too. The album from front to back is ill, it was a true throw back and I’m still shocked at how ill Nore came off. Capone was always dope to me, never really liked his voice but still never thought his skills were ass either. They had mad underground heavyweights from the beats to the bars come through, those tracks with Rae spawned an album in itself.
Hip Hop song G.O.O.D Music by Consequence feat. Common and Kweli
I first heard this on LFHQZ when I wanna say JS-1 filled in for Preem, anyway this song came in and I was like “Oh Shit”. Clinton Sparks did the beat and when I heard it on the show I was kinda like Consequence verse was the worst out of the whole song, really, I wouldn’t let his verse even fly in my ears. One day while just letting my mp3 player play I really listened to that verse and came way with alot more respect for the shit. Still not as dope as what Common said but it was put together well. While thinking of ten Hip Hop songs that were the shit to me this year “G.O.O.D music” was most def one of them. I’m keeping it on repeat all over again now that I made it a priority to show it love as one of my personal favs this year… I said favs, fuck, shit happens I guess. Still from the beat to message and slick metaphor and wordplay this shit bangs.
I was listening to NPR and Angelique Kidjo was on like mad programs here and there that they have and a few times it was the same show or maybe the same interview, either way I liked what I heard from her. This is one of the times I feel a bit embossed because I make it a must to check for music and know music and I was thrown off that Kidjo wasn’t new. Hell I didn’t even know what the looked like until I got the CD and the vibe in the interviews and the music and then seeing her album cover and on youtube just made me like and respect this beautiful woman that much more.
From the beginning with “Zelie” which of course is African, this album just takes off beautifully. The revision of the Mayfeild classic “Move On Up” Kidjo and guess John Legend gives is just hands down joyous and brilliant. And even thought I have no idea what is being said at all even when they are remakes of songs I personally know by heart like “I’ve got Dreams To Remember” and “Baby I Love You” (Otis Redding and Aretha Franklin) I’m still lost for a minute on what is going on. I don’t have a great African music collection at all but this is one of those albums that will have me continue to keep my ears open not just for Kidjo new as well as previous work but South African and African music in general.
Non Hip Hop song When A Woman Loves R. Kelly
This song is an example of my main argument as to why I hate R. Kelly. The brother spent so much time dropping odd corny shit to stay fresh for the radio and younger listeners then out of the blue brings the pure essence of music out and gets the hood jumping all over it. This song can be traced back to the great Jackie Wilson (I’m thinking right at this moment “Lonely Teardrops”, no bull shit check the song out) and Percy Sledge, I mean if you have ever heard any of their slower love songs this song fits right in there. From the adlibs to the background singing that pops off around the end to the damn ending it screams old school. This song is that bridge that older people love and haven’t yet put their fingers on why they love it and since it is R. Kelly younger people and radio are riding with it. I’m joking about the hating R. Kelly thing of course.. I respect the brother and always have because he knows music, the history of it and can go back and make what was popping in the past rock in the present without completely copying or sacrificing major elements of the sound he chooses to run with. This is another classic in the mans catalog.