Re: bunk hip hop and the real shit

flight (
Thu, 27 Nov 1997 08:45:05 -0600 (CST)

Point taken - but don't you think it's a bit naive to come down on rap
artists for something that is a completely industry-wide occurance. If
anything I think US rap artists are to be the most forgiven for this type
of mentality - for one, I'd imagine that pre-record socio-economic status
of many US rap artists is on the whole lower than any other form of music
- the chance to release a record on a major label can not really be
squandered for many. Even an LP selling a damn respectable 200 k units
will really only garner an artist and his dj/producer about 30,000 dollars
over the course of a year (the Beatnuts made 27k each after selling 265k
of their first records, Intoxicated Demons - Flavor Magazine). Second,
rap albums on major lablels with just a little mainstream radio airplay
makes an absolutely huge effect on sales - there are only so many "true
consumers" who buy on the basis of quality alone, while there's millions
of radio consumers. Seeing the success of groups that once had
underground cred - Nas, Notorious BIG, 2PAC (to an extent w/ his first
record), Rakim - his new one is selling large, Fugees, ect - has to be a
bit intoxicating. The logic goes, "oh, just one or two r&b peppered,
catchy hook centered, bouncy club beat type cuts has the possibility of
doing more good than harm." As far as OC goes - fuck, I wanna see him get
paud - if not for his new, utterly lackluster LP, than his 1st, completely
uncompomising, gorgeous first one (an album jazz-beat heads should really
give a listen). Rakim and Nas - they have paid their dues to the music
biz. Of course, I'd like another _Illmatic_ LP, but for a kid out of the
projects - it's hard for me to fault him... more like the US society that
filled him with commericials, Capitalism, individualism and the lust for
consumption. It would just be too easy for me - sitting at a computer in
Sheffield, Uk - studying abroad for a semester, doing exactly what I want
to in school, planning a trip to Norway in a few weeks, ect to judge
someone like Nas or OC. Believe me, I am still a purist at heart - but
you got to realize the world does not revolve around music, it reveloves
around cash money.

Anyways.... on to some solid rap tunes this year
-the Company Flow LP - utterly rugged, yet sublime beats with lyrics
you'll be trying to figure out for years.
-the Common Sense LP - don't go by the weak 12" - this LP is dope - but if
you haven't got _Resurrection_, pick that up first - jazzy , soulful beats
at their best by producer NOID.
-the Siah and Yeshua Dapo Ed EP on Fondle 'Em records - some of the most
original beats on a straight musical tip I've heard in a while.. can be
ordered from fat beats in nyc, or - the place to
order hip-hop on the web - great prices, daily updates & you can listen to
everything via realaudio - loads of old classics for sale as well.
-Mos Def 12" - from UTD's classic 12"s of 94 with Diamond D and J-Swift
remixes, to De La's LP, to a solo career that looks quite promising -
defiatly a kid doin it for the love, yet he can't get signed... though I'm
sure all he needs is an r&b hook and he'd be rich.
-Reflection Eternal 12" - pure unadulturated hip-hop.
-Mike Zoot 2*12" - Japanese pressing, so it's a bit expensive w/
production by up and comer Dj Spinna, Buckwild and more..tight.
-Any 12" by J-Live (actually 96) - the new LP is coming
-Any 12" coming outta Chicago (a lil hometown bias), but the Molemen 12"s
f/ Chicago's finest - EC, Rubberoom, Rhymefest, Vakil, Juice, Griffin - w/
Chicago's no. 1 beat diggers - the molemen. Check or to order. A EP by a group called Prime Meridian
and also All Natural have got to also be on any top 10 of the year for
me, has em for sale I believe - no eye on the money
here at all.
-7L and Esoteric on brick records outta Boston has a dope EP
-Any EP/Lp coming out on Outhouse Records (Mystic Journeymen's -hip-hops
DIY personified- label). Should be found on the West Coast, or by
ordering through point blank or atak distributors - they got web pages as
well, run a search.
In fact, most of the best hip-hop this year is not available in most
stores at all... they're by groups with names like sacred hoop, murs,
grouch, eclipse 427... and unknown emcees from san diego, seattle, LA, the
Bay Area and phoenix (supermarket). Some is available only on tape - if
you really want emcees, producers and dj doing it for the love not the
loot you gotta search..... again point blank, atak and are your best bets... also
Indiground hip-hop has a pretty fair infrastructure on the net, take

All in all, I think there is more rap out there with no regard to the
money than ever before, problem is it is not as accessible to the casual
listener as it was before. Urb (as hard as it tries) ain't gonna really
give you the score. I'd b happy to offer more detailed answers - if i got