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"Sleeping Bag/Fresh Records" Sunday PT.1 & Most Played, Most DL'ed (Wink Wink) For The Week

by Eric on May 5, 2007

Arrgggh! It’s 10:35 P.M. but here goes folks….bare with me I may stray off into la la land but I’ma try to get this right. One hell of a day thus far, my wife actually thought that her water broke this morning (our second daughter in 16 months is due any day now!), but it was a false alarm. Although, I guess we’re “ready to rock” due to the fact that we’re have a “home birth” with our forthcoming gift. I’m actually downloading “A Piece Of Strange” instrumentals as I type this so that she can listen to it on her Ipod during labor….I know she’s gangsta huh? So in the meantime, we checked out the new Nicolas Cage/Jessica Biel thriller “Next” tonite…and, is it just me or is Nicolas Cage one weird ass dude in every last one of his movies? Still, he’s a pretty damn good actor. Okay, here’s the deal, I got this bright idea this week “Why not post (or at least attempt) to post some of the more relevant albums from what are now “defunct” hip hop labels. I’m talking about the Sleeping Bags, Gee Streets and Loud Records of the recording industry (Although, I’m quite sure that most folks in my listening bracket already posses much of Loud’s releases). So, spanned out over the course of the next few weeks I’ll be kinda keeping things Fresh (pun intended…God, I kill me sometimes!) with drops from the labels previously mentioned while basically maintaining the same formula that we’ve been following thus far. I hope everyone will enjoy the posts in days to come and hit me up with any comments or suggestions. Thank you for the continued support! Oh, and I almost forgot.. if you’re a fellow blogger & you drop non-stop requests such as “let’s exchange links” followed by your URL in my C-Box…don’t take it personal if I don’t add you to my top notch blogs, it’s just that your blog sucks! If I wanted a Lil Weezey or Cam’ron “mixtape” (which I don’t see happening anytime soon), “Mixtape Torrents” has been doing the job just fine for the last two years, but thanks anyway!…-Eric

Nice & Smooth-Self Titled

“Ayo Dizzy Gillespie plays a sax”….Ahh, the “wordplay” of Greg N-I-C-E. There is no doubt that Nice & Smooth were a..maybe, once in a lifetime hip hop duo. With their self titled debut album Greg Nice & Smooth B burst on the scene with the now classic “Funky For You”, sampling the infamous WAR track (I can’t remember the name, plus I’m too damn tired and lazy to surf the net’ looking for it right now). This album while not on the level of “Ain’t A Damn Thing Changed” or even “Jewell Of The Nile” for that matter, does accomplish it’s rhymes with a little bit of “lovin” for the ladies thrown in for good measure. This was Nice & Smooth’s only album on Fresh Records, their follow up was distributed to the masses via Rush Associated Labels. Man, as I’m typing this some of their lyrics flash into my head making me smile…i’e “Smooth B, notorious, glorious, knowledge is infinite, I live in a fortress”….so simple, yet effective….You gotta’ love Nice & Smooth and the legacy they created for themselves!….-Eric

Stezo-Crazy Noise

Damn..Stezo is rockin’ the “acid washed” jean jacket! Mmmm,mmmm,mmm, some of the things we wore back in the day! Everyone knows that Stezo got his start as a back-up dancer for labelmates EPMD but not to many folks know that Stezo repped the CT..boy, Apathy must be proud! “It’s My Turn” which used the now famous Skull Snaps beat and finds Stezo rockin’ gems like “off the record this is the “anthenem”(huh?)is without a doubt the highlight of “Crazy Noise”, as well as it should be for many listeners. I will say this though, Stezo is a prototypical “party rapper” and he does more than succeed in making the ultimate party album. Somebody, needs to jack the beat from the title cut “Crazy Noise” and make a banger though…I always that he should’ve released that as a single. Anyway, Stezo was one and done as far as full length albums are concerned (he has dropped a few 12″ since then and produced for Dooley )”Crazy Noise”, too many a hip hop head’s dismay….. bring Stezo back!….-Eric

EPMD-Unfinished Business

Wow!….Perhaps one of my favorite albums of all time “Unfinished Business” may be the most celebrated release during the “Fresh” era. Containing only one real “throwaway” track (“You Had Too Much To Drink”), “Unfinished” was the soundtrack to my young adult life during the summer of 89′. I actually, had a job cutting grass for that summer and I played the tape so many times during that timeframe (along with “It Takes A Nation Of Millions) that the tape literally “popped” from continuous listens!. Thanks to my first glimpse of EPMD via the video for “So Whatcha’ Sayin” on YO!MTV Raps, I was introduced to two of the biggest legends in the art form. There are just too many dope cuts on this album to pick a true defining gem…from the early day struggles of trying to get a record deal “Please Listen To My Demo” to just pure, unadulterated hardcore flows “Total Kaos” this sophomore release knocks infinitely. Erick & Parish in many circles are considered to be the most important and relevant duo in hip hop history, as well as they should be. The two emcees had such a chemistry that was almost mesmerizing to a young, carefree 12 year old. If you’ve never heard “Unfinished Business” you’re a sucker and if you have enjoyed this what was considered at the time of its release “New School” yourself a favor, listen to it again and take a trip down memory lane…-Eric

Eric’s Most Played For The Week

  1. “Nostalgia”-Marco Polo & Masta Ace….I know by now that everyone is jocking this cut to death, but it is what it is…IMO, the best single in the last two years…There’s just something that gives me the chills after Erick Sermon’s “This might be my last one”……
  2. “One Night Stand”-Llyod Banks….I know I’ma get some flack for this but…9th Wonder did the beat and the bottom on this joint is ridiculous!
  3. “Anonymous”-Bobby Valentino…Timbaland’s electronic BS has had me hooked since “FutureSexLoveSounds”…okay, bring it on!
  4. “Sweetest Language”-The A.L.L.I.E.S….if you haven’t heard this 9th Wonder produced EP/LP “9th Wonder Present The A.L.L.I.E.S.” your missing out big time!
  5. “Supa Jean”-DJ Jazzy Jeff f. Jean Grae..taken from Jeff’s disappointing “Return Of The Magnificent”…Miss Grae is betta’ than 90% of male emcees today, no BS!
  6. “Be A Man”-Wordsworth…from th

    e heavily slept-on “Mirror Music”…Words’ breaks down the joys of “becoming a man” over a soulful soundscape….”Wave ya’ hands, side to side, ……

  7. “Applause”-Square One (Rasul’s former group)…”Clap ya’ hands, ya hands ya clap”..Ra murders a fonkay track with a dope break.
  8. “Salute”-M.O.P….off “Firing Squad”..folks seem to forget about this “all too short” Primo banger!
  9. “The Plague”-Strange Fruit Project….dope Nicolay laced track from their overlooked and much slept-on release “The Healing”
  10. “The Gates”-Cunninlyguists f. Tonedeff…”A.P.O.S.” blows me away with each listen, perhaps my favorite cut off the album.

Most DL’ed For The Week

  1. “Put It In Your Mouth EP”-Akinyele
  2. “Hazardous”-Godfather Don
  3. tie…”In Control Vol. I” & “Hip Hop Dicitionary”-Marley Marl
  4. “Let Me Explain”-Mysterme & DJ 20/20
  5. “M.any Y.oung L.ives A.go the 94′ Sessions”-MC Serch…surprised that more folks didn’t pick this up
  6. “In Control Vol.II”-Marley Marl
  7. “A Prince Among Thieves”-Prince Paul
  8. “Re Entry”-Marley Marl
  9. “The Fabulous Chi Ali”-Chi Ali
  10. “Wild Pitch Classics”-VA
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Leave Your Nine At Home May 6, 2007 at 7:36 pm

Man, your woman is/seems to be about to go into labour and you try to find an excuse to make another post? My girl would kill me on the spot. :)
But compliments to your wife on her taste. Excellent choice. (No, I’m not talking about your ass, I meant Cunninlynguists :)

Wish you all the best with your second baby-girl.


Dan Love May 6, 2007 at 7:37 pm

I’m still loving Nostalgia as well, its got that warm fuzzy feeling down pat.

Good luck with your imminent baby!

Take it easy


Mike Dikk May 6, 2007 at 8:39 pm

I’m originally from CT so Stezo has always been kind of a local hero to me. He used to do this local commercial for a rim/tire place called Star Tire for YEARS. Well, it was really just one commercial that was played constantly. I really wish I could remember the rap to it, or it would show up on Youtube someday.

santoscrew May 9, 2007 at 2:32 am


any chance of you uploading the cunnynlinguists’ a piece of strange instrumentals for us (for me :p)???

Homey June 8, 2007 at 4:07 am

“…taken from Jeff’s disappointing “Return Of The Magnificent”…”

Are you serious? That album was the SHIT! You trippin’…

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