First off, wanted to say thanks to those of you who emailed me or left links in the comments, helping me with those songs I was looking for. I got pretty much everything I was looking for by Monday. Amazing, thanks goes out to everyone who helped.
Next up, something I’ve been sitting on since April, for some odd fucking reason. Someone sent me a link for these back then and they’ve gotten a lot of listening pleasure from me and I think some of you might get some enjoyment out of them. They are a collection of songs for each year. I know it’s all been done before with the Ego Trip thing, which you can also find floating around the net as well. They are from Brooklynradio.net, by a group of DJ’s consisting of DJ Ayres, DJ Eleven & Cosmo Baker, calling themselves “The Rub” (is this where I use “no homo”?) that did a series of radio shows highliting each year from ’79 to ’89 and there is some pretty good shit included on them. For example, here’s the track list from the ’79 Mix
Everybody Hates Cool J
Ever since LL Cool J first popped up on the scene as a boom box packin’ B-Boy, Uncle L has routinely stepped on toes in the hip-hop game. Often his brash and arrogant persona has ruffled a few feathers, this a long with people claiming uncooth practices of borrowing both flows and beats has caused many an artist to drop joints denoucing. His most famous battle was with legendary “old school” artist Kool Moe Dee who first went at Cool J on “How Ya Like Me Now”, claiming LL bit his style, which I personally never saw all that much. The two would go back and forth for a few songs, which LL dropped “Jack The Ripper” and “To The Break Of Dawn” and Moe Dee dropping “Let’s Go” and “Death Blow”. Who won the battle is up for discussion, but it did seem as LL would duck Moe Dee when ever the subject of a live battel would come up.
Even before the beef with Moe Dee dropped, LL was taking shots from all angles and while there might have been a few subliminal disses in some of his rhymes or a direct mentions such as the line he dropped in “I’m Bad” about Queens MC Kamikaze with, “I couldn’t shouldn’t and it’ll stay that way/The best rapper you’ve heard is L.L. Cool J/Kamikaze take a look at what I’ve done/Used to rock in my face now I’m number one”, LL didn’t spend much time answering back. Too many to answer? Or maybe some of them were just not important enough to go after. Here’s a little taste of who went at LL….(Sorry, zshare was down when I tried upping these)
In ’85, Steady B was an enspiring Philly MC who’s uncle was a fairly important local label owner. Answer records were all the rage during this period with the 5,285 Roxanne answer records as well as Salt ‘N Pepa’s big break with “Show Stoppa” which was the answer back to Doug E Fresh &
Ricky D’s “The Show”. Young Steady would decide it was a good idea to go after James Todd Smith. Here is a first hand account of how it went down on the “Official Steady B Myspace” page:
November, 1985…..Overbrook High School. I’m sittin’ in class, don’t even remember what class, fuckin’ around as usual. Niggaz beatin’ on the desk, rappin. RunDMC, Whodini, Fatboys, and LL Cool J is runnin shit. I start talking about LL’s new song, “I can’t live without my Radio”, wit this nigga Jimmy….Jimmy the Jaun was his rap name. He said “He should make an answer song to it”. Nobody paid him no mind cause LL was the shit. Plus it was report card day and I was thinkin’ about my mom snappin out on me. I know my shit was fucked up.
In between thoughts of Fila, Calvin Klein jeans and my mom putting her foot up my ass, for all those E’s on my report card, the idea of makin’ an answer record to LL continued to peak my interest. Needless to say, that night when my mom came home from work and saw my report card, she flipped. Yellin’ and screamin’, talking ‘bout “I’m not going to able to get a good job without an education”, the usual shit parents preach,..when she hauled off and slapped the SHIT outta me. I didn’t even blink! The look of surprise on her face almost made me laugh. And it was at that moment, I think she realized I was becoming a man, and she never touched me again…….
I used to baby sit for my aunt Candy sometimes, my pops sister, and she was married to L.G. (Lawrence Goodman), L.G. and his brother Shaheed (Dana Goodman) owned Popular Artist records, better known as Pop Art. Pop Art Records was started a year earlier in 1984 and quickly became a Philly staple because of the success of Roxanne Shante. “Roxanne’s Revenge” put the company on the Hip Hop map, and it was even more impressive because this was a Philly company who signed a New York artist. So, I told my uncle L.G. about this idea, to answer LL Cool J with “Take Your Radio”. He freaked out! He loved the idea! He asked me who’s idea it was, and I told ‘em it was Jimmy’s ( Jimmy the Jaun ) idea. My uncle wanted this song recorded so bad he told me to take him to Jimmy the Jaun’s house. We went to Jimmy’s house about three times, he was never home. I wonder if he ever knew about the opportunity that was literally knockin’ at his front door.
My uncle asked me to do the record, NO….now, lookin’ back, he told me to DO the record. He knew I rhymed but I don’t think he ever heard me. That’s how bad he wanted this record. I knew my chances of recording this song was none, never mind slim, because of my report card. So, when my uncle and I approached my mom with the idea, of course she said “hell no”. I don’t think I can describe the feelin’ that went through me when I heard her rejection. My dream is in the palm of my hand, quickly slippin through my fingers. All because I wanted to do stupid shit in school! But my moms boyfriend, Steve, who stayed wit us, saw the dis-appointment in my face. I think he could relate to me on a different level than my mom because he was only around nine years older than me. I was 15 and he was 24. So, needless to say he had my back. He and my mom went upstairs, and when they came back down, the decision was reversed. I could go to New York and record what would become a landmark record in the history of Philly Hip Hop.
I’ve always liked Steady and he comes out swinging on this track, saying he is going to jack LL’s box. Them’s fighting words back in the day. You couldn’t take another mans box, that was like touching another mans woman, you just didn’t do it. The track worked, Steady had a modest recording career and his legend is forever scribed in Philly hip-hop lore, although probably for all the wrong reasons.
On “Radio”, LL rips a thought to be ficticious woman named Evette on the track “Dear Evette”. He drops some not so nice lyrics on the same name as a garden tool girl. Well some relatively unknown girl named E-Vette Money took this seriously, or maybe was out for the fame, but she came out after Cool J with “Evette’s Revenge”. The track sounds terribly outdated, but if you are old school like me, you’ll enjoy the stripped down beats ala Rick Rubin and the whiney screachy vocals of Evette.
The track is produced by Kydd Fresh, who was from another group (can’t remember the name of the group to save my ass) that had made an answer track to “Can’t Live Without My Radio” in the form of “It’s A Walkman” (anyone has it, lace it up).
Now, if anyone had a right to have beef with LL, it would be T La Rock, who I always thought L straight ripped off as far as style, look, image, and basically winding up with T La Rock’s job at Def Jam back in the day.
T La Rock was everything LL was then, except he was it three years earlier. Don’t get me wrong, this is coming from someone who at one time proclaimed LL as his favorite artist (until I heard “Hey Lover”, then I knew it was over), but T La Rock was the ultimate B-Boy and a vital link in the evolution from “Old School” to “Next School”, “New School”, “Now School” or whatever you want to call it. T La Rock was using more complicated rhymes than the average MC in those early years and still came out it pretty hard.
He doesn’t mention LL by name on this joint, but judging by the title of the song, I think it’s pretty obvious who he is coming at. Thanks to Robbie at Unkut.com for this joint.
As much as I loved the Juice Crew, I’ve never been much of a MC Shan fan. In all actuality, Shan is better known for the B-side of this record, which was the “The Bridge” than anything he has ever done. In an interview, Shan says LL took his beat for “Rock The Bells” and even had the nerve to play him the song while the two were on tour.
Shan came at LL with “Beat Biter”, which didn’t make a lot of noise really and no response ever came from LL. They did supposebly meet up at a concert one night in Syracuse when Shan came out and broke a record of “Rock The Bells” that was being played by the DJ. He proceeded to rip LL, at least that’s Shan’s account. What really happened isn’t as wel known.
Trav’s Top Spins
1. Blue Scholars – Bayani
It took me a few listens, but when this finally hit me, it hit me pretty hard. Beautiful music and great music to chill to. They get a little too preachy at times, but other than that, a solid release.
2. Big City – City Never Sleeps
It’s got that Beatnuts flavor that I like and Problemz is pretty dope on the mic. It’s not the greatest album of the year, hell not even of the month, but it’s been good for some spins lately.
3. Marco Polo – Port Authority
Staying in rotation.
4. Jazzy Jeff – The Return Of The Magnificent
Still getting my bearings on this album. I have to be in the right mood to play it, but there is some good
stuff on it.
5. Beastie Boys – Paul’s Boutique
Reading the book made me pull this out and give it several listens over the week. I have even more of an appreciation for it now after reading the books
Why are baseball managers flipping out on umpires one of the most entertaining thing in all of sports?
Why do cell phones only last like 6 months anymore? It’s a scam I tell ya!
Why did I subject my liver to this Slushy Gutter Challenge? This ain’t intramurals brutha!
Why do I not really feel like writing anymore?