Tag Archives: Dr. Dre

ANOTHER NOISEY LETDOWN

I don’t like pushing negativity on here and I promise my next post is gonna be about a bunch of music I really like but ever since we found out about NOISEY’s highly questionable media tactics a week ago, I’m a little hypersensitive to their bullshit.  So when I saw this headline I felt like I needed to say something.

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Do yourself a favor and don’t read the interview, use it as motivation to never ingest anything NOISEY produces.  I’m not saying that there should never be humorous content in a music publication but when you see the pitiful, generic, two-paragraph treatment they gave to Sean Price’s death yesterday and the most recent interview they did with Sean early last year which is only 2 questions longer than they give to some white dude on the internet who said 4 words of a rap song simultaneously with the rapper in the recording, it’s pretty clear where the priorities and sentiments lie with the NOISEY editors.  There’s plenty of interesting (and humorous) content in the rap world, you don’t need to swallow NOISEY’s bullshit, fuckin’ onion head bastards.

Sean Price – Onion Head (feat. Tek)

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THE INGREDIENTS (PART 1)

As usual, I found out just barely too late that there was a mixtape made of songs sampled in the heavily-rotated-in-my-bedroom good kid m.A.A.d city.  Luckily I found a tracklist, and I’m starting to track down each song on it’s own, which is maybe more fun anyway than just having it all precompiled in a thing I just push “Play” on.  Here’s one of them, probably the most blatantly recognizable one, and also the first song anybody in the general public heard from this incredibly moving album.  I’ll keep posting new ones over the next few days unless it seems tedious, and then I might put a bunch in one post.  Sometimes it’s nice if things take time though.

Twin Sister – Meet the Frownies

Kendrick Lamar – The Recipe (feat. Dr. Dre)

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REALLY LOOKIN’ COOL IN HIS… WHITE LEVI’S

One thing a lot of rap detractors like to pretend and insinuate is that the problematic ideas expressed in many rap songs (violence, misogyny, materialism, etc.) are only newly problematic.  No one can deny that these ideas are present in rap music or that they are problematic, but I feel like I see more and more evidence all the time of the antiquity of these ideas in our culture as well as our music.  Why can Johnny Cash shoot a man in Reno just to watch him die, but when Weezy empties his clip, then rolls his window up, people start raising their eyebrows?  Why can Robert Plant claim that “the soul of a woman was created below“, but when Dre, Snoop, and Daz assert that “bitches ain’t shit but hoes and tricks“, they’re being offensive and destructive to society?

The materialism present in some rap music is probably not as hot-button an issue as these previous two, it’s usually at the end of a long list of complaints by people that want to disparage this music and is framed as more of an annoyance than a full-fledged indictment.  But today I found a really great example of even this more minor evil of rap having its predecessors in more “wholesome” music.

The Majorettes – White Levi’s

Name-brand dropping in rap songs definitely a lot more widespread than it was in 60s pop, but it’s good to be reminded that it wasn’t absent.  It reminds us that our culture really hasn’t changed that much, certain parts might have grown and expanded recently, but the issue itself is not at all new.  The Majorettes’ attitude toward name brands is the same as Rick Ross’s.  But how many people do you know that would scoff and turn their nose up at a rapper named Gucci Mane, but would find this song completely harmless, aesthetically and morally?  The point isn’t whether you want to be an advocate for materialism or not (or violence or misogyny for that matter), it’s whether or not you truly believe that the music we’re making is creating or bolstering these societal problems.  There isn’t a single one of us that doesn’t have a violent side, a bigoted side, a greedy, materialistic side.  But are we really going to believe that hearing a song where an artist channels that particular part of him or herself for a few minutes is going to make people that hear it drop everything and completely indulge that part of themselves?  When I hear a song like Waka Flocka’s “Bustin At ‘Em“, I’m no more likely to murder anyone after listening to it than before because I’ve been raised in an environment that teaches me that things like murder aren’t good things to do, and I live in an environment that doesn’t push me to abandon my morals to survive.  It’s when we create situations where there is little or no choice but to do things you know are wrong or when people start getting relaxed about teaching the youth these moral lessons that they can begin to be affected by something like a song in this way.

But I don’t believe it’s the artist’s role in society to always take the moral high ground and set a glowing example for the youth.  That’s not their job.  That’s why we have parents, grandparents, teachers, elders, priests, rabbis, shaman, monks, imams, chiefs, presidents, and countless other societal roles that are charged with the occupation of being examples to follow in ethical matters.  These are the people that need to be stepping up to do that job, it’s their job to stand on a hilltop or behind a podium and make sure you know that it’s not OK to steal from people, or to persecute people, or to murder people.  It’s the artist’s job to whisper in your ear that if you happen to have a passing thought or urge that defies these moral absolutes, you’re not alone, or crazy, or sick.  As long as our moral leaders are doing their jobs and our society isn’t pushing big groups of people into desperate circumstances, then it’s safe not to fear our artist’s whispers, because all they are doing is comforting us in our times of weakness and imperfection, allowing us to be comfortable with being human.  Flocka himself explained how his music plays that role in our society.

It’s for people that’s going through or living what I’m talking about. It teaches them how to relieve stress verbally instead of physically.

You don’t have to love the vices, you just have to admit that you’re susceptible to them like everybody else is.  I think we could all get along a little better if we all admitted that to ourselves, and each other.

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SIR VICIOUS SO SMOOTH LIKE A RIMLESS SWISH (PART 2)

Ok, now that you’ve had a little time to absorb all that old school flavor from yesterday, here’s the continuation.

This track is reeeal dirty, especially for a New York rapper from the mid-80s.  I might expect some shit like this from Too $hort or somebody like that, but I feel like the east coast is a little more timid to go this far on record, but Just-Ice fuckin goes there.

Just-Ice – That Girl is a Slut

The most obvious track to bring up in relation to this track is Doug E. Fresh and Slick Rick’s “La Di Da Di” (yes, the inspiration for Snoop and Dre’s “Lodi Dodi“) which it seems came out just a little before the Just-Ice track did.  But what’s especially exciting for me is knowing where the drums came from on this track from the great King Geedorah.

King Geedorah – The Fine Print

Yeahhh, 2/3 slow, 1/3 amazing.  That’s a formula I can get behind.

And if you just can’t get enough Just-Ice-inspired music, here’s a Redman track that reworks the song that got all this started in the first place.

Redman – It’s Like That (feat. K-Solo)

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RAP JOURNEY #6 – FROM RICH BOY TO DONNY HATHAWAY

So after I saw the video for that “Strugglin” song by Rich Boy (in case you missed that one, just check out this post, it was one of the first posts I put up) I decided to look a little deeper into his work.  It seemed to me like he didn’t just get lucky on that one, I had a good feeling he had more shit I was gonna want to hear.  Turns out he does.  I was vibin’ to this track on my way to pick up Matt to get some tacos and recognized the sample in the background from something I’d heard before… maybe a Ghostface song or something?

Rich Boy – Ghetto Boy

I ended up being pretty much right, it was a song from Wu-Tang Forever  with almost the exact same title, but a very different feel, in my opinion.

Wu-Tang Clan – Little Ghetto Boys

I still felt like there was more to be uncovered on this journey though, it seemed like I’d heard that sample someplace else too, in a third (totally separate) context… y’all are probably way ahead of me already.

Dr. Dre – Lil’ Ghetto Boy

Yeahh, can’t forget that one.  Here’s where I start getting sidetracked though.  I was re-listening to this track after I figured out its significance in this journey, and a line from the Dre verse stuck out to me, it comes just a little before the 2:00 mark.  I DEFINITELY know where that gets used.

The Notorious B.I.G. – Things Done Changed

OK now hold up hold up a second, I kinda left you all hangin on that Ghetto Boy stuff though.  We chased that sample through east coast, west coast, AND southern rap spanning a couple decades almost; but where’s the SOURCE??  Behold.

Donny Hathaway – Little Ghetto Boy

Yes.  Mission complete.  Yeah, I know a lot of this stuff isn’t crazy underground or obscure  or anything, but hopefully even seasoned rap fans were unaware of at least one of these steps.  Or at least enjoyed being reminded of them.  I know I had fun.

That’s a rap journey, y’all.  Dig

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DRE EN CUMBIA

Quantic y Su Cojunto – Nuthin’ But A G Thing

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LA DA DA DA DA

I’ve really been trippin off of some original samples to west coast G Funk songs lately, maybe cuz I just watched Friday?  Regardless, some really expertly chosen shit.  I’m pretty sure Simon showed me at least one of these, thanks dude.

David McCallum – The Edge

(The Next Episode)

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Joe Cocker – Woman to Woman

(California Love)

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The Isley Brothers – Footsteps in the Dark

(It Was A Good Day)

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Michael McDonald – I Keep Forgettin’

(Regulators)

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