Tag Archives: Juvenile

LET THE BEAT BUILD #14 – JUVENILE

It’s the month of resurrecting long dead post series on DRIVE SLOW!  This track doesn’t build to the climax some other entries in this series do, but there is still a steady addition of new elements throughout the entire song that subtly build momentum in a way that’s rarely found in rap.  Plus the rapping too amazing to not be included here.

Juvenile – Money on the Couch

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I’M ROLLIN’. LIKE I’M BOWLIN’.

Reeve flattered me the other day in the comments to this post, claiming he’d “polled the readers” of DRIVE SLOW and the “consensus” was that they wanted my opinion on this track.

Iamsu! – 100 Grand (feat. Juvenile & Kool John)

I have my doubts that there is a large number of people out there that Reeve is in touch with that are anxiously awaiting my opinion on specific obscure rap mixtape tracks, but I’ll humor him on this one because it actually is a pretty cool and interesting track.  I wrote a post back in April about Juvenile‘s push to regain some of his fading relevance and my mixed feelings about the results, and I unfortunately feel kinda the same way about the stuff I’ve heard him put out since then, too.  Rejuvenation didn’t really do much for me, not that I felt betrayed or that it was a total waste of time or anything, it just felt like Juvenile forgot all the things that make him sound like himself.  It’s like he became convinced that his own style isn’t enough so he adopted this obviously weaker, more watered down, and basic style just to distance himself from what he used to be doing.  I’m not one of those dudes that thinks that artists need to stick to the styles they start out with forever, hell I even stuck up for Snoop Lion when that stuff came out, but I just like it when the changes feel genuine, and Juvenile’s stuff lately doesn’t feel that way to me.  It feels like he’s trying to rap like somebody else, which, as I mentioned in my previous Juvie post, isn’t doing anybody any good.

That said, “100 Grand” is still an awesome song.  I’m sure Iamsu! was stoked to share a track with such a legendary artist, I’m totally happy for him about that, he deserves it.  And Iamsu! sounds great, the beat is great, and Juvenile’s verse is, well, fine.  It gets of to a little bit of a rough start, and hearing him talking about buying stocks feels a little strange.  But there’s still some lovable Juvenile in there peeking out the whole time; his voice is still captivating and his flow, while a shadow of its former self, is still pretty good compared to a lot of other rappers.  I just can’t get as excited about it as I would be about tons of his previous material.  Like here is a track I chose at random from his back catalog that I had in my collection.  Tell me this doesn’t grab you 500% more than verse 2 of “100 Grand“.

Juvenile – A Million and One Things (feat. Lil’ Wayne, Young Turk, & B.G.)

I hope this satisfies my breathless readership, you all just let me know if I can offer my opinions on any other pressing topics.

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I GO OUT MY WAY FOR IT, ANYTHING BUT PRAY FOR IT

It’s been a little while since I heard any new music out of New Orleans legend Juvenile, so when I saw he’d put out a new mixtape I greeted it with about 80% excitement, and maybe 20% skepticism.  Time out of the spotlight and out of the studio can sometimes prove to be detrimental to an artist’s style and technique, so I didn’t want to get my hopes up too high for this comeback push from Juvie.  I mean he’s been doin’ this rap thing for a loooong time now.

The Nino the Magnificent final product wasn’t really what I expected, which isn’t to say that I was disappointed, just a little surprised by a few things.  For one, it’s only 8 tracks long, which is, at best, half as long as an average rap mixtape, and in some cases only one third as long.  Not only that, but when you actually listen to the tape, you’ll find that only four of those songs contain actual new raps by Juvenile, the rest is either intro/outro hype or “             Speaks” interlude material, so what we’ve really got is a four song EP with some filler.  But maybe he’s going for quality over quantity, I can definitely respect that approach.  I haven’t listened to the whole tape with proper attention (or speakers for that matter) yet, so I’m waiting to pass judgement on the whole thing until a later date.  I will say, however, that I was very happy to see this track on there, this was one of the good surprises this tape offered.

Juvenile – Stop Traffic (feat. Rich Boy)

I really loved all of Rich Boy‘s material from 2011, I’ve featured some of his music on a couple posts on here as a matter of fact, and while I haven’t really heard much new shit from him in almost a year now, I still put on 12 Diamonds and Gold Kilo$ every now and then and they still sound great to me.  So it’s cool to see Juve jump on one of my favorite songs from that period of Rich Boy’s that I really like.  Much like many of the songs on both of those Rich Boy mixtapes though, this one, I feel, would be even more enjoyable if it was maybe twice as long, or just had one more verse from either one of them on there.  But I am happy to see Juvenile really rapping like himself on this beat, he doesn’t seem to be trying to cater his style to super mainstream tastes, he’s really being himself on here and that’s what I think will make his future material great.  I’ve also heard some examples lately of Juve reaching a little bit and emulating some more modern rappers though too, so we’ll probably just have to wait until his full album comes out to see where he’s at nowadays.  I can’t really say that he doesn’t still sound good doing this kinda Rick Ross type flow though, so maybe we don’t really have anything to worry about.  I’m all for artists trying new things and updating their styles too, and sometimes brief periods of emulation can push you outside of the barriers you set for yourself and expand your horizons, so maybe it’s all for the best.  But getting in a zone where you’re only rapping in an unoriginal style isn’t doing anybody any good, in my opinion.

Just be you, Juvie, we love you just the way you are!

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NIGGAS KNOW YA NAME CUZ THEY DONE HEARD IT IN THE WIND

The other day Matt asked me if I could think of a rap album from 2011 that I liked more than 808s & Dark Grapes II from Main Attrakionz, and I honestly had trouble thinking of anything.  There were some close contenders for sure, I loved Return of 4eva, NO YORK was a very pleasant surprise for sure, Black Up was rock solid, but I’m not sure I could say with certainty that I liked any of those more than 808s & Dark Grapes II.

So I was pretty surprised and happy to find that half of that duo with possibly my favorite rap album from 2011 started following me back on Twitter yesterday!  I keep up with a lot of rappers I like on there, but I wasn’t really expecting any of them to follow me, so when I saw that Mondre was returning the sentiment, I posted up this song on my Twitter page to shout out to him.

Then a funny thing happened.  While I was searching for that track to post it, I found this, which I’ve been unaware of while listening to that Mondre album this whole time.

Juvenile – March Nigga Step

Seems like everywhere I turn there’s a new song paying homage to the old school New Orleans scene, and this is probably one of the more subtle ones, so I’m glad I caught it.  What up, Mondre?

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DAAAAMN…. CLASSICAL MUSIC

I finally finished watching this monstrous Mannie Fresh interview, and there were so many times I wanted to stop and make a post about whatever he was talking about at that moment cuz he covered SO much crazy territory, but I knew I’d never finish it if I did so I just pushed on through ’til the end and I’m so glad I did.  He talks about so many amazing subjects that he has a very unique perspective on;  he talks about the history of rap in New Orleans, he breaks down Bounce music and tells its history, he explains the progression of his own sound and how Back That Azz Up was his attempt at fusing classical music with New Orleans Bounce, he talks about meeting and working with artists like Lil’ Wayne and Juvenile when they were first coming out, it just goes on and on.  He even talks about how when he heard the Jay-Z remix of this song I wrote about a little while back, that he knew that he’d made it in the industry.

The thing that seemed most appropriate for me to write about here though was this little thing, just because it shows how music that seems so far removed can often times be super connected (see my previous post for evidence of this).  He was talking about the song Bling Bling, which was of course a huge song for Cash Money and for hip hop in general

B.G. – Bling Bling (feat. The Hot Boys & The Big Tymers)

But you would never guess where he got the inspiration for the beat from.

Jonzun Crew – Space is the Place

And the best part is, that song also takes its inspiration from an extremely unlikely place.

Sun Ra – Space is the Place

Wait wait, weren’t we talking about Bling Bling?  Yeah, we were.

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YOU AIN’T SCARED, HA?

I’m not sure I’ll ever stop finding out about awesome shit that I totally missed out on when it first came out.  It’s really discouraging sometimes.

I just read this little article Murs wrote about how he thinks Juvenile is the the most underrated artist in rap, and in it he talks about Juvenile’s song “Ha”, and especially the video for it and how compelling it was to him when he first saw it, and I’d never even heard the song before.  So I looked it up, and I think it’s totally amazing.  His rap style is totally crazy in it, and the video just hits so hard.  Maybe the realest-feeling rap video I’ve ever seen.  I just wish I’d been exposed to this when I was in 8th grade when it first came out, when I didn’t know anything about rap at all, much less southern rap, much less New Orleans rap.  Ah well, at least I got to it eventually.  Thanks, Murs.

Juvenile – Ha

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