Friday, April 24, 2009

Red Light, Green Light Presents: J. Brown - Entry Level Mixtape

Cheap production, rich quality.

Download: zShare | DatPiff

1) Entro
2) Look What You Can Do
3) We In The House
4) Entry Level
5) Let's Talk About It
6) Donuts (Entrolude)
7) Only One Can Win
8) Cut Me Deep
9) The Cool Kids
10) Swing Ya Rag
11) '06 Freestyle
12) Hey Baby...
13) The Barkeep
14) 3 Black Men (Entrolude)
15) 3 Black Men
16) Three 16s
17) Vulnerability
18) Peace Outro
19) Certified Krunk *Bonus Track*

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Throwback Thursdays: Nas - Halftime (1994)

"Nas, why did you do it?/ You know you got the mad phat fluid when you rhyme, it's halftime"
After dwelling on the early 2000s for the past few weeks, I figured it was about time I got real old school. Surprisingly enough, this is the first time I've featured Nas on T-TDay. Surprising, of course, because he is my favorite artist. But you know that wasn't gonna last for much longer.

This is one of my favorite songs off his classic Illmatic album (if you don't have this album, you're not hip-hop). Most people talk about "It Ain't Hard To Tell", "NY State of Mind", or "One Love", but "Halftime" was always one of the songs that really resonated with me. Of course, the album is only 10 tracks long, with the first track being an intro. So it's hard not to like every song on this album, because there really isn't room for fillers. But I feel like he really went in on this song lyrically, with a lot of nice wordplay. Large Professor did a good job with the beat, as well.

One thing I noticed while watching this video (besides how old it looks) is how uncomfortable the 20-year-old Nas looks in front of the camera. Needless to say, he's come a long way. Also shout out to his wifey Kelis, who I recently heard is pregnant with the couple's first child. Congratulations to the Joneses.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Retirement, Champions & Kilimanjaro

Stay tuned, RLGL faithful. The mixtape is on its way.

Today's blogcast focuses on the musical retirement of a hip-hop legend (at least he is on 106 & Park). I also touch on Wasulu's latest fiasco, and give my picks for the NBA postseason. Last but not least, I give an open invitation to all my listeners to send in at least one question for next week's blogcast (I'm serious this time).

P.S. The Yankees need to pick it up, too. I see you, CC!

Editor's Note: Lupe's LupE.N.D. album was actually supposed to be a triple-disc release, but the idea got scrapped.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Throwback Thursdays: Beanie Sigel & Freeway - Roc The Mic (2002)

"All of y'all need to one yourself!/ Go get the burner, nigga, bang yourself!"
The 90s had Bad Boy. The early 2000s, though, had Roc-A-Fella (or Roc La Familia).

For a second, from like 1998-2001, it was kind of a two-way tie between the Roc and Ruff Ryders. But then Drag-On disappeared, Eve started doing sitcoms, and X couldn't put the pipe down. Needless to say, the Diamond Family kinda won out.

Beans and Freeway were basically the Robin and Nightwing to Jay-Z's Batman. Then Kanye West dropped "The College Dropout" in 2004 to keep the movement moving. Memphis Bleek was there too, but he's still there now, and nobody cares any more or less than they did then. (Sidebar: Why is he still wearing a durag? In 2009??)

As is usually the case with these rap guys, as soon as they got on, they decided to start a supergroup with every other rap guy that they knew growing up. In the case of Sigel and Freeway, they started a conglomerate of Philadelphia rap guys called State Property. Then they released a movie called (you guessed it!) "State Property." This song, of course, was on the soundtrack.

Beanie came out in 2000 with the Kanye-produced "The Truth." The first time I heard Freeway, though, was when he ripped a freestyle live on Hot 97.
Jay had brought the whole Roc fam to the radio station to freestyle, and I set up shop with my portable radio and recordable cassette tape, ready to save the goodness. (This is before the days of mp3's. Don't act like you never taped your own mixtape.) They collectively went in for about 20 minutes, and it was pure crack. Freeway, though, really stood out (go to about the 1:20 mark). I don't know if he was necessarily that much better than the other guys, or if it was just because his voice was so unique.

Freeway, of course, performs the best with the beat on.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Bonuses, Comebacks & Old Folks

It's hard to believe that he's actually back, right?

Today's blogcast discusses Mr. Mathers' comeback into the public eye, and why he's such a big deal to so many people.

I also touch on the idea of old people deciding to get married in the twilight of their lives, and I crown a new Bonehead Athlete of the Week (I know, it's been a while).

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Throwback Thursdays: Dr. Dre feat. Knoc-turn'al - Bad Intentions (2001)

From the soundtrack for The Wash.

After hearing this song for the first time in probably about 5 years or so, the first thing I noticed was that it was a lot more raunchy than I first remembered it. Probably because the version I was used to (TV, radio, etc.) was significantly censored. The song in and of itself is actually quite grimy, with Dre proudly rhyming about smutting chicks out. And as if that wasn't bad enough, I can't think of any other mainstream music videos that show the artists going to a brothel to bang some whores. I especially love how it was one of the girls' idea to go to Bad Intentions, despite there only being one guy who worked there.

The beat, though, is what makes this song memorable to me. That and Knoc-turn'al's chorus, simply because his voice is so unique and strange. For those of you who never heard this song, it might sound familiar to you because it was sampled in "Superugly", which was Jay-Z's last-second effort to defeat Nas in their hyped rap beef after he got Ethered. Of course, he still lost (this isn't debatable).

Dre, as we all know, has been in the process of putting out Detox for at least the past 5 years. I would say the album has been in development hell, but by all accounts, Dre has simply been dragging his feet on the project. Word around the industry is that Dre is such a perfectionist that he never feels like music sounds good enough until he's tweaked it a gazillion times. That's probably why this album still hasn't come out, 5 years later...

As far as Knoc-turn'al is concerned, I never really knew anything about homey other than that he was from L.A. and he was an associate of the Doctor. Apparently, he was one of Dre's many ghostwriters (you know how those producer-rappers are). He put out an album in 2004 which was chock full of famous appearances (Dre, Timbaland, Snoop, DJ Quik, etc.) and then apparently fell off the face of the earth. He dropped another album in 2006 which was released on the Sonic Wave Int. label, whatever the hell that is. I guess it's safe to say him and Dre aren't picking up hookers together anymore.