Hydra & Godfather Don Update/Trag Invasion
Thursday April 14th 2005,
Filed under: Not Your Average
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A few months ago, I wrote a couple of pieces called The Search For Godfather Don and A Tribute To Hydra Entertainment. Not long afterwards, I was contacted by Hydra co-founder Mike Heron, which led to me conducting interviews with both Mike and Jerry Famolari, who currently runs the company. Jerry was kind enough discuss the upcoming Hydra release schedule, and one project in particular had me amped – a “Lost Tapes”-style Godfather Don album is being put together! This is set to include around 15 unreleased tracks from 1999-2001, as well as some songs that have already appeared on 12″s. A maxi-single should be hitting the streets in the next month or so.

It seems that Don is still hard at work producing beats, and while he hasn’t touched the mic in a few years we can expect to hear more of his signature tracks on a variety of projects in the next six months. Although we discussed the possibility of hooking-up Don for an interview, it might be take a minute for that to happen between everyone’s busy schedule. There’s also a complilation album in the works called “Home Of The Streets” which features an all-star cast of artists such as Cormega, M.O.P, Lake, Mobb Deep etc. Finally, some new albums I’m actually excited about hearing!

In other Queens-related news, another project that I honestly can’t wait to check is Tragedy – The Movie, based on the ups and downs of the Intelligent Hoodlum’s career (thanks to Tobes from Spine for the link). If you’re not up on Trag’s contribution to hip-hop, and the enduring Queensbridge tradition of top-notch, hardcore rap, then you need to check for this film. Tragedy‘s first record “Coke Is It” (which was renamed “The Tragedy [Don’t Do It]” for it’s Nia 12″ release in 1986) still gets a lot of play in my car, and he’s kept dropping heaters through-out his long career. From “Arrest The President” and “Trag Invasion” through to “Da Funk Mode” and “Illuminati”, all the way up to his lyrically incredible “Still Reportin'” album, Percy Coles has worn his heart on his sleeve and delivered some of the most brutally honest rhymes ever pressed to vinyl. Not to mention he masterminded the whole Capone-N-Noreaga project, as well as having a huge influence on artists such as Mobb Deep, Nas and Cormega. Look for a full review as soon as I track down a copy.

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19 Comments so far
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Lots of good news Robbie. Nice one.
Now I just need to find a copy of Saga Of A Hoodlum on vinyl…

Comment by beez luva 04.13.05 @

“Snakes” by Kamakaze is my favourite Hydra track. Incredible. I don’t believe Molly Moll produced it for a second. If you get a chance ask them who REALLY put that one down. My money’s on Vic Padilla or someone like that. That song is TOO fierce. “Catch you on the solo, cave in ya whole chestplate, yo son pass the gat cos its time to bring that feeback” and then the mic feedback… BOOM! If you can find out who produced it I’ll do a piece on the gat about them :)

Comment by beez luva 04.15.05 @

I’ve only got the CD of that album. The vinyl was promo-only I think, I never see it around.

Comment by Robbie 04.13.05 @

I have the vinyl, and it’s not promo-only – at least mine doesn’t say “promo” anywhere on it.

Comment by kimblim 04.14.05 @

“home of the streets”…now on my list of anticipated releases. did mike heron say if godfather don was on some jesus shit???

Comment by T-Money Bags 04.14.05 @

Neither of them said anything about that.

If I ever speak to Don himself I’ll ask him though.

Comment by Robbie 04.14.05 @

isnt a kid named roots = jay-z weed carrier memph weak?

Comment by djxplicit 04.14.05 @

Nah man, A Kid Called Roots is a producer.

Comment by Robbie 04.14.05 @

Oh shit, that’s dope they contacted you after seein’ your piece. I know lots of people been tryna track those cats down for a long time. Why more current rappers aren’t hittin’ up the Hydra production team – Mike Heron, V.I.C, Godfather Don, A Kid Called Roots, Bezo – for beats i don’t know.

That Lake “by the sword” 12″ they dropped a while back was what’s up.

Hydra should do a full 12″ discography double cd for all the kids who slept on greats like Big Meal, Fanat, Slade Savage and Gab Gotcha as well as all the classic early Godfather Don and Screwball/Kamikaze 12″s

As for the Tragedy flick, as i commented to a friend, it sounds great but how you gonna do it without an appearance by Cormega? I’m lovin’ that he’s got Poet in it. I’m holdin’ my breath for cameo appearance by Rockwell Noel.

Comment by Brian Beck From Wisconsin 04.15.05 @

damn more hydra shit?!?! Sounds really dope, i still need that first godfather don album from the early 90s

new shit sounds like a classic in the making!

Comment by mega montana 04.15.05 @

> Nah man, A Kid Called Roots is a producer.

I am well aware of this. I thought that is the name he took when he produced:

“A Kid Called Roots = Roc-A-Fella Rapper Memphis Bleek.”

“…produced by A Kid Called Roots (Memphis Bleek)”

“…produced by A Kid Called Roots. Even funnier is listening to the tracks and recognizing that they sound NOTHING like what you might expect from Memphis Bleek.” [songs do not feature memph rapping]

“A Kid Called Roots (Memphis Bleek)”

Comment by djxplicit 04.15.05 @

although they all refer to that res album. maybe its just they got it wrong. AKCR did produce a buncha songs for memph as well as “co-wrote” “do my” (a jay/memph track)

Comment by djxplicit 04.15.05 @

do you have any contact info on Jerry and the crew? I need to holla at ole boy!

Comment by Q.Rock639 04.15.05 @

Cop Black Market Militia..Trag, Killah Priest, Hell Razah, its crack thats all I have to say about that!

Comment by chronwell 05.04.05 @

the godfather don track 7 degrees of elevation is one of the hottest
but that was like 95

Comment by illest 06.20.05 @

“7 degrees of elevation”

Have you got a copy of that song? I’ve never heard it.

Comment by Robbie 06.20.05 @

Any news on that Godfather Don album? I’m especially interested in his work between ‘Hazardous’ and ‘Diabolique’, the period when his beats sounded very spatial. I love the production he did on the ‘Four Horsemen’ album, the ‘Raise It Up’ 12″ and his pre ‘Diabolique’ tracks.

Comment by Lotuz 08.14.05 @

I’m a big Godfather Don fan & got a lot of 12inches to albums by him, been a fan since day one when I saw his first album “Hazardous”. I’ve been searching for some new s@#t by him but haven’t since that “Diabolique” album (there was an instrumental vinyl only pressing as well). Of course a lot of people probably know of him from his relations with Kool Keith (Ultramagntic MC’s & Cenobites) & the instrumental albums he did on Hydra Record’s instrumental beat series (which are dope & a must have) but they have been kind of dead for a while now. Speaking of Hyrdra, I found a Canadian album all produced by The Ghetto Pros (Mike Heron & friends) which has unreleased songs by Kool G. Rap, Dead Prez, Brand Nubian, Beatnuts, Nate Dogg, Big L., Milano, Alkaholiks, Black Attack, & etc.

Comment by DJ Joey Joe 01.27.06 @

I am currently in the midst of writing a book on the Golden Age of Underground Hip Hop. I would really like to interview or speak briefly to Scaramanga and Godfather Don. If anybody with any info on how to contact them can get at me, my email is tcop619800@aol.com

Comment by Rhyme patterns 09.11.06 @

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