Attention A&R Dept: Lost Ultra Tracks
Monday October 24th 2005,
Filed under: Ced Gee Special,Promos & Exclusives,Steady Bootleggin'
Written by:

funk your head up

Funk Your Head Up has already been talked about on this site in great detail, and thanks to Ultra associate Marc Davis, it was revealed that Mercury records had refused to release the original version of the album for being “too hardcore” as far as the production was concerned. This further illustrates just how clueless many A&R people can be, raising the question “why would you sign a hardcore group like Ultramagnetic if you wanted a crossover act?”. So as it turned out, the label insisited that the group record a couple of “smoove” radio-friendly tracks such as “I Like Your Style” and then got some foreign producers called Solid Productions to remix many of the original beats.

The very idea of letting some idiots mess with original Ultra tracks is disgraceful to begin with, but this kinda shit goes on in the music biz daily so it’s not really suprising. A few songs that were later issued on Tuff City such as “Ya Not That Large” were also intended for their second album, and give us a glimpse at how much better that project could have been if their original vision had survived intact.

Luckily, beatlover laced me with the original versions of “MC Champions”(featuring the removed Tim Dog verse) and “Message To The Boss”- both sporting alternative production to the retail versions – as were leaked on Westwood‘s radio show back when he still had an ear for good rap.

Ultramagnetic MCs – MC Champions (original version) [unreleased,1991]

Ultramagnetic MCs – Message To The Boss (original version) [unreleased,1991]

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53 Comments so far
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yo what happened to ‘james call it what you want’? he was on a version of mc champions too?

Comment by blitz 10.24.05 @

I guess there’s a couple of different versions.

Comment by Robbie 10.24.05 @

you dont know how long i’ve been asking about and looking for these joints for real. i only had em on a tape yeeeeaaars ago
message from the boss? damn you guys made a real hip hop motherfucker happy

Comment by blitz 10.24.05 @

message from the boss is also available on tuff city.
it`s on the flip side to watch your`s just titled ‘message’.
believe me,i want the version with ‘james’on it too..i had it on a tape,but have no idea where that is.
one day this`ll appear on vinyl..i`m counting on it.

robbie..gonna hit me up for some trades??

Comment by beatlover 10.24.05 @

wow a great post and finally a reason why this album failed to live up to expectations. as we all know ‘critical beatdown’ was and still is hailed as one of the greatest and innoventive true hip hop albums of all time. without the meddling from the powers that be, we can only imagine how great ‘funk your head up’ would have been. my faith in ultramagnetic is fully restored.

Comment by eargazm 10.25.05 @

My first post.
Fantastic site,and about time T La Rock got props.
And the mystery of the poor 2’nd ultra lp.
can’t front on the 12″ of Poppa Large though.
Here’s one for ya.
Frik and Frak.
I can find no trace of them .
Any clues?
Again great site

Comment by Mr Jackson 10.25.05 @

i only heard the james call it what you want verse once. and every other time i heard mc champions, it would fade as james started to rhyme….thats fucked up.
and yes..this site is heavy for real.

Comment by blitz 10.25.05 @

“message from the boss is also available on tuff city”

I can’t remember if it’s the same version as on the “Watch Ya Back” 12″, but Moe Love’s Basement Tapes has a song called “Message In The Music” which has the same rhymes and chorus as the version posted here except that the music during the verses is totally different… so there must be at least three versions of that song as well.

As far as Frick ‘N Frack, they had a couple of songs with Marley Marl (“Who’s On Mine” and “Go Southside”) that were on one of those Streetsounds compilations (Hip Hop 18) but never offically released beyond a couple of acetates. I’ve got their second record with DJ Doc called “Look Out”, which isn’t as good.

Comment by Robbie 10.25.05 @

The ‘Funk Your Head Up’ album was disappointing at first, but it grew on me. And tbh I like the album versions better than the original versions posted here. ‘I Like Your Style’ was the only real mistake imo. Still I’d like to hear the album as it was meant to be.

and then got some foreign producers called Solid Productions to remix many of the original beats.

They co-produced a couple of tracks, but those ain’t the ones I dislike. Has Ultra ever mentioned in interviews how they felt about those co-productions?

Comment by Lotuz 10.25.05 @

you`re the first person to say they liked the released versions that i know of!

Comment by beatlover 10.25.05 @

“They co-produced a couple of tracks, but those ain’t the ones I dislike. Has Ultra ever mentioned in interviews how they felt about those co-productions?”

You can’t always take production credits at face value, otherwise you’d believe that Eric B. and DJ Muggs made every beat they’ve been “credited” for.

Mercury had the tracks remixed against the wishes of the group, but there was nothing they could do about it if they ever wanted the album to be released. I interviewed TR last weekend and he confirmed this.

Comment by Robbie 10.25.05 @

you`re the first person to say they liked the released versions that i know of!

I can’t help it, I just do. :) But I’m not saying the album version of ‘Message From The Boss’ is perfect though. It would have been better without the R&B-ish sounds in the intro and outro. And it should have been mixed better, because the drums and vocals lack punch. ‘MC Champion’ on the other hand is one of my favorite tracks of the album.

Comment by Lotuz 10.25.05 @

I interviewed TR last weekend and he confirmed this.

Looking forward to that article. Da Beat Terrorists!

Comment by Lotuz 10.25.05 @

Nice one for the info Robbie.
I do remember Mike Allen playing a track called ‘You shouldn,t have done it’ ,back in the 80’s.But that is about it.
I want Frik & Frak stuff.

Comment by Mr Jackson 10.26.05 @

I’ve heard the original version of “message to the boss” before but not “mc champion”. Interesting.

Even though these are a billion times better than the released versions they still aren’t really what i’d call classic Ultra. Certainly not on the level of “mentally mad”, anything off “critical beatdown”, “chorus line” or “poppa large” remix or even something like the bizarre macked-out smooth jam “biscuits and eggs”.

Comment by Brian Beck From Wisconsin 10.26.05 @

What up Rob, good lookin on the Ultra Tracks. But why the hell would record co. people try to lighten up the album but leave a track like Porno Star on there? I don’t get it.

Comment by Jay 10.26.05 @

If Westwood had the scoop in ’91 I wonder if he still has the white labels? If anyone knows that son of a vicar, perhaps they could lean on him to hook with Mercury & put hip-hop history right.
(Back in the real world now…Thanks for the posts)

Comment by Nayland Smith 10.26.05 @

As far as Frick ‘N Frack, they had a couple of songs with Marley Marl (“Who’s On Mine” and “Go Southside”) that were on one of those Streetsounds compilations (Hip Hop 18) but never offically released beyond a couple of acetates.

Here are the two tracks from Streetsounds 18.

Comment by Lotuz 10.26.05 @

Ultra fans check out (Critical Beatdown Hiphop site)
Respect The Legends Vol 2 mix cd — The Best Of Ultramagnetic.

Comment by Mr CRF 10.27.05 @

Thanks Lotuz
But the link didn,t work.
I should be able to track streetsounds 18 down.
They gotta be worth a blog

Comment by Mr Jackson 10.27.05 @

The link works fine, but has had some problems over the last days. Try again.

Comment by Lotuz 10.27.05 @

I must be on the late tip, b/c I have not checked this out yet. I’m glad I came here.

Comment by Dayrell 10.28.05 @

For those who are still looking for the classic remix of ‘Poppa Large’: Vinyl Addicts

Now who are the guys that remixed this song? They go by the name of Da Beatminerz, but I read they aren’t the ones we know from the Boot Camp Clik.

Comment by Lotuz 10.29.05 @

i have a version of just rhymin with the Biz that supposedly has frick and frack on it, but it cuts off just before their verse. Biz name checks them at the start though “Frick N Frak In The House!” and they start rapping at the end but then my damn mp3 dies…..

Comment by madtapes 10.29.05 @

I also have another track recorded at the time … Happy Raps (Taking No Shorts) Feat Tim Dog!! It sounded like a diss to De La. I’ll post it when I have more time.

Comment by Anonymous 10.30.05 @

The LP version of ‘Champions’ was ok, but the drum programming was rather disappointing after hearing the original the previous year. I still have it on tape from JP Chill’s radio show in Chicago/Hyde Park (which, by the way, is STILL running.) I’ve also heard an alternate version featuring a cat they called Amaretto (maybe that’s James.) Another track that didn’t make the cut was ‘You Ain’t Shit’ with Tim Dog, and the rest of the crew. Tim was featured more prominently on tracks I heard before that album dropped, and then Mercury subsequently dropping the ball. Holla.

Comment by fosterakahunter 10.31.05 @

yeah foster JP Chill is mesmerizing…i’d like to hear that tape you speak of. i don’t think i’ve heard the alternate version with another mc…hmmmm…

brian beck- biscuits-n-eggs is hilario along with chuck chillout…chuck chucky. most of that new york what is funky lp is decency esp. that one kool keith solo track at the end.

frick-n-frack had moments- go southside/go southside.

Comment by thesurgeongeneral 11.01.05 @

“i like your style” is nice, they just clowning all the way threw “You gotta know how to walk, u gotta know how to wear your jeans” etc. i love that track, on eof the best track off the album

Comment by azizz 11.02.05 @

This is the version Tim Westwood played at the time but cut Tim Dog’s verse off,it was funny to hear a Monie Love/Jungle Brothers dis “rhymin over house break mumbo jumbo” Ha ha ha ha ha h-h-how true.

Comment by DrOp OnE 11.02.05 @

That’s not the original version of M.C champion’s this is … .

MC Champion snippet

Yes with James from “call us what you want” .And no it’s not the whole entire thing, it’s just a sample to show you someone still has it . I’m not generous enough to let you hear the whole track.That’s for me, my crew, obviously Ultra,Tim Westwood and anyone else up at 3am who taped it at the time and bothered to keep it for the last 15 odd years .But if your quick you can hear a fraction of it as a fuzzy mp3 ..James’s part went on for 1 min 38 secs. So now you know .

Comment by The Truth 11.02.05 @

I got also an stripped down version on tape from Message and MC Champion they did with All Star fRESH instead of Moe love on the decks- its raw- IN aMSTERDAM on some radio show, WHEN I RIP IT I WILL PUT IT ON HERE- BUT THAT WILL TAKE SOME WEEKS- FIRST I GOTTA REARRANGE MY CONNECTION fuckin internet. This site is very dope by the way

Comment by Reno 11.04.05 @

I’ve found an old tape with a demo version of ‘Bust The Facts’.

Comment by Lotuz 11.04.05 @

nice demo version of bust the facts………made my day

Comment by lo71 11.04.05 @

That snippet of the original “Champions” and the other mix of “Bust The Facts” were great.

Keep ’em coming….

Comment by Robbie 11.05.05 @

Thanks for the snippet,how about posting the whole lot you tight arsed cunt!

Comment by DrOp OnE 11.06.05 @

Much love for these snippets. There’s an amazing interview with Moe Luv at… I was gutted when I found out about the alternative versions. For me this was hiphop and it was Ultra, which lets face it is a hiphop group’s hiphop group – you get me? All those lost tapes were kinda wack and confused me as to where the bands head was at, at what time. I now know how the Beatles fans feel when new material gets released.

Comment by farns 11.07.05 @

Yeah DrOp OnE gotta it right about the snippet…what kinda b-boy is this bloke…its probably westwood himself, cause surely there aren’t two massive hip hop dicks out there?

Comment by jidzaman 11.20.05 @

has anyone got the original? and willing to share it?

Comment by jidzaman 11.20.05 @

I love his album. In all it’s remixed glory. This was the album that got me into Ultra. I had seen the videos they did off of Critical Beatdown before, but for some reason (Poppa Large most definitely!) this was the album that made me an Ultra fan to this day.

I think the sound is ill–whoever remixed it did a good job, I think. The problem with the album is the sell-out love song type tracks on the second side. But overall I think this is one of the most hard hitting pure hip-hop albums of 90s.

The original cuts are still good, and I’d love to see another basement tapes with all the different verisons of these songs.

BTW that extra Tim Dog verse with the “ha ha ha” stuff is EXTRA wack. Which is one of Tim Dog’s charming qualities. I want all the tim dog excerpts in a basement tapes CD as well!!

Comment by Ultra fan 11.22.05 @

One copy and only one copy in existence.I don’t think so.Why bother to stick a snippet on here?Just keep it,you probably still cover the labels of your breaks when your “crew”(Tee~hee!)come round!

Comment by DrOp OnE 11.26.05 @

You have to check the original “i like your style” Ced-Gee uses the “sexy mama” groove with the catch the groove drums. It sounds soulful and funky melodic but with raw drums and keith kicking some raw lyrics to a bitch with Patrick Miller(ced gee’s brother) singing on the hook “i like your sytle”

Comment by marc davis 12.16.05 @

yo marc davis where can i find that version of i like your style?

and the other original mc champion and the bust the facts demo? repost those if possible. i missed those somehow.

Comment by thesurgeongeneral 12.28.05 @

The lead single off this album, “Make It Happen” was a DOPE track. The video was decent too with the group and Tim Dog around a sauna/pool with skeezers. There were a lot of dope tracks on this album. Besides, if any other rapper did “I like your style” no one would care.
Hey Marc, the version you have, is it the album version?

Comment by VerBaTim 12.30.05 @

Also, does anyone have “Secret Fantasies” with Tim Dog and Ultra? They rap about all the industry hoes they wanna screw…

Comment by VerBaTim 12.30.05 @

VerBaTim, its on Tim Dog’s Penicillin on Wax

Comment by ObjectUnknown 01.07.06 @

That “Message To The Boss” cut is dope, but what’s with the sound on “MC Champions”?

Comment by Kafka 02.01.06 @

I just got sent clearer versions of both of those tracks, so I’ll post them up soon.

Comment by Robbie 02.01.06 @

Aiyyo, speaking of Ultra, does anybody know what break is used on Moe Love’s original version of “Poppa Large”, the version that appears on the “Smack My Bitch Up” compilation?

Comment by Kafka 03.24.06 @

TIGHT! They should re-release “Funk your Head Up” with the original versions. Man, Ultra would have had three totally amazing classics under their belt if Mercury hadn’t remixed this shit.

Comment by Mike G 03.09.07 @


Comment by AYATOLLAH 02.21.08 @

Can you please re-up the ultramagnetic mc’s mc champions (original verson)? Big thanks in advance…

Comment by Woodman 01.10.10 @


I’ve been scouting for that full version for almost 20 years. I wish i found this site a few years ago. If dudes have the full version put it up so that every one can check out one of the hottest unreleaed cuts of hip-hop. If ultra released the ‘funk your head up’ joint with these original beats it may have extended the golden age by a year or two.

Download Link:

Comment by beatselite 01.18.10 @

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