O.C. – The Unkut Interview
Working through my list of D.I.T.C. members to interview (only Fat Joe, Buckwild and O.Gee remaining), I got to talk shop with O.C. recently to ask the question that’s been burning my soul slow since 1994 – why didn’t he use that Rakim sample on ‘Time’s Up’!?
O.C. – The Unkut Interview
Grand Puba – The More Things Change
For anyone who has missed Puba‘s off-key warbling in recent years, you’re in for a treat. I’m just glad he ditched that shitty keyboard he used for Understand This.
The Awful Truth About Rap Shelf Life
The limited shelf life of most rap groups is a an unfortunate reality. For some MC’s, the window of opportunity is so small that getting stuck in record label limbo for two or three years can spell career ruin, while even some of the genre’s greatest groups such as Run-DMC and Public Enemy suffered album release delays which saw them slip from cutting-edge to being eclipsed by the new kids on the block (with the exception of Donny Walberg’s ‘posse’).
Video: Psycho Les – Show Me Thoze!
Psycho Les carries on Beatnuts tradition with this dedication to racks.
CJ Moore [Black By Demand] – The Unkut Interview, Part Two
Engineer all-star CJ Moore delves into the behind the scenes events of Kool G Rap‘s Roots of Evil and the infamous Rawkus album, heading out west, working with the Live Squad and much more in the second part of this interview trilogy.
Robbie: What happened after the Akinyele sessions finished?
CJ Moore: When money started coming into play between Dr. Butcher and myself, things started getting funny. I went out to California and I teamed-up with Ed Strickland again and we was with a guy doing a project called The Reality Check – a guy named Michael Harris – Harry O. He’s the guy who funded Death Row Records. Ice Cube, Ice-T, Dub C, all those guys were involved. I produced a couple of records with Ice-T with me and him rapping back and forth. I was doing the east coast stuff, Battlecat was doing the west coast stuff. I went to Big Daddy Kane, talked to him on the phone, I said, ‘I need you to be out in California. I’m doing this project, it’s kinda merging the east coast with the west coast. Let’s talk about what it’s gonna take to get you on the project.’ He asked me who was on the project, and I explained to him. There was guy named Black Ceasar on the project, he was from Pittsburgh, real talented guy, but Kane had a problem because his name was Black Ceasar. I said, ‘But your name is Big Daddy Kane!’ ‘Yeah, aka Black Ceasar.’ I said, ‘What kind of bullshit is that?’ He couldn’t do the project because of that. I stepped to Method Man and I was trying to get to Redman and everyone was kinda busy, so the east coast/west coast thing never did the proper merge. There was so much money on the table, more than these guys have ever made. For some reason it just backed-out. I guess the whole Harry O thing might have scared people to a degree, if you know the homework on the whole Death Row situation. But we can’t get into that.
Video: Positive K Performing Stand-Up Comedy
I was directed to this in the comment section of my Pos K interview last year by hotbox but forgot to post it. Take my wife…please!
Download: Grandmaster Caz – The Grandest Of Them All LP [Ced-Gee Version]
Photo: Joe Conzo
Back before rap magazines and the internet, I heard a rumor that Grandmaster Caz and Ced-Gee were working on an album together. Needless to say, my young mind was blown at the possibility of these two rap geniuses teaming-up. While we only got a couple of Tuff City singles from this meeting of minds, it turns out that they did in fact record an entire album of material together in 1992 before Aaron Fuch‘s decided that the material ‘wasn’t commercial enough,’ according to a piece that Dave Tompkins did on the ‘You Need Stitches’ single. Tuff City eventually released the vaulted material on a couple of compilations, so I thought I’d assemble it all together to paint a picture of how Caz’s 1992 LP, The Grandest Of Them All was originally intended to sound before The Mighty Maestro was recruited to remake it. ‘I’m Gonna Freak You’ deserves a special mention as being one of the most amusing sex raps ever recorded, while ‘I’m Rich’ is flossing at it’s finest. I’ve also included the earlier records they did together, just on the general principle that everything Ced touched during that period was amazing and Caz still had some gas in the tank despite being part of the old guard by this point. Bronx brilliance at it’s finest, albeit in poorly mixed, unpolished form.
Download: Grandmaster Caz – The Grandest Of Them All [Ced-Gee Version]
Ghostface Killah feat. Kool G Rap, AZ & Tre Williams – The Battlefield
The second single from 36 Seasons, featuring two CRC-approved veterans of rap.
Buckshot – The Unkut Mini Interview
Once again I found myself subjected to indignities of a press day, where you have ten or fifteen minutes allotted to talk to a rapper who has already bored themselves to death speaking to the twenty other jerks before you and some herb always messes up the schedule and as a result that fifteen minutes turns into less than ten. Just for laughs, I decided to stay on the line and laugh at the other shitty questions from the amateur journalists who followed me, while witnessing Buckshot get progressively more confusing the more he drank and/or smoked to make the whole process slightly less tedious for himself. Nevertheless, I still managed to get a couple of interesting jewels from the former Black Moon front man.
Robbie: What inspired you start making music?
Buckshot: My uncle David was a dancer, he was an entertainer and he made dancing a big influence on my life when I was a youngster. He was a dancer for a group called Mtume, they made a record called ‘Juicy.’ I saw him on TV and I felt like he achieved the ultimate impossible and one day I was going to do that and I would achieve the same impossible. I kept going and kept going and I kept dancing. I stopped dancing in 1990 and I became an MC at that point. I always wanted to be an MC but never thought that that was my path. I always thought that dancing was gonna be the way for me. When my MC got locked-up I felt like I had no choice but to continue what we started. When he got locked-up he was like, ‘Yo, keep it going!’ I was like, ‘How am I gonna keep it going? You know what? I’mma just start emceeing myself.’ That’s how I became an MC.
Tragedy Khadafi – Free Thinkers 2
New Trag track, taken from off Pre-Magnum Opus dropping Nov 24th. Produced by Audible Doctor.
Great Moments In Rap: LL Cool J Sons Run At The Roxy
A great moment in rap – the time that LL Cool J went at Run at The Roxy:
Dr. Butcher: That was not Jam-Master Jay, that was [Jay] Philpot [the second Cut Creator] his DJ on the turntables when he was rhyming. Run-DMC was performing after him, so when he’s freestyling he’s talking about Run in that rhyme. They were walking in and that’s why he wouldn’t let go the mic – he had something to say to Run because they weren’t getting along. Then they took the mic from him and pushed him off stage so Run-DMC could perform.
Stream: Diamond D – The Diam Piece Album
Empire Music have posted the new Diamond album on their YouTube channel for your enjoyment. Here’s a re-up of D-Squizzy’s track-by-track breakdown of the album here while you listen. Available now on CD and digital.
Diamond D: It’s more or less a production LP, about two and a half years it took. A lot of tracks I didn’t even use. I had about 27 tracks but I only used 18. Some of the artists I was in the studio with, and others – because of their touring schedule and my touring schedule – I just sent them music and they sent me the session back. If the track that I give them has a sample in it that’s giving it direction then they’ll follow that. If there is no sample or concept at the beginning I just let the MC’s paint their own pictures and try to figure out how can make it connect. I use a lot more live instrumentation now. I still chop and manipulate samples, but my sound just sounds bigger now. Just using better equipment so the sample frequencies are better.
Large Professor Feat. G-Wiz – In The Scrolls
Paul Sea returns with this tribute to the legacy of Nas‘ first album, with a track from the next Large Professor project, RE: Living Legend.
Video: M.O.P – 187
This could be the line of the year in reference to popping pills:
“The whole place emotional/wake up, find out somebody Frank Ocean’d you”
Your Old Droog feat. Prodigy – Hoodie Weather
Marco Polo produced this new cut from that Coney Island dude and Snowboard P.
Spotted at Ego Trip.
Video: Psycho Les feat. Royal Flush, Tragedy Khadafi and Illa Ghee – Thunder Bells Teaser
This is the definition of Conservative Rap Coalition-approved rap. All four of these gentlemen do themselves proud with their vocal performances here.
Challace feat. Boldy James and Big Noyd – Let You Go
Killa Kidz graduate Challace enlists Bold-Faced James and Rapper Noyd for this cut from the forthcoming Paybakzdagetbak mixtape, produced by King Benny.
Video: Ed OG – 2 Turntables and a Microphone
Pete Rock produced lead single from Ed’s next LP, After All These Years, dropping 9 September.
Diamond D feat. Pete Rock – Only Way 2 Go
Second release from The Diam Piece. Will Black Rob steal the show on the LP as he did on Cormega‘s new album? Odds point to yes.
Spoonie Gee – The Unkut Interview
Thanks to Will and Aaron from Tuff City records, I had the chance to speak to pioneering Harlem rapper Spoonie Gee last week, who set the standard for street tales and slick talk on his earlier work for Enjoy and Sugarhill before he enjoyed a late 80’s comeback with Marley Marl and Teddy Riley providing the cutting edge beats. After enduring some rocky times for most of the 90’s, he’s currently in the process of recording one last project before he retires from music for good.
Robbie: Being from Harlem, in the early days before records, did you have to travel to see shows?
Spoonie Gee: I went to The Bronx, that’s the first place I saw Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five. First time I seen him, I think it was P.A.L on Webster Avenue. I used to go see the Funky 4 + 1, Fantastic Five.
How had you heard about them?
I heard a tape of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Four MC’s at the time, this was before Raheim joined them.
M.O.P – 187
Fame loops up Cash Money and Marvelous‘ “Ugly People Be Quiet” for a new cut from the next EP.
Cormega feat. Craig G, Masta Ace and Kool G Rap – Industry [Juice Crew Remix]
Large Professor‘s majestic track gets an injection of much-needed J.U. Ice as Craig G, Masta Ace and Kool G Rap give Cormega an assist for his musical update of Rule #4080.
Download: MC Eiht – The CRC Collection
It goes without saying that the first three Compton’s Most Wanted albums are an essential part of any Conservative Rap Coalition members collection, but just in case you’ve neglected MC Eiht‘s extensive feature work and b-sides, I’ve assembled a collection of eighteen more pieces of Eiht hype that will please the ears of East-Coast Elitist’s everywhere.
Download: MC Eiht – The CRC Collection
Video: DJ Skizz feat. Roc Marciano, AG, OC, & Godfather Pt. III – Light Years
Rap Game Superfriends (if you ignore Mad Skillz’ old crew), from last year’s BQE LP.