Thursday, 24 March 2011

Tune Recommendation Time

Today I'm in a vibe to share tunes I've been feeling since year start. Feels like a long time since I shared some recent reggae and dancehall.

We call this one here "Back on my Bashment"

Stephen 'Di Genius' McGregor - Bounce A Gal

Girls them time. 2nd verse "Girlfriend walk out pon da one ya/ Some girl scary like Iguana/ Teeth full a mix up like piranha/ So how she ah say she favour (look like) Rihanna" Raaaaaeeeeeee!!! Tune mad enuh. Make the girl them feel nice. Probably won't do well outside of dancehall circles in the UK because it isn't x-rated.

Mavado - Pepper

"So all them a talk, man a stepper/ Ketch (catch) up them ah play man ah pepper" translates as "I'm hot they're normal". Catchy as fk... again! Mavado still has it all these years later.

Vybz Kartel - Benz Punany

Relatively old tune but I hadn't blogged it, so here it is. This is a sure fire hit from I first heard it. Catchy chorus, good beat, slack lyrics = winner. If you don't get what he is saying (I'm sure you do but), it's basically wanting a girl who doesn't sleep with loads of men. Great concept

Grindsman did it originally on the Punany riddim back in the early 90s

Vybz Kartel - Coloring Book

Kartel's ode to tattoo's mad nuh bloodnawt! Caused controversy in Jamaica at time of release over whether tattoo's are marking skin or art. "Push the needle through the epidermis/ Hotter than a makka (one of those stinging bushes) bun you like a furnace/ Pretty when it finish but it hot when it ah surface/ Moany hear the needle go so "Vrring" and get nervous... Mi skin favour the walls them LA Lewis (popular Jamaican graffiti artist amongst other things) pass through" Pap! Pap! Pap! I still won't get a tattoo, like I didn't get Clarks (I did want a pair of bank robbers though). Watch when Lil' Wayne decides to get lazer treatment to remove some of his because he's too grown for it. Gonna be pissed!

Vybz Kartel - The Lyricist

Whilst on the subject of Kartel, I'd just like to say I indirectly caused this song. I asked Kartel about Aidonia, Kartel diss Aidonia, Aidonia says "Kartel you nah nuh lyrics", Kartel makes The Lyricist with "Them say you run out of lyrics" in the intro. Kartel ends it with (English translation) "Russian, they should know that this isn't a diss song for someone (Aidonia) to reply with a mediocre song. This is for the fans". See't deh

Stylo G - Boasy

Lifted from the same riddim as Gappy Ranks ft. Russian 'Tun Up', fellow UK dancehall starlet puts his spin on there. To be fair, I think I prefer this one, although Gappy's isn't a bad song at all. Obviously made upon hearing Straight Jeans and Fitted.

I-Octane - Nuh Ramp Wid We

"Nuh man can't play with man like how them play with them catty (woman)/ No boy pon Earth can't put their hand in a mi natty (hair)" Fiyaaah! Octane ah mad dem.

Kymani Marley - Brave Ones

Marley's all have talent. What a family. Bob Marley's son stands up against the discrimination against rastafarian's. "We need to make a stand, beg you some clearance. Why them ah judge me for my Rasta appearance / Them ah say they nah've no vacancies, and ah say them ah go call so me fi wait and see." I'm not sure about you, but I love music made by sufferers/rebels. "Must be true they see the locks on my head they think I'm not intelligent, but I'm hear to show them what is evident. They better know I'm not a weak fence and when me touch the road Jah is my defence". Spiritualist rebellion music is always a win.

Vybz Kartel - Poor People Land

From the same Message riddim as above, Vybz Kartel drops a different vibe to what most are used to. This one touches on rebellion (again). He speaks for the poorer people in Jamaica that are regularly kicked out of where they live when Governments decide the land is valuable. Similar to what happened in places like Brixton and Clapham in south London. Raise the taxes so people are forced to vacate to outskirts like Thornton Heath, Mitcham and them. Think they've been trying to do that in Battersea.

And just for the hell of it

Trevor Off Key aka DJ Bambino - Clappers

Brought to us by the same dude that spoofed Vybz Kartel's 'Jeans and Fitted', this time around he has put a real man's perspective on Bruno Mars' Grenade.

Friday, 18 March 2011

Flashback Friday: Forgotten Gems pt II

FlashBack Friday (click for previous episodes)

Today's a singers special because I've been listening to a lot of r&b recently. There's a particular album that has sparked this off, but that will be revealed in two weeks. And I've been in a Rodney Jerkins/Timbaland phase.

If you missed part I check here Forgotten Gems. It's where I share some songs that I'd forgotten about. Some you may know, others you may not. I think you'll appreciate every song 'cos my taste is that of a person that tastes expensive wine.

One song that has been on the receiving a lot of spins is Jennifer Lopez 'If You Had My Love'. Sparked by this quote "‘U Don’t Know Me (Like You Used To)’ acted more like an album filler to me, however did have good points, in particular the drum production was rather hard hitting. It possibly acted as the precursor to Jennifer Lopez’s ‘If You Had My Love,’ which is probably why I didn’t really like it too much." from a review of Brandy's Never Say Never from the Return The Classics series over at Soul Culture. For the record, U Don't Know Me is actually a banger.

(re: Return To The Classics - check the Dru Hill - Enter The Dru and D'Angelo - Brown Sugar ones for an insight from people that help craft it. Siiiiiiiiiiick)

I forgot how good this song is. We all know JLo was a r&b fraud. I think I hated everything she did after this song including 'Love Don't Cost A Thing', but excluding 'I'm Real' with Ja Rule and 'All My Love' with LL Cool J. Remember the 'Jenny From The Block'? The sample? Her "still Jenny from the block"? She really thought I'd fall for that nonsense? Ashanti ended her reign. Plus, I realised I'd been conned into believing she was extremely hot. I've seen her. She ain't thaaat great.

But yeah, Jennifer Lopez - If You Had My Love

p.s. Those black and silver TNs during the dance break. OMG!

Karen Clark Sheard feat. Missy Elliott, Yolanda Adams, Kim Burrell, Dorinda Clark Cola, Mary Mary & Tweet - Higher Ground

This used to get a lot of rotation on pirate radio. I came across this on Missy Elliott's 3rd album Miss E... So Addictive (the one with Get Ur Freak On). You had to let the last track run for about 7mins of silence. Not sure how big this song was in the Gospel circles, but damn, this is a tune. Looking at the all star line-up, this is the gospel equivalent to Kanye West's All Of The Lights lol

Justin Timberlake - Worthy Of

Another bonus track, this time lifted from JT's classic Justified released in 2003. Yes, that album is classic. Not sure why it was a bonus track. Bonus tracks were usually placed on something else like a Movie OST (Original SoundTrack for future reference).

Not sure if this is a forgotten gem or an underrated gem. Shows Timberlake's human side, dealing with insecurity. Maybe they just wanna hear him on about pulling birds (getting ladies). Maybe that's why it was a bonus track.

Yasmeen - Blue Jeans

Worthy Of reminded me of this tune. There's a similar sound in both of them. Don't ask me what 'cos I can't put my finger on it, but in my head there is a similarity. This is a tune! Released in 2002 but no info on chart history

On a separate note, what the hell happened to Jazze Pha? Ciara neeeeds you!!!

Nicole Renee - Strawberries

15k views on YouTube with an out-of-sync video uploaded by a fan epitomises forgotten gem. I spent a good chunk of this week playing Craig David's Born To Do It. They sampled this song for Last Night.

Latrelle - House Party

Think this was released in 2002. Heard this on DJ Swerve's Tuesday show on Kiss 100. One of my favourite Neptunes r&b productions. Official video is unembeddable (I made that word up) so click here

Fundisha - Live The Life

Oh my days, I'm going in today. I was fully on r&b '98-'02. Greatest period of r&b in my timeline. Older people born in the earlier part of the 80s prefer hip hop/soul or new jack. Don't get me wrong, I rate them times highly too, but to me, this is my favourite era.

But back on track, I really liked her voice a lot. I think she was signed by Jermaine Dupri

Last one for today,

Olivia - Bizounce

Remember Oliver as The Game called her. He killed her career before it even started. This song was recorded before she signed with G-Unit, but regularly spun on pirate radio over here in London.

Friday, 4 March 2011

Flashback Friday: Forgotten Gems

FlashBack Friday (click for previous episodes)

So this week I've been rollin' through some archive songs and thought I'd share some of my forgotten gems. You may agree with some, you may not have heard many, but for me to think they're forgotten, there is no way they are bait.

Usually with these kinda dig the vault themes you remember every song 'cos they're the same ones everyone says "Oh remember x tune?" but it's bait. I'm sure you've been in a rave and the DJs like "Who remembers this one?" even though he knows he plays it every week meaning we hear it every week.

(Disclaimer: I'm based in London, UK so in your ends they may be the type of tunes I mentioned above. Oh and I'm mid-late 80s born, so it's from my time but a forgotten tune).

Anyway, here goes

Foxy Brown Stylin'

This is from her album Ill Nana The Fever. I'm not sure if this album ever actually got released. Leaked out there though. Westwood used to bang this hard. The way this is chopped sounds like an unfinished version so I wonder if it ever saw the light of day.

There was a remix with NORE, Loon and Baby plus Foxy's borther Young Gav. Think Young Gav produced this. There were rumours around this time of a romance between Foxy and Baby.

Jerzee Monet featuring DMX Most High

This tune was big! Message, social-commentary, unique tone, nice beat, and X. Released in '03. Heavily slept on. I've just realised who Jonelle Monae's name kept reminding me of. From what I remember, Monet is pronounced like Moet, with a N in the middle.

Here's a link to the video
but the sound quality is poor.

Redman Da Goodness

I'm sure Red & Meth performed this during their infamous performance at the MOBO's. I know this is Red and Busta but I'm sure they did it.

Limp Bizkit Rollin'

Remember when the lines between racket and hip hop started to blur? This was one of those songs that everyone appreciated. Thumbs up if you knew about Fred Durst of Limp Bizkit from Eminem lol. I'm sure this was their one and only UK #1. Linkin Park were the real deal when it came to this type of music.

Ruff Ryders feat Juvenile Down Bottom

Lifted from Ruff Ryder's debut album back in the late 90s, the most underrated Drag-On, with Cash Money's bread winner at time Juvenile. Cash Money along with No Limit were the main ones I knew of at the time from Down South. Rap-a-Lot didn't come up on my radar them times.

Ginuwine What's So Different

R&B's nearly guy Ginuwine had a hard time of life. Broke through as the singing, dancing, ladies man just before Usher's 'U Make Me Wanna' then My Way album stepped on him commercially. Sisqo followed through that door and brought out his stuff just as this song was about to do things. He never ever was that guy. Even Justin Timberlake kicked through the door and said "Sorry mate, it's either me or Usher in this lane, pal." I've just realised something, reckon Timbo saw what he couldn't do with Ginuwine in Justin?

(Disclaimer: the above is all based on memory. I would go and quantify the information but that isn't organic. I want this to be organic.)

Anyway, back to the tune. This is a banger! Timbo's the king with them insane drum patterns. Even features a sample of Godzilla. I still don't get the video.

To show the difference between me and them other people that do flashback's, you would have just been shown an obvious track like In Those Jeans or Pony. Levels.