Archive for August, 2011

The Greatest Rap Groups of All Time! Of All Time!

Posted in Alkahol, Hip Hop, Music on August 31, 2011 by Saliva Vic

“Me & The RZA connect!” – Kanye West.

If you know me well then you know that I live on the twitter. The past week I engaged in a discussion about the greatest rap group of  all time. I come from the school of hip hop that believes that if it isn’t Wu-Tang it isn’t hip hop! However I decided to dig in the crates last night as I sipped my Geezus Juice & discovered quite a few dope rap groups!

Now before you tear me apart some of the groups in my list are 1 time collaborators & rapper/ producer collaboz! So, without further ado, let’s go in!

20. Main Source: This group consisted of 2 wack ass Canadian DJs and the almighty Large Professor! Large Pro is the guy who produced “Life’s a bitch” on Nas’s monster album “Illmatic” which gave us AZ’s best verse & in essence the best verse on that album! Breaking Atoms was a classic but the group split up when Large Professor went solo!

Here’s the classic “Fakin the funk” which inspired Kanye West to become the great rap producer he is today.

19. SlaughterHouse: This group consists of Royce Da 5’9, Crooked I, Joell Ortiz & Joe Budden. 2 of my favorite rappers make up this group but they’re at number 19 coz I think they can do better! The SlaughterHouse EP was dope but maybe being signed to Eminem’s Shady Records will yield some classic shit! Let’s wait & see.

Here’s one of their illest tunes but featuring Ludacris. Joell BODIED this beat!

18. Slum Village: This group must be the rap group with the most drama! That’s what happens with creatives though. J Dilla, one of the illest producers ever! The man who created the sound of Neo-Soul was a part of this group at 1 time. Then there was Baatin who lost his mind thanks to a bipolar disorder & schizophrenia. They both died. T3 & Elzhi still hold it down though, but I heard Elzhi wants out as well! Damn!

Here’s my favorite SV tune Tainted Love. No…not the rock song! 

17. BlackStar: Again to the uninitiated this group consisted of Mos Def & Talib Kweli. This is a supergroup! Mos Def didn’t even have an album out when he & Kweli dropped the classic “Mos Def & Kweli are BlackStar”. There’s a rumour that they’re working on another album to come out this year but it reeks of Detox if you ask me!

Here’s the jam they did that made me date Mo back in 99! Brown Skin Lady!

16. Das EFX: If anyone ever tells you that they’re a fan of Kenya’s KalaMashaka & they’ve never listened to this group then they’re a mothalovin liar! Das EFX are the reason K-Shaka had dreads, used to rap with the hiss sound like they were smoking Kush in the studio & used to say they came from the sewer!

Das EFX were dope but fizzled out when they switched their style thanks to biters like IllAlSkratch! I still bump “Dead Serious” & “Hold it down” when my music system feels like it! Here’s the classic “Real Hip Hop” from “Hold it down”.

15. D.I.TC: Yet again to the unitiated and the young, this was a super group! This is where I discovered Fat Joe. Believe it or not he was pretty dope back then! The group consisted of Lord Finesse, AG, Showbiz, Buckwild, Fat Joe, O.C. & Diamond D. This crew had beats & rhymes on lock! Buck went on to create one of my favorite albums & O.C. recorded one of my favorite rap songs “My world”. 

Here’s D.I.T.C. with Big Pun & KRS! Puns sounded like he was gonna die after his verse! Damn!

14. EPMD: This group made it onto the list coz of the influence they had on hip hop. Personally, I never fucked with EPMD that much. Anyway here goes. One of their more memorable jams You gots to chill!

13. DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince: This guy! This fuckin guy! I mean both of them by the way. DJ Jazzy Jeff is one of the illest producers & DJs I have ever had the pleasure to listen to! The Fresh Prince is one of the 1st rappers I fell in love with! No homo! Together they recorded a classic, apart, they suck more balls than my neighbourhood prostitute!

We will always have “He’s the DJ, I’m the rapper”. From that album sample “Brand New Funk”. I’m not gonna post summertime like every other loser! I’m sophisticated!

12. UGK: I’m a hip hop head but I only discovered this group coz of Jay-Z. Hov featured this group on his classic pimp anthem, “Big Pimpin”. Forgive me Hov but Bun B bodied you on that jam! I think that was the only time Hov has ever been murdered on his own shit!

The group died coz..well….Pimp C died. Yesterday was declared Bun B day in Houston so cheers to him! Here’s the classic “Pocket full of stones” that Wayne & Birdman jacked for “I sold my 1st key”.

11. RedmanMethodman: These 2 are like Beavis & Butthead! They were made for each other. The classic Blackout album proved this Wu-Tang Member & Def Squad Member could create great hip hop records in between Meth’s heavy drinking & Red’s Kush habit!

Here’s the classic How High!

10. De la Soul: My God! How far back do I & De La go back? I remember listening to “Me myself & I” on 3 feet High & rising when I was 11 years old on Lwanga’s Walkman! Gotdamn! This group created classics! They were hip hop’s hippies! Together with ATCQ  they formed Native Tongues! Need I say more?

Here’s my favorite De La jam that featured mad rap cameos in the video! Look out for The Lords in the Cafeteria. By the way…rumour has it a new De La Soul is in the works!

9. Lords of the Underground: Wow! Mr. Funke & Do It All really did do it all. This crew combined hardcore, funk & soul to create the unique sound that was L.O.U! I remember kissing my 1st girlfriend when I was 12 to “Funky child” then hearing the same song years later on the movie “Boiler Room” when Seth starts working at the firm!

Here’s the jam that made them true Lords though, Chief Rocka!

8. Lost Boyz: Of course who can forget the dreadlocked boys from Queens! I used to think all Queens niggaz were good looking (See Nas, AZ, Jam Master Jay) till I saw these dudes! No homo! The music was grimy but you could dance to it! Of course things fell apart when Tah died & Spigg Nice got locked up!

The music is still with us! Legal Drug Money is a classic & Love Peace & Nappiness sampled Slick Rick well! Here’s the classic Renee that reminds me of one of my favorite girls who passed to cancer 8 years ago.

7. Pete Rock & CL Smooth: If you have never listened to these guys’ music you need to get to your nearest Mediafire link & download it. If you’re like me who buys music get to iTunes and cop “Mecca & The Soul Brother”. I can honestly say that this album changed my life & made me appreciate soul samples in hip hop vis-a-vis the heavy synths prevalent at the time thanks to Dr. Dre & the west coast.

They barely spoke after 95 but rumour has it that a new album is in the works! I would jizz my pants if they realeased that! Here’s my favorite rap song T.R.O.Y.

6. Mobb Deep: When Dr. Dre samples your beat/ makes a beat that sounds like yours and you have the most sampled lines in hip hop then you know you’re a super group! Dr. Dre’s “Housewife” sounds ridiculously like it was inspired by Mobb Deep’s “U.S.A” & even super conscious Common sampled Prodigy’s lines on “Allustrious”.

5. GangStarr: This has to be one of the most consistent groups in hip hop. Even the number 1 group in my list has never been this consistent. Gangstarr gave us dope album after dope album! From “No more Mr. Nice Guy” to “The Ownerz” all 6 albums were dope!

Of course the group was already on the rocks but it officially died when…well..GURU died.

Here’s a record written so good that DJ Premier sampled the lyrics for “Right where you stand” Gangstarr with “Moment of Truth”!

4. The Roots: The only reason this group isn’t number 3 is because the other rapper in the clique isn’t on every album. I’m talking about Malik B. This group has the world’s best drummer…after Davy Grohl of The Foo Fighters & formerly Nirvana of course! Questlove!

Black Thought, the rapper, manipulates words like gymnasts or strippers for that matter, do their bodies. Malik B can take you to the dungeons of addiction with one bar & The Roots as a whole are the only band in hip hop! Need I say more!

Here’s the joint where they called out all rappers!

3. A Tribe Called Quest: These 3 guys! These 3 talented guys! They created music that made me fall in love with hip hop! Ali Shaheed Muhammed & Q-Tip together with Dilla unknowingly created the sound that is now referred to as Nu-Soul/ Neo-Soul! If I were the type to have kids I’d play them “Midnight Mauraders” all day!

The group split after Q-Tip got sober & Phife demanded more time on the mic! Here’s their sickest tune in my books!  

2. OutKast: The list wouldn’t be complete without Big Boi & Andre 3K! These 2 complement each other well coz they both have their own distinct flows! I hated & loved that their last album was each on their own. As much as I appreciated Speakerboxx/ The Love Below, I want another Stankonia, another Aquemini, another ATLiens!

Hopefully Andre3K might get his shit together & smack some sense into Big Boi whose busy getting busted with Viagra! The classic tune ATLiens!

1. Wu-Tang Clan: There will never be a rap group as large and as powerful as the Wu-Tang Clan! 9 original members, each with their own persona, their own flow & they all combined like Voltron to create great hip hop! Here’s to The Abbot aka RZA, GZA, Method Man, U-God, Raekwon, O.D.B, Inspektah Deck, Masta Killa & the illest Ghostface Killah!

The group’s last couple of albums haven’t been great but hey, they all have egos now. Here’s the classic off the album that made O.D.B storm the stage at the Grammys!

Pamoja!!!!

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Imagine….NO MUSIC!!!!!

Posted in Alkahol, Hip Hop, Music on August 26, 2011 by Saliva Vic

If I die young/ bury me in satin/ Lay me down on a bed of roses/ sink me in the river at dawn/ send me away with the words of a love song – The Band Perry.

I am a lover of music. All genres of music. I’ll listen to it if it sounds good to my ear even when I don’t understand the language. That’s just how beautiful, dynamic & universal music is to me. However I RARELY listen to country music. This morning I stumbled upon this song called “If I die young”.

This song won the Grammy this year for best country song and is by The Band Perry. If you’d like a listen, find it below.

If I die young – The Band Perry. 

This got me thinking. What would the world be like without music. It would obviously be a horrible place where we would all be in a rush to die young and this is why:

1. What would the gotdamn strippers dance to? Nothing makes for a good lap dance than some T-Pain “Make that booty work” coming through the speakers. Can you imagine a stripper rubbing her not so safe privates on your person to the sound of bottles clinking & murmurs from other patrons?

2. All movies would be like “No Country For Old Men”. The only movie I ever watched that had no music accompanying it. It was weird even though it worked surprisingly well for the film. But can you imagine “Pretty Woman” without the classic soundtrack? Transformers which is a shitty movie would be even shittier minus the music.

3. There would be no rappers! Tupac would be alive, working as an actor but Jay-Z & Notorious B.I.G would probably be dead or in prison. Twitter would suck without 50 Cent & Joe Budden. However, Drake would still be acting which I think is a good thing…right?

4. Maqbul would probably be the Kenya’s favorite presenter. Why? Maqbul has the peculiar penchant to sing when he talks. No? Maybe it’s just me then. In a world without music people would all listen to him to talk in this manner that sounds almost melodic. How would they know melody? *Kanye shrug*

5. Rockstars wouldn’t exist. The 27 Club would never have come to fruition coz Kurt Cobain would have died earlier, so would have Janis Joplin & Amy Winehouse. Jim Morrison might have lived longer & become the 20th Century Edgar Allan Poe.

6. DJs would have regular jobs. I can just imagine probably they’d work as cooks in restaurants spinning the Chapati or at Nakumatt digging in the crates to stock up the shelves! I know…I know…laaaaaaaaaaame!!!! I find it funny though.

Of course there’s plenty more unpleasant things about a world with no music but that’s all I’ve got time for right now. I need to go back to working like a Hebrew slave building the pyramids.

Here’s a great song! The best song ever! Helena Beat by Foster The People.

Pamoja!!!

Old Man Rap vs Young Man Rap

Posted in Hip Hop, Misadventures, Music on August 9, 2011 by Saliva Vic

“Tell him I just want my racks/ racks on racks on racks/ lay backs on backs on backs on backs on bachs/ who in that/oh shit, its just blacks on blacks on blacks/ hundred stack/ how you get it/ nigga layin raps on tracks/ I wish I could give you this feelin/ I’m plankin on a million” – The Throne bka Jay-Z & Kanye West.

*PSA* Click on the links for the songs & twitter handles. Thanks.

The most hyped album of 2012 finally made its way into the ears of every music lover & their mother and its audio crack to some but to others, its absolute rubbish!

As I listened to Watch The Throne with the rest of the world, it drew my attention to the striking difference between Old Man Rap (OMR) & Young Man Rap (YMR)! First off let me break down what each term means just to put you up on game. What follows are the characteristics of YMR:

1. Thumping beats. I’m talking knocking pictures of the wall, car alarm setting off, super 808 heavy beats! Examples are Hard in the paint by my man Waka Flocka & 9Piece by the obese law enforcer Rick Ross. These joints are usually best produced by Lex Luger, Southside, Zaythoven & The Runners.

2. Fantastic rhymes. By fanatastic I do not mean clever rhymes with superb delivery but rather rhymes that are pure fantasy bordering on the ridiculous. This characteristic makes YMR quite entertaining. Tell me you didn’t enjoy it when Rick Ross said on the fantastic John Doe “Ugh/ I just parked the caddy in the living room”. I would love to do some shit like that, wouldn’t you? Shit, I want to sleep with Sanaa Lathan in a room full of money out in London as she screams!

3. Tech Savvy. YMR is very tech savvy from the lyrics to production. Let me explain. Their lyrics will always mention iPhones, twitter, iPad, Wii, blogs, basically anything that has to do with the digital age. Rick Ross who I must say is the King of YMR  spits “I’m sellin dope straight off the iPhone” on 9Piece. Fabolous rhymes real nice on Motivation “I follow what you sayin/ you ain’t got to twitter shit”. Woe unto you if you aren’t familiar! The production also features autotune, space sounds & all sorts of weird special effects, the shit is like a movie! Fire flame indeed!

4. Singing. The one thing I absolutely cannot stand in my rap music is when the rapper starts singing. What are r&b singers for fellaz? I could stand Ja Rule then 50 Cent started singing & finally came along that girl Drake! This kid is solely to blame f0r J Cole singing, Big Sean & even Lil Wayne singing like a bunch of kindergarten girls playing Ring a Ring o roses! Drake threatens you while singing & harmonising shit & you’re supposed to take it seriously? 

With that said, here are the characteristics of OMR:

1. Sample heavy beats. OMR keeps it old school using samples that are outrageously rare to find. The likely culprits in this kind of production are Kanye West, DJ Premier, Pete Rock & 9th Wonder.

2. Thematically Dark. I don’t know what it is about OMR but the theme is usually dark and ominous. Even the OMR songs that are about having fun must have some darkness. Take for example Naughty by Nature’s Feel me flow. Treach just had to say “Coming from the town of Illy & alleys/ are full of phillies & rallys suckers get/ silly as Sally then found in alleys/ I’m rowdy really/”. One minute we were dancing the next minute we’re killing dudes?

3. Intricate flows & heavy lyrics. OMR doesn’t go the easy nursery rhyme way of its counterpart YMR. It’s almost as if the harder it is to write & deliver that rhyme the better it sounds.  On Nasty, Nas rhymes “Any rebuttal to what I utter get box-cuttered/ Count how many bad honeys I slut/ it’s a high number/Name a nigga under the same sky that I’m under/ Who gets money, remain fly, yeah, I wonder” This shit is damn near a tongue twister!

4. Skits & Interludes. OMR albums will always contain skits that are usually humorous or at least interludes. The interludes are usually throw away beats like Dilla, Pete Rock & Black Milk are accustomed to doing on their albums. YMR always lacks this, its alm0st as if the label tells these kids its a waste of studio time and beats, that cost more than all their fantasy cars put together, in today’s rough economy!

Why did I take time out to write this? The Throne has tried to blend the two, OMR & YMR with surprising results. Jay-Z sounds odd on the space like “Lift Off” and Ye fades away on Hit Boy’s banging beat on “Niggaz in Paris”. Dude doesn’t even say “Crazy” he says “Cray” which comes off  as an attempt to sound cool.

They manage to ride RZA’s beat real well to give us the dope ass “New Day” & “Welcome to the jungle” produced by Swizz Beatz. The fantastic rhymes are all over this album just take your pick, even the King of YMR, Rick Ross would have never said he’s planking on a million!

Conclusion is that Watch The Throne is a win for both lovers of Old Man Rap & Young Man Rap. It also made me realise that the future is upon us & there will be a new King of rap if & when YMR completely takes over. That King is this kid Meek Mill, check out I’m a boss! This jam knocks like a muhfugga! When the kid spits I can’t help but think of Jay-Z back in 1996!

If you like OMR you can always listen to Nick who plays that Golden Age rap every night on Hot 96. If YMR is your kind of bag most def the queen Corine plays that on HBR 915 every night. If you’re into new school OMR then the Cypher is what you need to rock to on Capital FM Saturday evening & Hits Not Homework on Wednesday night. But for that underground OMR & Kenyan hip hop check out Hip Hop Republik on Ghetto Radio 89.5 on Tuesday night.

Pamoja!!!

Why I don’t mess with pharmaceuticals

Posted in Alkahol, Misadventures, Music on August 2, 2011 by Saliva Vic

“At night I can’t sleep/ toss & turn/ candle sticks in the dark/ visions of bodies being burned/” – Scarface

I have always been a light sleeper. Unless of course I pass out from the sauce, then not even the wildebeest migration running through my room could wake me! Being a light sleeper has been made worse by the fact that I am also slightly insomniac. This has banished me to 3 decades of maximum 5 hour sleep on a good night. Last night, I was having one of those nights when every little noise stirred me up & I couldn’t fall asleep for the life of me.

It’s a well known fact that I don’t mess with pharmaceuticals but since with my new work schedule I value those 5 hours of sleep I decided to pop some pills to lay me to rest. No Amy! I took the pills then flipped to my favorite rock station and lay on the mattress replaying last night’s Soy Tu Duena episode over & over in my head. I can’t believe that Ivana killed the nanny as a result of her current psychosis! But that’s a story for another day. What I want to talk about are the dreams that I had when the pills kicked in.

First off, I was back in high school, not as a student but as a resident! For some odd reason I lived in a container (you know the kind 18 wheeler trucks tow around) in Dagoretti High School’s compound! I owned a huge television that was not inside the container but rather at a petrol station located at the school’s gate so I was watching it in open air. The show I was watching was called “Weeds” but not the regular one, this featured 2 Spanish women who hunted ghosts.

As I watched the T.V. out in the open air, all of a sudden the pitch I was sitting on came to life and from below climbed out an American Football team that was made up of mutated zombies. True story, I kid you not the zombies had mutated arms that had turned into lobster claws, others had mutated faces that resembled goats with shattered mandibles!  As I made a break for it toward the TV at the petrol station, I ran into my brother who was driving a Vitz!

What was alarming was that he was dressed in Speedos and he was using his massive legs as the motor power behind the tiny vehicle that had his son in the backseat! By now I was completely freaked out but then from the container emerged something worse! A street urchin who had to be about 6’1 popped out covered in shit! Yes, he was covered in human waste, and not the nice brown kind, no! He was covered in that Guinness flavored, dark brown almost black, steaming, stinking shit!

He offered me his hand & I immediately ran towards the football players who were now being led by a black dude who reminded me of Papa Shango! The black guy kept chanting numbers in a ghostly manner as the football players charged towards me & that’s when I heard the Foo Fighters’ Learn to fly playing real loud & it woke me up! God bless my alarm tone.

This is what I learned. Pharmaceutical use after watching a Spanish soap featuring a psychotic woman & then reading about Plaxico Buress joining the New York Jets will result in some pretty fucked up dreams!

Some tuneage! I am really feeling this Foster the People – Pumped Up Kicks. Have a good night kids!

Pamoja!!!

A.M.Y (Amy, Me & You)

Posted in Alkahol, Hip Hop, Music, Women on August 1, 2011 by Saliva Vic

I take a shot of Hennessy now I’m strong enough to face this madness/ nickel bag full of sess weed laced with hash – 2Pac

I had my 1st weekend off work 3 days ago and so my girlfriends & I went on a bender on Friday. It was an all out Skins Party! I’m talking DEFCON 1 debauchery! In the midst of the madness, one of my girls took me to task as to how I could write a blog dedicated to music & drug use and not mention the passing of Amy Winehouse!

Immediately I was inspired to write a poem dedicated to the memory of Amy Winehouse. This is my perspective on her lifestyle and your lifestyle for that matter, if you’ve ever been in that dark place where many never make it out of but some, such as myself, manage to by the skin of the teeth. Pardon me if it ain’t all that, considering the copious amount of alkahol I consumed to the point I drunk texted my old boss, I think it’s pretty good. What do you think?

A.M.Y.

Look at me, what do you see? Talent, genius, an embodiment of G.O.D?

I’m exactly like you, only thing different, my soul too fiery.

I wish I could be like you, but that wouldn’t be me, I’d be a fraud…a fake…& I don’t do phony!

I remember a time when I couldn’t wait to wake up & create….

Tuneage: Adam’s Song – Blink 182

These days, I dread being awake…you see I’m alive but I’m a corpse unless I’m in that state.

The only way I know I’m alive is when I bleed…indeed,

The pain of everyday, the madness, is a heavy cross to bear,

And I’m not Jesus, wasn’t built for this, my dream is your nightmare!

My thoughts, my ideas, no longer my own…but rather noises of voices wrecking my dome.

Tuneage: Crazy – Gnarls Barkley

The only time I’m at peace is when I drown them out…

Pills, needles, bottles, powder as white as the earth in a drought…

Look at me, what do you see? A loser…a fool…a waste?

Please pause before you judge me in haste.

I am exactly like you, I’m no liar, only thing different, my soul is on fire!

I regret that this was inspired by our dear soul sister’s death but addiction & recovery are topics that those who’ve been through rarely talk about. However, I feel that in order to exorcise these demons you have to call them out, Jesus style.

This post is also dedicated to:

Musa – Captain, I always think you’re going to call me then I remember He called you home & I can’t wait to get there & chill with you.

Quinn – Babes…I know that there are no bullies in heaven or silly principals giving you shit. I’ll see you when I get there.

Ngoks – My nigga, you flew off that balcony like we used to fly off that vodka, I’m sure your flying with Jesus & B.I.G.

Amy Winehouse – Thank you for the music & the inspiration. I don’t think you’re dead coz the music is still here. This is how I choose to remember you babes.

Tuneage: In my bed – Amy Winehouse

Pamoja!!!