Diggin’ in the Crates: Boogie Down Productions & KRS-ONE

I was in the barber shop a couple of weeks ago and they were bumpin’ BDP’s Ghetto Music at the request of my barber. So during our conversation about how ill Kris is, and the current state of hip hop I got the idea of doing a Radio.Blog featuring KRS-ONE. You already know that I rate him as the G.O.A.T.
For those of you who aren’t very familiar with Kris’ music here’s your chance to take a listen. Many of the new school rappers could learn a lot from studying Kris’ work — substantial lyrics, switching styles, enunciation, breath control, how to rock a live show, etc.

Update: These tracks are now gone. Check out a newer Radio.Blog post.

Some comments on many of the tracks:

  • 7 Dee Jays – This posse joint is one all time favorites. You have D-Nice, Heather B, Harmony, Melody and Jamal-Ski chattin’ his ass off.

  • 9mm Goes Bang – Do I even need to say anything about this one? An all-time classic with the ill reggae groove.

  • Black Cop – That’s right, you remember this shit. You know you used to lose your damn mind when heard that beat come on. And check the lyrics.

  • Build and Destroy – Kris kicked mad knowledge on this song part of which was a dis of X-Clan:

    What have you done, besides critique KRS-One?
    I create organizations
    Without organization, there’ll be no black nation
    What the fuck are you really saying?
    You ain’t a human while your music’s boomin anti-human I’m assumin
    If you ain’t human you’re a beast
    The white man could be the devil all the day, that’s the least
    What are you doing for yourself black man?
    Trying hard to be the original man – who?
    The first man, with the first tan, on the first land
    with the first clan, who gives a damn???!
    In history KRS is WELL advised
    But it’s something that my brain won’t memorize
    I don’t base my whole life on memory
    I base my life on my spirit and body chemistry
    Africa is the home of humanity
    Which makes the African a humanist, challenge me
    You gotta learn not to be so concerned
    with the original man, and see the criminal man, yeah!
    The now man, with the now plan, with the now tan
    with the right now genocide master plan
    Damn! We gotta think about stopping this
    God is not any black man on the land; God is consciousness
    When you understand this you’ll see Kris
    Until then, you can get dissed
    I’m not your prophet, messiah, minister, or savior
    Chill with that ill behavior
    I zero in like a laser
    You’re cuttin your wrists with a razor
    I got all type of flavors
    Yes I am the original teacher
    You gotta study the Qu’ran, Torah, Bahavaghita
    The Bible, Five Baskets of Buddha Zen
    And when you’ve read them shits, READ them shits again!
    But watch what you’re repeatin
    If you don’t know the history of the author
    you don’t know what you’re reading!
    Yeah I’m still the original
    Leaving MC’s lyrically miserable
    Their criminal syllables are minimal, show me respect BOY
    Cause I build and destroy!

    Straight fire! And how appropriate is this twelve years later:

    Too many Teachers in the class spoil the class
    After awhile you got blabbering fucking fools
    That’s worse than always talking about sex, let’s build
    It ain’t enough to study Clarence 13X
    The white man ain’t the devil I promise
    You want to see the devil take a look at Clarence Thomas
    Now you’re saying, “Who?” like you a owl
    Throw in the towel, the devil is Colin Powell
    You talk about being African and being black
    Colin Powell’s black, but Libya he’ll attack
    Libya’s in Africa, but a black man
    will lead a black man, to fight against his homeland
    An accomplice to the devil is a devil too
    The devil is anti-human, who the hell are you?

  • Dope Beat – Along with that dope guitar riff… another classic.

  • House Nigga – Pure knowledge once again. Check the lyrics.

  • I’m Still #1 – The title says it all. This is from his live CD. I was floored the first time I heard him do that freestyle:

    It’s goin’, it’s goin’, it’s goin’, it’s gone
    Your heart has left because Kris is strong
    And mighty, undefeated, I mean it
    Pick up the album, turn it over and read it
    Written, produced, directed and mixed
    Get off the tip, or get off the many tips
    Pick a tip, any tip, get off of it
    I’ve got ridiculous rhymes about bussin’ it
    You sit at home with a pen & a pad
    Going ‘dad, mad, glad, bad, sad’
    That style is from ’78
    A little late
    So make a tape of the great
    Blast Master poetic
    Your record sounds pathetic…
    Oh, I mean demo tape
    I’ll give you credit…

  • Jack of Spades – Gotta have your theme music. 🙂

  • Health, Wealth, Self – Kris on that metaphysical tip.

  • Higher Level – I’ve always loved the groove of this track. And of course Kris is flowing at his best and kickin’ knowledge about “your oppressor’s religion

  • KRS-ONE Attacks – A nice little DJ mix.

  • Outta Here – ‘Boogie Down was performin’ and they ain’t no joke…’

  • Sound of Da Police – Check it:

    Now here’s a likkle truth
    Open up your eye
    While you’re checking out the boom-bap, check the exercise
    Take the word “overseer,” like a sample
    Repeat it very quickly in a crew for example
    Officer, Officer, Officer, Officer!
    Yeah, officer from overseer
    You need a little clarity?
    Check the similarity!
    The overseer rode around the plantation
    The officer is off patroling all the nation
    The overseer could stop you what you’re doing
    The officer will pull you over just when he’s pursuing
    The overseer had the right to get ill
    And if you fought back, the overseer had the right to kill
    The officer has the right to arrest
    And if you fight back they put a hole in your chest!
    (Woop!) They both ride horses
    After 400 years, I’ve _got_ no choices!
    The police them have a little gun
    So when I’m on the streets, I walk around with a bigger one
    (Woop-woop!) I hear it all day
    Just so they can run the light and be upon their way

  • Uh Oh – A song for all the little knuckleheads out there.

  • Like a Throttle – Oh shit! Check the flow, the lyrics! I love when he breaks into that reggae shit and then says ‘woah, woah, woah… let’s get back to the hip hop’ Straight fire!

  • Love’s Gonna Get’Cha (Material Love) – Another great track, the dope beat and tells a great story about materialism. “I do it once, I do it twice, now there’s steak with the beans and rice”

  • My Philosophy – Dare I say that if you don’t know at least the first 10 lines or so of this song (up to ‘right up to your face and dis you’) by heart you don’t know shit about hip hop?

  • P is Free – ‘When I’m in Queens we rulin hip hop’. Gotta love all that reggae shit. Bo!

  • Poetry – Sometime less is more. I’m love some intricate, layered production a la Dr. Dre or the Neptunes, but this is hard to beat. Just a drum machine, some scratching and a poet.

  • Reggae Medley – KRS live in concert flowing over nothing but reggae riddims. Nuff said.
  • South Bronx – Classic.
  • The Eye Opener – “Jesus Christ, a me say, Jesus Christ… Jesus Christ was Black! The Europeans rewrote the Bible and they use it as a fact.” Another live track over a timeless reggae riddim.
  • Why is That? – “You don’t teach white kids to be black” They just don’t make them like this any more. This is Kris at his absolute best.
  • You Must Learn – I’ve got to find the remix of this song. That joint was off the damn chain. Black history in a song — the embodiment of edutainment.