Radio.Blog: The L.A. Player, MC Ice-T

Nothing like a little Ice-T for a hot summer day (and it’s hot as *%$#! in Atlanta today). Here are my favorite Ice-T tracks. Ice is a rapper who I think doesn’t get enough credit for all the music he’s put out. He may not be a lyrical genius but my man can tell some stories. And the beats… every time I hear “6 ‘n the Morning” I have flashbacks to the good old days in L.A. when every Mustang 5.0, Nissan truck and VW would be blasting that track. But most of his tracks are like a soundtrack for a kid who grew up in L.A. I guess that’s why I like Ice’s music so much (ditto for Ice Cube).

Enjoy the music, I’m off to get some real iced tea…

Radio.Blog Tribute to Luther Vandross – R.I.P.

I just heard that Luther Vandross passed away today so I had to do a radio.blog of some of my favorite Luther tracks. People always say that “they don’t make ’em like this any more” but in Luther’s case that’s very true — voices like his don’t come along very often. I used to wear these songs out back in the day. Enjoy…

P.S. Great minds think alike. EJ and Todd put together a tribute to Luther as well. Be sure to check that one out too, they’ve included some classics that I’m ashamed to say I don’t have in my collection… yet. 🙂

Radio.Blog: ‘Necks Move’ by Deep Thinkers

It’s not often that I like a CD on my first listen, so I was pleasantly surprised when I first listened to ‘Necks Move’ by Deep Thinkers. “Necks Move’ is a refreshing departure from the typical hip-hop being produced these days. The group is a throwback to old school hip-hop yet their music also draws on influences ranging from jazz to drum & bass. Hip Hop Politics has an excellent review of the CD, which covers the disc better than I ever could. So check that out while listening to the radio.blog below.

“Big ups” to Willis at Datura Records for hooking me up with the CD.

Diggin’ in the Crates: Dancehall, Vol. 1

Here’s some dancehall reggae (mostly) from the 90s. This was the genre that I turned to once I started falling out of love with hip-hop. This stuff brings back some great memories, from seeing the Shabba Ranks & KRS-ONE tour (I was at the show in L.A. when KRS beat down the sound man) to the first time I saw Buju (and Beres Hammond) live to me getting life off of women winin’ to a good riddim whenever they drop some dancehall at a club. Man, there’s nothing like some dancehall to get a party heated up!

For your continued listening pleasure be sure to check out some of Todd’s radio.blogs. That brotha’s dropping bombs on what seems like a daily basis. And Honey’s got more new releases this week. She’s promised to post new releases every week, so be sure to bang on her site every Friday. 😉

Diggin’ in the Crates: Native Tongues

A little something inspired by the Tribe Called Quest concert I hit a couple of months back as well as an article about the Native Tongues in last month’s Vibe magazine. This crew was largely responsible for making the late 80’s & early 90’s such a classic time for hip-hop. And of course the repped that hip-house ish too. For a little history:

Ushering in a new era of hip hop that downplayed violence and sexual exploits, the New York City based Native Tongues took the rap world by storm in the late 80’s/early 90’s. The base of the group originally consisted of the Jungle Brothers, Afrika Bambaataa, and Queen Latifah, with the purpose being to perform with each other and promote one another’s projects in order to get noticed by the mainstream. They shared a common goal, and that was to spread a positive message through music without taking away the gritty realism and street logic that came with hardcore hip hop. De La Soul was the next to join the group, taking Stetsasonic producer Prince Paul and upstart teenagers A Tribe Called Quest with them. [read the rest]

Radio.Blog: U.K. Flava Volume 1 (Electronica)

Since there’s so much great music coming out of the UK I thought I’d highlight some of my favorites, which get so little air play in the States. When I went through and ripped my UK CDs I ended up with about 80 songs, so instead of cutting most of those out I decided to break them into genres. The songs on this radio.blog could be lumped into the electronica genre, although they sound very different. There’s representation from Drum & Bass, Garage, Jungle, 2 Step as well as music that would probably be called straight up R&B in the US (like the Craig David & Artful Dodger “2 Step” tracks).

Some other recent radio.blogs to check out:

Diggin’ in the Crates: A Dr. Dre Production

I’ve been sitting on this radio.blog for a while now because I’ve had radio.blogger’s block. It’s not that I couldn’t think of anything to post, it’s that I had too many ideas floating around in my head. At least now I have some good ideas for next year.

Anyway, here are some of my favorite Dr. Dre produced tracks. This was very difficult for me to pare down from the initial 35 tracks I ripped. But I think it’s a good representation of the man’s skills. It’s got everything from a track from his “lipstick & lace” days to some D.O.C. (damn he was nice) to NWA, Snoop and of course tracks from the Chronic. That ‘album’ is my all-time favorite hip-hop album. It stayed in my car’s CD player for over a year straight. It happened to come out right around the time when I moved from Los Angeles to Atlanta. I used to play it to remind me of home. I especially loved the tracks that talked about the L.A. uprising. Ahhh. L.A…

BTW, I came across this list of the top hip-hop producers/M.C.s the other day. Dre comes in at a respectable #6, which isn’t bad considering all the hating that goes on about his rapping skills.

Honey’s doing her thing again. This time with her Top 25 Songs of 2004 Radio.Blog. The woman’s got great taste in music.