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Posts Tagged ‘Rawkus’

GRORTNETA: “Like They Used To Say”

Monday, February 8th, 2010

common

Common – “Like They Used To Say

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from One-Nine-Nine-Nine (Rawkus, 1999)

After splitting from Relativity but before misspelling his own name at then neo-soul halfway house MCA, Coomon dropped this one off on the razor blade. “1999″ was the lead off for the Soundbombing 2 compilation and is a cool enough chin stroking conscious rap song with an always welcome Sadat X cameo, but it’s the B-side that wins (again) with Lonnie trying his hand at Buhloone era style De La recontextualized nostalgia. Except he was never quiet as smart as those guys so it comes off like the “I Used To Love HER” video if it was a song about songs and not a song about a person who was actually a genre. Still it’s a fun record and might just be the last great song that Common Sense the lyrically lyrical half drunk rap fanboy ever recorded. Presumably it never made it past the 12″ because it would have cost a fortune to clear all the vocal samples. “1999″ vid after the jump. (more…)

GRORTNETA*: “Crosstown Beef”++

Tuesday, January 12th, 2010

medina

(*Good Records On Rawkus That Nobody Ever Talks About)

Medina Green f/ Mos Def – “Crosstown Beef

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Medina Green f/ Mos Def – “Fa La Lashe

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from Crosstown Beef 12″ (Rawkus, 1998)

Mos Def, Pharoahe Monch, Talib Kweli, Rah Digga & A-Butta – “Talkin To You

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from CIA 12″ (Rawkus, 1998)

So this is shaping up to be a quarterly series. Because I’m a busy man – I have a formspring to tend, after all. (more…)

Video: Mos Def – “Universal Magnetic” Live 1999

Friday, October 16th, 2009

Mos Def performing “Universal Magnetic” at what appears to be the Black Star release party.

I’m still slowly going through all these Rap City pause tapes I made in high school. This mostly involves a lot of fast forwarding through regular old videos like “Triumph” and “Southern Hospitality.” It’s weird to think of an era time when taping a music video seemed like a necessity, out of a genuine concern that you might otherwise never see it again. One day we are going to have to explain to our kids what it was like in the pre-youtube era and they are going to look at us like we are retards.

Related: GRORTNETA Pt. 1: “Universal Magnetic”

GRORTNETA* Pt. 1: “Universal Magnetic”

Thursday, July 30th, 2009

rawkus

(*Good Records On Rawkus That Nobody Ever Talks About)

Mos Def – “Universal Magnetic

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Mos Def – “If You Can Huh You Can Hear

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from Universal Magnetic 12″ (Rawkus, 1997)

It’s been more than a decade marinating, it’s time to go in deep with the backpack rap revival.[1] Like Lil Wayne or Parliament Funkadelic, Rawkus Records has one of those frustrating legacies where that which is best remembered is not really representative of their greatest work. This is mostly because their short dominance of New York underground coincided with what would be the last gasp of the 12″ format. Most of the pre-mass market Rawkus classics were vinyl only and to this day remain unattainable legally (or available only in butchered Soundbombing format, pitched up with Evil Dee screaming atop every track). Many are also completely undownloadable illegally, which speaks to the weird exclusivity fetish of idiot rapidshare blog hoarders.[2]

So this alternate history of Rawkus Records exists[3], ignored by the label’s own self-celebration, unrecognized by the hoards of interneters, and written out of the history books because it’s easier to canonize a full length than a disparate bunch of 12″ singles. This new continuing series is an attempt to tip the scales back in favor of the Rawkus that I grew up with. (more…)

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