Friday, June 26, 2009
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
I stole this tape from my old radio cohort on KSCU Rob “Rock B” Jackson’s crib back in like ’93-’95 (???). It was after a show he had set up for the Sole Sides Crew, when “Melodica” was still a test-press, at like Evergreen Community College or some other classroom-style live spot. I got drunk as shit and when we got back to Rob’s lab to post-party, in an attempt to join a conversation I had no business taking part in and to play the part of asshole in general, I told either DJ Zen or Asia Born, I forget which, that I had “two sealed copies of Expansions” (a direct quote from that Beasties song). Needless to say, they weren’t too amused, and I think someone tried to son me with, “Wow, are they really sealed.” Rob shot me a look like: “I’m trying to impress these dudes [he wanted to be their road manager or something], why are you fucking me up?” But, Gab seemed oblivious to any mega-digger-posturing and more than willing to share his bammer joints with me, and thus I couldn’ta given two squirts of monkey piss about anything.
I have no idea where The Incline is from nor what year they recorded these three songs nor what their names are (Kohari the Insomniac??? Damien??). But if you will allow me to apply the science of conjecture and bullshitting, the dank fog in my brain is slowly forming letters and... I think they were either from The Town or Sac. I’d love to find out the truth. Did they ever morph into another project? Do they still rap and/or make beats? Who are they?
The tape is laid out as such:
The first song, "Frozen Cocaine," is regularly considered the "banger" by folks I've showed this to, because of it's furious dichotomy of drug messaging and perfectly placed EPMD sample. The other two are more your typical early-90's backpacker fair and not as dark as the jump off, but definitely worth posting, so I did.
Later that night, Rob’s hotheaded roommate Jermaine came home wasted and complaining of being shot in the thigh with a "BB gun" after tussling with some “Mexicans” outside of San Jose Live. After Rob saw the wound he urged Jermaine to allow a sober person to take him to the ER. Jermaine turned out to have a .22 slug embedded in his leg. Some BB gun. Jermaine was a division 1 defensive back and very patriotic about being from Merced. Ever since this incident I've considered people from Merced tough as nails. To commerate the evening, while everybody was taking Jermaine to the hospital, I snatched a handful of tapes off the floor of their living room in front of the stereo (remember those?) and one of them was The Incline. Rob was always a good friend to me, and I feel I’m finally doing penance to our friendship by airing this all out. Rob, if you read this and you want your tapes back, they’re yours, mane. But all you Bay Area demo fiends are lucky, ‘cause you get to listen to these old ass unreleased jams without the tinge of guilt and regret I feel from being a drunken shit-talking loser who steals from his friends the same night their roommate gets shot. Rob’s dad was a preacher on TV in Richmond to boot!
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
The Game Is Thick, as far as I know, is the first Vallejo rap song to appear on wax, and the first 12” single from Vallejo as well.
"But I Get Nasty!!" is essentially the instrumental version of the b-side “But I Get Paid!!” I should say q-side because the sides are labeled G and Q in honor of the turf jacket fashionistas, GQ, that kept the nuttin’ nice Vallejo crew in fly gear. Look closely at the front cover and you’ll see a white GQ hat on the dash of the root beer brown ride on the right with the trues and vogues and the mustard and mayonnaise. On the back cover The Mac’s personalized GQ-made jacket is worn by a homegirl named Nikki who has her back to us, but you can tell she’s not wearing anything else but the jacket, because her bare ass cheeks are hangin’ out the bottom of it. Loved it more than Ice T "Power" and the SI swimsuit issue combined. Anyway… I guess Khayree didn’t want anybody jackin’ his beats, because instead of just muting the vocals, he had The Mac record a phone sex conversation over the top of it with a chick who fakes an orgasm at the end of it. I especially dig the way he incorporates the sound effects from the vocal version to make sense with the convo. “Hold up, I gotta piss.” Listen to it; you’ll catch my meaning. I salute both Khayree and The Mac for going this extra yard, and adding some signature spice to their 12” single selection. Artists don’t give that same effort anymore; these days, it’s always just: street version, radio version, instrumental. What happened to bonus beats? What am I saying? People don’t even put out 12” singles anymore. That’s an argument I should’ve made in ’95, but I was too drunk to give a fuck. And now I’m caught in a time warp.
If you ever overhear a group of so-called Nation of Thizz-lam tried-and-trues referring to some “OG Shit,” quiz ‘em about this record. If they’ve never heard of it, they don’t know what the fuck they talkin’ ‘bout—pull they fuckin’ card and vic ‘em for the blue pills!
P.S. If you didn’t think og bay area macks thought real hip hop skills were important back in the day, check the liner notes: “ Scratches: The Mac.” Then check what DJ Universe did for Too $hort on “Born To Mack.” You thought wrong, Jack. Now download it and soak game.
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
Ripped Open Radio #2
1. Beatnuts - "Get Funky" (remix)