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Native Tongue x A Tribe Called Quest x New Birth

Despite the tit for tat that Q-Tip and Michael Rapaport are currently engaging in, the documentary they are riffing about, Beats, Rhymes and Life: The Travels of a Tribe Called Quest is phenomenal. I said as much, though I’d like to think more eloquently, on ParlourMagazine.com. A moment that stood out for me in the flick is when Q-Tip described how Tribe’s extended crew of family (starting with Jungle Brothers and De La Soul) came up with the name Native Tongue.*

The story goes that the Abstract was at Baby Afrika’s crib cutting up a New Birth record that says “took away our native tongue.” After some digging—through the wonderful world of Google—I figured out the specific song in question is called “African Cry”  [pay attention at the 0:32 mark below] from the Funk/Soul band’s 1972 album Coming Together. The record itself is deep; its soulful lyrics recount African’s getting stolen from their lands and being shipped across the sea and into slavery, over a funky bass line and wailing horns.

I found the MP3 of “African Cry,” which I feel obliged to share since Coming Together seems to be out print (I couldn’t even find it on YouTube). Get it while the gettings are good, to paraphrase ATCQ’s “Ham N’ Eggs.” If you’re so inclined, seek out the entire album because it’s a winner.

Download: The New Birth “African Cry” [Mediafire]

*Note, I’m of the school of thought that when used correctly—though even some members jack it up—the “tongue” is singular. The homie Keith Murphy wrote a great story on the influential crew for Vibe Magazine about four years back.

RELATED:

Helped on on this too. -> Top 30 Greatest A Tribe Called Quest Songs [XXLMag.com]

July 8, 2011 Posted by | Films, Freshness, Hip-Hop, Music, News, Rare Joints | , , , , , | 3 Comments

Rare Joints: The Source Magazine – Mad Flavor Vol. 1

A compilation called Mad Flavor Volume One from The Source Magazine. Not to be confused with those The Source Presents Hip-Hop Hits albums, this promo only CD dropped circa 1991, packaged with an issue of mag. I can’t for the life of me remember which exact issue it was, though. Kept the CD in my files and thought I’d share.

Some familiar joints (2Pac “Words of Wisdom,” Del the Funky Homosapien “Dr. Bombay”), a few rarities (Hard Knocks was a duo out of The BX signed to Wild Pitch, Pretty Tone Capone was part of the infamous Azie Faison’s MobStyle rap group ) and some oddball picks (Jodeci. word? not without any Rae & Ghost in the mix buddy). Strangely, there isn’t a single Almighty RSO song on here. Go figure.

Tracklist after the Hard Knocks and Sir Mix-A-Lot vids, download here [Mediafire].

Note: The Cookie Crew and Two Kings in a Cipher songs are actually #9 and #8, respectively, in the sequence.

RELATED:

Who Deserves the Precious 5 Mics? [TheSource.com]

Continue reading

August 2, 2010 Posted by | Freshness, Hip-Hop, Music, News, Rare Joints, Scans | , , , , , | 3 Comments

The ‘Lo Lifestyle x Vintage Hip-Hop Videos

Taz best not give out his address…

“When I go bury me with the ‘Lo on.”—Raekwon “Iron Maiden” (Ghostface Killah’s Ironman)

The homie Dallas Penn dropped a post last week regarding Vado and his suspect Polo homage “Polo” [side note: dallaspenn.com is down and according to DP he is currently “unemployed by the internets,” this must be corrected, stat.]. I gotta agree with DP’s sentiment, I can’t rock with cats shilling for ‘Lo in rhyme form when you can tell the appreciation for the nuance of the Polo lifestyle just isn’t there. Really, any MC suddenly repping like they’re serious ‘Lo heads reeks of gimmickry unless they’re certified ‘Lo connossieurs; like say Thirstin Howl III, Meyhem Lauren or that kid Shakespeare the Great. ‘Nuff respect due to official Lo Life members past and present too.

But the point of my post is that I was reminded of a couple of OG Hip-Hop videos that truly repped the ‘Lo lifestyle: Zhigge’s “Rakin’ in the Dough” and “Toss It Up” (both produced by Salaam Remi) as well as KRS-1’s “Outta Here” (produced by DJ Premier). A special nod must be given to Wu-Tang Clan’s “Can It Be All So Simple” because—as the homie Rob Markman pointed out—Raekwon rocking the Snow Beach Polo jacket was truly epic.

I’m not going to even front like my ‘Lo pieces are that hardbody—I do got a few gems in the stash, though—but I’m an appreciator of the lifestyle. There’s something to be said when ‘Lo heads check each other’s gear and give appreciative head nods—pause—out of respect. It’s a mutual understanding that hearkens back to an era when the quality of your gear was first and foremost (think: Coca-Cola gear, North Face shells with Gore-Tex, Vasque boots, etc.). Pandering to the Hip-Hop generation with baggy cuts and too loud logos? Nah, hold that. We’ll keep gravitating to fly fashion that probably wasn’t intended for us to begin with, flip it, and have the establishment racing to catch up. It’s the Hip-Hop way.

And I’ll always have more ‘Lo than my bro-hims Vaughn C and DJ Maestro, mentally.

Zhigge “Toss It Up” Quality (image wise) of the vid is wack but (Added a better version) some classic pieces are seen in there.


Zhigge “Rakin’ In the Dough” – “…but did you know, the mall was closed/So I spin into Macy’s and get some Guess and Polo…” True.

Had to add the “Uptown Bounce” version, which is better quality anyway.

KRS-One “Outta Here” – Sun (sic) with the green rugby was winning.

Wu-Tang Clan “Can It Be All So Simple”

BONUS

Grand Puba Ft Mary J Blige – “Whats The 411 (Live)” – “Polo the top gear…” raps Puba. The Alpine Polo rugby is timeless. Mary J’s Cross Colours outfit, not so much.

The Baby Polo Mansion Pt. 1 – When your pops is Thirstin Howl III your Polo game is proper since birth, literally.

June 29, 2010 Posted by | Fresh Dipped, Freshness, Hip-Hop, Music, Rare Joints | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Rare Joints: A Tribe Called Quest’s Lost Intro x Mos Def

Rock Rock Y'all

Back in ’98 I was Hip-Hop Music Director at WTJU in Charlottesville, Virginia. The nondescript position made me privy to treats like an advance copy of A Tribe Called Quest’s then last hurrah, The Love Movement. OG promo man Al Lindstrom had been servicing me with music from Jive Records for a minute so after a few pestering phone calls (e-mail? nah.) he sent me the CD advance, making me that ninja amongst my inner circle of Hip-Hop heads.

The proliferation of MP3 blogs has pretty much deaded proper advances for most major label releases. More often than not, the best you get is a watermarked copy with annoying commentary to discourage bootlegging or worse yet, the corny listening session where every ass kiss journo raves about how this is the album of the year.

The Love Movement “Intro” f/ Mos Def | Mediafire

The point of this inaugural Rare Joints post is that The Love Movement’s advance included the above intro track featuring Mos Def pontificating on the loveliness of ATCQ. The inclusion of the minute and change track probably wouldn’t have made the album’s initially lukewarm reception by fans and critics much better. But to its credit the The Love Movement has aged well in the ATCQ cannon, in no small part due to Jay Dee/J. Dilla’s sonic influence.

RELATED:
Video: A Tribe Called Quest Reunites for Phife Dawg’s Diabetes Benefit [Nah Right]

Video: Jay Electronica, Talib Kweli & Mos Def Perform @ The Knitting Factory [The Smoking Section]

Video: Q-Tip “Life Is Better” + All The Others

January 22, 2010 Posted by | Freshness, Hip-Hop, Music, News, Rare Joints | , , , , , , , , | 26 Comments