Archive for Hip Hop

Daily Dose of L

Posted in Daily Dose of L with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 18, 2009 by letterlbeats

Good Friday Hip Hop!

I though the last Top 5 Friday would be the last one of the year but it looks like we have time for one more.

I was watching Sesame Street with my son. Before he started watching it, I hadn’t seen the show since like ’89. Apparently they have changed a lot with the times. One of those changes seems to include a regular dose of Hip Hop. I’ve heard them rap about everything from bird habitats to prime numbers. I appreciate the effort but it started to remind me of all the things that I’ve seen over the years where Hip Hop has been exploited and/or placed grossly out of context. I present to you the Top 5 Worst Exploitations of Hip Hop:

5. Parappa The Rapper

According to, PaRappa the Rapper was a rhythm video game for PS1. Released in Japan on December 6, 1996, followed by releases in North America on October 31, 1997 and Europe in September 1998, it was one of the first rhythm video games (sort of a precursor to DDR, Guitar Hero and Rock Band). While it was simplistic on a certain level, the game is remembered for its unique graphic design, its quirky soundtrack, and its bizarre plot. The game is named after its protagonist, Parappa, a rapping dog.

4. The Super Bowl Shuffle

Here’s the thing about this one. I have lived in Chicago on and off since ’84. People here loved it. In fact I remember my dad taking me to the Bears’ victory parade. However, I dare you to watch that video now without laughing. Go ahead, it’s right here:

3. The Burger King Sir Mix-A-Lot Square Butts Commercial

This falls under the “out of context” category because it’s so out of context that it’s hilarious. You’ve all seen it so I won’t post the video but come on! They’re using Hip Hop to sell burgers and fries.

2. Snoop Sells Nokia N-Gage During 2004 Sugar Bowl

I think people have forgotten about this so I might have to break out the video. I remember one of my friends saying at the time, “Snoop doesn’t usually sell out but when he does, he goes 110%…ok we couldn’t locate the video but Google it. It was a shizzame.

1. MTV

For those of you born after 1990 you should know something. MTV was strictly for rock videos. As well, before Michael Jackson, MTV would not play black music. In fact, they were hesitant to play MJ’s records altogether. This was like ’83 or ’84. Now fast forward to 2009, and they barely even play videos. The ones that they do play are almost predominantly Hip Hop or pop. When TRL (Total Request Live) was at its height, it was almost all rap videos. MTV, at one point I loved you and at one point you would not play black music (Hip Hop, R&B etc.). Now that you can make a profit, you loooove Hip Hop.


Daily Dose of L

Posted in Daily Dose of L with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 1, 2009 by letterlbeats

Have you heard one of the greatest stories ever told in Hip Hop?

This is my ode to a living legend. Pete Rock all but defined what is commonly known as “The Golden Era” of Hip Hop. His is the most unique and eclectic sound to ever bless our music.

He is best known for T.R.O.Y. (They Reminisce Over You) from 1992’s Mecca and the Soul Brother. Even if you don’t know the name of the song, you have heard it before. It’s an iconic piece of music that is etched in the conscience of Hip Hop. I had heard it when I was much younger. It really hit me after it was in NBA Street Vol. II on PS2. That game had so many scenes from NY street courts. T.R.O.Y. just complimented those scenes so well. It’s an auditory synonym for NY Hip Hop.

His first two albums, including 1990’s All Souled Out, were collaborations with CL Smooth. CL was the primary emcee for the duo, while Pete contributed verses as needed. His signature was taking sounds from several records and piecing them together. His first piece of equipment was the E-Mu SP 1200. He later shifted to the MPC 2000XL as his primary weapon of choice. He is an expert at tuning sounds from different sources to make them sound like they should go together.