Archive for Michael Jackson

Daily Dose of L

Posted in Daily Dose of L with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 6, 2009 by letterlbeats

It’s time for another Top 5 Friday

Good Friday Hip Hop! If you are a regular reader of my blog, you know that I try to get at least one top 5 list in every month. Today I will countdown the top 5 trends in hip hop production for 2009.

5. The Airhorn

This has been a mixtape staple for years but only recently are we hearing it in actual songs on purpose. It originated in Reggae dance halls as a like a call to the dance floor. I remember hearing in a mixtape I got in like ’01 from Canal Street in NY. Then I would hear it from Dj’s at parties (probably because half of their stuff came from mixtapes). Obviously Drake’s Forever was the linchpin song that demonstrated this trick but I heard some others this year as well. Even Young General wanted me to throw it in Headbanger Boogie.

Drake Forever Cover

4. The Drumma Boy Sound Effect

Even though Put On by Young Jeezy was the summer anthem for 2008, in 2009 everybody started biting Drumma Boy’s (the prodcuer of the song) style by inserting that electro synth build up sound effect into every damned song. My understanding is that it was supposed to be his signature tag but I guess it doesn’t work if everyone else does it.

3. Synthesizers

I suppose this was more of a carryover from 2008 but I think the death of Michael Jackson and the trend of 80’s throwback kept it going. In the last month I can’t turn on the radio without feeling like the line between hip hop, pop, techno and electro has been blurred beyond recognition.

2. Hi Pass Filtered Ad Libs

This is also known as the “telephone” effect. Obviously we were first introduced to this on B.I.G.’s Warning. But now it’s like people can’t make a song without having at least one track of vocals passed through the filter. Even singing vocals. That Sean Kingston song is a perfect example. Melodies or some sh*t like that.

1. The Triplet Kick

The staple song for the year on this one would be Every Girls by Drake, produced by Tha Bizness. It’s essentially an extra kick between a double. It’s really simple but I’ve heard it so much that I don’t understand why this never happened before. Timbaland used to do it all the time but when he did it with a bunch of other off beat type rhythms. These are like your basic 1,4,7,11 patterns (on a 16 step based sequencer) but done on a 1/32 as to be able to add that quick triplet. It’s funny because I know Jason is reading this right now and has no idea whatI am talking about.

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Daily Dose of L

Posted in Daily Dose of L with tags , , , , , , , , on October 23, 2009 by letterlbeats

It’s time for another Top Five Friday! I love my top five lists and I haven’t done one since my Top Five Hip Hop Movies of all time.

So I am DJing the dance tonight at the school where I work. It is our Halloween dance…kind of. The theme is Michael Jackson and we are celebrating every era of MJ. Kids will be dressing like him and everything. So to celebrate the dance and the man, here are my top five Michael Jackson Songs:

5. Billie Jean

While this is a great song, I think the image of Michael’s first moonwalk at the Motown 25th Anniversary celebration is what cements this in the top 5 for me.

Billie Jean

4. Remember The Time

This song was as much about great songwriting as it was about Mike’s performance. The song was co-written by MJ, Teddy Riley and Bernard Belle. It’s such a timeless classic that brings back great memories for me.

Remember The Time

3. Thriller

I remember when I was about 11 and I rented the Making Of Thriller video (yes, cassette tape) and I watched that thing like 20 times. It was a little bit scary but it was soooo cool. Especially the break dancing zombies at the end. Remember the Taiwanese prison where the inmates re-enacted the entire routine? Ha!


2. Smooth Criminal

The video was Michael’s key to adult success. First of all, that white suit with the blue dress shirt, black tie and black armband was so damn smooth. And the the lean that everybody busted their face trying to do…classic. You add that to a nasty guitar riff, and it’s another MJ classic!

Smooth Criminal

1. Bad

The year was 1987. Simultaneous to the release of LL Cool J’s I’m Bad, Michael Jackson confirmed bad as the thing to be. I know how corny it sounds now, but I guess you had to be there. My favorite part of this video was the guy rollerskating at the end.


The effect that Michael Jackson had on music as a whole cannot be understated. everyone listened to his music. That’s why he was the king of pop. Pop music is defined as music that reaches the most people in terms of popularity. His music was rock, R&B, pop and hip hop. Moreover, because he was a black entertainer, black people could identify with him and his music so culturally, his influence on urban music is undeniable. Without Michael, there are no Chris Browns, no Usher, T-Pain, Diddy, Drake, Ne-yo, Kanye West, Jay-Z. etc. This is a generation of performers who grew up on Michael Jackson.

Here is a list of songs that sample his songs:

Good Life-Kanye West & T-Pain

Love Will Be Right Here-SWV

O.P.P.-Naughty By Nature

H To The Izzo-Jay-Z Produced by Kanye West


Hey Lover-LL Cool J Featuring Boyz II Men

It Ain’t Hard To Tell-Nas

Good Good-Ashanti

One More Drink-Ludacris

Ill Na Na-Foxy Brown

…Just to name a few

And for the record he was spoofed by Weird Al Yankovic…twice:

Weird Al

Weird Al 2

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