Journal / hip hop.

i was just talking to a friend of mine about the early days of hip-hop in nyc. well, the early-ish days.

i only heard the early/early/early days (79, 80, etc) on the radio (mr magic, red alert, etc). i first started going to hip hop clubs in the city in 1982 and 1983, and then when i first started dj’ing at mars in 1987 i thought, for a moment, that i was actually a hot shit hip hop dj…

then i heard klark kent and i realized that on the ‘talented hip hop dj scale of 1 – 10’ i ranked somewhere around 1.7 compared to him. he’s still the best hip hop dj i’ve ever heard.

the mid to late 80’s were an amazing time for hip hop. big daddy kane, eric b and rakim, ultramagnetics, public enemy, biz markie, de la soul, schooly d, and on and on. rakim still, in my opinion, ranks as the best mc ever in the history of ever. just listen to the vocals in ‘follow the leader’ and try to tell me that any other mc has ever even come close to his level of mastery.

i still like some modern hip hop (like talib kweli and common), but most modern hip hop just can’t compare to the talent and creativity that was around in 1986, 87, 88. every week back then i’d get a new record and think it was the best hip hop record ever made. and there was true underground hip hop, with groups like jvc force putting out records that were huge in the clubs in nyc but virtually unknown outside of nyc. and lyrically people wrote/rapped about everything. raps were political. raps were funny. raps were smart. again, just listen to the vocals in ‘follow the leader’ and then listen to any of the top 40 rap from the last 10 years…

there’s a lot of creativity in todays hip hop, but i really don’t know if anyone needs to hear another song about rims, champagne, clubs, and money…

here’s the best mc of all time, rakim, with ‘follow the leader’.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WvIOsyrMQrA

-moby