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Bumpin In My Ride

Posted Mar 13 2006

Five minute reviews of CDs getting love in my ride. This article was featured on BlackElectorate.com.

DJ Chino-Dress II Sweat 2
If I wasn’t so humble, I’d be riding my own jock. Jus' playin. I picked a bunch of hits as diverse as R. Kelly’s “Happy People” to “Jack of Spades” by Boogie Down Productions to classic house tracks from Chicago in a 75 minute mix designed to make you move. You can Chicago Step, do the Thunder Clap, the Wop, and hustle to this. I dug up tracks from places as diverse as Australia, Jamaica, and the Bronx. E-mail me about buying two or three copies now! Disclosure: Yeah, this is a bit of self-promotion, but I gotta eat too. I wouldn’t steer you wrong though, would I?

DJ Graffiti-Bling Free 3: It’s Official
This series keeps getting better as Graffiti brings us Volume Three, a fully licensed mix featuring established and obscure artists from hip hop’s underground, ranging from Brother Ali to Erick Sermon. Between tracks, Graf drops some knowledge and it would’ve been nice to hear him kick some more rhymes. Disclosure: Yeah, we’re friends, but I was a fan before we connected on a personal level.

Carlos Mena-Hip Hop Meditations
A blend of hip hop, spoken word, and Afro Cubanisms from the Brooklyn-bred M.C. who was part of the San Jose-based 10 Bass T in the early ‘90s. Special guests include Oakland’s Allseer and Speech of Arrested Development. Disclosure: OK, so I’m friends with this guy too. I met Carlos a few months back and as we kept in touch, I was really feeling his vibe so I actually offered my support for this CD before I had even heard it. You can also drop me a line if you’re interested in buying it. And yes, I have heard it.

Kiwi-Writes of Passage: Portraits of Son Rising
There’s nothing subtle here as Kiwi proceeds to wreck shop from a decidedly Filipino-American perspective touching on racism, capitalism, politics, and other ills plaguing our world. Make sure you also support his boy Bambu. Someone ganked my copy so I need to buy another one. He's on the same vibe as Kiwi and you can get more info on him at the above link.
Disclosure: After buying this CD from him after a show, I dropped him an e-mail but never heard anything back. I guess he didn’t want to be friends.

Black Electorate-The Streets Are Political
Cedric Muhammad and crew show once again that they’re among the best at connecting the white collars with the white t-shirts when it comes to politics. This mix blends lectures, interview excerpts, and thought-provoking tracks from the past and present. The beats are hard hitting and plenty of big names are here, proving that artists such as Jada Kiss and Jay Z are much more complex than their radio hits let on. A classic hip-hop CD. Disclosure: Beanie Sigel drops a track that’s so heartfelt and honest that I wanted to whup his deadbeat dad’s *ss.

Subterraneous Records-Water World Too
Another hot album from one of Michigan’s premier hip hop crews featuring thoughtful lyrics and tight beats. Featured artists include DJ Phrikshun, Decompoze, and One Man Army. Sports fans will appreciate the track titled “Pistons” after this past year’s glorious NBA season. Those in New York can hit up dmenzion@yahoo.com for copies.

Classic 1824-Heavy Dosage
This Pittsburgh-based crew slipped me this mix CD the other day and if I didn’t know better, I would’ve thought that they recorded this 13 or 14 years ago. If you know your hip hop history, that's a good thing. In addition to 5 Percent ideology being stamped all over this CD, the grimey, sample heavy beats took me back to Rakim, Kool G Rap, early Nas, and Wu-Tang. Even those who think that Junior M.A.F.I.A. is old school will find something familiar here. If one had to categorize them, I’d put them on the East Coast of things, as if you couldn’t tell by my above references. Topically, songs revolve around empowering the Black community, racial pride, and bridging social activists with the streets. As they make an effort to grapple with serious issues that most MCs don't touch, you might hear a few things that you don’t agree with but don’t miss the forest for the trees. Contact classic1824@yahoo.com for more info.

Shamoko Noble-The Return of the Coming of the Aftermath
I just got this CD, but it came highly recommended by Adisa Banjoko, who some may know by his writings on Davey D and All Hip Hop.com. So far, I’m digging it. Some nice beats, including a few that it would be easy to hear Defari, Cypress Hill, or E-40 rhyming over. Topically, Shamako shows a diverse range. I've only had a couple of preliminary listens but I definitely feel like I got my money’s worth. Check him out.

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