Friday, January 11, 2008

Treebeats A To Z Posting Compilation Of Really Dope Things. The Letter N

In my mad intricate plot, I saved the second half of the alphabet for the dos mil ocho putas. An amazing year thus far with January “The Month Of Beats” progressing along quite nicely. Next month is either the month of “Breaks & Rare Grooves” or “Rapper Guys” I’m not sure yet and planning 3 weeks ahead seems a bit too ambitious. Anyway, here’s “N” Enjoy or don’t.
01 - Nancy Wilson & CannonBall Adderly - Save Your Love For Me
Ah Nancy Wilson. The babalicious song stylist with a remarkable voice to boot. This is off the record she did with the legendary Cannonball Adderly. Its just really good vocal jazz with Adderly making aural brass love. The whole record is great and I highly recommend it.
02 - Nas - It Ain’t Hard To Tell (Large Professor Remix)
Perhaps there are too many LP remixes on my list. I don’t care. There’s a reason for it. They’re dope. With a clever Biz sample this one just bangs. It loses the charm of the Human Nature version but was probably cheaper and legal-er to make. I know it’s obvious to say this album was big in one’s life but this one was. I actually met Nas when he had released this album as we had a mutual friend. He was doing a promo tour and did a show in Florida where I was living at the time. He came to my crib and we had a session and smoked Bidi’s and talked about beats. My homeboy had just bought a bunch of hash and we started smoking and drinking beers and got pretty fandangled. As the night progressed he became more comfortable and familiar and was less Nas and more Nasir and he started opening up a little. He went on about his difficult relationship with his dad and then out of nowhere, the dude starts crying. I mean literally weeping on my couch and I’m looking at my friend like “What the Fuck!?”
Actually none of that happened. And I would go on but got really bored with myself. Great track though.
03 - Naughty By Nature - Uptown Anthem
Before making Egypt with Pepa. Before his acting career with co-stars Peanuts Chocolate and Obsession (seriously? You’re telling me it’s not gay porn but his name was Peanuts Chocolate!) Naughty By Nature was doing well. And after their self-titled debut they did a little song on the Juice soundtrack that fucking owned me. I mean the whole thing with the piano in the beginning and then him coming in with, “Hey you can smoke a spliff...” and then continuing his rapid-fire delivery into shit no one ever really understands. Vinnie once again paled in comparison but still was fine. I don’t know how many times I watched this movie.
04 - Nellie McKay - The Big One
From the nearly never released second record from Ms. McKay we have “The Big One” After doing stand-up for a while Nellie started recording music. Her initial outings generated a lot of buzz and the bidding wars commenced to have the next big thing. After a label debacle I think she is now on her own label. She’s pretty hard to pin down genre-wise. She does have a great voice and smart lyrics. The song is about Harlem being Guliani-ized and how great that turned out for anyone not old, white and rich.
05 - The New Pornographers - The Laws Have Changed
Honestly, the main reason this song is here is because Neko Case’s voice kicks ass and it was a two-fer. The song is pretty good too. People drool and babble about how Mass Romantic was such a better album and any real music fan would agree. I’m a surreal music fan, man. I burn incense and I am guided by the winds of change and the planets in the northern hemisphere.
06 - Nice & Smooth - Sometimes I rhyme Slow (Stay Faithful Remix)
There was a time where I dropped this beat behind everything else in my collection. And I would juggle it for hours much to my delight and any one else’s chagrin. I don’t know what it is about the beat, but Joshy likey!
07 - Nick Drake - Parasite
The sad case of a dude who was really talented and petrified of sharing his talent. A story that parallels the crippling sorrow that washed over America when Jonathan Knight came out and announced he had stage fright and the New Kids broke up. Nick Drake battled or rather was beaten down by depression up until he overdosed on antidepressants in 1974. He never was critically acclaimed in his lifetime and this certainly didn’t catapult him into extroversion. He was one of dudes that played guitar and sang quietly and would get his guitar ripped out of his hands and then have it smashed against the wall by William Zabka if he was in any 80’s film.
08 - Nightmares On Wax - Morse
I’m a lot more familiar with George Evelyn’s work from the 90’s a la “Smokers Delight” and “Carboot Soul” which was well produced down tempo hip-hop. This is off the latter. He had a lot of musicians and artists come in for the sessions and I heard that the show was pretty good. Another reason I like N.O.W. is he did an EP with De La. So, yeah dig the mellow vibe and spark an L.
09 - Nina Simone - Black Is The Color Of My True Love’s Hair (Jaffa Remix)
So what if Eunice Kathleen Waymon looks like and sounds like a dude? So did MC Lyte but Ms Simone made more than 2 albums worth listening to. This song is from the Verve Remix series which are worth checking out if you like fat beats and Jazz. Her voice was unique and covered a lot of emotions effectively. A few cool facts about her. She recorded over 40 albums. She had Bi-Polar Disorder. She once shot a neighbor’s child for disrupting her concentration. Lauryn Hill does a spot on imitation of her defecating on a microphone. Nuff said.
10 - Nine - Wutcha Want (Portishead Remix)
Nine was that dude that sounded like he was in the midst of swallowing a bag of gravel and then decided he rhyme as well. Kind of like that guy who drinks a glass of water while his Mannequin sings The Star Spangled Banner. But different and iller. This is the Portishead remix. Speaking of Portishead, when asked about rumors as to whether or not they would be working with Danger Mouse on their new effort Mr. Barrows replied, “I’d rather poo in my mum’s Sunday roast than have Danger Mouse produce a Portishead record. No offense.” None taken sir. Well played.
11 - Nine Inch Nails - Closer
Upon further introspection, I was never really a Trent fan. I like a couple of tracks off of this record and the only track of his I liked a lot was off of the Mulholland Drive soundtrack which featured hot chicks naked and making out and the standard “I’m the only person who actually knows what’s going on but I have know clue what that actually is” plot by David Lynch. So, I should have posted that song but I didn’t and don’t feel like going back now. In closing, I only put this here because I like what he did conceptually, pushing boundaries and expanding his audience’s tastes but I didn’t really like it.
12 - Nirvana - Lithium
I wasn’t ready for this band when they came out. I was too submerged in making beats and writing rhymes to accept anything that wasn’t sequenced. I grew up. I’m also glad I wasn’t on the Nirvana bandwagon because they would have been ruined for me by over exposure. Now I can come from the future and freak that futuristic George Jetson robotic type shit and appreciated it without millions of depressed and pseudo depressed kids having candlelight vigils and crying over him going out with his grey matter splattered against the closet wall. I think that was gangster.
Pussy.
13 - The Notorius B.I.G. - Gimme The Loot
Okay here it goes. I don’t think Biggie was the greatest rapper of all time. Now that everyone has left the room I shall continue. He was obviously great but he recorded 2 records. Only one of them was great. The second one was not. Sorry. And his style was ill but he recycled lyrics all the time. I’m not saying others don’t but I guarantee the greatest of all time won’t. I was a much bigger early Biggie fan. I liked his cameos. “Party & Bullshit” is my favorite song of his, period. True Story, this is kind of where that Nas story came from BTW. Me and a bunch of my friends went to Jack The Rapper in Florida while I was living there. We broke 2 ounces into nicks and dimes and sold it and tried to network. We sold a lot, smoked a lot but networked nil. Anyway, I was taking a break and taking in the scene for a minute when Big and some stromie of his stand right next to me. This was after Party & Bullshit but before he was huge (as a star I mean. He was still quite fat) So I’m doing my best to not look over at him and be like “Hey I think your really groovy sir, and on behalf of all white people to all black people, “I’m sorry” can we be friends?” But apparently Big Poppa had had too much to drink and was having trouble balancing his girth and maintaining a vertical stance. His buddy says he’s going to look for someone and he starts whining, “Nah man. Don’t leave me man.” Like really pitifully. It was horrifying. I felt awkward and uncomfortable and walked away and we never crossed paths again.
14 - The Nonce - Mix Tapes
Did you know “nonce” means “pedophile” in the Queens’ English? I didn’t. It means, “present time” in Real English. It means “a rap group form the mid 90’s that had 2 MC’s, one of which died” in Ebonics. It’s one of those slept on records that people go on and on about so I won’t but if you haven’t checked out “World Ultimate” then do so. It’s a good example of what good hip-hop from the West Coast sounded like. Less posturing and more postulating. And the “mix tapes” referred to in this song are the kind that don’t suck.
15 - Nuyorican Soul - Jazzy Jeff’s Theme
A really interesting project that came out in the late 90’s that was the brainchild Of Kenny Dope and Little Louie Vega. This one features Jazzy Jeff which I don’t think one can get enough of. Well that’s not true but it’s a dope track. The rest of the release was a combination of Jazz, Latin, R&B, and Hip-Hop that all blended really well. Certainly worth a listen if you’ve never checked it out.
16 - N.W.A. - Gangsta Gangsta (Aphrodite Remix)
Aphrodite on the remix. Not much like the original but maybe some of you haven’t heard it yet so I wanted to break you off something proper like. If you don’t know Aphrodite, he was instrumental in making Drum & Bass a big thing (I use “big” as a relative term) this comes off of a CD called Urban Jungle where he remixes a couple other rapper guys like Jeru and The Luniz. You’ll also find the Vinyl Syndicate’s "Man Of Steel" which always gets me open and should absolutely be checked out.

Pace.

01 - Nancy Wilson & CannonBall Adderly - Save Your Love For Me
02 - Nas - It Ain’t Hard To Tell (Large Professor Remix)
03 - Naughty By Nature - Uptown Anthem
04 - Nellie McKay - The Big One
05 - The New Pornographers - The Laws Have Changed
06 - Nice & Smooth - Sometimes I rhyme Slow (Stay Faithful Remix)
07 - Nick Drake - Parasite
08 - Nightmares On Wax - Morse
09 - Nina Simone - Black Is The Color Of My True Love’s Hair (Jaffa Remix)
10 - Nine - Wutcha Want (Portishead Remix)
11 - Nine Inch Nails - Closer
12 - Nirvana - Lithium
13 - The Notorius B.I.G. - Gimme The Loot
14 - The Nonce - Mix Tapes
15 - Nuyorican Soul - Jazzy Jeff’s Theme
16 - N.W.A. - Gangsta Gangsta (Aphrodite Remix)

3 comments:

AaronM said...

Nice comp.
Great description of Nine's voice too.

Max said...

The pic of the Necronomicon is hilarious. Also, good work exposing your readers to the New Pornographers and Neko Case specifically.

What It Is said...

It's such a weird exercise. Especially the limiting to 100 megs part and picking and choosing what makes it and doesn't. But that's more my own thing I got going on. Not really sure what I was actually going to say at this point but I can always rely on the internal monologue thing to take up some space. So, yeah. That is all.

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