I've been missin' out on the musical gold of satellite radio! I discovered a station called Backspin, featuring the pioneers of Old School rap/hip hop just a few days ago. I had forgotten how much I admired some of those rhythms and rhymes. Can you place these snippets of clips from some old school hits?
1. "I'm brown....from the boogie down"
2. "This groove is set to soothe and move you. Party people now it's time to....Get up....everybody get up"
3. "Hyped like a poet, on the mic I'll show it. Do-re-mi fa-so-la ti-doe it."
(I wanted to jump up and dance, but I was driving the car.)
4. You a paper chaser, you got your block on fire. Remain' a G, until the moment you expire. You know what it is to make nothin' outa somethin'. You handle your biz and don't be cryin' and sufferin'."
You can't tell me that's not poetry. This performer's delivery is so rhythmically perfect even I can replicate it (sort of).
And this was the last of my satellite radio meal:
5. "Spread the word, cause I'm in EFFECT. A smooth operator, operatin' correctly."
Can you name any of the artists who penned the above lyrics? Juvenile is one of them and as I heard his song "Ha" on satellite radio recently, I remembered the eloquence of the music video for the song. The video for "Ha" is very well made and entertaining for several reasons. It's filmed in New Orleans in the Magnolia Projects, where Juvenile grew up. The video shows footage of random children and adults in the Big Easy, at least 6 years prior to Hurricane Katrina. You see the beauty, pain, strength and vulnerable humanity in the faces of these smiling, straight-faced, and frowning residents, medics and police officers. As I watch the video now, I can't help but wonder how many of these babies and grown folks were affected by the devastation of Katrina.
There's something both ominous and comical about the way Juvenile repeats lines from the Forest Gump film, "Run Forrest, Run Forrest, Run!" in "Ha" because as he says the lines, the music video shows a young boy running from police officers in an alley.
And for you Latin jazz/salsa lovers out there, if you don't know about it, you gotta check out Juvenile's "Follow Me Now" song that is oh so lively and ingenious. It's a harmonious and witty blend of hip hop and Latin flavors. I love the way the music video features shots of Latinos and African-Americans, smiling, dancing, and just actin' silly. Check it out here: