Friday, April 26, 2019

STeP x STeP`s "CoMiN` 2 GeTCHa"...

First off, BiG~uP BowdenCstyle! He`s the kat that originally shared this album over on the Bomb1st Formus, until then I had no idea that this even existed. So thank you very much kind sir, the move is truly appreciated. Anyways, what I can tell you about the album itself is unfortunately somewhat limited - however the info` is still very interesting nonetheless. So sit down, roll up, strap ya`selves in & get ready for the ride...

Step x Step (Step By Step) is a duo that reps L.A. consisting of members Doc Genisis (Vernon Jackson) from Watts & Funky Dreds (Jimmy Hamiliton) from South Central. While both attended State University at Norfolk, they perfected their dancing & rappin` skills. It was during this time of perfecting their crafts that the 2 friends decided to band together & form a group. Shortly after their union Step x Step auditioned to appear in a commercial for Coca-Cola & nailed it. In 1995 the duo was eventually able to put together an album, their debut titled "Comin` 2 Getcha". The album was released thru Lockdown Records, a label owned by Big Wes Crockett. In the early 1990's Big Wes was a music producer & promoter working with SOLAR Records until he branched out on his own with Lockdown Records. The label wasn`t around long with only a total of 4 releases under their belt; Life Afta Death`s (Erotic D & Jonezey Jay) debut album "The Death Penalty"  & their single "Date With Death" in 1993 & Step x Step`s "Comin` 2 Getcha" & their single "Stomp! It`s All The Way Live" released in 1995...

The interesting historical Hip Hop connections continue, check it out! Step x Step recorded "Comin` 2 Getcha" in Galaxy Sound Studio, the same famed studio that Dick Griffey allowed Dr. Dre & Suge Knight to use when they were in the beginning stages of forming Death Row Records. Wait there`s more...The D.O.C. & Big Wes Crockett were executive producers on the project. While production was handled by Clever who did 5 tracks & J-Stank (think Dangerous Records, Tweedy Bird Loc, NiNi X, Bloods & Crips) also did 5 joints. Another interesting fact about this album is that Blaqthoven contributes one of his first productions on the track "Friendz". That`s quite a bit of historical Hip Hop connections right there, especially for an album that I`m sure many haven`t heard yet, that`s why I`m sharing it with y`all. The album`s only single "Stomp! It`s All The Way Live",  which samples the classic Lakeside tune, actually features Mark Wood & Stephen Shockley from Lakeside singing on the hook. Something else that I noticed, but can only assume is that the Homegirl Shello was cool with Step x Step because she`s featured 4 times on the album. Anyways there ya have it y`all a little background info` on an album that you should hear at least once. Stand out joints for me are; "Wake Up", "Stomp! It`s...", "Step x Step Be Rockin`" & "D.M.S.". Something to note, the volume on a lot of these tracks was lower than I liked so I boosted it up a few notches. Check it out for ya`selves & feel free to drop some comments...





Label: Lockdown Records
Released: 1995



1. Wake Up {ft. Aaron & Shello}
2. Hee Haw [Skit]
3. Letter 2 Da Banger
4. Brother To Brother
5. Stomp! It`s All The Way Live {ft. Mark Wood & Stephen Shockley of Lakeside}
6. Pledge Story
7. Friendz
8. Step x Step Be Rockin`
9. Between 2 Cutz
10. Blow Your Wig {ft. The Bro`s & Shello}
11. What If? {ft. Cream}
12. Out To Get Minez {ft. Shello}
13. Dinner, Movies, Sex {ft. Shello}











N`JoY...

Saturday, February 23, 2019

KRS-One`s "Return Of The Boom Bap [HeRBaN DeLuXe VeRSioN]"...



“Return Of The Boom Bap”……Ahhhhhhhh mannnnnn! What should I say about this album? Aside from the fact that it’s still my favorite KRS-One album to this day? Aside from the fact that I still have the cassette over at my parents’ crib? Copped it thru one of those music clubs back in the day; you know Columbia House, BMG music, etc. I actually gotta BiG uP those music clubs because I was able to experience a whole lot of Hip Hop thru the memberships that I had with ‘em when I was 13 & didn’t have a large grip of dough to spend. Copped plenty of albums at reasonable prices, cassettes at first because I hadn’t yet moved onto CDs until a bit later in the game. The only thing that I wasn’t a fan of was when ya had to buy the required amount of CDs or tapes at their full price because their prices were quite high especially with their shipping costs, but that’s another story for another day. So anyway that’s how I was able to get my hands on the “Return Of The Boom Bap” tape amongst many others & once I slapped that tape into my Sony Walkman I played the hell out of it thru~out my high school years! I was feeling a little nostalgic a few weeks ago so I actually dug out the album from one of my many boxes of CDs & decided to dust it off. While giving it a listen thru that’s when I got to wondering why hasn’t this album been re~released with some bonus cuts? It’s definitely worthy of such a release, so I said fuck it & decided that I’d put together one of my web~famous HeRBaN DeLuXe VeRSioNs & this here is what I came up with…


Originally this great gem of an album was released in 1993 thru Jive & it included 14 tracks in total, with production handled by the likes of DJ Premier (6 tracks), Norty Cotto (1 track), Kid Capri (2 tracks), Showbiz (1 track) & even KRS-One (5 tracks) himself. So at just under 56 minutes in length, it left me enough room to add another 6 tracks to complete this HeRBaN DeLuXe VeRSioN (I`m Old School so I try to keep these H.D.V`s under 80 minutes so they can still fit onto a CD if one so chooses to burn it onto a disc). The first song that I decided to add is “Hip Hop vs. Rap”, a tune that in all honesty should`ve been on the retail release of “Return Of The Boom Bap” anyway. The next selection was a no~brainer really, “Outta Here [Original Demo Version]”, definitely worth the listen for the Mr. Magic DiSS alone. It was kind of hard to find a track to follow that almost lost piece of Hip Hop history, but I think I made the right choice with “Sound Of Da Police [Rmx]”. After that I hit the 12 inch singles for “Return Of The Boom Bap [Iron Lion Rmx]” & “Mortal Thought [Kenny Parker Rmx]” respectively. “Hip Hop vs. Rap [Spinbad Blend]” closes out the album very nicely. Now for some reason unbeknownst to any true Hip Hop head you haven`t heard this album before, let me break down exactly what you`re in for…






“KRS-One Attacks” opens up things & gives the listeners a glimpse of what to expect. KRS doesn`t actually spit anything on this, it serves as more of an intro. The way DJ Premier cuts the various KRS-One samples to create it is simply awesome. “Outta Here”, which I believe was the album’s first single, was produced by DJ Premier. Over the simplistic, but very hard beat KRS-One kicks some tales of Hip Hop History as only the teacha could. What’s DoPe about it is how he does it in such a way that it`s pretty much first~person perspective because…well, he was a crucial part of the history & it`s kind of awesome to see things from that side of the fence. The self~produced “Black Cop”, which was previously released on the “CB4 Soundtrack”, rocks a simple yet effective enough loop for KRS to get his points across. DJ Premier shows up once again to handle the production on “Mortal Thought” & provides a nice jazzy backdrop for KRS-One to flex his lyrical braggadocio mic rockin’ rhymes over…





The KRS/Premier collaborating continues, but this time they both handle the production on “I Can’t Wake Up”. This song could be taken 2 ways; a lot of folks take it as an anti~Weed smokin’ tune, but I think that it should be interpreted as a dream that KRS-One probably had after indulging in a few blunts himself. I mean c’mon, he’s a blunt being passed around & smoked by a who’s~who of Hip Hop (at the time). Either way you take it though, it’s a good concept record worth the listen so don’t sleep! “Slap Them Up” features a little uncredited intro by DJ Premier & some uncredited raps from Ill Will. The beat was produced by Latin House producer Norty Cotto & co-produced by Douglas Jones. To be honest I`m not really familiar with either one of these producers, but they sure gave KRS a nice backin` for his rhyme flexin`. Now the Showbiz produced “Sound Of Da Police” should need no introduction, I mean c’mon it’s featured in the 2016 animated “The Angry Birds Movie” for cryin’ out loud. My son was singing the hook of this tune at 4 years old because of said movie….LoL, both Showbiz & KRS must`ve seen some nice residuals off that song placement, anyway this was the album`s second single. The head~nodding beat & catchy chorus will definitely hook your ear, but it’s the lyrics that you really need to hear. I’d quote some, but honestly you truly need to hear them over the beat to do `em justice. Trust me you won’t be disappointed at all!!!





“Mad Crew” is a self-produced joint that’s sure to get ya` head noddin’, Boom Bapp`N Hip Hop indeed. The simplistic beatboxin’ backdrop on “Uh Oh” is almost the perfect backing for KRS’s reggae~vibed storytelling, another self-produced joint. “Brown Skin Woman” is the Blastmaster’s ode to well just that, Kid Capri provided the smooth production on this one. “Return Of The Boom Bap” is another joint that KRS-One produced himself. Some folks out there may remember hearing the DJ Premier produced “P Is Still Free” while they were listening to the “Menace II Society Soundtrack”, which was also released in 1993. Something interesting to note; if you actually take a look at that tracklist the song’s credited to Boogie Down Productions. So does that make it the last official BDP song? Or did someone at Jive just fuck up?? Someone out there on the Internet knows, feel free to school me…



Kid Capri takes on double duties on the Jazzy~vibed “Stop Frontin`” as producer & guest emcee, he handles both very well I`d have to say. “Higher Level” is some great funkdafied spiritual Hip Hop, produced by DJ Premier. This song is the closer on the original album release & honestly I have to say that it’s a great way to end such an awesome album. Still as a KRS fan I can’t lie, I was always just a little disappointed in the fact that “Hip Hop vs. Rap”, the B-Side of the album`s first single, was never included as part of the album. So naturally that was my first choice when it came to the songs that I chose to add to this HeRBaN DeLuXe VeRSioN. The song’s produced by both KRS-One & Kenny Parker, definitely something you just need to hear on your own, my words probably wouldn’t do it enough justice…






Next in the added bonus joints is the “Outta Here [Original Demo Version]”. Unfortunately the sound quality isn’t that great, sounds like a cassette rip & the song itself sounds like it was dubbed from a radio show. So maybe it’s not actually a demo, but an alternate radio version, because the song is censored, has the same beat pretty much, but it also contains a few Mister Magic DiSSeS that don’t appear on the retail album version of the same song. I’m not sure of the source of the file so I couldn’t tell you, either way though it’s definitely something worth listening to just for the historic value of it. The “Sound Of Da Police [Rmx]” comes with a nice thumpin` beat that Kenny Parker produced, it’s DoPe but I’m still kind of partial to the way Showbiz rocked the original album version myself. Regardless it’s a great song & that’s why I added it…



The “Return Of The Boom Bap [Iron Lion Rmx]” comes from the 12 inch single released in 1994 & features Mad Lion. It has a nice Reggae vibe to it & I believe that Mad Lion was the one to produce the track, couldn’t find any production credit on the track so feel free to school me if I’m wrong. The “Mortal Thought [Kenny Parker Rmx]” is another joint off that “Return Of The Boom Bap” 12 inch single. It’s ok, but doesn’t compare to the original version, Premier just rocked it more, my opinion of course. Still plenty of heads dig the tune, I think the reason that I don’t dig it as much is because it’s censored & well Premier didn’t do it….LoL, anyway “Hip Hop vs. Rap [Spinbad Blend]” closes out things here. DJ Spinbad does a great job blending in various beats to match KRS’s lyrics. I think this was featured on a mixtape or something, to be completely honest I’m not sure of its source. So there ya have it, did I do the album some justice with the added tracks? Is there something else that should have included? Feel free to leave some comments…





Released: 1993-2018



1. KRS-One Attacks
2. Outta Here
3. Black Cop
4. Mortal Thought
5. I Can`t Wake Up
6. Slap Them Up {ft. Ill Will}
7. Sound Of Da Police
8. Mad Crew
9. Uh Oh!
10. Brown Skin Woman
11. Return Of The Boom Bap
12. P Is Still Free
13. Stop Frontin` {ft. Kid Capri}
14. Higher Level
15. Hip Hop vs. Rap
16. Outta Here [Original Demo Version]
17. Sound Of Da Police [Rmx]
18. Return Of The Boom Bap [Iron Lion Rmx] {ft. Mad Lion}
19. Mortal Thought [Kenny Parker Rmx]
20. Hip Hop vs. Rap [Spinbad Blend]







N`JoY...

Saturday, February 02, 2019

iCe CuBe, SHaQ & M.J. - "We Be BaLLiN`" [uNReLeaSeD]...

No...your eyes do not deceive you, you are seeing a NEW post on this here blog! Yes, yes a 'rebirth' of the blog has been a long time coming & well that time is now ladies & gentlemen. Hopefully Life has been treating you well. I won`t get into the long story about the reasons behind the hiatus, no one cares anyway....LoL, so let`s skip the chit chat & get to some music shall we? This is just a quick post, but still I think it`s a decent start. What I have to share with y`all is some unreleased goodness; an odd collabo` at first glance, but not so much once you know some of the song`s backstory. So what is it that I`m talking about? Well, apparently back in 1998 someone in the music industry decided to open up a proverbial blender & threw in some Ice Cube, some Shaquille O`Neal & a lil` Michael Jackson to spice things up on the hook I guess, then hit that mix button & threw the end result over the "We Be Clubbin`" beat & titled it "We Be Ballin`". So does this make it an unofficial remix? I don`t know, but I can only guess that DJ Clark Kent & Dutch are the producers of this song seeing as how it`s pretty much the same instrumental as the previously mentioned "We Be Clubbin`"...

After doing a little research regarding this song I discovered that it was apparently recorded for some NBA compilation that was set to drop towards the year in 1998. The song would`ve been featured in some commercials for the NBA`s "I Love This Game" campaign. Unfortunately there was a player~initiated strike that year so the entire project was scraped. To be honest, I`m a little curious about what other songs would`ve been on this comp`. My theory on how this song came to be has to do with the fact that Ice Cube had already worked with Shaq on the "Steel Soundtrack" which came out that same year, 1998. So that can explain the 2 of them connecting for the song, well that & since they used Cube`s beat it only made sense to include him on the song. Now the M.J. connection stems from the uncredited feature that Shaq had on "2 Bad" from Michael`s  1995 album "HIStory:Past, Present & Future Book I". I guess Shaq wanted to return the favor so he insisted that M.J. got down on the track. So there ya have it, enjoy the song...



























R.i.P. M.J...