Monday, October 1, 2007

Old School Mondays:: A Tribe Called Quest & Ahmad

All righty, as always we've got a couple solid jams for you on this crisp Monday morning. The first One should be near and dear to your hip hop heart, while the second is a tad more obscure, yet awesome in it's own right. Last week in his Small Sins review, Ack included the following:

D'Arcy uses clever one liners like, "thirsty like a diabetic." (ED NOTE: this answers Phife Dog's question, when's the last time you heard a funky diabetic)

No doubt you've just recalled that the lyric mentioned above is from the ATCQ classic, Oh My God from 1993's Midnight Marauders. I love this song, in fact it might be my favorite Tribe song. So I thought it was awesome that Ack referenced it in his review, and I knew I had to use it for the next OSM. Song number two comes from a discussion Ack and I were having this past week about albums we loved from the early 90's that have been all but forgotten about by everyone except obsessives like ourselves. One of those albums was Ahmad's self-titled effort from 1994. If you know who I'm talking about, then surely you assume I'll be posting the big song from that album Back In The Day, but no, we're going with the party-starter Touch The Ceiling.

MP3:: A Tribe Called Quest - Oh My God
Oh my god, I love this song. This is a perfect example of why A) I can't leave hip hop alone and B) why I will always think "old school" hip hop is better. If for some unfathomable reason you aren't familiar with A Tribe Called Quest, this is as good an intro as you could ask for. The beat is fantastic, crisp drums, catchy horns, amazing bassline, and some vinyl static that fits perfectly. The verses are great too, both Tip and Phife are in fine form. Ordinarily if you walked up to someone and said "licks, licks, licks boy 'pon your backside", that person would think you were a nutter. However, if they're a Tribe fan, they'll give you much respect. Phife was often classed as a subpar MC, but I always thought he was plenty entertaining. "I like my beats hard like two day old shit, steady eatin' booty MC's like cheese Grits". Two day old shit and cheese grits, whats subpar about that? And of course, old school "crazy" Busta is excellent on the hook. I've posted the video below, it's also rather classic. I love Phife's Devils jersey and Busta's dapper yellow jacket & hat combo. How many of today's wannabee ballers could you see running down the street behind a flatbed truck with a bunch of kids? Not many, I miss these songs. Enjoy it.

MP3:: Ahmad - Touch the Ceiling
Ahmad was 18 when his debut album was released. Being that young, from LA, and not down with the gang rhymes, I suppose it made sense that he sounded a whole like Imani from The Pharcyde (it says Fatlip on his wiki entry, but I think his voice is higher). Anyway, his album was high in both catchiness and funk samples and the "back in the day"jam, uhh, Back In The Day was a minor hit for Ahmad. I love that song too, but I felt Touch The Ceiling was a better match for Oh My God. Crazy horns and a huge bottomed bassline that sounds like it's sampled from More Bounce To The Ounce provide the beat, and a Funkdoobiest sample is used to very catchy effect on the chorus. Ahmad was a solid MC, and this is just a really good, early 90's party starter. These days Ahmad is very much down with god and has released a few albums with his hip hop/rock/soul (don't ask me, that's what they call it) and 4th Avenue Jones. Hopefully there's plenty of folks out there that remember Ahmad, so enjoy this.

Video:: A Tribe Called Quest - Oh My God

Posted at 8:42 AM by naedoo :: 0 comments

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