Monday, November 19, 2007

Old School Mondays:: Black, Rock & Ron

I don't have much of a theme for this week's OSM, just an excellent album I've been meaning to talk about for a few weeks: Black, Rock & Ron's Stop The World. I didn't have an original copy of Black, Rock & Ron's one and only slept-on album, but I believe I had a dubbed copy, and You Can't Do Me None was a signature song from my high school years. Plus, Petra and I were entertained at the home of former herohill contributor Mario "Mr. E" Eleftheros and his wife Danielle on Saturday night, and Mario has to be the biggest (and/or only) Black, Rock & Ron fan I've ever known.

Stop The World is another example of a group from the late 80's, early 90's that made a splash with an awesome debut album, and ended up fading away. Comprised of Lord Black (David Cootryer), The Ruler Master Rock (Gregg Walsh), and Ron Scratch (Ron Walsh) Black, Rock & Ron were from Hollis, Queens which explains how they ended up getting down with Rush management at LL's urging. From the one or two sources I can find on this album, it seems that the legendary Paul C. was certainly involved, but I'm not sure whether he had was involved in the production or the engineering side of things. Either way, the production on the album is mighty catchy with plenty of recognizable samples and catchy breakbeat usage. There's also plenty of scratching and energetic back and forth rhymes, both of which are very good things.

So why, after this album, did Black, Rock & Ron fall off the face of the earth? I have no idea, but I'm guessing it might have something to do with Lord Black's untimely murder in the 90's. Whatever the reason, it's certainly a shame, but thankfully we can still enjoy a couple tracks from the album. The title track Stop The World, and of course the excellent You Can't Do Me None.

MP3:: Black, Rock & Ron - Stop The World
This is a very funky song with a pro-black message, and a very bomb squad-esque track built around the famous funky drummer, ummm, drums. When doing these OSM segments, I'm afraid I might overuse the phrase "this is a perfect example of golden age hip hop", but I can't help it, and I think it applies to this song. Pro-black lyrics were very common during this era, even for groups like Black, Rock & Ron who certainly weren't considered "conscious" rappers. But unlike today, rappers back in that era weren't afraid to vary their subject matter to try and address serious topics. On the other hand, they also weren't afraid to rap over house music, so not all the ideas back in the day were good ones. Scratching on songs was a very good idea though, and there's plenty of it on this song. Anyway, this is a solid track, check it for yourself.

MP3:: Black, Rock & Ron - You Can't Do Me None (Vocal Mix)
This is just an awesome party jam with plenty of quotable lyrics. I've linked up the video version, which is build around Cheryl Lynn's Got To Be Real as it's the one I remember from back in the day, and it's just better than the album version. This beat has been used for many other songs, but this might be my favorite usage right here. It also contains one of Mario's favorite lines, which in turn became famous in our click: "The sound that you hear could never be stopped, this is Black, Rock & Ron not New Kids On The Block". I don't really even know what that means, but it's fairly awesome. The whole song is awesome, a must listen if you haven't heard it before, so I won't keep you from it any longer.

Video:: Black, Rock & Ron - You Can't Do Me None (Video Mix)

Posted at 10:15 AM by naedoo :: 7 comments

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At 1:47 PM, Blogger e did sayeth:

how have i never seen this blog before? black, rock, and ron? awesome.

 

At 2:08 PM, Blogger naedoo did sayeth:

Oh they're awesome all right, mighty, mighty awesome.

Thanks for stopping by.

 

At 6:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous did sayeth:

Also, Malcolm Jamal Warner is in the "Can't Do Me None" video...to have a Coby kid in your vid that's big for the 90's....

Mario E

 

At 6:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous did sayeth:

They are one of my favorite rap groups. I may be the only person around who has the original cassette tape. The last track of the album is also a hidden message. It is them talking but it's played reverse so you can't make out what they are saying.
I recall in the early 90's Shawn LaPaix had the excellent idea of dubbing the tape, then opening up the tape and switching the spindles (the 2 wheels) in the tape and playing it. I have no clue how he knew this would work but it did and we were able to decode the message. They were basically cursing and dissing people.
To hear Lord Black be murdered, I guess he was in the rap wars before Biggie and 2Pac.

Mario E

 

At 6:23 PM, Blogger Hero did sayeth:

The best part about late 80's/90's hip hop, is no matter how hardcore they wanted to be, they still had dancers just wylin' out.

Also, I like this song way more than the College Boyz. They rerecorded the jam in the limo, College Boyz just literally phoned it in.

 

At 9:23 AM, Blogger naedoo did sayeth:

How have I not heard of the great Black, Rock & Ron tape reversal experiment until now!

Man, this is the kind of thing I'd usually remember if I'd known about it. Oh well, it's excellent all the same.

 

At 2:27 PM, Blogger fenton did sayeth:

Black is not dead people where do you get that info from

 

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