Monday, June 2, 2008

Old School Mondays:: Lord Finesse (Loss Of The Funky Man Edition)

Sunday nights often find me looking back over the week's events on the hill to come up with something I can tie into my weekly trip down hip-hop memory lane. Well this Sunday also found me looking at some very spiffy shirts I was sent by the fine folks at Stones Throw Records, one of which is a rather awesome look at the label's releases from the past ten years. I knew most of the acts listed on the shirt, but I was googling some of them anyway looking for tidbits, when I stumbled upon the following during a quick perusal of underground Bronx luminary Percee P's Wiki page:

Percee P was selected for a 1992 Source Magazine "Hip Hop Quotable" for his verse on Lord Finesse's "Yes You May", from the album Return of the Funky Man.

Well then, that's all I need. A Lord Finesse OSM was certainly in order, for a couple reasons. The first being that Lord Finesse is really rather excellent. He's one of those MC's for whom a a large portion of their awesomeness is tied to the fact that they have an awesome voice, Guru being the prime example of this phenomenon. That being said, I think Finesse was a bit more of a technician (or you might say, a funky technician if you wanted to turn the punnage up another notch) than Guru ever was, but he really does have a great voice.

The other reason I'll always a soft spot for Finesse and Return Of The Funky Man is because that tape was in my slick Sony yellow walkman when I forgot it in the classroom after accounting in grade 11. I hadn't had the tape long, but I thought it was awesome, and I was pretty sure whatever skiv ended up with my walkman didn't appreciate the gift of golden age goodness that I un-willingly gave them. Oh well, I'm happy for any chance to re-visit this album, so we have the the title track along with the aforementioned Yes You May.

Both tracks are produced by Showbiz and have that awesome DITC sound - tight drums, horns, basslines - that just feels like hip hop. Return Of The Funky Man features Finesse going for his with punchlines and battle raps ("trying to hang but they softer than baby shit"), and appropriately samples Guru in the chorus. Yes You Man is just a vintage posse cut, with Percee P. and the under-rated A.G. joining Finesse over a tight beat. I can certainly see why Percee's uptempo verse got the Source's attention, he can clearly rhyme his ass off. Makes me wonder why he never made a bigger splash, well other than the fact that the industry is gross and often rewards very un-talented people. A.G. also kills it in my humble, and Finesse brings it home. Really great stuff, enjoy these.



Video::

Lord Finesse - Return Of The Funky Man

Posted at 9:35 AM by naedoo :: 0 comments

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