I don’t know if you’ve listened to the “Top 40″ type radio much of late, but there is some really unfortunate hip hop on there right now. I mean, if you had come to me in the late 90’s and told me that one day I’d be pining for the bling & beat-jacking era presided over by Puff Dirt-Diddly-Dee Combs, I’d have told you in no un-certain terms that you were crazy. We’re talking Randy & Evi Quaid vs the Star Whackers-level crazy. But it seems like this is now the case. I say this because today’s commercial or radio hip hop, while still generally obsessed with obtaining vast sums of wealth and bragging about said wealth, has morphed, sonically, to a stage where it is almost unlistenable. Somehow house music has once again wormed its way into hip hop, and as a result, most “rap” songs I hear on radio right now sound like rap-house rejects with beats that Mr. Lee would be embarrassed to spit over.
Ok then, so what to do about the terrible radio rap? Well I have a solution, for Canadian radio stations at the very least – play some Shaun Boothe. Admittedly, I don’t know too much about Shaun Boothe, but a quick internet perusal suggests that he’s fairly well respected in the T.O. hip hop scene, and I can see why. He’s a talented MC, with a style that mixes charisma with smarts & humour and it makes his recently released album Waiting Room a really enjoyable listen.
It also helps that the production on the album, some done by Shaun himself, and some done by his cousin Nineteen85, is very solid, mixing a bunch of stick-to-your-ribs soul sample goodness with an adventurous streak (re-working Nas’ “One Mic”, the blues-bent of the rather clever “Get A Job” and the futuristic rock feel of the Bassnector re-fix of Poor Boy). Plus, Waiting Room features a Kardinal Offishall guest appearance (on the Queen-jacking remix of “Poor Boy”) and Americans (Cyhi Da Prynce, STS & Talib Kweli), two things Canadian Urban radio stations seem to enjoy a great deal. So come on Canadian Radio stations, put that Pitbull down and play some Shaun Boothe!
Luckily you, the incredibly smart readers of the hill don’t have to rely on the radio stations, as you can download the mixtape version of Waiting Room this very second. So go ahead and do it. After all, Shaun Boothe does it for you, ya know.
Video:: Shaun Boothe f. STS – 123