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Old 10-24-2009, 02:21 PM   #401 (permalink)
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I'm glad someone else remembers him! I didn't realize that song was on a Fast and the Furious film. If that was the case, I figured having a song in that film would have made him all sorts of fame, as remember Fast and the Furious being a massive deal. But I completely agree with you, Ja-Rule is such a relic of the past that just came and went with the times. Shame is, he was big during the Dr. Dre Snoop Dog era when there was a lot of good rappers and competition and he really got edged out. Now his music would top any of the raps on the radio now.
That's probably one of the only tracks from Ja Rule i like. Ja rules career pretty much ended after he had this massive "beef" with Eminem, Dr Dre and D12. They tore him to shreds on multiple diss tracks and he never really recovered lol.
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Old 10-24-2009, 04:00 PM   #402 (permalink)
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That's probably one of the only tracks from Ja Rule i like. Ja rules career pretty much ended after he had this massive "beef" with Eminem, Dr Dre and D12. They tore him to shreds on multiple diss tracks and he never really recovered lol.
Wow, I wasn't even aware that had happened
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Old 10-24-2009, 09:45 PM   #403 (permalink)
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Ja Rule was pretty big when I was in middle school. He also was a pretty big punchline for terrible rap. He had a track with "J-Lo" that was huge, I remember.
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Old 10-29-2009, 01:09 PM   #404 (permalink)
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Yes, a LOT of rap rips off A Tribe Called Quest. Maybe they can be in a top 10, but I wouldn't say "without a doubt." I realize that they're very influential, but De La Soul comes first. Yes, I know, Rakim is dated. I said this; I agree. Rakim didn't only influence mainstream rap, man. Like I said, he basically invented modern lyrical technique.

De La Soul comes first because they did it first. A Tribe Called Quest is heavily influenced by them. De La Soul NOT unique? No, man. De La Soul was incredibly innovational. During their time, no one like that existed; rap was in a hardcore state of mind with acts like Public Enemy, etc. De La Soul flipped the game upside down with their jazzy and silly samples, goofiness and intelligent / colorful rhymes. They were one of the most, like, eclectic hip hop groups ever, they expanded heavily (especially on samples and style) - lots of people took after them. Including A Tribe Called Quest. De La Soul are the ones responsible for alternative rap, not ATCQ.

I really, REALLY like A Tribe Called Quest, and I'd put them in like... My top 15, man. They just don't surpass Rakim's influence (but they are MUCH more interesting and lasting), and De La Soul is miles ahead of them.
If you want to do it based solely on when they started, Jungle Brothers were producing a fusion of jazz and hip hop before De La Soul or ATCQ, and their debut album Straight out of the Jungle launched The Native Tongues Posse, where all of the early jazz rap stuff came from. The album was released in '88, a year before 3 Feet High and Rising. Really, ATCQ was eyed by Geffen Records in early 1989, and they made a 5 song demo for them which included a few of the tracks from People's Instinctive Travels.... So they had already developed their sound and recorded part of their debut by the time De La Soul's first album came out. Also, ATCQ sort of formed in 1985, 2 years before De La Soul, but was just Q-Tip and Jarobi doing rap battles. They were originally called Crush Connection, then Quest, and didn't pick their full name until 1988, when Jungle Brothers gave it to them. So they actually did come first. And they were friends with Jungle Brothers before De La Soul was around. In all reality, though, Jungle Brothers, ATCQ, and De La Soul were essentially around making music together in The Native Tongue Posse at the same time, it's just that ATCQ took longer to release their new album.

So really, both bands are probably equally responsible for creating alternative rap, and in reality less so than The Jungle Brothers They were both trying to make chill, laid back nonsense music heavily influenced by jazz at the same time. And it's really quite sad that Rolling Stone once said De La Soul paved the way for the Jungle Brothers... can't forgive them for that.

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Old 10-29-2009, 03:28 PM   #405 (permalink)
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I can't get into this underground rap stuff. Doesn't the cream rise to the top?
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Old 10-30-2009, 02:29 AM   #406 (permalink)
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I can't get into this underground rap stuff. Doesn't the cream rise to the top?
Not necessarily.
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Old 10-30-2009, 08:52 AM   #407 (permalink)
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I can't get into this underground rap stuff. Doesn't the cream rise to the top?
Depends what you're in to.
A lot of the popular stuff is cookie cutter rap that's fun to dance to. That's gravy for most people. A lot of people want something else.
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Old 10-30-2009, 11:27 AM   #408 (permalink)
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I can't get into this underground rap stuff. Doesn't the cream rise to the top?
Have you never listened to a band that's signed to an independent label rather than a mainstream one?

The rappers who make catchy songs and have an image that will appeal to the masses and make the rich guys in suits even richer are the ones who make it to the mainstream. The majority of the time the rappers who actually have some sort of skill in song writing and a good grip on lyricism are the ones who are not signed to major labels for many reasons, one being that their songs aren't made to dance to and another one of the main reasons is that starting your own label or remaining independent gives you more control over your work rather than having someone tell you what you can and cannot say. Generally rappers in the underground just don't want to conform and lose all rights to their music by signing to some huge label. (obviously there are exceptions to this, on a rare occasion a very intelligent and lyrical rapper will make it onto mtv lol)

Also a lot of underground rap is quite political, sure controversy sells but only to an extent. There's no way a major label would get away with signing someone like Lowkey or Jedi Mind Tricks (not that they would sign with one anyway lol)


Albums sales/profits gained is not a reflection of skill. Just something to remember.
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I echo through the mountain when I'm singing in the air,
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"Wake up and listen, hear what's not for the public's ears
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Old 10-30-2009, 12:08 PM   #409 (permalink)
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Yeah, but not that any of that is concrete.
Most of the "underground" is chock-full of shitty rappers that use the moniker of not wanting to sign, but it's usually just sour grapes. What CA just described are mostly the big underground rappers. Equally, not all the popular shit is just rich jewish guy A's writing rapped by stereotypical black guy B. Lupe, Wu-tang, Mos Def, Pharcyde, Eminem, Jay-Z, Nas, shit loads more great, popular acts.
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Old 10-30-2009, 12:55 PM   #410 (permalink)
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Yeah, but not that any of that is concrete.
Most of the "underground" is chock-full of shitty rappers that use the moniker of not wanting to sign, but it's usually just sour grapes. What CA just described are mostly the big underground rappers. Equally, not all the popular shit is just rich jewish guy A's writing rapped by stereotypical black guy B. Lupe, Wu-tang, Mos Def, Pharcyde, Eminem, Jay-Z, Nas, shit loads more great, popular acts.
Like i said, there is exceptions. Eminem is one of my favourite rappers and arguably the greatest of all time. There is a lot of mainstream rappers i like. It's best not to bother labelling them "mainstream" or "underground". For every great rapper (underground or otherwise) there is around 50 crap rappers.

And of course the underground has more bad rappers than great rappers if you were to put it in a ratio but that's because any one who even attempts rapping and isn't signed to a major label is considered underground. But still, i can name more great "underground" rappers than i can mainstream ones. The underground is more versatile, the mainstream is extremely repetitive. Sure everyone might deliver the song differently or have a different approach to writing it but it's always the same stuff. They've found a formula that works (by works i mean makes them rich) and therefore are sticking with that formula. The underground is filled with people trying new stuff every day. They're not limited by their manager and contract telling them what kind of music they need to make and how many albums they need to sell if they want to keep their deal.

Truth of the matter is you can take pretty much every mainstream rapper you mentioned and look at their entire discography. Chances are it's their underground material and there first big album that are the best. The longer they go on the worse it gets and the more they sell out. Discarding what rap and hip hop is all about in exchange for making millions (eminem being a prime example)

It wasn't so bad in the mid-90's and anytime before that because there wasn't as much money in the rap industry. But now rappers are entertainers and businessmen more than lyricists. They seem to have forgotten what rap is about and just see it as a way to make money and live the high life. I'm not saying it's there fault, it's just the way their mind(our mind) has been conditioned (or attempted to be conditioned) after years of having the glamour and celebrity life style thrown in our face.

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And he wants that dream but he's unable to see he's lost.
Now on the road they map so there's no way back he's lost."
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"If we're all merely players in a play on this great stage,
the problem is the script writers ain't on the same page,
I echo through the mountain when I'm singing in the air,
from my lab a lad with lavish lyrics living in his lair."



"Wake up and listen, hear what's not for the public's ears
Pinocchio poets played by profiting puppeteers"
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