YALL REMEMBER BACK IN THE DAY WHEN WE WERE NODDING OUR HEADS TO THE SOUNDS OF:
Grandmaster Flash, Melli Mel, Kurtis Blow, Kool Moe Dee, Stetsasonics, Afrika Bambata, KRS-1, Public Enemy, LL Cool J, Erik B n Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, EPMD, Special Ed, Queen Latifah, Money Love, MC Lyte, RUN DMC, A Tribe Called Quest, Naughty By Nature, De La Soul, Digable Planets, NWA, Wu Tang Clan, Outkast, Gang Starr, Notorious B.I.G, Tupac, Beastie Boys, Nice & Smooth, Snoop, etc.
THE LIST GOES ON & ON. SO POP A CD, SPIN SOME VINYL, OR CLICK YOUR FAV MUSIC APP N NOD YOUR HEADS TO THE GREATEST.
On this day in music history: October 15, 1987 - “Top Billin’” by Audio Two is released. Written by Kirk Robinson and Nat Robinson, it is the debut single for the Hip Hop duo from Brooklyn, NY. Formed in 1985 by brothers Kirk “Milk Dee” Robinson (MC) and Nat “Gizmo” Robinson (DJ), the Audio Two splinter off into a duo after the demise of their former group the Awesome Foursome. In 1987, Milk and Giz’s father Nat Sr. establishes First Priority Music to release music recorded by his sons. The pair connect with Daddy-O of Stetsasonic to work on their first single. The first track, the proto-new jack swing flavored “Make It Funky” sampling the James Brown classic of the same name is the original designated A-side. However, when it’s released in the Fall of 1987, the flip side is the one that winds up going the distance. That B-side titled “Top Billin’” features a chopped up sample of the drums from the classic Hip Hop staple “Impeach The President” by The Honeydrippers along with Stetsasonic’s “Go Stetsa I”. The skeletal and propulsive back beat topped by Milk Dee’s well measured verses extolling his rhyming skills and way with the ladies, and his brother Giz’s prowess on the wheels of steel. All of this along with the insistent refrain of “Milk is chillin’, Giz is chillin’, What more can I say? Top billin’”, make song an instant classic in under three minutes. “Top Billin’” quickly becomes an underground smash in the duo’s hometown of New York City, and goes overground with rapid speed. Its popularity is such that it attracts the attention of Atlantic Records, which offers to not only sign the Audio Two, but take over distribution of First Priority Music. The single is re-released by Atlantic, with remixes by Teddy Ted of the Awesome Two. The brothers follow it with their debut album “What More Can I Say?” in May of 1988. The album and follow up singles “I Don’t Care”, “Hickeys Around My Neck” and “Many Styles” are only modest hits. Audio Two release their second album “I Don’t Care - The Album” in 1990, but fails to recapture the success of their debut. They record a third album titled “First Dead Indian” in 1992, which is shelved. As a result, Audio Two call it quits after cutting ties with Atlantic. In spite of the duo’s demise, “Top Billin’” takes on a life of its own as a Hip Hop cornerstone during the 90’s and beyond. The drum track from the song is sampled as the basis for R&B singer Mary J. Blige’s smash “Real Love” in 1992, raising the profile of the Hip Hop classic once again. Atlantic Records responds by commissioning new remixes of “Top Billin’” by DJ Clark Kent and Sean Wan (b/w the original 1987 recording), which are released as a 12" single. Over the years, “Billin’” is sampled by numerous artists in rap and R&B music including The Luniz, The Notorious B.I.G., 50 Cent, Jay-Z & Kanye West, 2Pac, Das EFX, Jeru The Damaja, MC Lyte, Ne-Yo, Fergie, Usher, and R. Kelly among them.
Check it out, I found a pic of the Midnight Marauders album cover without anything obstructing the heads.
If you think about it like a grid, the left to right axis is numbered 1 to 8. The top to bottom axis is labeled A through G. So, for example, Puff Daddy at the bottom left has the coordinates “G1.” And Busta Rhymes, in the checkered bandana, has the coordinates “B8.”
I’ve done my best to identify all the heads in this pic. Can anybody identify the ones I missed?
A1 Daddy-O (of Stetsasonic) A2 Chuck D (of P.E.) A3 Too Short A4 Large Professor A5 Afrika Bambaataa A6 DJ Jazzy Joyce A7 Mike G (of The Jungle Brothers) A8 Afrika Baby Bam B1 Litro (ATCQ Road Manager) B2 Maseo (Plug Three, De La) B3 Posdnuos (Plug One, De La) B4 Ice T B5 Heavy D B6 Kool Moe Dee B7 Grandmaster Flash B8 Busta Rhymes C1 MC Lyte C2 Crazy Legs (of Rock Steady Crew) C3 Mr. Wiggles (of Rock Steady Crew) C4 Doug E. Fresh C5 Prince Po (of Organized Konfusion) C6 MCA C7 Mike D C8 Ad Rock D1 Doitall (of LOTU) D2 Litro again? D3 Slim Kid Tre (of The Pharcyde) D4 Romye (of The Pharcyde) D5 Fat Lip (of The Pharcyde) D6 Grandmaster D (Whodini’s DJ) D7 Diamond D D8 Special Ed E1 Casual E2 Del Tha Funkee Homosapien E3 Teddy Ted (of Awesome Two) E4 ? E5 ? E6 Pete Nice E7 Ruel (of Rock Steady Crew) E8 Mr. Funkyman (of LOTU) F1 Opio (of Souls of Mischief) F2 Phesto (of Souls of Mischief) F3 Tajai (of Souls of Mischief) F4 A-Plus (of Souls of Mischief) F5 ? F6 DJ Jazzy Jay F7 Skeff Anselm F8 Dallas Austin G1 Puff Daddy G2 Kid Kapri G3 Pee Wee Dance (of Rock Steady Crew) G4 DJ Evil Dee G5 Rashad Smith G6 Buckshot G7 5ft. Accelerator (of Black Moon) G8 Trugoy (of De La Soul)
Baby Elephant: How Does the Brain Wave? (feat. David Byrne)
‘How does the brain wave? How do my insides say hello?’
Baby Elephant is Prince Paul, Newkirk, and Bernie Worrell. While those names might not mean anything to you on their own, you’ve almost certainly heard of things they’ve been involved with. Prince Paul is a hip hop producer extraordinaire, having worked with Stetsasonic, De La Soul, Big Daddy Kane and a lot of other famous rappers, as well as being half of Handsome Boy Modeling School with Dan the Automator. Newkirk has done some stuff with De La Soul and on his own. Bernie Worrell played keyboards with both Parliament/Funkadelic and Talking Heads. Sounds like a pretty good recipe for funkiness, no?
And it is. The album, Turn My Teeth Up!, is essentially a love letter to p-funk, but with a modern sound, and without ever sounding like it’s trying too hard. But for some reason, the album has gotten almost no attention since it’s been out, which I find very surprising given who’s behind it. I am amazed white college kids aren’t all over this shit, what with Prince Paul’s fingers in the pie. David Byrne is even on a track!