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Tag: A Tribe Called Quest

The Friday Five: April 13, 2012

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Upstairs” by Women (from Women, 2008)

It’s all a bit “indie rock by the numbers,” but this record got quite a few spins back in 2008. They remind me a bit of Pavement; maybe too much, even.

“A Roller Skating Jam Named “Saturdays” (LP version)” by De La Soul (from A Roller Skating Jam Named “Saturdays”, 1991)

Our friends over at Popblerd had a running discussion on their Facebook page last week looking for the greatest Hip-Hop band, to which I inquired if we could just include the Native Tongues. This right here—along with the Native Tongues remix of “Buddy”—is the reason why I’m lobbying for their inclusion. When Tip, Phife, Plugs 1 + 2, and the Jungle Brothers get together, magic is made.

“Piece of Me” by Skid Row (from 40 Seasons: The Best of Skid Row, 1998)

Sleazy, with a side of pop.

“To Lose My Life” by White Lies (from To Lose My Life…, 2009)

England’s answer to The Killers, White Lies does the disaffected new wave schtick even better. I don’t think they caught on much in the states, perhaps a cameo on a CW show would solve that problem?

“Little Light” by Rachel Platten (from Be Here, 2011)

Miss Platten possesses the sticky sweet voice of an angel, and the songwriting chops to back it up. Well worth checking out.

What’s on your shuffle today?

Recap: Beats, Rhymes & Life – The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest

 I just finished watching the Michael Rapaport-directed Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of a Tribe Called Quest. Like a lot of folks around my age (early 40’s – same age as Rapaport & the Tribe), I spent a lot of quality time back in the day with A Tribe Called Quest. In my case, it was the first two albums that really resonated with me – particularly 1991’s The Low End Theory. Songs like “Excursions”,  “Can I Kick It”, and “Rhythm (Devoted to the Art of Moving Butts)” helped provide a soundtrack for my late college years in Colorado. I have great memories of driving through the mountains from Colorado Springs to Telluride bumpin’ those Tribe beats (in my beat up ’85 Jeep Cherokee).

By the time Midnight Marauders was released in late 1993, I was distracted with other genres and busy being young and irresponsible. Other than “Award Tour”, I’m ashamed to say I didn’t hear the full album until the new millennium. Forget about the last two Tribe records – Beats Rhymes & Life and Love Movement – I’m just getting around to ’em now.

So the documentary was fantastic, a real learning experience for me, someone who loved those early records but checked out of the scene in the early 90’s.

Other than the music, it’s the love/hate dynamic between childhood buds Q-Tip and Phife Dawg that is the central theme of the doc. Phife has struggled with Type 1 Diabetes throughout his adult life, even undergoing a kidney transplant a few years ago (a donation from his wife). What the film suggests is that Q-Tip hasn’t really been there for his pal during these struggles. Tip’s focus has always been on the music. When the time came in 1998 that he didn’t see a future for the group, Tip disbanded the group and embarked on a successful solo career.

Since then, A Tribe Called Quest haven’t released any albums, but have reformed for live performances on occasion (for the money, they’re not ashamed to admit). The film covers a couple of these live gigs over the past several years, and there’s plenty of drama still alive and well among the group to make it all the more compelling.

I recommend this film for music lovers anywhere – whether you’re a hip-hop head or not. But if you dug those early Native Tongues albums – Tribe, De La Soul, Jungle Brothers and such – you will especially enjoy this.

BuyBeats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of a Tribe Called Quest

The Friday Five: July 1, 2011

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Everything Is Fair” by A Tribe Called Quest (from The Low End Theory, 1991)

I don’t know if this cut stands up well on its own, but when listened to in the course of the record, it’s all sorts of hot. The Low End Theory is a record that just reminds me of summer.

“Village of the Sun” by The Mothers of Invention (from Roxy & Elsewhere, 1974)

Music is the best!

“Edge of the Blade” by Journey (from Frontiers, 1983)

Pretty standard, early ’80s AOR fare from the masters of the craft. I dig Schon’s guitar playing here.

“Good Ol’ Fashion Nightmare” by Matt & Kim (from Grand, 2009)

New school summertime jam!

“32 Pennies” by Warrant (from Dirty Rotten Filthy Stinking Rich, 1989)

I’d be embarrassed, but I dig this tune.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: May 27, 2011

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“My Country” by tUnE-YaRdS (from WHOKILL, 2011)

This is the first time I’m hearing anything from this record, which comes very highly recommended by my Popdose alum—and frequent flyer with the Friday Five—Michael Fortes. It reminds me a bit of Ween, filtered through a Sonic Youth colored lens. I’ll have to queue this up for the long weekend.

“Anna Begins” by Counting Crows (from Films About Ghosts: The Best of…, 2003)

This is, for me, Adam Duritz’s greatest moment as a songwriter.

“The Same December” from Prince (from Chaos and Disorder, 1996)

For every bit of praise I lavished on Come a few weeks back, I have to decry Chaos and Disorder. Does anyone else recall the full court press promotional tour for this record? I swear, there must be a dozen television performances of “Dinner With Delores” out there.

“Transatlanticism” by Death Cab for Cutie (from Transatlanticism, 2003)

Buy Codes and Keys. Seriously, you’ll thank me.

‘Bonita Applebum (radio edit)” by A Tribe Called Quest (from Bonita Applebum, 1990)

With this, I’m kicking off the Friday Dance Party.

What’s on your shuffle today?

The Friday Five: April 8, 2011

Friday Five

Friday Five : ‘frī-(,)dā,-dē ‘fīv : On the sixth day of every week, I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes, then share the first five tracks and thought for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, occasionally we’ll have a guest, but most of the time it’s just me. The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments.

The Five:

“Can I Kick It?” by A Tribe Called Quest (from People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm, 1990)
“Shimmy Shimmy Ya” by Ol’ Dirty Bastard (from Return to the 36 Chambers: The Dirty Version, 1995)
“Concentrate” by The Guggenheim Grotto (from The Universe is Laughing, 2010)
“Like a Prayer” by Madonna (from Like a Prayer, 1989)
“Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard” by Paul Simon (from Paul Simon, 1972)

What’s on your shuffle today?

Q-Tip’s “Barely In Love”

Well, shame on me for not listening to this album when it came out September. 2009. It’s teeming with life. Live instrumentation; a funky, soulful, jazzy laid back vibe (it is Q-Tip, after all, who perfected “laid back” hip-hop twenty plus years ago with A Tribe Called Quest).

This song sums up the greatness of the record. “Barely In Love” is nothing you’d ever expect from Q-Tip, or anyone else in the hip-hop scene. I go back to my main theme – no boundaries, no genres. I feel 70’s Stevie Wonder. I feel an urban street scene, late on a Saturday night with musicians gathered around in a circle, jamming out. There’s hip-hop in this album, but it can’t be called a hip-hop record. It’s just… music.

Q-TipBarely In Love (mp3)

[audio:barelyinlove.mp3]

Check out Kamaal The Abstract on Amazon.

The Friday Five: February 6, 2009

I do wish we could chat longer, but I'm having an old shuffle for dinner.

52 Weeks, 261 Songs and a full year later ‘The Friday Five’ is officially a year old. It has been consistently one of our most popular features and for that I want to thank the folks that take the time every week to play along. The coming weeks will bring a slight facelift to the five as well as a few guest spots. This week we’ve got a short but sweet list…

For those who have not joined in the Friday Five here is all you need to know; each Friday I hit the shuffle button on my iTunes and share my five and drop a little knowledge and insight for each track. Sometimes there is a playlist involved, sometimes there isn’t. Sometimes we have guest, but most of the time it’s just me.

The rest is up to you, our friends and readers! Fire up your media player of choice and share the first five random track of your shuffle in the comments. The more the merrier!

The Five:

Rich Girl” (mp3) – Hall & Oates (from Greatest Hits: Rock ‘n Soul, Part 1)

Hall & Oates never fails to bring a smile to my face.

“1999” – Prince (from Purple Storm in the Coachella Valley)

Live from Prince‘s headline set at last years Coachella festival.

The Brainsong” (mp3) – Fury in the Slaughterhouse (from Mono)

I never really understood why Fury in the Slaughterhouse wasn’t huge in the states. Has anyone else ever heard of this band, or am I the only one?

“Footprints” – A Tribe Called Quest (from People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm)

Kicking off with a sample of the Stevie Wonder‘s “Sir Duke” this is real hip-hop. Q-Tip is in perfect form spitting a wicked rhyme as only he can over the bouncy funk track.

“Losing a Whole Year” – Third Eye Blind (from Third Eye Blind)

I’ve found out that there is a new genre definition for all the alternative bands of the mid-90’s that we all love (or love to hate), it’s called Post-Grunge

Tag! You’re it!

Can I Kick It?

The Tribe That Refreshes.

Yes you can! The annual Rock the Bells tour line up has been announced and it is, for my dollar, the most jam-packed bill of any tour crossing North America this year. Headlining the trek is the reunited members of A Tribe Called Quest, Nas, Mos Def, De La Soul, 1/3 of the Wu-Tang Clan and the master himself Rakim. So indeed, “before this, did you really know what live was?”

De La Soul – Buddy (Native Tongue Decision) (Video)

Check the rest of the line up and the dates after the jump.