MNR: Young Black Entrepreneurs
Peace and blessings, world. It’s your guy Mr. Ty Monday 115, the Great. And yes, that is my full title. Get it right, bitch, or I might just have a bag full of produce on deck and throw all the tomatoes at you. You never know. Regardless, make sure you attach the Mister. That’s word to Red Onez. It’s Monday, y’all. No, I mean literally. It’s Monday, y’all, the start of the work week. That means there’s new motivation. I definitely pray every night before I take slumber, but I especially thank the Lord every Sunday night because I’ve made it through another week of life. I’m pragmatic. It begins with surviving the 24. Then, I thank him for the 168 (hours in the week), and so on and so on. My favorite history teacher ever, Jose Garrigo, reminds his students at the beginning of each school year that everyone has the exact same 168 hours in a week to make things happen. From there, it all comes down to how you budget your time. That’s some of the realest shit I’ve ever heard. It’s word…life. Word to my brother Erik Waller. Anyways, welcome to tonight’s MNR. Let’s get it.
We all know what tomorrow is. 11.3.2020. I’m not gonna beat you upside the head with political rhetoric or scare tactics to vote for a particular candidate. With the climate of our nation, it’s safe to say that if you haven’t long since made your mind up on whom to vote for, you don’t give a flying 747 fuck about tomorrow’s results (although final tallies may take days to count). And that’s cool, too. If you don’t follow politics or care…you don’t follow politics or care. Me trying to convince you (considering you’re registered) is tantamount to giving lashes to a deceased filly. But for those who are registered and have not sent in an absentee ballot or taken part in early voting --- take your lazy ass to the polls tomorrow and press the button(s). Whom you choose is on you.
P.S. Don’t ever forget that more than just the presidential vote is on the ballot. New Jersey --- let’s get this marijuana legislation passed. It’s that time.
Disclaimer: The next part of this blog is about battle rap. If you don’t like battle rap and/or don’t care to know anything about battle rap, please and kindly fast forward to the next section.
Halloween Saturday night’s card with the Murda Mook vs. Tay Roc main event has set the battle rap internet on six alarm fire. The first three battles were clear 30s: Loso smoked a decent Emerson Kennedy (better than his UM2 showing), Jerry Wess outclassed an overworked Danny Myers (who had a major stumble in his second), and B-Dot showed UM2 champ Holmzie the God that there’s levels to this battle rap shit. Then came the main event…
I leave the official recaps to Showtime SP and my nigga Vada Fly. I’m just gonna give my unbiased, objective opinion. Mook won that battle 2-1. He edged the first and killed Roc in the third. He disarmed all his bombastic gun bars and talked to him as a grown man. I’m not big on the tranny angle without proof but I’ll say this: you can find a lot out by paying attention to body language. Roc looked like he saw what Pandora had in box when Mook spit his third. It was spooky (pun intended). One thing I know for certain is that battle rap is a preference sport. And most of us are very biased in favor of our favorite rappers. But even then, you have to call it straight up at the end of the day. Mook talked to Roc’s soul. His bars were tailored to Roc. Roc had a lot of general bars in his rounds. They were nice, as usual. But they weren’t enough for Mook. I don’t put much faith into the fan vote. That’s their opinion and Roc is arguably the “face” of URL, easily the more popular of the two. But I saw some bullshit Saturday night from other battle rappers and URL itself that made me want to use the emoji with yellow man’s hand on his chin. First, I noticed that for the first time since Caffeine has aired URL events and used the in-app message board, battle rapper messages dominated the board. Fans literally couldn’t get a word in because battle rappers both against and for Mook spammed the messages. Boo (pun intended). I also noticed that Mook’s round one voting mysteriously hit a wall at a certain point when both battlers were in a virtual dead heat. After that, Mook’s votes slowed considerably while Roc’s continued to pour in. Eye dunno. Felt kinda odd to me. But check the bloggers and other battle rappers’ opinions out. Damn near all (who aren’t pro-Cave Gang) gave the battle to Mook. And there were plenty of 30s in the mentions. #ijs
Rabbit hole time…
Big ups and love infinite to my blood cousin/lil sister Leaha. Her favorite rap song ever is “One Love” by Whodini. It inspired the classic Nas song of the same title as well as the great, late Prodigy’s “Y.B.E.” featuring the legend B.G. (one love to that man, no pun at all). I was listening to the Prodigy track the other day when a recurring thought came to mind. Whenever I’m listening to timeless material, I at times ponder what it would’ve been like to have been present in the session(s). I can only imagine how real that session had to have been with Pee Double and B.Gizzle together in the same studio, burning trees and trading war stories. It doesn’t get any more ill. We have heard about how crazy the Tribe’s Midnight Marauders sessions were, and not necessarily from any of the members (RIP Phife Diggy, miss you). Mos Def talked about how he’d troop from Brooklyn to Manhattan just to hang around and profit off the vibes. Pharrell talked about how he came up from Virginia Beach just to be amidst the vibes. Might I mention he was still in high school? You know that had to be some legendary shit (obviously Monday, they’ve heard the album). Anyway, here’s a few sessions I wish I were simply in proximity to when the classic shit was laid down:
Earth, Wind, and Fire – “Can’t Hide Love” – the “ah’s”
I wasn’t even alive when the natural elements laid this masterpiece down. The year was 1975. The album, titled Gratitude, was arguably their best. It also included “Devotion”, “Reasons”, and “Shining Star”. All three are considered classics in their own right, but they can’t fuck with “Can’t Hide Love”. You know what time it is as soon as the trumpets blow. But what makes me wish I were alive and present was their iconic ending. Y’all know what I’m finna say. Yup – the “ah’s”. If you don’t know what the eff I’m talmbout, I’ll fill you in. Toward the end of the track after the last lyric, the band harmonizes in crescendo, simply singing a series of “ah’s” throughout the last minute or so of the track. It’s more than amazing. It’s other worldly. Those boys left earth that session.
Rufus featuring Yvette Marie Stephens (better known as Chaka Khan) –
“Sweet Thing” – the “love me now or I’ll go crazy” ending
1975 must’ve been one heaven of a year. In addition to the aforementioned song, Rufus and Chaka graced us with its existence on their fourth album, titled Rufus featuring Chaka Khan. A generation later (in my era), the GOAT Mary J. Blige introduced it to my life and reintroduced it to the music world. But even though her record was amazing, like most remakes, they don’t quite match the original. Chaka was on another level, sexy personified. Sensuous. Sincere. Amazing. It was personal. And as amazing as it was, the ending was on a whole other level. The rest of the team joined in vocally in to finish the song together in harmony: “You’re the heat, you are my fire. You’re not mine, I can’t deny it. Don’t you hear me talking baby? Love me now or I’ll go crazy!” They rode out on repeat through the end of the track. Chaka’s vocals dominate, but the subtle background harmony from the fellas give it a boost of HGH and seal its perfection.
Tupac Shakur, All Eyez on Me (entire album)
“Out on bail, fresh outta jail, California dreamin’!” Pac scripted the beginning to this entry much better than I ever could even fathom, so I didn’t. It was early 1996 (my senior year in high school) and Pac had just been released from Clinton Correctional Prison. He immediately signed a record contract with his bail signee, one Suge Knight and Death Row Records, and took two whole weeks to record the first double album of original material in rap history. It birthed classic tracks like the afore referenced “California Love”, “I Ain’t Mad At You”, “All About You”, and MANY others (those were just the singles). It also included a plethora of legendary rappers, singers, and producers, including the Death Row camp (which still had Dr. Dre at the time) , Devante, K-Ci, and JoJo from the iconic R&B group Jodeci (Devante on production, K-Ci and JoJo on vocals), E-40, Method Man, Redman, and former Guy front man Aaron Hall. The only thing that matched the project’s greatness was its aura. Death Row was the number one record label at the time and everything the Row did was a movie. Dre was arguably the best producer. Pac was pretty much the most enigmatic figure in hip hop. Pac’s signing placed them firmly atop the mountain. I wish I were there to be a part, knowing how Pac moved. I would’ve had all the energy in the world. Record all day, party all night, get some groupie cutty, sleep for a couple hours (literally), repeat process.
I certainly hope you enjoyed the blog. But if not, just remember that it didn’t cost you one red cent, you trout mouthed heathen. I hope you take a misstep off the walkway leading to your front doorsteps, twist your ankle and recover, only to step in shit. Peruse the archives if this was your first time reading the blog. Holla at the Crew on IG @ theunbearablescrew or on Twitter @crewunB so you can scoop some fly ass apparel for this cold ass autumn and winter on deck. That’s my time y’all. Stay paid and stay blessed. Water.