Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Ill Street Blues

"Four Walls"---Eddie Holman
Eddie Holman often gets lost in one-hit-wonderland, due in large part to the fact that "Hey There Lonely Girl" was his only commercially successful single. While the rest of his discography is often overlooked, Eddie's smooth-flowing style made a distinct impression on me in the very earliest days of my soul diggin' career. "Four Walls" is an incredible tune from his I Love You LP (1970) that speaks volumes as to why I still consider him an absolute master of soul balladry. If you're a bit on the romantically challenged side, spinning one of Eddie's records could easily turn things around in your favor, too, by the way...

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"Writing The Silver"---Opgave
Opgave's sound is perhaps best described by mentioning some of the artists that producer Saboteur cites as influences: DJ Krush, RJD2, Diplo, Portishead, DJ Shadow, Blockhead, Amon Tobin, etc. I came across this moody little track by way of Suspicious Records' Broken Nightlights compilation, which apparently entered my aural pathways for the sole purpose of uncovering this solitary gem. This has become the perfect soundtrack for nights when I'm battling insomnia, dragging on one last cigarette before I haul my tired ass to bed.

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"The Mexican"---Babe Ruth
It's possible that I should have saved this song for an episode of Souled On Samples, because this joint would easily qualify for an opening session of The Breaks 101. This is a brilliantly funky anthem from a relatively obscure '70s progressive rock outfit from Hatfield, Hertfordshire, England. The song has been rehashed and covered numerous times, as well as having been sampled by the likes of Afrika Bambaataa, Organized Konfusion, Grandmaster Flash, Doug E Fresh, Funky 4 + 1, Jungle Brothers, and more. For what's it's worth, this track can teach you how to play one hell of a mean air guitar.

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"Liberation Conversation"---Marlena Shaw
Marlena Shaw's name should be familiar to you whether you listen to soul, funk, jazz, the blues, R&B, disco---hell, pretty much any kind of music except for heavy metal and polka. Loop diggas are fond of her material as well, considering that her records have been borrowed by artists such as DJ Shadow, No I.D., Lyrics Born, Madlib, Automator, People Under The Stairs, and DJ Premier. "California Soul" is easily her most sought-after tune, but I thought I'd deviate from the norm a bit and slap you in the chops with this sliver of funk that packs a lot more punch than most songs ten times its size.

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"What's In A Name?"---Jay-Z
Some of you may be wondering whether or not I'm pissed at Hov for making a mockery of my allegiance with the complete and utter fiasco known as the Kingdom Come LP. As I suspected, the CD does in fact make for a great coaster, although I don't usually spend $13.99 for one of those. The hologram on the cover didn't exactly make up for the lack of quality content either, so what's a Jigga fan to do to save face in light of this disaster? I haven't come up with anything other than falling back on his classic material, when dude was tryin' to eat---not mired in defeat. This is an unreleased throwback from The Early Tapes (1989-1994) that certainly is a prouder moment than "Beach Chair" could ever hope to be. Sorry about the bootleg hiss in the background, but I'll take that over slickly produced garbage any day of the week.

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Another monumental moment in hip-hop history---Jay and Biggie live in '96:

"Smokin' Cheeba Cheeba"---Harlem Underground Band
I suppose this track might have been better suited to the post I did last week with Grandma chiefin' on that chubby, but what the hell---this is a worthwhile song to throw into the mix at any given point in time. The Harlem Underground Band were the studio group for Winley Records, but they released two albums under their own name as well. This fine contribution to the pantheon of stellar pot songs was released on their self-titled debut LP in 1976.

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"To Know Him Is To Love Him"---Amy Winehouse
Despite the fact that many soul enthusiasts seem to struggle with Amy Winehouse's "authenticity" (not to mention her ethnicity), I bear no shame in saying that I'm rather engaged by her. Let he or she who is without guilty pleasures cast the first stone...

Back to Black has been hyped to the fullest and most nauseating extent, so I thought it might be refreshing to post a more obscure track---a live acoustic cover of a Phil Spector tune that she released on the UK version of the "You Know I'm No Good" single. I'm not a huge fan of the song itself, but Amy's vocal abilities are displayed here in such a raw and unpretentious manner that I find this track somewhat difficult to resist. Hopefully you'll agree, but if not---let the haterism begin...

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Bonus mp3:

"Dirt Off Your Shoulder (Ghislain Poirier remix)"---Jay-Z
I know---if you hear one more Black Album remix before you die it will be light years too soon. Can't blame you there, but damn, cousin---tell me this beat ain't CHUNKY...

Word From Your Moms:

"I been in the blues all my life. I'm still delivering 'cause I got a long memory."---Muddy Waters


Go Nicole Yourself said...

Have we discussed my LOVE for cover songs? Oh and I don't hide in the Amy Winehouse closet. I love that little drunk white girl. I'm assuming you've heard her do Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow? Damn that song is good.

I have tix to her show in Sept and I look forward to a Paolo Nutini appearance during Rehab.

Glad to see another post from you kid.

Anonymous said...

Fucking shit Scholar. You just cant come with a bad post now can you???! Props fam-a-lam.

DL said...


Great post - you know I can't hate on Amy's steez.

Check you mail, the FDB/Souled On fam gets closer!



Anonymous said...

I got chills watching that BIG video. I thought Puffy was the dancer in the Bad Boy Family.

Travis said...

Dope as always and you came with a Jay song I hadn't heard before and I thought that I had heard all of his stuff by now.

As usual, the other stuff I'll have to do some homework on, but I have yet to meet an Eddie Holman song that I didn't like.

I actually prefer "Frank" to the new Amy Winehouse joint.

Hope all is good...I got to fire ya off an email one of these days again and give you and update. I promise to have it done by the end of the year..hahaha. I haven't had the time to keep up with WYDU much either.

Anonymous said...

That Ghislain Poirer remix is that crack.

Superb drop as always, Scholar.

Sven said...

thought thatpoirer beat sounded like amateur bedroom studio crap, with all those cheap storebought drm sounds and keyboard halfass melodies;but hey to each his own. thanks for the breaks

Scholar said...

Nic---I'm going to have to live the Aw concert experience vicariously through you. I thought about going to see her in Chi-town, but even that's a long haul for me. Particularly if she starts puking in the first 10 minutes of her set.

Also, co-sign on "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?". I pretty much try to get my hands on anything of hers I possibly can.

Dondi---Fucking shit---thanks.

Dan---Thought about you when I posted the Amy track. At least I knew I'd have one person in my corner.

Anon---Yeah. Who knew B.I.G. had moves?

Travis---I'm actually stunned that I came with a hip-hop joint you haven't heard. It's ridiculous I know, but that's a proud moment for me. I consider you a human encyclopedia when it comes to such things.

"Frank" is superior, and it's good to know you're an Eddie fan, too. His hair is pretty wack, but otherwise I don't have a bad thing to say about the guy.

Be glad to hear from you whenever, but you know I ain't mad at ya.

Flood---Gratitude. I know everybody and their moms has already said this, but your DJ Premier mix was that crack, too.

Cooky---I'm sure that you're not the only one that didn't like the mix, so no hard feelings. I'm not usually a big Ghis fan, but I do like that beat. And you're welcome for the breaks.

Ced said...

Great post, all is perfect espacially Eddie Holman, Opgave, Babe Ruth, Marlena Shaw, Jay-Z, Amy Winehouse, Harlem Underground Band...thank's


Jack B. said...

a big hell yes to that Babe Ruth track, mon frere. Dude. I cant find SHIT on any of the Fantastic samples. Here's a list I came up with from my shitty, young ears.

Easy enough to ID all the james brown, but I'm pretty sure i hear a break from Pet Sounds in Look of Love. strugglin man.

Anonymous said...

Don't stop posting such themes. I love to read stories like that. By the way add some pics :)

viagra online said...

I don't know why everyone admires Amy Winehouse, she was just a junkie.