Today I decided to switch it up and upload five different overlooked projects, namely Tricky presents Grassroots, Royal Flush’s Ghetto Millionaire, Peanut Butter Wolf’s My Vinyl Weighs A Ton, Nuthouse’s Deez Nutz, and Masterminds’ The Underground Railroad.
Tricky first appeared on the scene with Massive Attack as Tricky Kid, he later set off on his own and surfaced again with the project “Nearly God”. It wasn’t until he released the classic album “Maxinquaye” in 1995 that Tricky was finally recognized as a visionary and a producer (he has also appeared in the film “The Fifth Element” and had a recurring role on “Girlfriends”). In 1996, he traveled to New York and negotiated a short lived deal with PayDay/FFRR for his own label Durban Poison (named after Tricky’s favorite brand of weed).
Tricky then spent some time in the famed D&D Studios with his partner Drunkenstein, D&D engineer Eddie Sancho and Big Jaz AKA Jaz-O to release the first (and only) joint under his new imprint label. Guests include underground heroes Hilfiguz, vocalists Laveda Davis and Stephanie Cooke and rapper Roberto Malary Jr. (I’ve never heard of him either). This EP has 5 tracks, one of the being an alternate version of “Tricky Kid” remixed by Eddie Sancho (the original version appears on Tricky’s “Pre-Millenium Tension” LP). Just to warn y’all, there will be more Tricky projects appearing in this blog in the future. Download it and listen.
The 2nd Golden Era of Hip Hop had come to a close and the post Telecommunications Act Era had just begun. It was 1997 and one of the many classics released that year came from Flushing, Queens own Royal Flush. Ghetto Millionaire was released by Blunt/TVT Records (home to Mic Geronimo and Cash Money Click) and featured production by EZ Elpee (“Iced Down Medallions”, “Family Problems”, “What A Shame”, “Regulate”), Buckwild (“I Been Gettin’ So Much $”, “Niggas Night Out”, & “Makin’ Moves”), L.E.S. (“Worldwide” & “Reppin’”), Da Beatminerz (“Movin’ On Ya Weak Production”), Sha Self (“Conflict”), Hi-Tek (“Shines”), ChySkillz (“International Currency”), and Low (“Dead Letter”), the rest was produced by Royal Flush, his brother Rudy Govantes, and Prince Kaysaan.
Royal Flush ‘s first project featured his peoples Wastlanz, Noreaga and Mic Geronimo (his boy and TVT labelmate). Royal Flush is one of the most overlooked emcees in the game and considering how nice he is on the mic and what a good businessman he is (he ghostwrote a lot of joints and he won’t divulge who his clients are/were) it’s a surprise he never blew...just listen to this album for proof.The standout tracks on this album include the mixtape staples “Iced Down Medallions”, “Illiodic Shines”, “Movin’ On Ya Weak Productions”, “Conflict”, “Shines”, “Family Problems”, “What A Shame”, “Regulate”, “Worldwide”, “International Currency” and “Dead Letter”. If you missed out on hearing this album or you weren’t one of the 100,000 that bought it when it was in print, download it and get your head nod on.
Stones Throw owner Peanut Butter Wolf’s solo album “My Vinyl Weighs A Ton” was relased on UK label Copasetik Recordings in early 1999. The album featured The Lootpack, Planet Asia, Rasco, Kazi, Grand The Visitor, Zest, Pablo, Persevere, Dave Dub and Charizma (R.I.P.) all rhyming over PB Wolf’s beats. The album also contains some turntable joints featuring DJ Design, Mr. Dibbs, DJ Babu, Rhettmatic, Kid Kaola, Rob Swift, A Trak, DJ Handz, Z Trip, Total Eclipse, DJ Quest, J Rocc, Shortkut, Cut Chemist and Vinroc (Most of them appearing on the turntable posse joint “A Tale Of Five Cities”). Bangers include “In Your Area”, “Styles Crew Flow Beats”, “Hold Up”, “Necromancin’”, “Breaks Em Down”, “Definition Of Ill”, “Keep On Rockin’ It”, “Run The Line”, “Mobbin’” and “Competition Gets None”. Check this joint out.
Nuthouse’s first release was on Bobbito Garcia’s Fondle ‘Em Records. They released the sucessful 12” “A Luv Supream/Synapsis/” and received a reutation on the underground as an up and coming group. They sprung up later in 2000, signed with indie label GoodVibe Recordings (who also released projects by Bahamadia, Phil Da Agony, Spontaneous, & Mystic) and released the EP “Deez Nutz”.
The graf writin’ rhyme spittin’ crew made 8 tracks that featured production from Nex Millen (“Introducing..Deez Nutz”, “Interlude #2” and “Correct Technic”), Adam Bomb (“Tagz, Throw Ups & Pieces” and “The Proposal”), Jahee (“Forget About It” and “Interlude #1”), and Fel theEnigma (“Proceed 2 Build” & “Infinite Potential”). Later on, Dave Ghetto of Nuthouse went solo. The cover art of this EP was done by Az Iz of Da Outsidaz. Download it now.
The crew Masterminds (Oracle, Epod, and Kimani Rogers) was relatively well known in underground circlesand they developed friendships with Organized Konfusion, A Tribe Called Quest, The Roots, and Common (who often let them open for them on tour). They made several vinyl singles before eventually signing with Ground Control Recordsand releasing “The Underground Railroad” in 2000.
The album’s 15 tracks were mostly produced by Epod and Kimani Rogers except for “Joints 2000” which was produced by Mr. Khaliyl formerly of Da Bush Babees, “Shellshocked” produced by Poisoned Ivy and “Memories” produced by Emmai Alaquiva. This project has features from Mr. Khaliyl (“Bring It Back”and “Joints 2000”), underground vet L Fudge (“Onetwo three”), Boston rhyme animal and Def Jukie Mr. Lif (“No Test”) and one of the most slept on posse joints of the 00’s “Seven” featuring the all star lineup of El-P, J-Live, J-Treds, Shabaam Sahdeeq, and Mr. Complex. The album closes with the outro “Free” where vocalist Jasmine Lee sings and Judy Rogers recites a piece of the Francis Ellen Watkins Harper poem “She’s Free”. Download this joint if you missed it back when it first dropped.
For full tracklistings, cover art or more general info on these uploads check out http://www.discogs.com or do a regular Google search. All uploads are Zip files, download and enjoy ‘em:
Tricky presents Grassroots (1996)
Royal Flush-Ghetto Millionaire (1997)
Peanut Butter Wolf-My Vinyl Weighs A Ton (1999)
Nuthouse-Deez Nutz EP (2000)
Masterminds-The Underground Railroad (2000)