A lot of us oldheads in hip hop (and many of us that have blogs) tend to idealize the past 10 or 12 years in hip hop history. Even though there was a great amount of classic material made and released between 1991-1997, there were a lot of wack copycat groups, lame trends and other things of that nature that could fly only in that era. I’ll list three of them here in this following blog:
Old Trend #1
Group overdubs, group chants and punch-ins in unison on tracks:
No more of those rehearsed team chants, improvised sound effects or random interjections being hollered over the track anymore. Sometimes it sounded fly, other times it sounded like a high school spirit squad just got a damn record deal. We heard this style used regularly from 1991-1994 by groups such as Fu-Schnickens, Leaders Of The New School (pictured below), The UMC’s, Original Flavor, etc.
Never again will four dudes cram themselves together in the vocal booth to scream something borderline gay or cornball like “Sha Na Na!!!”, “Shboom! Shboom!” or “Wopbabaloobop!” There will never again be a rapper like Ski of Original Flavor, whose entire style consisted of him repeating popular phrases and making random sound effects like scratching noises. The last group that actually pulled this off and made it sound fly was The Arsonists (pictured below)...after they broke up that style was officially dead and buried.
Old Trend #2
Flippin’ your tongue:
After Das Efx (pictured above) came out with the “iggity” style and sold a shitload of records, it seemed that everybody and their mother decided it would be a good idea to bite it (even though Kool Ass Fashion of The Beatnuts (“Third Of The Trio” off of the Intoxicated Demons EP) and the UK ‘s Demon Boyz suggest that Das Efx jacked their styles) and run with it. Tung Twista and Daddy Freddy also jumped on the scene and took the whole fast rapping/tongue twisting rap era to another level of ridiculousness. The end result? Verses in 1992 and 1993 would go sorta like this:
Let me fliggity flex my skills to piggidy pay the bills/I used to chiggity chop that raw and sling those krills/
I riggidy rock and roll/I siggidy got soul/I tick tick boom/I’m gonna bliggity blow!/
I fliggity flow/I fliggity flow like the Nile/they call me Swiss Army Knife cuz I’m so versatile/
Back in the days that sounded fly, but nowadays? Please shiggity shut the figgity fuck up! I now understand why some younger heads go back and listen to some of that shit that we were doing the East Coast Stomp and jumping up and down to in 1993 like “This shit is hot garbage!”. You truly had to be there in that time and era to fully comprehend/enjoy it.
Point of reference "Ban Da Iggidy's" off of Illegal's "The Untold Truth" LP on Rowdy Records and the scrapped Def Jam album by Boss' sidekick/hypewoman Dee Tha Mad Bitch...and everybody on Earth flippin' their tongues after Das dropped.
Old Trend #3
The grimy ass “underground hip hop” video (circa 1991-1997):
These videos were usually filmed in a really shitty area near or in an abandoned building and everyone around is wearing army gear, skullies, vests, hoodies and Timberlands. Sometimes it’s filmed entirely in black and white. Folks are dancing around metal drums with burning wood in them (cuz that’s how you keep warm in the winter, duh!). Assorted heads may have somehow acquired sledgehammers, baseball bats and/or chainsaws (YZ. Treach..I’m looking at you!) and have preceded to destroy things that are ALREADY in extremely shitty condition (it IS the ghetto, after all!).
When the camera comes around everybody makes their best ice grills and mad faces they’d been practicing since the casting director picked them for the shoot. They also get to flash their machetes, butcher knives, box cutters, guns or whatever other weapons (including razor blades under their tongues) they have on them to the camera to illustrate how “real” shit is at that point in time. Occasionally, some cinder blocks and bricks might get thrown around as well (because God knows how much fun that is!). Breaking shit is imperative, also feel free to spit, smoke weed and grab yo’ nuts.
Some of these elements are present in old Hip Hop videos like Das Efx “Straight From The Sewer”, EPMD’s “Crossover” and “Headbanger”, Rough House Survivers “Get Rough (Rough House)”, Fat Joe’s “Shit Is Real”, Redman’s “Blow Ya Mind”, Wu Tang Clan’s “Wu Tang Clan Ain’t Nuthin’ Ta Fuck Wit”, Rumpletilskinz “Attitudes”, Onyx’s “Throw Ya Gunz”, YZ’s “Return Of The Holy One”, Diamond D’s “Fuck What U Heard”, Beatnuts “Hardcore (Hit Me With That)”, Bushwackass "Rough, Rugged and Raw", Greysun and Jasun's "Livin' Like A Trooper" and M.O.P.’s “How About Some Hardcore?”
That's all for now...shout to Animal Mother for posting his blog a while back and making me delay and rewrite this one.