Charlés DaBeast - "Vibin'"

Charlés DaBeast resides in Durham, NC, but hails from Wheatley Heights, NY. At only 17 years old, he's already released three self-engineered mixtapes (The Progress EP Vol. 1, 2 and 3) and is currently working on his "first major in-studio project," as he puts it. If the titles of his EPs and the sounds of his latest song, the Opito-produced "Vibin'," are any indication, then that upcoming project will definitely be his best work to date. And as he's clearly already progressed from competent freestyler to radio-ready songwriter, I for one am excited to hear where he goes next.


"It's where you're at."

Long Island, for those who don't know, consists of 13 Towns, such as the Town of Hempstead, the Town of Babylon and the Town of Islip, all of which are divided into villages, hamlets and census-designated places (CDPs). These neighborhoods range in size from sprawling stretches down to areas of less than two square miles.

From this blog's inception, I've tried to tag each post with the neighborhood of the artist or venue being discussed. This, as you can imagine, has posed several challenges. In addition to trying to figure out where lesser-known artists are from, I've had to decide how specific I was going to be with each. That led to some inconsistencies: Freddie Foxxx was tagged with North Babylon instead of Babylon, but DJ Stitches was tagged with Amityville instead of North Amityville, and De La Soul were tagged with Amityville but not East Massapequa.

I've thought about this for a while, and after some discussion with my girlfriend, a Plainedge native, have decided that I'm going to try to be as specific as possible. That means from here on out, even CDPs as small as Wheatley Heights (1.4 square miles in the northern section of Wyandanch) will get their own tag. I think localizing the posts like this will help provide the most accurate representation of each artist and serves to illustrate the dynamic nature of Long Island hip-hop. After all, Long Island is the largest and most populated island in the continental U.S., so it's only right that I try to be as specific as possible with regards to our artists' hometowns.

Of course, I can only make these judgments based on the information available to me, so if you're submitting music to be posted here, please include in your email which neighborhood you're from, and likewise, if you have any knowledge of where a particular artist on this blog comes from, be it the high school they attended or the block they grew up on, please feel free to share that information. Thanks. Peace.


DJ Stitches & Rhyme Valore - "Another Sleepless Night" EP

This EP collects the vocal tracks from DJ Stitches and Rhyme Va-Lor's long out-of-print "These Are The Dayz" / "Top Emcee" 12-inch, as well as five previously unreleased artifacts of early-mid '90s Long Island hip-hop, each of which evoke a particular kind of creepiness, perhaps presaging Rhyme Va-Lor's coming work with Prince Paul and Superstar in Horror City.

This Dope Folks Records release is "limited to 300 copies and will never be repressed," so give it a listen below and get it here while you still can.


Shabazz - "Respect" / "Glad You're In My Life"

You might recognize the name Shabazz from the Bomb Squad roster, as he was involved in the making of some of their biggest records such as Ice Cube's Amerikkka's Most Wanted and Public Enemy's Fear Of A Black Planet. However, what many people don't realize is that Paul "Omari" Shabazz also has a pretty extensive solo R&B catalog, including the "Respect" and "Glad You're In My Life" singles, which were respectively released by RCA in 1989 and 1990, right around the same time as the aforementioned albums. Shabazz's complete discography is a little bit hard to pin down and piece together as he's used the names Shabazz, Paul Shabazz and Omari Shabazz interchangeably over the years, plus there are several other Shabazzes out there -- Palaces, the Disciple, etc. That being said, his career is definitely worth exploring, as it has taken him from the legendary 510 South Franklin St. to the Juvenile Hell sessions all the way down to the Atlanta area, where he currently resides.