DJ Surrup - Trappin Out Tha Bandwidth VI

Like Alchemist telling Wapo he'd been living under a rock not knowing about Armand Hammer, I couldn't name one of the artists on this choptape, slowed or not. To be fair, we've all been living under our own rocks for the past 12 months, masked up, time stretched, trapped, hearing only what's on our bandwidth, what the algorithm allows.

How long has it been like this? Has it always?

Oh wait, I think that's A$AP Ferg. Yeah, that's him. How's it going!?

{Slowed down lady laugh}

Public Enemy + LL Cool J - Rebel Mama Said Knock You Out Without a Pause (Stretch Armstrong Blend)

Marley Marl deserves mention in this post's title as much as, if not more so than, LL Cool J, but when you hear that four-note vocal sample odds are your brain jumps to James in a boxing ring not Marlon in a recording studio. So it goes. This blend was mixed live on a January or February 1991 broadcast of the world-famous Stretch & Bobbito Show. After this, Stretch transitioned seamlessly into the full song, "Mama Said Knock You Out," but the blend is what grabs my attention, as it 1) is dope, 2) brings together two of the headliners of the 87 Def Jam Tour, and 3) in a roundabout kind of way, reconciles Rap Attack's infamous on-air diss of "Public Enemy No. 1" by placing Chuck and Flav's voices on beat over a Marley Marl loop. Talk about the magic of radio!

As it happens, in addition to the PE-LL dream team, this broadcast also featured songs from several other Long Island rappers, including EPMD ("I'm Mad"), Bolaji ("Massive Material"), and L.O.N.S. ("Where Do We Go From Here?"), and although I can't say for certain, we may even hear a young Zev Love X shouting out the latter group during Kurious's mic break around the 18:20 mark.


Dzoe - "Patience Freestyle" + Slowed Version

Missing the days when walking through Midtown meant making sure to not take the CD that was being handed to you as that was considered grounds for beginning a transaction.... 

Thinking I might need to adopt that same sales tactic as soon as this plague is over...

Meanwhile, if Times Square lights made music, it might sound something like this... 

Orrrrrr thhhiiisss....

Dzoe with the glow up...

That's a thing the kids are saying, right?


EPMD & Erick Sermon Instrumentals

Last month, Montreal-based writer/producer Son Raw tweeted, "Erick Sermon's 94-96 production run >>>," then brought attention specifically to his bass lines, which got me thinking, Erick Sermon's production run from 1988 onward is really underappreciated in general, which later got me thinking, I ought to make a compilation of EPMD/Erick Sermon instrumentals. 

"And I could hear, 'sorry son, good idea, but you're a little too late.'" 

Of course Erick Sermon knows how dope he is behind the boards: the man's in a class all his own! It should come as no surprise then that a compilation of 16 EPMD beats is already available on the Hit Squad Bandcamp, and another compilation of 14 Funk Lord Instrumentals is on Sermon's. Side note, while reflecting on the obvious: this site is severely lacking in EPMD, Erick Sermon and Parish Smith posts and that should change in 2021.


Pal Joey's Mid-'90s Hip-Hop Mixes

Joseph "Pal Joey" Longo's name rings loudest in halls of house, but the Central Islip raised, SUNY Farmingdale educated DJ has never been shy about his hip-hop roots. After coming up making pause tapes, he was present for the recording of many a classic as second engineer at Power Play Studios, went on to produce for the likes of Boogie Down Productions and even claims to have done demos with a young Nas. Below, four hip-hop mixes from 1993, '94, '95 and '96, all taken from Pal Joey's Mixcloud page. If you're unfamiliar, definitely check that out along with his online "diary."


Lyrica - Notes to Self

One year ago yesterday, Broadway shut down. Four days later, New York schools shut down, as did all restaurants, bars, movie theaters, gyms and casinos in the tri-state area. 

You'd have to be excused for missing any album that dropped at this time, even one as notable as what Lyrica dropped March 12, 2020. As it turns out, Notes to Self was not just appropriately but presciently titled, as every repsonsible adult would spend plenty of time with themselves over the next year. I wish I'd have known to recommend this album at that time, even if only to myself.

So it goes, a year late and a salary short. 

"Who is Lyrica?" All I have is her notes. Still, I'm happy I'm hearing them now and hoping you are too, whoever you are.

...Even if only myself.

DJ Muggs x Rome Streetz - Death & The Magician

Imagine Muggs' record stacks, like bookshelves in grandpa's house — plain sight occultism, totally nonchalant, no attempt at hiding anything, the rhetorical "what of it" toned accordingly. Rome Streetz gives dramatic readings from and of the texts, true to atavistic form like a third-generation Soul Assassin assassinating the souls of grandchildren. This film is based on a true story.



Sugiwon - "Syzzle"

Even when he brings Disney+ level production value and commercial appeal, Sugiwon still manages to slip in something for the astigmatic set (see: "Circle small as ever, I did this on Cedar Road / Everything I say is gold, I'm C-3PO"). This is why I do this.

AZOMALI - "Tofu With Brown Rice" Live! + Freestyle

AZOMALI burns down UGHH Blog's Mic Session then kicks a freestyle that proves beyond a shadow of a doubt he's one of the dopest poets alive. (This appears to be from an appearance on the LA Natives Podcast, whom he has also given a very insightful interview.) If you haven't been following him on Instagram, you're missing out on so many brilliant off-the-head sessions like this one. 


Rian Wyld - She Is Me

There could actually be a summer, like a real one. I'm going to have to finish writing this book, start editing it, get these screenplays going, buy a ring, line up LIRR03, unload the rest of these LIRR01 tapes, spend more time with family and friends, get a raise, and listening to She Is Me by Rian Wyld makes me feel I can definitely do all that and more this year. 

She Is Me is the latest release on Hofstra University's student-run label, Unispan. The album came into this world at the same time Wyld did something more trying than all the stuff mentioned above: brought another person into this world. Check out three videos from the project below and stream it in full here.