Juelz Santana f/ Yelawolf – Mixing Up The Medicine

Juelz Santana and Yelawolf echoing/channeling Bob Dylan’s “Subterranean Homesick Blues”. If the rest of Born To Lose, Built To Win (his much-delayed third album– push-backs and title-changes) sound anything like “Mixing Up The Medicine” then it’ll be a decent album, but I doubt that after hearing that awful radio single/standard club number featuring Chris Brown.



Pill f/ Freddie Gibbs – Run Up To Me

Pill continues leaking out great materials from 4175:The Refill which drops sometime this week — check The Educated Villains. He once again link up with Freddie Gibbs, and each time these two get together, the result is great.



Washington Phillips – Denomination Blues Part 1

In the late 1920s, gospel music performer Washington Phillips recorded 16 songs. The songs featured Phillips’ voice and an home-made instrument, — some argued not a Dolceola, but a common fretless zither (possibly both of the Phonoharps in the photo above.)  The instrument(s) add an ethereal effect to Phillips’ voice (on first listen, I thought I was hearing the voice of a woman, a trace of Nina Simone.) Earlier this year, Dust-to-Digital, a record company based in Atlanta, Georgia released Take Me to the Water: Immersion Baptism in Vintage Music (1924 – 1940) and Photography (1890 – 1950) – a 96-page hardbound book containing amazing historic images and an incredible 25-track CD of songs and sermons. It’s available everywhere.


[youtube width=”525″ height=”455″]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UogeAFYnBo[/youtube]

Pill speaks about coming up in West ATL’s Pink City, the hard, un-glossed reality he deliberately portrayed in his video for “Trap Goin’ Ham” -which ruffled a few feathers, trapping and rapping, other generalities like blunt communication/honest expression thru rap.


This is probably the craziest rap video you’ll see all year. I saw the preview for it, but slept on the actual video. Thanks to The Times writer Caramanica for the reminder. You might remember Pill from my Recession Rap Jams.  Juvenile’s “Ha” immediately comes to mind, as a point of reference and, to a lesser extent, and so does Goodie Mob’s “Cell Therapy” to a certain extent – using the rap video purposefully, to unmask black poverty and show real human suffering that we rarely see in mainstream American media.  Also, look for the Amnesty International “JUSTICE FOR TROY DAVIS” poster.

[vimeo width=”500″ height=”400″]http://vimeo.com/5282853[/vimeo]


About two years ago, Papoose was a promising, young rapper with heavy street buzz (countless mixtapes, hot97-radio love, magazine/blog exposure, etc.) and a 1.5 million dollar record deal in the works with Jive Records.  Well, the deal fell through, and Pap bragged on subsequent tapes that he kept the 1.5 million from the label, but plans for his debut album The Nacirema Dream never actually materialized. Pap has been releasing mixtapes (and greatest hits from his previous tapes) and newer bits/leaks surfaced every now and then. On this particular track, he’s disgruntled, disgusted with the whole music industry and he’s letting his feelings known, keeping it one hundred/real (as “real” as rappers can keep it anyway.)


Papoose – I Just Want The Paper


Playaz Circle – Hold Up

I found this one on my desktop. Playaz Circle with (insert big name/famous rapper) is usually pretty good, but this is the first time I’m hearing the group without Lil Wayne, Ludacris, or OJ Da Juiceman and it’s surprisingly nice.

Gucci Mane

I keep on hearing voices/Telling me to ball, so I keep on buying Porsches/My watch’s like a portrait, Gorgeous!

Gucci Mane – Gorgeous

Gucci Mane is one of the most interesting figures in rap music at the moment, and he’s suffering not only from the general psychosis of being dope but also severe auditory hallucinations.  I downloaded “Gorgeous” from cocaine blunts several weeks back, and I just got around to  hearing it. According to Noz ““Gorgeous” finds him walking the line between language and commerce obsession by way of voices in his head. We’ve heard the balling as a compulsion defense but never the full on insanity claims.” The beat is great as well, providing a perfect background for the experience that is Gucci Mane.

F*** The Recession, my bank accounts are pregnant!

& & &

Augustus Pablo – Africa Dub

Hugh Mundell – Africa Must Be Free By 1983

To bring us back to reality, away from Gucci Mane and the Hearing Voices movement, here’s Augustus Pablo’s “Africa Dub”, plus the original tune “Africa Must Be Free By 1983” by Hugh Mundell, a teenage prodigy, who died far too early (1962-1983~ shot to death in Kingston while driving a car with Junior Reid.)  Hugh Mundell wrote and recorded several albums, some of which were produced by Augustus Pablo. I have yet to hear them.

Speaking of unheard/undiscovered Jamaican reggae – Props to Professor Wayneandwax for the heads up & review. I ordered Dub: Soundscapes and Shattered Songs in Jamaican Reggae from Amazon weeks ago, and still haven’t received it.


Due to the recent election, people feel no need to keep pumping their fists. It’s as if they’ve been tricked to believe that the years of hatred has been erased with one achievement. If you’re one of the ones that fell into this trap, stay tuned… for some post-election rap jams/news from Playboy Tre, who last month dropped a brand new street album/mixtape titled Liquor Store Mascot.

Playboy Tre – Breakin’ News

My partner Tally put me up on Tre’s excellent 2008 mixtape Goodbye America, which noz called a near classic— I think it’s an absolute classic and one of the most criminally slept on street albums of last year. In a sense Liquor Store Mascot feels as if it should have been the precursor to Goodbye America, rather than the other way around.  LSM continues with the same themes, same relentlessness, but it is more dramatic, more nightmarish, and even funnier (Bobby Ray asking “what about HAM Squad? How am I supposed to smoke all these HAMs by myself?” gets me every time.)  The themes here, on the track above and on the mixtape about crime, poverty, race, alcoholism, police brutality and the recent increase in gun sales and gun club membership in the Obama era.

I still haven’t fully wrap my ears around the tape or even this track, “Breakin’ News,” which is dense, and Tre is reflecting on deep, serious problems (like Oscar Grant‘s shooting in the Bay) but his flow is so deceptively disarming with that Georgian accent and Southern drawl, the grand social comments (and criticisms of Obama) like “ain’t nothing change in the streets we walk” or “the president’s black but the neighborhood sad” just breeze through, as if they are of no significance– just a drunk talking shit over beats.

DJ Drama – People Will Be Heard feat. Ludacris, Willie Da Kid, Busta Rhymes

I don’t like Luda, but he’s alright– I have been saying that for a decade.  Here, Luda warns the government about trampling voices of dissent and encourages said voices to reassert themselves, after the euphoria and noise.  Busta shouts out Obama, empathizes with struggling people, –the starving, the evicted, the unemployed, etc. In the middle, there’s that Willie kid. Why is Barack O’Drama always shouting? We are already listening to our music at very dangerous dBs. Deafness descends upon all of us.  Sounds bleeding out of our earbuds and headphones, in trains and buses, the constant blasts of noise in New York, sound levels at clubs are usually over 120 dBs.  I was at Que Bajo?! for about three hours last night, and my ears are ringing right now.  I was briefly exposed to that wobbly monster Geko was in search of in Colombia.  To conclude this, a whole generation is at risk of premature deafness and the DJ business is loudness.

Capone-N-Noreaga – Dead Broke

Empty fridgerator and pissy elevators… welcome to Queens? And it’s 1997 all over again! The image of the pissy elevator as a prominent identifying feature in mid to late nineties New York rap is as significant as say the scuffed timbs. I liked Wallabees and Mountain Gear better then.

Recession Rap Jams, mixed with the struggle, alcohol, and the kick!

here are a few youtube videos I have been meaning to post the last few days –


First up, Obama Chia pet commercial – We already know that one of the few growth areas in the American economy at the moment is Obama memorabilia.  So this one comes as no surprise, though it is inappropriate and hilarious – not as much as the kids in Times Square selling Obama Condoms to tourists (“Get your Obama Condoms” and “We got extra-smalls”) or the Obama tees I saw people wearing in DC a few days ago, at the Smithsonian of all places. It seems to be all about hot dogs and ice cream and Obama memorabilia down at the Mall.


Second, SkipScreen – A Firefox extension which eleminates the unnecessary wait time when downloading files from zShare, Rapidshare, Megaupload, etc.  You still get pop-ups from zShare and other host sites but they’re still working it, and if you’re not interested in purchasing a premium account with thise hosting sites, you’ll appreciate SkipScreen.


And last, Mos Def recites DOOM lyrics in a studio.  DOOM’s latest album Born Like This disgustingly good – “Give a MC a rectal hysterectomy/Lecture on removal of the bowel, foul technically,”  “Chrome grown men doin’ business with Anglo Sax’n’em/Lackin’ swing but that banjo’s so relaxin’,” “Villain knot his hair, he’s no Afro-American/If that’s the case, he be a bald-headed African,” and “…don’t know what he sayin’ but the words be funny.”


pic by tatyana-k

Well, I suggest you subscribe and check out the previous podcast, before we jump into this one.
All set? Alright, here it is-Recession Rap Podcast, a compilation of rap songs addressing the worldwide economic recession/depression, or more generally the everyday struggle and pain of financial pressure, the bread-n-butter hustle (or should that be food-n-gas?) that it comes it. Except for songs like Lil Wayne’s “Real Rap” which clearly is more about the post-Katrina nightmare that is now New Orleans and David Banner’s “Faith” which is about keeping faith and not collapsing or folding under pressure, nearly all of the raps here are directed at the economic suffering that is going on right now.

With that said, I’d also like to add that I did not necessarily/intentionally/exclusively look for a collection of rap voices of  depression or voices of the global gloom. In fact, some of the rap jams I have been posting here for the last few weeks are (on the contrary) very funny, and compassionate as well.  There’s a lot of struggle and darkness in the economic depression and it’s reflected in the music, but that’s not all it’s about.  For example, listen to Cam’ron’s “I Hate My Job”a song which is partly about a “everyday workingwoman,” whose job and workplace is toxic for her well-being ~financially, emotionally, and physically-“Being here 8 hours sure will get you nauseous...” On that same Cam’ron song listen to the chorus –“I put on my pants, put on shoes. / I pray to God, paid all my dues. / I’m trying to win, it seems like I was born to loose / All I can say…” It’s simple and very affecting, the virtue of getting up in the morning, putting your clothes on, one step at a time, and saying your prayer ~something struggling people do every morning, preparing themselves psychologically and spiritually for whatever the day brings, heartbreaks, knockdowns, and whatnot.

All the songs here are in that vein, impressive and amusing. It would have been impossible or just very lengthy if I had decided to cram all RRJs I gathered or posted, but I’m happy with this batch.  Download it, bump it in your car/ on your subway ride to work, play at home/ walk in the park, listen and enjoy.


Jahdan Blakkamoore Intro (Buzzrock Warrior coming soon on Dutty Artz)

Attitude f/ Jackie Chain – Money (off T.I.M. (Time Is Money) Warner Bros. Records 2009)

Gangsta Pill – Back Outside (off 4180: The Prescription mixtape, Grind Time 2009)

Cam’ron – I Hate My Job (from Crime Pays, Diplomat Records 2009)

Jadakiss f/ Barrington Levy – Hard Times (from The Last Kiss, Roc-A-Fella Records 2009)

G-Side f/ Shyft – Hit Da Block (from Starshipz & Rocketz, Slowmotion Soundz 2008)

Diata Sya – Saria (from Move It Chaleh! Akwaaba Music 2009)

Joell Ortiz – Bout My Money (off Free Agent, ???, 2009)

Kano – Paper (from 140 Grime Street, Bigger Picture Music 2008)

Rhymefest – Exodus 5.1(off El Che, J Records 2009)

Amanda Diva – Rebels (from Spandex, Rhymes, & Soul, DivaWorks Inc. 2009)

Young Jeezy – Circulate (off The Recession, Def Jam Records 2008)

Lil Wayne – Real Rap (off ???,??? 2009 )

David Banner – Faith (from The Greatest Story Ever Told, Universal Records 2009)

Willie Isz – In The Red (from Georgiavania, Lex Records 2009)

Good Enough!!


Pill – Back Outside

Pill is a rising lyricist from ATL, and is one of Killa Mike‘s proteges in Grindtime Rap Gang. This joint if off his new tape 4180: The Prescription. Buyable here – if you have money, or if you’re into spending money at all, cop it!

It’s going down like a stock (computer) (?)
Or a job with union… (?)

Recession Rap Jams, jumping like a trout attached to a rabbit!(?)

Courtesy of Traps N Trunks