Here is my 10 list. I could easily go to 100. There were too many memorable moments and too many albums. But for the sake of this post, I will keep it at 10 and particular to the late eighties and early nineties. Each album had a memory, below are my stories…
01. Public Enemy - Yo! Bum Rush the Show / 02. N.W.A. - N.W.A. and Posse
Yo! Bum Rush The Show and N.W.A. and Posse were 2 of the very first records I picked up when my parents bought me my first set of turntables. I had these Technique SLDD22's with an Atus mixer and I was ready to be the next Kool Herc. Pop's took me and my buddies downtown to AC&S Records. Both albums stood out on the rack that called my name. At home, my turntables sat on the rug since I did not have anything to put them on. I would lay next to my set up and play both albums over and over again.
03. Eric B. and Rakim - Paid and Full / 04. Boogie Down Productions - Criminal Minded
I was in jr high listening to a lot of Electro and Miami Bass music. Dr Dre was in a group called the World Class Wreckin Crew and Ice T was waking up 6 'N the Mornin'. 808 kick drums ruled production. I had a buddy who kept talking about this east coast rap I should listen to. He made me a mixtape. The music was way slower than electro and the kick drums had a hard knock to it. It was Poetry. It was Boogie Down Productions song Poetry....Ba-boom-boom-crack.. I remember saying how hard the kick and snare sounded. MY buddy threw paid and full by Eric B and Rakim on the tape as well and so I also ended up purchasing that album. I used to look at the cover art front and back religiously. All I wanted was a pager and one of those Gucci Suits by Dapper Dan.
05. RUN DMC - Raising Hell
Raising Hell is timeless and still gets play today. That Bob James sample under Run and DMC's vocal goes really hard. I used to walk around my neighboorhood with a radio cradled in my arm. My neighbours heard RUN DMC...I made sure they did. My friend Chase had a setup in his garage and did not mind when we would hang out. He would just sit there and let us practice scratching on his turntables for hours. They used to rack records at the local Sam Goody's and grab 2 of everything. Peter Pieper taught me how to rock doubles. Thank you Chase.
06. De La Soul - De La Soul is Dead / 07. A Tribe Called Quest - People's Instinctive Travels and Paths of Rythm
During my senior year, I would hang out in the middle of the courtyard for lunch. I remember eating my rolled pizza and standing in a circle with Sabo, Damon, and Guy. There were times Bert would show up and just hang. (Side note: Guy and Bert would later become Soulo and Profile + Jason Skills of the Sound Providers) Someone would spit out “Oodles and oodles of O’s you know”. Then another person would recite “You get ‘em from my sister, you get ‘em from my bro. We just went around in a circle taking turns with lines and verses. Then we would switch It up....Bonita Apple Bum....you got to put me on. It was Native Tongues. Period. I had some Ill overalls on and some other kids used to wear Birkenstocks with socks.
08. Jungle Brothers - Straight Out The Jungle
I used to write back in the day and had an alias named "Images". You couldn't catch me without my piece book. All I wanted to do was draw and play video games. After school, I would sit in my room plugged into my Commodore 64. If I wasn't playing Karateka, I was drawing in my book. I had a cassette tape I used to play on repeat. "Educated man from the motherland, You see they call me star but that not what I am......" That album was the soundtrack to my graf days. The simple raw drum samples is what I dug the most. I lend Ken my cassette tape and never saw it again. Ken give me back my tape!!!!
09. Beastie Boys - Check Your Head
A portion of my high school life I started listening to a lot of punk/hardcore, buts that's another list. The Beastie Boys however, took Punk, Funk and Hip Hop and fused it all together to create Check Your Head. Pauls Boutique is an amazing album, but check your head was the album that resonated with me. I used to shop at thrift shops for clothes or bought clothes that looked like they were from thrift shops. Vintage ringer tees and Doc Martens and baggy jeans. Some would say I looked homeless. But I just wanted to be like MCA, Ad Rock, and Mike D.
10. Souls Of Mischief - 93 'Til Infinity
Every single emcee on this album had skills that could hold their own! But what really got me hooked was the video of That's When You Lost. They were ordinary west coast dudes wearing ordinary clothes. It was like they just left school and then went to shoot a video. Me and my buddy Chris would drive everywhere to this album on repeat. Back and forth we went song by song. And this classic album will definitely stay in my top 10 since 93 ‘Til infinity.
Whats Your top 10? Leave in the comments below…