ChartWatch: Underground Rap Rises! Go Buy Some Gangstarr!

"Above the crowds above the clouds

where the sounds are original infinite skills create miracles  warrior spiritual  Above the clouds raining down 

Holdin it down" 


“Above the Clouds”

Guru (Gifted Unlimited Rhymes Universal) July 17, 1962–April 19, 2010 As I was driving home last night the radio station out here in Houston played a mixed dedicated to Guru. One of the songs they played was “Above the Clouds” and a listener called in asking who the artist was because she liked the song. Guru was a big part of Hip Hop culture and he will be missed, but one saving grace is that his music is timeless. It’s there forever. Hopefully some fans and artist out there will be exposed to some of the music he created now, and see the time and effort that Gangstarr put into their craft.  There is no Hip Hop in the top 10 but maybe that’s fitting for this week. Take the time to experience a Gangstarr album like No More Mr. Nice Guy, Step in the Arena, Daily Operation, Hard to Earn, Moment of Truth, The Ownerz, Full Clip: A Decade of Gang Starr, or Mass Appeal: Best of Gang Starr. If you like Jazz, then listen to one of the four volumes of Guru’s Jazzmatazz series, where he blends Jazz, Hip Hop, and R&B. Take some time out this week to hear some real Hip Hop. Guru…Rest In Peace Dropping this Week I wasn’t even going to put any albums in the column this week but the artists we have today have a heavy following in the Hip Hop community. First up is North Carolina’s own Little Brother.  The group has gone through some ups and downs, and a little bit of drama, due to their split with 9th Wonder. Now a duo, Phonte and Rapper Big Pooh, still continue to spit real lyrics since their debut The Listening. This week they release, Left Back, their fourth album. Next, is Devin the Dude, who, in honor of yesterday releases Suite 420. If you’re familiar with Devin the Dude then you know what style of music he’s producing.  I don’t know much about the album but I will be picking it up. Lastly, is California’s own Cypress Hill who releases their ninth studio album Rise Up. This is the group’s first album of new material in the last six years so fans out there should be happy. That’s it for the week so go pick up one

of these three albums, listen to some Guru, and go enjoy some real Hip-Hop.