Read, Watch & Listen. | Mid-Day Links 4/13/12
From the moment he appeared as the 16-year-old featured DJ on Marley Marl’s In Control Rap Show on WBLS in 1988, Pete Rock was destined for higher heights. Following in the footsteps of his radio mentor, the Mount Vernon-bred starchild may have caught his initial break via a bit of music biz nepotism (being cousin to the Marley-produced Heavy D), but proved more than worthy of these blessings by going on to become hip-hop’s most dominant producer of ’92 and ’93. Echo-soaked horn hooks, a raucous snare, and an out front hi-hat were the foundations of the Pete Rock sound. It’s a style whose influence reverberates today, as vintage yet still fresh sounding remixes for Public Enemy’s “Shut ’Em Down,” Das EFX’s “Jussumen,” and EPMD’s “Rampage,” and the Soul Brother’s crowning production jewel, Pete Rock and C.L. Smooth’s “They Reminisce Over You,” all attest. With Pete and C.L.’s debut LP, Mecca and the Soul Brother, hip-hop’s production standards were pushed to an unprecedented level of excellence. Never before had the music’s power to move minds as well as heads flowed with such soulfully orchestrated finesse.
Jeff Staple is a very busy man, yet he finds time to produce his 1-2-1 with Jeff Staple series of video interviews. We are very lucky to see two interviews uploaded in one week, and it is twice as good for hip hop fans as the 15th installment is with the one and only RZA. On top of that, these interview clips spans over twenty minutes. RZA was one of the founders of the rap super group Wu-Tang Clan, yet he went through a lot of struggle growing up. From hustling on the streets selling socks to going to block parties at a very young age, RZA talks openly with Jeff Staple about his past, but also the present and the future. This interview is definitely worth watching, so hit after the jump and press play.
With the likes of The Lonely Island, Chuck D and Prince Paul lining up to endorse his memoirs, we decided to ask him and his partner Chief Chinchilla to put together an exclusive Dazed Digital mix about all the things he loves – but mostly hates – about the music business. Are you ready to be schooled? Over to you, Mr. Zone….