Top Ten Thursday: Masters Of Originality

Original

With the release of Nine Inch Nail’s new album, as well as the random tracks that artists like M.I.A. and TV On The Radio have been dropping lately, we thought the topic of original artists was a good thing to focus on this week. Artist in particular that unmistakably have their own sound. Vocally, musically, production-wise; upon the first moment you hear it, you know who it is. Something that didn’t exist prior to, and something that even if attempted to be replicated, it has not happened in the same fashion since. In this respect, artists such as The Beatles or Led Zeppelin (who were extremely original for their time but have been copied a billion times over) don’t exactly qualify. Naturally this lends itself to be a very current list, but we would love to hear any arguments as to what we missed. Now onto the list of what we find to be the most uniquely original artists in music:
10. Mystikal
Mystikal, rapper, artist
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Top Ten Thursday: The Hologrammy’s

tupac, hologram, coachella, digital

All it took was the one and only Coachella music festival to bring Tupac back from the dead…at least in Obi-Wan Kenobi hologram form.  A hundred grand plus and the unequaled genius of Dr. Dre was what proved necessary to display Tupac’s hologram performing “Hail Mary” and “2 of Amerikaz Gangstaz” with Snoop Dogg (for those with a more technical interest in the technology used, see this article).  The shocker is that, from the youtube videos and first-hand reports, the hologram actually looked pretty good.  This may not prompt the esteemed writers of LxL to rush out and buy tickets for the inevitable tour of Tupac reborn (who am I kidding, I’m in), but it did get the ball rolling on which deceased musicians we would like to see show up at a music festival near us.  Our preference would be that these legends show up in hologram form, as opposed to zombified (aka Bob Dylan’s most recent tours), because zombies give us the willies.  Enjoy, and let us know who you would like to see brought to computer-generated life.

10. Notorious B.I.G./Ol’ Dirty Bastard

biggy, notorious, crown, king, close-up

Alright, so maybe the connection between Notorious and ODB are tenuous at best (Jay-Z sampled ODB’s “Brooklyn Zoo” for his track “Brooklyn’s Finest”, which contains a verse by Notorious).  But with the power of post-humus production, we would like to see a Watch The Throne-esque collaboration featuring Big Poppa and Big Baby Jesus in a feast for the ears.  Yes, ODB went by Big Baby Jesus for a period of time during his late-career nosedive. 

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LxListening: I’m a Wu-Tang Man

wu-tang clan, wu tang, symbol, logo

For some reason I have found myself listening to the work of the members of The Wu-Tang clan a lot recently.  Mind you, I have not been listening to any collaborative Wu-Tang albums, but instead the solo works of the various members, which is quite an overwhelming endeavor.  I really like Wu-Tang, but it is difficult to sift through some of the muck and mire that has been by the various members over the years.  For instance, say I wanted to get a greater base of knowledge on Inspectah Deck’s body of work.  I have to then decide which of his FIVE studio releases I am going to try to dig into.  I can look at other people’s ratings of his albums all I want, but rap is just such a crap shoot anyway, there is no way I am going to be successful finding what I’m looking for. 

Since I am just starting to make progress of Wu-Tang solo albums, most of what follows is more of a list of some of my all-time favorite Wu-Tang member’s offerings, and not so much any hidden gems that I have found.  Maybe once I am all the way through the solo catalogues I will be able to offer a LxListening Wu-Tang sequel.  Enjoy.

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1999: A Small Grammy Miracle

1999:  A Small Grammy Miracle

grammy rap nominees, 1999, album, cover, art

In the past week, a lot of venom has been aimed at the Grammy’s, and I am generally in full agreement of Todd and Wes’ remarks.  But, I must give credit where credit is due and recognize that The Grammy’s supplied me with what was a fantastic primer in hip-hop at a pretty young age.  Here is a little background.

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