Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Jeru The Damaja - The Sun Rises In The East 2xLP


FFRR / Payday (2009, Reissue)

Every Wednesday, in honor of Ed Lover Dance Day from Yo MTV Raps, I take a break from rock and roll to write a little bit about hip hop. In the late 80s and early 90s hip hop ruled my musical life. During this often called 'Golden Era' I discovered so much incredible music. As I am slowly replacing the CDs I've had for 25+ years with vinyl copies, I'm going to talk about some albums that had a really important impact on me during some very formative years.

The Sun Rises In The East is one of those 1994 hip hop albums that came out as I was starting to lose interest in hip hop as a whole.  The lure of Beck and other new-to-me rock and rollers had the lion's share of my attention by the time that year had come to a close.  But albums like Fear Itself by Casual and Jeru The Damaja's debut definitely caught my ear.

I know that "Come Clean" was released as the first single, but I don't remember hearing that at the time.  "D. Original" was the first song that I heard and it totally captivated me with its beat based on a loop of what sounded like a piano falling over.  The entire album is full of beats like that.  Dark. Perhaps deceptively simple, but DJ Premier lays down an incredible foundation for Jeru to unleash his gritty, unapologetic flow.

I didn't really give this album as much attention as it probably warranted in 1994.  As mentioned before, that was a big transitional year for my taste in music.  As far as hip hop went, I was neck deep in Hieroglyphics albums.  Not to mention Gang Starr's Hard To Earn also came out that year so I had a pretty damn strong album from the DJ Premier side of things as well.  As the years have gone by, I've revisited my Jeru CD quite a bit and have much more of an appreciation for how strong it is.  Adding the vinyl to the collection was a no brainer.

Jeru The Damaja - The Sun Rises In The East (Full Album Playlist):

No comments:

Post a Comment