Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Boogie Down Productions - Ghetto Music: The Blueprint of Hip Hop LP


Get On Down/Jive (2017, 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.

When I discovered Boogie Down Productions, it was primarily based on the song "My Philosophy" appearing on a Yo MTV Raps compilation combined with videos being played on the daily Yo TV show.  I have strong memories of playing By All Means Necessary non-stop and I have equally vivid recollections of their fifth full length Sex and Violence being released as the 'new' BDP album.  The time in between those events are a little fuzzy.

I'm not sure exactly when I added my original CD of Ghetto Music to my collection, but I'm fairly positive that it was part of one of the Columbia House or BMG Music scams I would take part of in late elementary school/early high school.  I used to sign up for the ten CDs for a penny gimmicks.  Then, they would send you a monthly mailer that said 'unless you opt out, we'll be sending you then new Heavy D CD at full price as part of your subscription thing.'  What I would do is not reply to that  mailer and get sent the Heavy D CD.  The next step would be to write 'Return to Sender, I didn't order this' on the box and stick it back in the mail.  It usually only took a couple of those before I received a notice that my account was suspended.  Then I'd start all over again.

As for this album itself, like all BDP albums, I love it unconditionally.  While I probably don't listen to it as often as some of their other albums, there are many incredible tracks.  "The Style You Haven't Done Yet," "You Must Learn" and "Jack of Spades" (as featured in the excellent I'm Gonna Git You Sucka) are among my very favorite BDP songs.  This fairly recent reissue sounds and looks great.  I'm not ever going to make the move from hip hop CD to vinyl without adding every Boogie Down Production album to the pile.  They're way too great and far too important to skip.

Boogie Down Productions - Ghetto Music: The Blueprint of Hip Hop (Youtube full album playlist)

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