Tuesday, July 20, 2010

//The Cee-Lo Green Mix: Download + Outtakes..

//And now for your listening pleasure..
The Cee-Lo Green Mix
by DJ Dmadness:
80mins/44 tracks of Green magic from the catalogs of Goodie Mob, OutKast, Dungeon Family, Gnarls Barkley and Cee-Lo's extensive revelatory solo and collaborative work.

download on soundcloud
stream/download on mixcrate
download track-separated mix

1 Blackberry Molasses
2 Gettin' Grown
3 In Due Time
4 Thought Process
5 Reset
6 Insp Her Ation
7 Right Now
8 Soul Food (Live Remix)
9 Let's Stay Together
10 All Day Love Affair
11 Blood
12 Die Trying
13 G.O.D. (Gaining One's Definition)
14 Backyard Mississippi
15 Whoa Now
16 Free
17 Git Up, Git Out
18 Beautiful Skin/The Experience
19 Crooked Therapy/Cell Therapy
20 Liberation
21 Slum Beautiful
22 Fly Away
23 Soul Machine
24 Who Cares?
25 Watch for the Hook
26 Southern Man by Merry Clayton
27 Rebuilding
28 I'll Be Around
29 The One
30 Get Rich to This
31 Trans DF Express
32 Black Ice (Goodie Version)
33 Dirty South Remix
34 I Want You
35 Follow the Light
36 Crazy (D's Blend)
37 Living Again
38 Pretty Please (Love Me)
39 Lil Star
40 You Don't Shock Me Anymore
41 Closet Freak
42 Ophidiophobia
43 Bass Head Jazz
44 Georgia

*CD available at The Giant Peach

//Here are some additional notes about selected tracks, along with some loose vinyl rips for the DJs..

Mista "Blackberry Molasses (Organized Noize Remix)"

One of my favorite 12"s I ever found in a 50 cent bin at Amoeba. Bobby Valentino was part of this pubescent mid-90s R&B quartet whose self-titled LP was produced by ONP. I always liked the smoove original but with the harder beat and Cee-Lo's verse this is golden.

OutKast with Cee-Lo "In Due Time (Acapella)"
A great track from the Soul Food soundtrack. Remix anyone?

OutKast "Reset" - Now that Big Boi has dropped a classic solo album (I don't use that term lightly) maybe folks will go back and see what a good disc Speakerboxxx was.

Goodie MOB "Soul Food (Live Remix with Little John and The Chronicle)"

Love the loose feel of this version. This 12" was pulled off the shelves because I guess Tabasco didn't want to be associated with one of the most classic albums from the South. I have one of my favorite promo items around here, a Soul Food "menu" promoting the album.

Goodie MOb "Blood" - While the classic 1st LP Soul Food ran just the hook as a pensive interlude, the full-length version with incredible verses showed up on America is Dying Slowly, a pretty good compilation that was part of the Red Hot AIDS Benefit Series.

Goodie MOb "Rebuilding" - While most of their 1999 LP World Party was forgettable compared to their first 2 albums, tucked into the second half was this production by an up-and-coming young cat named Kanye West.

Cee-Lo "You Don't Shock Me Anymore" - My favorite track from the eclectic Stray Bullets mixtape that dropped last month.

Gnarls Barkley "Crazy (D's Blend)"

Of course everybody knows this vocal, but not everyone might know that the track I blended it with, "Don't Cha" by Tori Alamaze (later re-done by The Pussycat Dolls) was written and produced by Cee-Lo.

These are songs I had in the crate that I had to cut or for whatever reason didn't fit. They are all worth tracking down..

-Esthero & Goodie MOb "World I Know (Country Livin')" - From the Slam soundtrack, they remixed the song from her album and it is awesome.
-Goodie MOb "Goodie Bag" - Cee-Lo freestyles his verse!
-Witchdoctor "7th Floor/The Serengetti f/ Cee-Lo" - Incredible way to open an album
-Musiq Soulchild "Momentinlife f/ Kindred the Family Soul & Cee-Lo" - A great soul collab
-Goodie MOb "Inshallah" - with one of my favorite Big Gipp verses
-Scar "What is This? f/ Cee-Lo" & Goodie MOb "Hold On" - From Big Boi's Purple Ribbon comp
-Trick Daddy "In Da Wind f/ Cee-Lo & Big Boi" + "Sugar (Gimme Some) f/ Ludacris & Cee-Lo" - Those hooks!
-Cee-Lo Green "What Part of Forever" & "Language of Love" - I guess these still need to grow on me. From Twilight:Eclipse and Sex In The City 2 soundtracks respectively.
-Seeed "Aufstehn f/ Cee-Lo" - singing with some German reggae cats

Friday, July 16, 2010

//The Cee-Lo Green Mix release 7/18/10

//I am excited and honored to release my latest composition, The Cee-Lo Green Mix. Cee-Lo is one of the greatest, most soulful artists of my generation. He is sonically and vocally fearless, his sound is vast, and his writing is revelatory.

//More than a tribute, my goal was to create a definitive Cee-Lo mix, drawing from the catalogs of Goodie MOb, OutKast, Gnarls Barkley, his solo albums, his collaborative work, and of course rare remixes, b-sides, soundtrack joints, 12"s and more. Aside from the entire Organized Noize/Dungeon Family there are records with Pharrell, Common, Estelle, Kelis, Jack Splash, Da Ranjahs, Eightball & MJG as well as productions from Kanye West, Timbaland, Menahan Street Band, DJ Premier and more.

//I again enlisted Oakland artist Jidan Koon to create the visuals, and again she came through extra large, painting a vibrant, psychedelic watercolor worthy of the music.

This Sunday, July 18 I'll be spinning a guest set (not all Cee-Lo) with my brothers DJ Mpenzi and j s i g h t at their excellent weekly MÄJOR at Somar Bar in Oakland. The first 50 good people get a free copy of the mix, which is also available from the good folks at The Giant Peach.//The Green magic of Cee-Lo can be summarized in this commentary about his verse on OutKast's "Liberation" (from the excellent 12th-anniversary article on the making of Aquemini in Atlanta's alternative weekly Creative Loafing).

"What inspired those words, I can't say. I was out of my mind during that time. I was just very, very obedient to what was moving and motivating me. And, of course, to be liberal and to be liberated was an artistic aspiration and a personal aspiration of mine, too, so it was just all relative."

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

//Living My Life Like It's GOLDEN..

+ some audio treats ripped from vinyl:

José Feliciano - "Golden Lady" (RCA, 1975)

Collén & Webb - "Golden (Tighten Jill Up)" (G.A.M.M., 2004)

Saturday, July 3, 2010

//'05 Rewind..

//Let's talk about 2005 for a minute. Not that it was a particularly amazing year in music, but I just happen to have it documented. From '04-'06 myself and DJ VNA held down a weekly called GOOD LIFE (pre-Kanye & T-Pain) at Luka's in Oakland. Pretty frequently we would send out an email blast with our top 5s of the moment on there. Here's a few months of those top 5s just for the heck of it. It's funny to see where we were at the time, what songs I would later eat my words about (Bilal's "High and Dry"? Classic! What was I thinking? -- Tank? Garbage, what was I thinking!), and how much we were feeling Late Registration and G.A.M.M. (and rightfully so).
/////Good Life Top 5 5.9.05
1. "My Chrome" - Killer Mike f/Big Boi
Just to hear they way Big Boi annunciates "creme de la creme" is worth it. We need more of these summer uptempo jams.
2. "Go" - Common & Kanye
Lyrics are aight, but those dreamy keys just have that feeling of childhood carefree days. And that's love for putting the scratch solo at the end. His remix of "The Corner" with Scarface & Mos Def is cool too.
3. "Hate It or Love It" - Mary J Blige
You can hate or love G-Unit but you can't front on Mary's third verse where she sings a medley of her last 12 years in the game.
4. You Made Me So Very Happy - Lou Rawls
Switching up the top 5 a little bit is one of my favorite "you're the one" love songs. Rawls comes tender and sincere (just like the Good Life DJs). Production by David Axelrod makes it even more unique.
5. Stevie - 7 Samurai RMX
GAMM blesses us with another unique interpretation with this remix of a Stevie gem from the Jungle Fever soundtrack.

////Good Life Top 5 5.16.05
1."I Want You Back (Z-Trip remix)" - Jackson 5
V: Classic Motown gets the remix treatment a la the Verve Remix projects. A hip hop breakbeat compliments a younger (and more sane) MJ.
2."Died in Your Arms" - Jay-Z
V: Taken from the "It Was All a Dream" Mixtape, Jigga goes 80s with support from Resource.
D: Next to the Purple (Rain) remix of "My First Song" this Cutting Crew cutup of "PSA" is my fave Black Album rerun.
Related side note: glad to see Just Blaze get some shine on the Taylib Kweylie video.
3."I Want You Back" - Raphael Saadiq w/ Teedra Moses
V: Heat from Saadiq's slept-on Ray Ray album.
D: Damn, 2 songs with the same title this week? I think the flip side "I Love Her" is dope.
4."He Looks Good/What You Gon' Do?" - Stiffed
D: Santi White is an originator who wrote RES' How I Do LP. This is her punk-ish band and their Sex Sells EP is 3 years old now but guess what I got that on blue vinyl! She left neo-soul in the dust.
5." I Got You" Platinum Pied Pipers feat. Tiombe Lockhart
V: This song has been around on 12" for some time now but the PPP's full album is finally out and this slow burner is one of the best songs on it. Lockhart's voice is as sweet as Amerie's but way stronger. This is Detroit futoro soul at its finest.

/////Good Life Top 5 5.23.05
1. Kenny Lattimore & Chante Moore "Tonight (2 Step)"
D: Alright, I can finally play a stepper's song that's not by a trapped in the closet child molester. Kenny & Chante are forever about making babymaking music.
2. Destiny's Child feat Clipse "Lose My Breath(Neptunes RMX)"
V: The Neptunes pull inspiration from Nina Skye for this clappa remix.
3. The Coup "Fat Cats, Bigga Fish"
V: My Favorite Coup record. After PE petered out and before Dead Prez was pushing vegetables, the Coup was holding up political rap and helped me freak out my Berkeley floor mates.
4. The Coup " Pimps"
V: My second favorite Coup track. WASP rappers who love "Reggie" music. Brilliant!
5. Hans Koller "The Twister (Moonstar RMX)"
V: From the MPS-Rework series that remixes jazz tracks from Universal's MPS catalog. If you're disappointed by the Verve Remix #3 compilation (which I am) than this is for you.

/////Good Life Top 5 06/01/05
1. Goapele "If We Knew"
V: With a new album out in August Goapele is set to put some life back into soul music.
D: I like the title track "Change it All" The first lyric goes " they're closing all the schools down/ some teachers work for free now/ and libraries won't be found..." I love seeing artists grow and get better, rep the Bay, and write about real stuff.
2. Common "They Say"
D: I'm talkin bout the OG version with the guest verse by MC Consequence. Dude got shafted when Kanye replaced Con's verse with one of his own. The original is hungrier, healthier, and better tasting.
V: Thankyou Limewire for letting us hear this track.
3. Tank "I Love them Girls"
D: Buried after the cheesy Part I (sounds like a washed-up Usher in the strip club) is a monster Timbaland remix. Side note: the best part of the snoozeville Fade to Black DVD is seeing Timbaland in the studio declaring "I'm the best that ever did this."
4. Lina "My Fix"
D: Was feeling her last single, now I'm feeling the big band with scratching sound of this cut.
5. Grocery Store Wars
Cuke Skywalker, Obi-Wan Cannoli, Chewbroccoli, Princess Lettuce, C3Peanuts and the Organic Rebels battle Darth Tader and the Dark Side of the Farm. In the vein of "The Meatrix" webmovie that popped up last year. George Lucas should be taking notes. Peep it.

/////Good Life Top 5 06/06/05
1. Stevie Wonder "From the Bottom of My Heart"
D: Stevie, you knew how much we've missed that harmonica (10+ years?) so you gave us 16 bars of it right from the jump. Stevie in 05 is like Prince in 04.
2. Nuffwish " Healing In Vain"
V: A Marvin and Marley mashup that actually works.
3. Amerie " 1 Thing" (Phoreyez RMX)
V: With all the different versions out there, this is probably the best. Barrington Levy makes a cameo apperance midway through.
4. Cemara "How Many Times"
D: Yep, we've got this year's SHINE 2005 cd almost done: songs by my middle school students. Cemara wrote this song, verses, hook, bridge and all, did overdubs, and recorded a remix version with her classmate on the rap verse. Better than songs on the radio right now. What!
5. Havana "Shine/Tangled"
D: Producer Nicolay from Foreign Exchange with a Southern (CA, not Dirty) soul singer Havana. Nuff said.

/////Good Life Top 5 06/14/05
1. Yam Who? " The Star of the Story"
V: London remix masters, Yam Who?, redo this drippingly soulful Heatwave classic.
2. Faith Evans " I Don't Need It"
V: Another strong R&B groove from FE.
3. Pharcyde " Knew U"
V: If you watch VH1 Soul everyday, you'll know about this track from the ignored Humboldt Beginnings.
4. Kanye West w/ Jay-Z " Diamonds"
V: Jay proves again that he's hardly retired. A welcomed addition to a great song.
5. MIA & T imbaland "Dream Collabo"
V: Though they haven't met yet,Tim is hyped to worked with MIA so let's hope it happens.

/////Good Life Top 5 06/14/05
1. Kanye West ft. Jamie Foxx as Ray Charles "Gold Digger"
V: With Jamie Foxx doing his Ray Charles thing, KW continues to drop more fire. Can he do no wrong?
2. Ladybug Mecca "Ladybug Come Outside"
V: Ladybug of the Digable Planets returns with a playful track that bounces with a dirty bass line that would make the Neptunes proud.
3. Dwele "Lost Track of Time" EP
V: Can't listen to the John Legend album anymore? Check out Dwele's newly released white label tracks to hear another leading voice in contemporary soul.
4. Yam Who "Genius of Love"
V: I know I talk about Yam Who too much but these brothers are sick. Check out their redo of the Tom Tom Club's classic joint..
5. Foxy Brown f/Sizzla "Come Fly With Me"
D: Notable cause it's Sizzla's only 2nd appearance on a stateside track (the first was uh, Ja Rule). Also notable cause Fox is now on Roc-a-fella (if you care). Her lyrics are real gutter, Kalongi's only on the hook. Just wish I could turn on commercial radio and hear Sizzla's "Just One of Those Days" or "Be Strong", I mean if they can play Damien Marley and Wayne Wonder and all that reggaeton...

/////GOOD LIFE Top 5 7/4/05
1. Kim Hill "The Real Hip Hop"
D: LA soul singer acoustically serves the monkey crew that she was once the vocalist for: "Shuck for them shuck for them / Jive for them jive for them" Dayam.
2. GURU & Isaac Hayes " Night Vision "
D: Gifted Unlimited & Chef get deep dark over some lullaby music to driveby.
3. Latoya London f/Black Thought " Appreciate "
D: Uh-huh, Oakland's Idol with Philly's Riq Geez getting all Hallmark.
4. Missy Elliot w/ Slick Rick "Irresistable"
V: Missy goes back a few years and returns with another old-school flavored track.
5. Notorious Big " Can I Get Witcha"
V: Old Biggie verse over new version of the "Hate it or Love It" beat. It's like he's still alive...

/////GOOD LIFE Top 5 7/13/05
1. Avila Brothers "I Want You"
V: After handling production for Gwen Stefani, Jant Jackson and Earth Wind & Fire, the AB's finally come out with their own album. Props to Mike at B-Sides for giving me this record.
2. Esthero w/ Andre 3000 "Junglebook"
V: It's Esthero with Dre. Nuff said.
3. Natasha Bedingfield "These Words (Plantlife remix)"
D: She's like a UK, uh Esthero (another Esthero reference! -V) , um Kelly Clarkson, hmm, Macy Gray? Anyway, the scratchy-voiced Londoner gets Giant Step promo and Plantlife & Dwele remix treatment here.
4. Van Hunt "Down Here In Hell with You"
D: His self-titled album came out a few months ago and kinda got eclipsed by the John Legend hype. But this fellow midwesterner's got chops, songwriting skill, and somuchsoul. He's at that level with Eric Roberson, Peven Everett, and (frequent collaborator) Rashaan Patterson. Who? Hey, don't doubt that there's no great male soul singers out now just cause D's in absentia.
5. Rize
V: Watch it, then come to Good Life and get your krump-on.

/////GOOD LIFE Top 5 7/27/05
1. Wayna " Luvin' U "
Nice feel good song from this former Clinton staffer turned singer. Has a Amel Larrieux vibe and Stevie Wonder calls her "amazing".
2. Consequence w/K. West " Turn Yaself In "
This singles been out for over a year but I never heard it until recently. Consequence (aka Q-Tip's cuz) is an underrated but probably had a heavy hand in influencing Kanye's style.
3. Common " Testify"
My current favorite song off the new album
4. Biggie & Frank Sinatra " Juicy/New York"
A great and well executed high-concept mashup.
5. Hustle and Flow
Terrance Howard does a 180 from his role in Crash as a non-threatening " Cliff Huxtable" to play a Memphis pimp trying to achieve his dream of blowing up as a rapper.

/////GOOD LIFE Top 5 8/1/05
1. Jennifer Johns & Mystic "Ghetto Stories"
D: Two favorite Oakland vocalist/rhymers hijack the classic "Tried By 12" beat and give us a redemption song: "I feel like hell so I'ma sing tonite "
2. Goapele "Go Find a Way"
D: Not to be outdone, MsChangeItAll transforms Common & Kanye's locker room tale into a 3rd Bush era lament.
V: Goapele's lyrics, full of soul and gravitas, fits the music far better than Common's version.
3. P.E.A.C.E "Twisted Tongue b/w Mimosa"
D: There's a scene in The Exorcist when a linguist is explaining that in an audio recording of the possessed there are several distinct overlapping voices...to which the priest responds "There is only one voice." Which might be this Freestyle Fellowship legend's vocal philosophy (D'Angelo's too)...his overdubs alone are, according to Doc Max, "songs of their own." Produced by The Knocks (of CA), the beat duo of Doc Max and Shing02, this is PEACE's best single in...ever.
4. Mark Ronson vs. QSO " Pushin' Ronson" (Bonobo Edit)
V. Quantic Soul Orchestra takes a stab at reworking MR's "Ooh Wee" by using their "Pushin' On" vocals. Definately better than the OG.
5. Stevie Wonder " Signed, Sealed, Delivered, I'm Yours" DJ Smash RMX
V: This joint from the Motown Remixed Comp should tide some of you Stevie fans over until the new album.

/////GOOD LIFE Top 5 8/1/05
1. Kanye West f/Adam Levine of Maroon 5 " Heard 'Em Say"
D: You did it again Kanyeezie! You're a genius! A ha ha ha haaw.
2 . NORE & Pharrell " I'm a G"
D: In 20 years The Neptunes' catalog will be viewed like Quincy Jones'.
3. John Legend & Lauryn Hill " So High remix "
D: You-know-who's on it so you gotta hear it. But the best version of this song is still the live one with J.Ivy from the Live at the Knitting Factory recording. Just John & the piano crushes any of the overproduced tracks he's been on since.
V: Looks like I'm not the only one that visits Honey Soul to get up on the new shit. Hell yeah, it's good to hear L-Boogie's voice again.
4. Damien Jr Gong Marley & NAS " Road to Zion"
D. Not as powerful as that biggest of the big reggae tunes of the last 3 years, but a worthy followup and wow, a listenable reggae collab with a rapper. In related news, Sizzla signed to Dame Dash's label?
5. Nonameko " I Wanna Make It With You"
D: I cannot get this out of my head.

/////GOOD LIFE Top 5 9/13/05
1. Nas & Lauryn Hill "It Wasn't You"
D: L-Boogie & Nas equals '05 Diana Ross & Marvin Gaye? Maybe not. But they cut a version of the classic Ross & Gaye "You are Everything" with L singing the chorus and Nas painting the picture. Not quite "If I Ruled the World" but it's good to hear them both returning to '94 era form.
V: Not the heat we've all been waiting for from L, but this track along with the "So High" RMX gives us a taste of bigger things to come.
2. Little Brother "Cheatin'"
D: I've never been a huge Little Brother or 9th Wonder fan, but they got me with this one. This is genius. In one fell swoop they smash on R.Kelly, Usher, Lil Jon, and that great grandpa Ron Isley by beating them at their own game: the cheesy theatrical confessional syrupy R&B song. Comedy. "Can't think of nothing that rhyme with 15"
3. Mos Def "Katrina Klap"
D: "This is dedicated to the streets...affected by the storm called America" announces Mighty Mos before tearing into Nawlins originator Juvenile's "Nolia Clap" bounce.
4. Marvin Gaye " Let's Get It On" (Step RMX)
V: Since we have a Marvin Gaye cover on the list, why not include an original? Marvin Gaye's classic gets a remix that updates it for all the steppers.
5. Prince " SST"
V: While giving a nod to Sade (Sade's Sweetest Taboo), Prince pays tribute to the Katrina Hurricane victims with this charity track.

/////GOOD LIFE Top 5 9/20/05
1. Jazzyfatnastees - "Little Black Dress"
D: What group of soul singers since aforementioned En Vogue actually harmonize ? This is the only one. As 1/2 of the Jazzys who laced the Pharcyde and The Roots back on their respective 2nd albums, Mercedes Martinez says, "Our voices and styles are so different they're actually complementary, think opposite sides of the color wheel." And since their sound goes much further (out to 80s pop, rock and jazz) than the typical "neo-soul" group, record labels don't know what the hell to do with them. So record labels be damned, they have their entire new album The World is Coming up for free legal download from their website because they're proud of what they've done, they're tired of waiting, and they want yall to hear it.
2. Joi - "Another Rocket"
D: From the fearless "I'm so famous 15 minutes will never hold me in" vocalist/flamethrower Joi is four tracks from the unreleased Tennessee Slim Is The Bomb album. She's literally the present and future of the funk and the embodiment of Betty Davis as she is touring as vocalist for Parlaiment/Funkadelic as we speak. And these tracks, oh my lord, oh my LAWD....if this is her second album to never see the light of day ('97s shelved Amoeba Cleansing Syndrome was the best album of the decade)...it's gotta be 'cause the industry's afraid. I mean I'm sure she eats 4 Rihannas before even waking up in the morning for breakfast.
3. Platinum Pied Pipers - " 50 Ways to Leave Your Lover (feat Rogiers)"
V: I know this doesn't fall into the "hot new s***" category but I just recently discovered this track (yeah, I slept) and it's fire! Wajeed and Saadiq cover Paul Simon's ode to getting dumped with some drums that sounds like they came from the Doors.
4. Black Harmony - " Don't Let It Go To Your Head"
V: This little gem proves that covers can, in rare cases, surpass the original.
5. John Legend - "Johnny's Gotta Go"
V: Alas, another Ipod discovery ! Released as a b-side on the UK version of the "Number One" single, this track joins Raphael Saadiq's "Uptown" in the category of great songs about leaving your hometown for bigger and better things.

/////GOOD LIFE Top 5 9/27/05
1. Piano Overlord " Stay Home "
V: Prefuse 73's more low key musical persona doesn't miss with this track. Strictly budda.
2. Fugees " Take It Easy"
V: Alright, so this may not be the best single to mark the Fugees' return but f**** it, it's damn good to hear again. Now with Common, Kanye and the Fugees on the radio there is a reason to listen to the radio. Also, get ready for the upcoming Alicia Keys Unplugged album. Check out the Love It track with Keys, Common and Mos Def.
3. Fiona Apple "Tymps (The Sick In the Head Song)"
D: In this interview, Kanye admits that he worked with Tidal and When the Pawn producer Jon Brion on Late Registration (to stunning effect) because he wanted to be like the rap version of Fiona Apple. So that means that Fiona getting Dr.Dre's bass player/boardsman Mike Elizondo to beef up her finally-seeing-the-light-of-day 3rd album Extraordinary Machine means that she wanted to be like the oddball baroque mental institution cabaret version of...Rakim? NWA? Whatever that means. But nah she's not really like anyone but herself, the extraordinary and astounding thing about her music. And that's love for putting the album out on vinyl before CDs and ITunes. Whoever does that anymore?
4. Clipse f/ Pharrell "New World"
D: Now that Skateboard P is exclusively rapping (check the "Maybe remix" ), will there ever be any more silly classic off-key hooks like this? Will Clipse's 2nd album ever come out?
5. Alice Smith "Dream"
D: I don't even know what to say about this. Whoa.

/////GOOD LIFE Top 5 10/03/05
1. Alicia Keys feat. Common & Mos Def - " Love It or Leave It Alone"
V: Alicia Keys goes unplugged with Brooklyn and Chi-town's finest MCs.
D: It's alright, it could've been better. It's dope that it's a Brand Nubian remake though, I don't know if another has ever been done (Groove Theory's "Tell Me" remix doesn't really count).
2. Fort Knox Five - " Blowing Up the Barrio"
V: For those of you who used to come by Kingman's for Soul Trip , you might remember me playing a lot of Latin flavored mid-temp breaks. FK5 was the source for almost of those records and this is another good track off the new cd, Raid.
3. Si*Sé - "Amiga"
D: Subtle electronic lush keyboard instrumentation with bilingual singer Carol C (also a DJ!). They're from NYC. Reminds me a lot of Gaelle (who?).
4. Stiffed - "Your Voice"
D: This punk band is fronted by homegirl Santi White, who wrote most of songs on Res' debut album How I Do. She's like a rawer Gwen.
5. Fiona Apple "Please Please Please"
D: I ain't even gonna front, there's certain artists that when they come back out make you wonder why you even bother listening to all the bullshh in between.

/////Good Life Top 5 10/20/05
1. Gnarls Barkley (Cee-Lo & Danger Mouse) - "Crazy"
D: This is Danger Mouse's best production yet, and Cee-Lo Green is channeling. I heard they covered a Violent Femmes track for the album.
2. Pharrell - "She's An Angel"
D: Stylistically this falls somewhere between "Frontin" and "Run to the Sun" and quality-wise head and shoulders above "Can I Get It Like That." Pharrell singing is much better than Pharrell rapping.
3. Marco Polo f/ J*Davey - "You Are"
D: J*Davey is an astonishing soul/funk duo from LA...check for "No More" which everybody who's heard it likes. This track is more goodness. Vocalist Jack Davey has a light touch but a lingering effect.
4. GLC "Chi State of Mind"
D: Chi-town theme songs always make me think of my lil nephews out there. This is GLC who stands out on Kanye's "Drive Slow" and "Spaceship"(which is sampled here). Produced and cut deftly by turntablist DJ A-Trak, Kanye's tour dj and flowed mellow by G, which all adds up to a promising single.
5. Kirb and Chris "Closer"
D: More on this later. 80s kids, you know what this is...

/////Good Life Top 5 (80s Edition) 11/02/05
1. Snoop v. The Cure "Drop It Like It's Hot RMX"
V: This track really deserves the "best of both worlds" tag.
2. When in Rome "The Promise "
V: For some reason Asian people are into new wave like how Kirb and Chris are to white girls (j/k). If it's not Bizarre Love Triangle or Blue Monday middle class Asians are go bonkers for songs like "The Promise". Steph: Aren't you glad this one made the list?
3. Dexy's Midnight Runners " Come On Eileen"
V: Before songs by Franz Ferdinand and Modest Mouse became the unofficial anthem for drunk white people, there was "Come on Eileen" which actually sounds better when you slur the lyrics. On a personal note, my brother had this song on a 45 way back in the 80s when I was still fat and dreaming of becoming an astronaut.
4. OMD "If You Leave"
D: Remember Pretty in Pink? This song is a headspin into an '86 timewarp for me...
5. Alphaville "Forever Young (Unplugged Live)"
D: Another 80s defining cut. I pick this one especially because of the way reggae artists like Wayne Wonder (on "Forever") and Born Jamericans (on "Boom Shak-a-Tack") flipped it. Plus you gotta love when it comes in at the school dance in Napoleon Dynamite.

/////Good Life Top 5 11/09/05
1. Tekitha "Ridin"
D: The Wu chanteuse who scared the bejeezus out of me on Wu-Tang Forever is one talented singer and Oakland resident. She's definitely vastly overlooked and underrated and if I wasn't working this Wednesday nite I'd be at her show at Mighty. I think she's playing with her band and an appearance by The RZA. This song "Ridin" is just...perfect. But what happened to her debut album Wisdom Body that was supposed to be entirely produced by RZA? Or Sahara , her full-length collabo with housecat Armand Van Helden?
2. Kirb and Chris "Doorstep, Girl"
D: They're rapping over The Smiths. It's working hard.
3. Bust Rhymes "Touch It"
V: Some new hard club ish from Busta Bus. Expect to hear this a million times at the clubs for the next three weeks.
4. MIA "Galang (Dave Kelly RMX)"
V: Our favorite Sri Lankan temptation gets the remix treatment from dancehall uber producer DK.
5. Fiona Apple " Extraordinary Machine"
V: When I first heard this song, she was performing it on the MTV Katrina relief benefit I thought it was a cover and didn't know it was a new track from her album. It was just so well put together. The lyrics and the way she structures the melodies. No wonder Kanye wants to be the rap version of Fiona Apple.

/////Good Life Top 5 11/21/05
1. Ray Charles "Golddigger" (diplo rmx)
V: If only he were still alive to hear people make Baltimore bass music out his songs.
2. Small World "I Believe"
V: Sweet downtempo track with the Kanyesque sped up soul vocals.
3. Talib Kweli "Ms. Hill"
V: I can't stand Talib but this ode to L-Boogie has a nice hook and it's about my future wife so it's all good. And I like to choose songs that D hates, see below.
D: When I saw the title I thought Kwa was gonna be addressing Anita Hill about the sickening interplay of race, gender and sex that fueled the tabloidesque Clarence Thomas hearings, her public humiliation and perspective on the whole drama and the ramifications of having Tom on this current Supreme Court that has seesawed heavily to the right and how this country is closer to unfolding into an Octavia Butler premonition... But nah, instead we get "Ms Hill you've got skills!" and "Parable of the Sower the main character was Lauren " and uh, it's just...really lame. ("If I ain't like it I ain't like it / It don't mean that I'm hatin" - Common Sense)
4. The Roots "Break You Off (Dub/Soundcheck)"
D: I liked this Roots single when it first came out, wasn't mad at it at all, I don't know why people were tryna hate. So it's dope to hear a dubbed-out, um, roots version of it. Plus the 6-page story of the song that ?uestlove tells in the liner note is unbelievable. Who was the old guy, Jaheim? That would've been dope.
5. Peven Everett "Ghetto"
D: File this right next to Sleepy Brown's "Me My Baby & My Cadillac" and Tekitha's "Ridin'" that we spoke of last time for that smooth cruise that floats you over all potholes and speedbumps and haters (see #3 and #4). From his most recent CD (I think, dude got hella albums, jazz stuff, brazilian, house, soul) Latest Craze, check for it.

/////Good Life Top 5 11/29/05
1. Kelis "Bossy f/ Too $hort"
D: They're really not playing fair on this one, what with the nasty 808 keyboard funk, Kelis' old school rap girl style, and Short Dog himself coming in at the end like Harvey Keitel to clean it all up. Kelis comes futuristic as always, I wonder if it's Neptunes on the beat, sounds kinda like that Beyonce joint from Austin Powers with more slap.
2. Prince "The Greatest Romance Ever Sold (Neptunes remix f/ Q-Tip)"
D: I don't know how I missed this remix before (well, it's not like it's Prince's best song ever) but I sure got it now.
3. Lil Wayne " Shooters f/ Robin Thicke"
D: This is an interesting track, it's got the Freaks of the Industry bassline, salooney piano keys, big drums, Speakerboxxx horns, scratches (wow, who puts those on songs anymore?), and that dude from Growing Pain's son trying to sound like D'Angelo. I'm feeling it though, how did Lil Wayne become one of the best radio rappers of the mid-2000s? Oh yeah, he actually has style.
4. Dennis DJ & MC Cabo: tire a camisa
V: I have no idea what they're saying but this is an essential baile funk that you may recognize from the MIA's Piracy mixtape.
5. Green Day "Bullet in a Bible DVD"
V: Going from making an album called "Dookie" to releasing one of the best albums of 05, Greed Day comes through with an incredibly well directed concert film from their two-day, 65,000 person performance in the UK.

/////Good Life Top 5 12/5/05
1. Donald Byrd " Think Twice (MIZELL 2005)"
V: Nice uptempo remix of the Byrd classic. Note: This version was not released on Blue Note's recent compilation album.
2. Jay Z feat. Beyonce " Bonnie and Clyde 03 DJ Crooked RMX "
V: No Spanish guitars on this remix, just Arrested Development's "Everyday People" which gives the song the kick that the original lacked.
D: Big up to The Rub, this helps extend that Everyday People bump that everyone loves.
3. Mos Def " Kalifornia"
D: From 04's forgettable Biker Boyz movie and the surprisingly eclectic (Papa Roach w/ N*E*R*D?) yet overall mediocre soundtrack is this buried gem. Mos croons a moody downtempo slice of Ronnie Hudson's "West Coast Poplock" aka the song Dre&Pac's "California Luv" is based on. "Californiaaa knows how to partaay"... but it's the manic depressive drinking away a hangover version.
4. Bilal " High and Dry"
D: So I guess BBC records is putting out an album of Radiohead covers, which could be an interesting project. This is Bilal's loungy version of a song from their now decade-old 2nd album The Bends . I think the original's better, dude needs another "Sometimes", that was the joint.
5. Santana f/ Big Boi & Mary J Blige "My Man"
D: It's ok, not as good as it looks on paper. I just like how they revisit the "Booooom boom boom" intro from "The Way You Move"

//There are definitely some moments of prescience on the list tho, and I would still recommend looking up most of the tracks that aren't already familiar. I think the best thing about finding these is that it prompted me to look for Tekitha's "Ridin", which I discovered was finally released earlier this year on iTunes on The Prelude EP.//For good measure, one of the funniest, best-executed mixtapes of all time came out in '05 and we hosted the release party at GOOD LIFE: Kirb & Chris' Ni***z and White Girlz with DJ Icewater://For even more good measure, the world famous DJs of NYC's The Rub have been continuing their History of Hip Hop Series of mixes and one DJ Eleven just dropped the 2005 Mix for all of us. 1neLuv..