hip hop music

April 7, 2004

A Complimentary Chuck D Post

Chuck D (today on Air America) discusses Kool Moe Dee's book There's a God on the Mic: "Everyone always puts me in the top 10 greatest emcees, I find it embarrassing because I don't think I should be in the top 25. But I guess I'll take it." A nice little moment of humility from one of our elder statesmen.

That's one thing I've always appreciated about Chuck, he's maintained a firm grasp of what his strengths are on the mic as well as his limitations, and figured out how to work with what he's got. He'll never be the most nimble tongue-twisting emcee with the most intricate rhyme structures, or kick any of the illest punchlines, but he uses that booming voice to make important ideas sound important, and has a knack for finding simple ways to switch up the structure or cadence of his rhymes and make the flow sound fresh (like ending his lines on the 4 instead of the 3 on tracks like Don't Believe the Hype, or that triplet note "radio stations I question your blackness" flow from "Bring the Noise", two simple innovations than half the emcees out there were copying 6 months later).

From what I've heard he's showing those same good instincts so far on Air America, stepping up front to interview folks like Spike Lee and Adisa Banjoko, playing the back when Lizz Winstead and Rachel Maddow are getting all wonky with folks like Josh Marshall.

I was planning to give more feedback on Air America but I'll have to come back to this later.

Posted by jsmooth995 at April 7, 2004 12:39 PM

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