Yo! ESN Raps

It's Old School time, boyeee!  Word to your grandmother!

It’s Old School time, boyeee! Word to your grandmother!

So the calendar may say 2017 even if our checks still say 2016 (Wait…. is anyone out there even still using checks?  Damn, I’m so outdated).  But even after a year of bringing you some of my favorite lost hits, Mondays never change.  So that means it’s time for The Nest to spin the wheel that opens that musical time capsule we like to call the Dusty Vinyl Archive!  This week, DJ Scratchy’s rocking the backwards hat and Air Jordans as we’re heading back to the 90’s old school like some old fools.  Sorry, Sponkies…. but I’m afraid you’ll have to pass on the gin and juice…

dusty vinyl

While I’m not the biggest fan of the genre known as hip hop… one of the traits almost every hit rap song of the 80’s I liked had in common was that it didn’t take itself too seriously.  It was hard for anyone to dislike listening to Run DMC try to rap over Steven Tyler’s loud mouth, getting girl advice from Young MC, or basking in the glory of the greatest two hit wonder in music history… Mr. Tone Loc.

Biz Markie.  Fucking genius...

Oh, and Biz Markie. Fucking genius…

But just like angst helped kill off pop and rock in the 90’s, so did “keeping it real” wrap a giant gold choke chain around the MC’s who made old school so much fun.  While Public Enemy, NWA and Tupac may have gotten all of the accolades and acclaim for getting out the uncensored message of the streets, they definitely weren’t as easy on the virgin ears of the masses as their predecessors were.

One of the few exceptions to this 90’s trend of gangsta rap also became one of the decade’s biggest one hit wonders.  In 1995, the diminutive Skee-Lo burst on to the scene to help clear the smoke from all the gunfire and weed that was dominating the industry and gave us one of the greatest self-depreciating songs in music history…. the #13 hit “I Wish”…

Like Spud Webb beating players twice his size to win the Slam Dunk Contest… Skee-Lo schooled the big boys of hip hop on how to lay down rhymes while also poking plenty of fun at yourself to keep the mood lightened.  Still, the sampled music that plays in the background is the quintessential mid-90’s hip hop sound.  This song was such a huge hit worldwide, that’s it’s pretty incomprehensible why it’s been largely forgotten about two decades later other than the occasional re-appearance in a lame Super Bowl commercial

I wish Big Game ads could be a little bit better...

I wish Big Game ads could be a little bit better…

I guess it didn’t help Skee’s image that he never did release a follow-up album upon getting thrust into the limelight.  Skee-Lo is one of those rare artists that actually deserves his OHW status because there literally wasn’t another song the guy did that charted on anything other than the roll of toilet paper it was written on.  Come to think of it… most of the laid back 80’s rappers I loved had short careers as well.  Perhaps hardcore is the way to go after all…

Counterpoint... most of those out of work 80's rappers are still alive.

Counterpoint… most of those out of work 80’s rappers are still alive.

I’ll bring back the retro beat next Monday…


About evilsquirrel13

Bored former 30-something who has nothing better to do with his life than draw cartoon squirrels.
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19 Responses to Yo! ESN Raps

  1. draliman says:

    Don’t you just love songs where random words and phrases are used just to make things rhyme? Not me. I don’t love those songs 🙂

  2. Yesterday I turned on the car radio and Sid Vicious was singing “My Way.” I told the kids, “HEY you have to listen to this. Sid Vicious doing MY WAY, like Frank Sinatra.” They laughed and thought it was pretty cool. I know this has nothing to do with hip hop or rap or Skee-lo. Maybe Skee will do his own version of “My Way.” Just made me think. Hey, I always learn something from your music blogs.

  3. NOW I remember why Rap was never my favorite genre of music. LOL 😉

  4. I always have a hard time FOLLOWING these songs…..some of them seem to be about NOTHING in particular just some randomly rhyming words but no real “substance” ?! Of course I guess that describes a whole lot of musical genres – maybe I’m just plain OLD. Yeah….that’s it.


  5. T. Wayne says:

    I actually know the song today’s song samples. I know it and just heard it last night! LOL!

    Truly, I don’t have any problem with Skee-Lo and his one hit. Like you say, it was the alternative to the rap that was dominating the genre in those days. Unfortunately, a lot of that kind of rap hasn’t gone away.

    • Like just about everything else from the 90’s (when I isolated myself as much as possible from new music), I came to learn of this song long after the fact, and marveled at not only how much I liked it, but that it didn’t seem to fit in to its timeframe. Too bad he didn’t stick around…

  6. Trisha says:

    I don’t remember this but I’ve always changed the station when anything with a hint of rap or hip hop comes on the radio. For some reason, rap reminds me of angry bees. I’m not sure why!

  7. Ladybuggz says:

    Catchy! So much I pulled out all my cassette tapes and am listening to …puuke.. Linda Rhonstand (a mixed tape made in 1987)!

  8. Merbear74 says:

    You say it’s just a rash, but it’s crawling up my ass.

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