Thursday, August 09, 2007

Ladies and Gentlemen, The Formula Radio Show..


(After breaking down the drooling incompetents over at MTV the other day, specifically the round-table of proverbial clown-shoes who shat out that god awful "10 Hottest MC's List" - I suddenly want to post something that will wash that toxic whore-stink off of me. Hence this post.)

One of the things that I wholeheartedly cherish about Hip Hop is that its an art-form that I feel, deep down, I chose on my own volition - my older siblings had nothing to do with it since most of their time was spent playing The Bee-Gees and those early Prince records. Of Course my parents weren't the ones who introduced me to Hip Hop, even though Earth, Wind, & Fire and Donny Hathaway had to be the best wake up call a kid could have on a early Saturday morning. Hip Hop was something that I felt I discovered solely on my own, a team of media savvy marketers didn't place it in in front of me to lap up like a fucking German Shepherd - its as if my musical sensibilities one day set sail to negotiate some rather turbulent waters to discover a land where the natives only communicated if a microphone or vinyl were involved. For the first 10 years or so I was totally accepted by the inhabitants of this new land that I had stumbled upon - they treated me as one of their own as I eagerly learned their customs when it came to their native dances and their rhythmic language that originally drew me in. Then in 1988, even though I embraced the people as much as they embraced me - I did what any garden variety explorer has done over the last 600 years or so, I planted a flag on a land people already inhabited and then proceeded to claim it as my own.

To be more precise, dropping the metaphors for a moment - I was transformed from just an average fan of the genre to having a level of devotion to Hip Hop that would rival most branch davidian members. When my cousins from Queens brought down three tapes for my birthday - EPMD's "Strictly Business", Big Daddy Kane's "Long Live the Kane", and Public Enemy's "It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back" - I immediately knew that this was music that would monumentally change my life forever. Some heroin addicts talk about the first time they got high as "feeling like home", as if they were back in the womb - Hip Hop was already the addicting force that travelled through my blood stream, without one day telling confidiong in a group of strangers on my road to recovery. Hanging with my cousins those few days in August of 88, listening to those tapes so frequently that my own mother began to know the words of "Wrath of Kane" - free-styling, watching the Hip Hop video's I had taped off of TV, even talking about which member of Salt & Pepa each of us would love to "get to know biblicly"(my choice has always been Spinderella).

Want to know why I'm such a insufferable snob when it comes to Hip Hop? Want to know why I feel that a person liking some bastard ass rapper isn't just an unfortunate musical choice but a serious character flaw? As fucked up as this might sound, if a person happened to die at a Lil Wayne show - after I pray for the person's soul and his family that is, want to know why I can probably be heard later uttering "That's the punishment for being a Lil Wayne fan motherfucker!"? It has everything to do with those three tapes, and the time spent with my New York cousins serving as my unshakable Hip Hop foundation.

That being said, almost 20 years later a lot has changed - I still love my cousin's dearly, and even though they sometimes they look at me with that "Dude, you're 34 years old and still collect comic books" look whenever I give off a passionate diatribe about the current state of Hip Hop.(For the record, I still collect comics) That's why when I stumbled on "The Formula Radio Show" it felt like a show that me and my cousins would have made back in the day - that in no way is a commentary about the hosts sounding like 14 year old boys or the quality of the program, but the show bottles that same sort of raw enthusiasm for the culture that we all need a healthy does of nowadays. The Formula Radio Show airing every Sunday from 1-3PM Eastern on radiovolta.org, hosted by DJ Primetime, Hollywood Cole, and Vanderslice - this show has not only hipped to me to a plethora of dope Hip Hip artists that I never knew existed but they have that "inside baseball"-like dialog about the genre that keep the heads interested. Broadcasting out of Philadelphia, they've had people on their program like DJ Mark The 45 King, Pharoahe Monch, Masta Ace, El Da Sensei, Mr. Lif, and Jedi Mind Tricks to name a few - so they don't need little old me to promote their ever widening agenda. The show is doper than a George W. Bush urine sample circa 75', so check it out - oh yeah, the only times you hear about Jim Jones or artists of that ilk on their show is when those bastards are the object of ridicule. Check these dude out..

Listen or Download Episodes
The Formula Radio Show myspace page

2 comments:

Classy said...

Great post, as always. I was first drawn into hip-hop via my older brother's tapes, mainly ll cool j. from then, it was jj fad, salt-n-pepa and then on my own i later discovered the coup, souls of mischief, nas and on and on. i find myself digging up my old tapes and cds and even re-buying the many that i lost over the years. i don't buy many rap albums nowadays, it's mostly indie rock or black pop. but i'll definitely check out the radio show!

Gedi said...

'the show bottles that same sort of raw enthusiasm for the culture that we all need a healthy does of nowadays' - PREACH!