This week’s selection for Tune Of The Week is a feel-good hip hop track by Brother Ali. The positivity in the lyrics and the head-nodding funk production make this a new favourite.
Brother Ali – Fresh Air
Brother Ali – Fresh Air Lyrics
[Verse 1: Brother Ali]
Ant check this out
I’m the luckiest son of a bitch that ever lived, I spend life doin shit I love
Got the world’s most beautiful kids and don’t nobody do it like us
Sunday morning play Al Green, make pancakes and watch cartoons
Sometimes get to change that scene, catch a plane and see somewhere new
Just got married last year, treated so good that it ain’t even fair
Already got a boy, now the baby girl’s here, bought us a house like the Berenstain Bears
Not two years ago I was homeless, I mean crashin on the couch of my homies
Now I’m crashin on the couch with Conan, signed a mortgage and bought my home, shit
Should of seen when they handed me the keys, I still couldn’t believe that it was mine
Like “baby hurry up let’s leave, before these damn people change their mind”
Ha, and shit what can I say? I would have made these damn songs anyway
Some of y’all still listen to ’em everyday, beautiful thing, I bow my hand and pray
[Chorus x2: Brother Ali – w/ ad libs]
I love the life I live, my laughter and my tears
I don’t know where it’s goin but I like it like it is
[Verse 2: Brother Ali]
Uh, I get a lot of love in my hometown, twin cities, y’all know how it go down
Same club where Prince shot “Purple Rain”, advertise my name and it’s sold out
I’m surrounded by greatness, my loved ones are amazin
Sometimes I look in their faces and just think of the lives they’re changin
And I don’t just mean Rhymesayers, my son’s grandmother quit freebasin
Desiree got eight years straight, now that right there cause for celebration
Ah, I’m so happy for her, we used to fight like cats and dogs
But she ain’t even mad that I left her daughter
She calls me her son, so that’s my mama
[Chorus: w/ ad libs]
[Verse 3: Brother Ali]
Ah, keep it goin now
All my life I had this music, my heroes have all saluted
I don’t need y’all to like my new shit, them dudes are the reason I do this
I done did so much cool shit, lived a lifetime in the last two years
Got the memories to prove it, look what a dude who ain’t even graduate high school did
Ha, used to always be the new kid, laughed at ’cause I never used to pull chicks
Now I turn down more girls than them rich ass pitiful ball playin fools get
Sometimes I smile so wide, I think about the dreams that I’ve lived
Shit even if I died tonight y’all, I’m the luckiest son bitch that ever lived
[Chorus: w/ ad libs until the end]
More lyrics: http://www.lyricsmania.com/fresh_air_lyrics_brother_ali.html
All about Brother Ali: http://www.musictory.com/music/Brother+Ali
Every Thursday I post a clip or video of a track that I’ve been playing on repeat for that week. These are not necessarily new songs or the latest chart topper, just music I’ve been feeling over the last couple of days – my Tune Of The Week.
I’ve created a YouTube Playlist which has all the tracks from the Tune Of The Week Collection.
Every now and then I can go for a li’l slice of RnB cheese (not too cheesy, mind you).
This week’s Tune Of The Week is by Juicy and features the talents of none other than The Weeknd. Everything about this record feels like a Timbaland record from 10 years ago, and that’s a good thing in my books. If you listen closely, I think you could agree that this may as well have been Usher and T.I on a Timbaland track.
Juicy J – One Of Those Nights featuring The Weeknd
As usual, the Weeknd is mellow and mourful about the deranged and depraved behaviour depicted in the lyrics. I get the impression he wants to find a way to stop the late nights drinking and partying. Juicy J on the other hand sounds like he can’t get enough of the crazy lifestyle. I guess this is a case of opposites attract because somehow the combination works.
One Of Those Nights is taken of the Juicy J’s album ‘Stay Trippy’ and if you ask me, if this is just one of them nights, he’ll soon be the late Juicy J
To say that I’m a fan of Bonobo would be an understatement. This is my working music, my running music, my thinking music, my writing music. My music.
Circus is taken off the album ‘North Borders’, the follow up to epic ‘Black Sands‘. After hearing ‘Circus’ for the first time, I immediately placed my pre-order for the album. Bonobo’s Circus follows up where ‘Eyes Down’ left off, but with some more pace in the drum line.
Bonobo Circus Music Video
Black Sands boasted an amazing ensemble cast and delivered the phenom that is ‘Eyes Down’ with Andreya Triana on vocals (also one of my Top Ten Songs From 2012). Looking at the colab list for North Borders, this promises to be another amazing album, featuring performances from Szjerdene, Erykah Badu and Grey Reverend.
I haven’t been a fan of anything User has put out in the last 10 years or so. It’s all been textbook, by the numbers RnB with inane lyrics that border on infantile. In a word, boring.
Now though, the smoove-moving one has joined forces with Diplo (again) to put out the very intersting “Go Missin”. The off kilter, minor key affair is a very fulfilling collaboration. Diplo has a tendency to go underground from time to time, and Usher certainly helps raise things back to ground level. Usher’s cheese is similarly lent some legitimacy by Major D’s production.
Go Missin – Usher produced by Diplo
If I’m honest though, I would have loved to hear what ‘The Weeknd’ could do with this production. This record is definitely a step in the direction of Abel Tesfaye’s eery House Of Balloons.
Still, I had this on replay for more than a few spins.
James Blake is back. After releasing his debut album filled with electro-baby-making-music, Retrograde is the first single to the follow up album entitled “Overgrown” which is a lock for this edition of Tune Of The Week
James Blake Retrograde
Retrograde feels a lot more solid that efforts from the previous record. It still maintains the the mournful, soulful electronic sound that is James Blake, but this time it feels more centered. More defined and less experimental, but without a losing a sense of originality.
The dense, drowning synths smother Blake’s vocal in a warmth that emphasises the isolation transmitted through the vocals. “We’re alone now””
When the synths drop out, leaving the hypnotic piano to keep Blake’s wails company by itself, I could feel the sense of loss he’s putting forward. A class record.
This week’s Tune Of The Week has been on repeat for at least 2 months, but somehow I never got around to posting it. “The Baddest Man Alive” is a collaborative effort from The Black Keys and the RZA taken off the soundtrack to the Tarantino produced blaxpoitation picture “The Man With The Iron Fists”.
The Baddest Man Alive – RZA featuring the Black Keys
The thing I enjoy the most about this record is the bad muthafucka vibe that the guitar is putting out, which is second only to the ridiculous lyrics. The animal inspired quips are my favourite by far:
I’ll grab a crocodile by it’s tail
Tell a great white shark to go and brush his teeth
Sometimes I hear a track and just know which other track to mix it with it. When I listened to this week’s tune of the week ‘Wildfire’ for this first time, I just knew it needed to be blended with Aaliyah’s “If Your Girl Only Knew”. Hell I could practically hear Timbo’s voice from “Are You That Somebody” being sampled too. Close your ears and listen for ‘Baby Girl, better known as Aaliyah’ at the 42s mark. Tell me you don’t want that in your life.
SKTRKT’s Wildfire track eschews the same stripped down sex appeal.The slightly off kilter synth line playing doppelganger to the lazy guitar swing from Timbaland’s production. This was an easy selection for Tune Of The Week
SBTRKT WildFire feat Little Dragon is a sweaty, late night, up-close and personal grinder of a track, and I for one will be saddened if dancefloors don’t get exposed to this banger.
Fuck it, turn the lights down, get me a drank and let’s get a little sweaty to this one.
I was very recently introduced to the music of Nicolaas Jaar while on a beach/ surfy trip to San Juan Del Sur in Nicaragua and I’ve been scrounging for any tracks, DJ sets or remixes by the man ever since. His remix of Avalance by Just Friends, which is a cover version of a Leonard Cohen cover version, also made it as a selection for Cover Version Friday.
Today’s Tune Of The Week is another Nicolas Jaar remix, this time of a track by Sneaky Sound System entitled BIG. And what a BIG remix it is
The hypnotic drum pattern opening the track instantly took me back to Michael Jackson’s criminally underrated “They Don’t Care About Us’ but it was the shy, seductive guitar loops wafting through the track that really had my head bobbing. This is drinking music, or driving music, or loving music. This is music.
The Sneaky Sound System Big remix is even more appreciable if you know the original. BIG is a slice of throwback 90s-inspired techno pop that saw a memorable remix by John Dahlback, and the contrast of this version makes it this Nicolas Jaar remix all the more enjoyable.
This past while I’ve been feeling a little more soulful than usual, cranking up the Commodores, some Bill Withers, a little El Michele’s Affair and I even put together a soulful little mixtape in October (click here to listen)
Today I’ve got a soulful drop for the Tune Of The Week.
The track comes from Cody Chestnutt, he of The Seed 2.0. The track is entitled ‘What Kind Of Cool (Will We Think Of Next’) and I think this track is enough to sell me on the new album. Listen to Cody Chestnut What Kind Of Cool Below
I’ve been listening to The XX for a couple of weeks now, since their second album ‘Coexist’ dropped. The album led me back to their self titled debut – ‘The XX’ and this gem – Infinity.
The XX – Infinity
Every time I listen to it, I get a throwback to Chris Isaak’s 1989 slow burner ‘Wicked Game.’ While Infinity is a decidely less energetic affair, it has the same air of melancholy and resignation, all the more so because of it’s stripped down nature. A very similar Dobro slide is also found on both releases.
I know Karate. I know Jujitsu. I drive like a gangsta when I’m coming to see you. So says Kennedy in this week’s Tune Of The Week. It’s a fun, disco inspired track that really takes me back to Room 5’s remix of Make Luv.