Saturday, July 29, 2006

Songs 191 to 199

And, we're back. I took some time off while we ran around the region on parent-visitations and then a nice mini-vaca at a funky old-school beach cottage complete with outdoor shower and picket fence. I never used to like the beach--too much exposure, but now that we have kids, I have absolutely no body image issues and will plunk down in the sand right next to a teenage hottie without thinking twice. Mainly, this is due to my children's absolute adoration of the beach: sand, waves, shells, birds, shovels and sandcastles. You name it; if it seems beach-y, they love it. While at the funky cottage, I finished Kaaterskill Falls--fantastic, and ripped through Tilly Bagshawe's Showdown--almost the same book as Adored but sub horses for movies. We've also started reading the Pirates! Adventures with . . . books to the kids. These seem more interesting for us than them, but they keep asking for more. After this trip (which culminated in my getting the Coach briefcase of my dreams--see earlier posts), I became involved in a protracted dispute about a car repair that could run several pages. Suffice it to say, I shall never buy a VW again and--if it were possible--would drive mine to the VWoA headquarters and set fire to it. However, as my husband reminds me, we kinda need this car, and it isn't yet paid off. Still, it's very tempting. I've also compiled my 8 page dissertation bibliography, completed a mind-numbing 4 hour online driver's course, and took the kids to The Ant Bully--quite good and we capped it off with a run through the car wash, which is always a mega-hit. It really takes so little. Now, for my first catch up edition, I'm going full-on white girl rap/hip-hop--lots of feel-good oldies and some scary new stuff. Parental advisory duly noted . . .

Song 191: Chamillionaire and Krayzie Bone, "Ridin'." Okay, first off, the name Chamillionaire is totally bril! This is dirty South, rapid rhythm rap. Apparently, others (read: the man) are always trying to catch Mr. Chamillionaire "Ridin' Dirty." As fast as the Cham is, Mr. Krayzie Bone tops him by at least two. As might be guessed by the title, this is a great slo-drivin' song. Plus, it has a nice social commentary rap about being stopped for DWB and ends with an accident. Given that I just finished online driving school, I feel Mr. Chamillionaire's pain.

Song 192: Coolio, "Fantastic Voyage." Yep, this is old, but it's such a major summer rip-up. Remember when Coolio seemed slightly scary? Kids, this is way pre-fify. Now, he's full-on Tom Joyner Family Reunion fare, but this song still kicks it--and I really wanted it on my iPod!

Song 193: Destiny's Child, "Bug-a-Boo." Another oldie. Remember the drumline pre-Drumline video? A fabu song from back in the day before Beyonce became a brand and a Jay-Z subsidiary. And, its with the original, four girl line-up. More female empowerment than exotic dancer, and the constant tinkling percussive sounds rock.

Song 194: Digable Planets, "Rebirth of Slick (Cool like Dat)." Alterna-hip hop classic--you know, the kind of rap that white grad students liked. I named one of my son's quilts "digable planets," and when looking at it the other day, wondered, "Whatever happened to them?" Well, of course, there they were, in the giant iTunes universe, gruving away.

Song 195: Ludacris and Shawna, "Stand Up." I absolutely love the beats and groove in this song--and still think Luda has one of the best voices in rap. This is a club narrative classic, such a great scene. Listen and I dare you not to "move . . . just like that."

Song 196: Trick Daddy, "I'm a Thug." Even though this is probably actionably similar to Jay-Z's"Hard Knock Life" in structure, I still love it. Senuously speedy Southern rap with a kid chorus counterpoint. Another oldie, but it has such a winking style about it. It's hard to resist his delivery of "Baby, 'Cause I'm a Thug."

Song 197: Twista, "Overnight Celebrity." This song is so cleverly and perfectly cynical in the way it captures the culture of celebrity. Fast rap over wicked, wicked beats with wonderful electro-captures. Twista had some behind the scenes KW production, which really shows. "Tha way we mold 'em right"--absolutely spot on. (Plus, check out his site for a remarkably unaffected personal msg from Twista.)

Song 198: Shakira f/ Wyclef Jean, "Hips Don't Lie." Is this hip hop? I don't know. She's certainly got hips. This is a real next millennium song: all cultures in one mash up. Haitian? Colombian? Lebanese? Yes, on all counts. I might have mixed her vocals a bit lower; they seem a bit too surfacey. Still, how you can beat a song that name checks Tupac's time with Digital Underground and gets your booty moving on the flat world?

Song 199: Strange Fruit Project, "Good Times." Old school feeling rap with a modern dance party feel. If you cut the cursing from Dead Prez, threw them in a blender with P-Funk, and seasoned with some Shakira-y production, you'd have Strange Fruit Project. Maybe the next step in hip hop? Good block party music.

166 to go.