Rodney Sept 06 Hiphop

Ok, so the first of my dance class mix CDs. What do we have here?

The expected Beyonce, Nelly Furtado, and JT deep cuts are present (B’Day, Loose, and FutureSex/LoveSounds ruled that season for me), along with a Confessions offcut that I think I picked up on late. A couple older faves are tossed in at random (at least the INOJ fits in with the rest of this, “The 900 Number” feels at odds). There’s that amazing Zone 4 remix of Mya, a pleasant late-period Janet trifle, a super-smooth Omarion disco jam, and the followup to “Me & U”.

The real nuggets here, both of which I had to google to figure out what the hell they were, are “Country Boys” by Tyra B (no, not that Tyra B) and Black Buddafly’s “Rock-a-Bye”. The combination of Tyra’s gutsy vocals and the minimal, bluesy beat of “Country Boys” is absolutely stunning, and it should have been way bigger. By contrast, “Rock-a-Bye” is so small and minor that I’m not surprised I forgot it. It feels positively fragile, but dammit it works, in a “Me & U” for the bedroom-not-the-club way.

The Big Boi song isn’t nearly as good as I thought at the time, and “Margarita” might as well be Big Boi song seeing how lost Sleepy Brown becomes in his own track, which I had quite fairly forgotten.

At least I had the good sense to include a trio of deathless rap bangers in “Superhyphy”, “Vans”, and “Stuntin’ Like My Daddy” (the former is a particular favorite of mine). Things are rounded out by a Monica mediocrity and the best Prince song of the 21st century.

*just gonna star whichever songs I’d completely forgotten the existence of

1. Beyonce - Green Light
2. INOJ - Time After Time
*3. Janet Jackson f/ Nelly - Call on Me
4. Mya - Fallen (Zone 4 Remix)
5. Nelly Furtado - No Hay Igual
*6. Omarion - Entourage
*7. Tyra B - Country Boys
8. Usher - Whatever I Want
9. The 45 King - The 900 Number
10. Cassie - Long Way 2 Go
11. Outkast - Morris Brown
*12. Sleepy Brown f/ Big Boi & Pharrell - Margarita
13. Keak da Sneak - Superhyphy
14. The Pack - Vans
15. Birdman & Lil Wayne - Stuntin’ Like My Daddy
16. Justin Timberlake - Lovestoned
*17. Black Buddafly - Rock-a-Bye
*18. Monica f/ Dem Franchize Boyz - Everytime tha Beat Drop
19. Prince - Black Sweat

So last night I finally went and picked up a bunch of non-essential personal belongings from my parents’ house, and among those I found all the monthly mix CDs I created for the tap and hiphop dance classes I taught 2004-2009. I decided I’d document them here. For me, it’s a time capsule into what I was listening to in my first years of adulthood, albeit with the restrictions that it must be a) danceable, and b) clean, so a lot of the less beat-driven or more vulgar stuff I was into in that era is not represented. For both of us, I hope I can uncover a few gems that should not have been forgotten in such short time.