Monday, August 16, 2010

Pete Rock & CL Smooth

For the next week or so we're going to feature some of my favorite hip-hop songs on the blog. I realized that my format seems to have been nothing but indie rock and classic underground tunes, and that's just not fair to other genres. You may recognize many of the songs, and you may discover some new hip-hop artists, but this is my attempt to weed out some of the crap and showcase some truly talented artists.

In 1992 duo Pete Rock & CL Smooth released what could be my favorite hip-hop song of all time: "T.R.O.Y. (They Reminisce Over You)." This song was a moderate hit, it only reached #58 on the Billboard charts, but where it lacked in radio play was made up for with critical acclaim. "T.R.O.Y." is considered one of the best rap songs of the '90s by a wide variety of critics. It's not hard to see why it receives so much applause, for one the backing sample of saxophonist Tom Scott covering Jefferson Airplane is infectious. But what really makes this song a rare gem is its subject matter. Very rarely do you hear a hip-hop artist drop the tough guy attitude and be emotionally vulnerable. This song is about remorse over their lost friend Troy Dixon, a fellow artist in their scene. Pete Rock has stated that it was hard not to break down crying during the recording of "T.R.O.Y" and that at times he was unsure if they would be able to finish putting it to tape. Since then the two have gone their separate ways, Pete Rock is a mega-producer and has worked with The Roots and A Tribe Called Quest to name a few, he has been a strong proponent of fusing jazz and soul into hip-hop. CL Smooth hasn't had as much success as Rock but has guest on several other artist's albums.

Download via Mediafire:
T.R.O.Y. (They Reminisce Over You)

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