Ronzo’s 5 Favorite Remixes

Craig Mack

Ever since Craig Mack and the rest of Bad Boy Entertainment gathered a remix lineup for the ages, big name collaborations have been tossed out frequently.  Big hits become classics when some of the famous names in Hip-Hop lend a verse or two to the original hit track.  Sometimes, putting a new beat on it just isn’t enough.

Remixes are still strong into the future.  The recent “Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe (Remix)” is proof enough.  Not only are famous artists coming together to make remixes, the up-and-coming rappers also benefit majorly.

Take someone like Rocko, for example, with the notoriously popular song “U.O.E.N.O. ft. Rick Ross, Future“.  Aside from the fact that Rick Ross and Future are both enormous names (and the significance of the rape lyric controversy), countless artists from Wiz Khalifa to all of Black Hippy have done remixes.  Naturally, this only ends up making the original song more popular, leaving Rocko with his first ever Top 50 spot on the Billboard Hot 100.  This is happening throughout the rap game, and very often.

It’s definitely positive for the genre, and positive for the culture.  It’s teamwork at it’s finest.

Here are my 5 favorite remixes that I’ve heard throughout the years:

Sway & King Tech – The Anthem ft. RZA, Xzibit, Eminem, Tech N9ne, Pharoahe Monch, KRS-One, Kool G Rap, Jayo Felony, and Chino XL

Being the hosts of The Wake Up Show, it’s not surprising that Sway & King Tech were able to gather an impressive list of legendary features.  “The Anthem” dropped in 1999, catching a number of these listed MC’s still in their primes.  Eminem was just beginning his mainstream rap career, with the personality of Slim Shady.  Pharoahe Monch, Xzibit, and Tech N9ne were all making popular music as well, making waves in the Hip-Hop world.  KRS-One and Kool G Rap both tagged along as well, adding a strong OG presence.

Each rapper performs at a high level, producing some hilarious rhyme schemes. Take Eminem’s line here for example:

Climbed out of a nice house/through the front window and heard this guy shout/hey that’s my couch!

(While this is not an official remix, the gigantic list of famous names on a DJ track deserves recognition)

Pharoahe Monch – Simon Says (Remix) ft. Lady Luck, Redman, Method Man, Shabaam Sahdeeq, and Busta Rhymes)

Pharoahe Monch achieved major success with “Simon Says”, which logically meant a ridiculously ill remix was right around the corner.  Sticking to an unorthodox method, Pharoahe Monch writes a new verse for the occassion, and makes it just as good (if not better) as the original verse.  He absolutely takes home the title for best performance.

That’s expected when the Queens MC takes the mic, though.

Redman and Method Man are one of the best unofficial Hip-Hop duos of the ’90s, and this remix is a great snapshot of both in their prime.  Both are rightful legends in the industry, and have made a name around having fantastic feature verses.

Also around this time, Busta Rhymes was still in his “wild style” phase, spitting verses with flows as strange as the clothes he wore.  His videos were strange, and voices maniacal, but you just had to love it; it was original and innovative.

Kanye West – Diamonds from Sierra Leone (Remix) ft. Jay-Z

I’m not a business man, I’m a business, man/let me handle my business, damn

The immortal line from Jay-Z made this song a remix miracle, and all but cemented Jay in the list of greatest feature rappers of all time.  Kanye in the past has mentioned how he felt about the verse, that Jay “kicked his ass” as mentioned on the song “Big Brother”.

Late Registration was a Hip-Hop classic, and this remix only made it better.  The original single was made to deliver an important message, while the remix made it fun and friendly.

Talib Kweli – Get By (Remix) ft. Mos Def, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Busta Rhymes

Funny how Busta Rhymes makes his way on to so many classic remixes.

Talib Kweli’s “Get By” is arguably his best single of all time.  It’s definitely one of his favorites.  This remix did it justice, as this heavily popular group of various MC’s made a solid amount of music with each other throughout the early 2000’s.

This version of Kanye West is long gone, and the same can be said about this version of Jay-Z.  Jay was in his Black Album days, a period of heavy inspiration and clever wordplay.  Kanye was making music from the “everyman’s” perspective, writing about his struggles and joy in every day life.  This writing style was seen through all of College Dropout and Late Registration. 

It was all quite different than the Kanye we know and love today.

Dj Unk – Walk it Out (Remix) ft. Andre 3000, and Jim Jones

Being a huge Outkast fan, I absolutely love this track.  Andre’s verse was one of the best feature verses he’s ever done, as well as one of the few we’ve gotten to hear over the past decade.

DJ Unk made it big with this song, but never caught the same attention again.  At least we got quite a collaboration.

-Ronzo

Advertisements

Big Sean – Hall of Fame (Artwork)

Big Sean Hall of Fame

Here’s the latest update from Big Sean, on his way to releasing the highly anticipated Hall of Fame album.

This time around, we get a look at the official album artwork.  A bit basic to say the least, but it fits the general theme of all the artwork we’ve seen for his previous promotions of his upcoming album.

What do you guys think?

-Ronzo

Monday Grooves

ugk_03_7512

After a brief hiatus, Monday Grooves is back and kicking harder than ever! This week we’ve got three new jams to get you through your week.

UGK – International Player’s Anthem ft. Outkast

A true classic to the very core.

This All-Star Southern Hip-Hop lineup is one of the most beautiful collaborations seen in the genre to this day.  The lush horn lines and soul samples fit perfectly with the kicking Southern 808 drums.  Very uncharacteristic production stylings from Prince Paul and Juicy J,  of Three 6 Mafia fame.  The song is one of the major standouts from UGK’s Underground Kingz album (another being “Candy”), and also one of the last great songs that Outkast did together as a duo.  On top of that, it was one of the last high points of Pimp C’s life, who unfortunate died later that same year.

The video has appearances from all sorts of famous guest, and also won the 2008 BET Best Hip-Hop Video award.

Scienze – Charlie Brown ft. Blu

Scienze’s latest project, Ella, really hit home for me as a solid must-listen.  Following a great concept of the rise and fall of a relationship, he nails the mood with ease.  This track is slightly off the main topic, but still remains a perfect fit.

What also makes the album a must-listen, though, is how talented of a lyricist Scienze is.  His intricate rhythm changes catch the listener off guard.  He bounces flows around, yet still maintains control of the sound.  His verse, mixed with Blu’s equally intricate syllables, ride perfectly over the smooth EOM groove.

The High & Mighty – Mind, Soul, and Body

Moses Manuel put me on to The High & Mighty way back in the day, and this song has always been the first choice to put in playlists. Homefield Advantage is a fantastic gritty 90’s Hip-Hop album from the Rawkus Records Soundbombing favorites, and this track the clear standout (even over an impressive showing from Eminem on “The Last Hit”).

Not much fanfare has been made over the years for The High & Mighty, as their debut on Rawkus was the only one that attained any sort of major success.  Definitely one of the more slept-on groups in that period.

-Ronzo

Dopamine Knights Update

Dopamine Knights Crofoot tickets

Who wants to see the Dopamine Knights in concert?

Well, on October 6th, we will be performing at The Crofoot in Pontiac, Michigan. Besides the presale tickets that you can get through us, you will be able to get in at the door. Tickets are 10 dollars each.

This is an early reminder, so there should be plenty of time to plan things accordingly. More news and updates coming soon.

-Ronzo

Big K.R.I.T. – Multi Til the Sun Die

big k.r.i.t remembered in time

K.R.I.T. has been steadilyy rising through the rap game, especially as a torchbearer for the original Southern Hip-Hop sound. Not only does he absolutely dominate mics, he also continues to evolve as a producer. All of his previous projects (including classics Return of 4Eva, and 4Eva N a Day), were all produced by K.R.I.T. himself.  He continues this trend on King Remembered in Time.

The talent it takes to be your own writer and producer is truly astounding, and Big K.R.I.T. shows every ounce of it.  

Along with the development of musical talent, the exposure has gained him notoriety among other rap artists.  His new video for “Multi Til the Sun Die” is filled with live concert footage, as well as his interactions with some of the  biggest artists in the industry.  Almost like looking through the eyes of a bonafide rap star…

Also, just a reminder: King Remembered in Time is a fantastic album, go listen now!

-Ronzo

Tech N9ne – Fragile ft. Kendrick Lamar, MAYDAY, and Kendall Morgan

Something Else

Only two weeks are left until Tech N9ne’s latest project, Something Else, and this single is sure to make anyone excited for the upcoming release.  Singing starts the track off, but it is then taken over by a battle of the dueling double to triple time flows of Kendrick Lamar and Tech N9ne.  This is impressive, and these two should collaborate far more often.

-Ronzo