Monday, August 13, 2007


On the plane back from Los Angeles (the one mentioned in the previous entry), I read (most of it anyway) “Ruthless,” the autobiography of Jerry Heller, co-founder of Ruthless Records. It was an interesting read and- as you can probably imagine- was mostly about Jerry’s time as manager of N.W.A., the legendary rap group that featured Ice Cube, Eazy-E, Dr. Dre, and a couple other dudes that people don’t talk about as much (okay, DJ Yella and MC Ren). And, of course, reading about N.W.A. got me thinking about their music and how much I really like it. Back in the ‘80’s and early ‘90’s (when I was street) I used to listen to N.W.A. and Public Enemy- pretty much the Beatles and Stones of rap in my opinion- with my friends a lot. And it’s music that still stands up today (in my aging whiteboy opinion), fucking yours and my shit up like nobody’s business, dammit.

One of the things I liked about Jerry Heller’s book is how he described N.W.A’s music as “exuberant.” I realized that’s what really sets theirs (and Public Enemy’s and a few others too) music apart from most of today’s hip-hop (and pop music for that matter), which I don’t have much use for. For a while I was getting worried that I just wasn’t street anymore and maybe that’s why I don’t listen to much hip-hop these days, but when I read that thing about exuberance I realized “Shit- it ain’t that I’m not street anymore. It’s just that motherfuckers ain’t exuberant anymore.” Phew- I’m glad it’s not me.

Anyway, why not finish this entry with a video for my favorite N.W.A. song, “Express Yourself”? I hope you enjoy it so much. And stay street. Like me, a crazy motherfucker named Dave Hill.

Dave Hill


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