A coupla days ago I was bold enough to tell the world that I believe the best hiphop album ever made to be De La Soul’s De La Soul is Dead. I got a lot of responses to that, here at the blog, in Facebook messages and comments, tweets, and a WHOLE lotta emails. Several of them told me I flat-out wrong (can an opinion be wrong? Disagreeable, maybe, but wrong?), some told me I was mis-guided, and clearly not the hiphop head I claimed to be (never claimed to be one—just a boy who grew up with this music before it was a “cultural phenomenon,” when it was just the stuff you listened to and danced to cause it was yours and it spoke to you). Others agreed with my choice and liked the direction I took. I appreciated all the responses. I love a good debate.
I figured maybe I should share some writing of mine, if not to defend my choice, then at least to defend the greatness that is De La, and the good-ness they pulled out of a young writer back in his early days. So here’s a piece I did about the group back in the first year of VIBE around the time Buhloone Mindstate was about to drop. I remember really liking this piece when I handed it into my editor Ben Mapp—something that never happens to me; I usually hate my pieces when I (finally, often late!) hand them in. But I liked it even more when ASCAP awarded me the Deems Taylor award for music writing for it a year later. What a night that was! (Big ups to Ben, Joan, and Ipe for a fun night!)
Hope you like the profile. Click here at Google Books to read the story.