No * means horrible
* means you better get used to it
** means there is something to like about it
*** means I like it alot
**** means I love it
I have been putting this posting off for a couple of weeks and I will tell you why. I hate being put in the position of hurting a friend’s feelings intentionally. Occasionally someone I know in the industry will ask my opinion on their new demo or CD and I will have to be honest. So about a month ago, a friend of mine gave me his new CD. I listened to it. It didn’t grab me at first. So, I put it away for a couple weeks to come back to it with a clear head. Unfortunately it did not work. I listened very carefully and because I have always try to give my honet opinion in my writing I decided to not review my friend’s CD. I wrote him an e-mail expaining that I would rather not write about the CD because it was “not my cup of tea”. I haven’t heard from him since.
I believe that I did the right thing. I often write bad reviews of singles and CD’s and never give it a second thought. Artists like Eminem and Kesha should be use to bad reviews. And I do try to support my fellow openly gay artists, but writing a good review just because of someone’s sexual orientation is just wrong. I only give props to songs that I would actually play on my floor or my radio show. So, let’s see what I would or would not program these days.
“Find Your Love” Drake (Universal Records) Until I moved to Toronto, I really didn’t know that much about Drake. I only knew him from a couple of guest raps on Mary J. Blige and Jay Z. records. So, it was interesting to find out that he was from a hit TV show and that his uncle is R&B legend, Larry Graham. So, when I got his latest single, “Find Your Love” I gave it extra attention to decide whether it would be the latest addition to my summer playlist. The past few singles I heard from him I didn’t really care for because he has fallen into the new Hip Hop trap of making tracks that are below 85 BPM’s. Those tracks are too slow for a dancefloor. They are made for listening in your car while crusin’ around da hood. So, I was pleasantly surprised to hear not only a track at 96 BPM’s but also a Club Mix at 126 BPM’s. The Tropical Blendz Remix featuring Shaggy is pretty hot. And the Vice & Riddler Remix is definitely going to be in my nightly rotation. ****
“I Rep That West” Ice Cube (Lench Mob Records) First off, the label name is wrong and tired. I have never really cared for Ice Cube’s music or image. And recently my friend Andrew McCarthy gave me a documentary called “Black Is, Black Ain’t” and it has a quote by O’Shea Jackson (no wonder he changed his name) where he said “Real niggers ain’t faggots.” So, of course this has sealed his fate with my playlist. Not playing an artist for political beliefs is definitely my politics. I will give you props if you make a good song, but that does not mean I have to play it. However in this case, this ain’t even a good song. In my opinion, O’Shea has been stuck in that 90’s Gangsta Rap mode. And with this new single he is still holding on to that East Coast/West Coast bulshit. The song opens with him saying that “This is too West Coast”. TIRED! Child....he put the RED in TIRED. Don’t even bother downloading it on Limewire.
“Cameroon” (The Remixes) BeBe Zahara Benet (Blueplate Global Records) I am happy to see that BeBe is continuing her recording career. I really enjoyed her debut single, “I’m The Shit” but felt that it was a shame that her first single could not and would not even be considered for radio. So, now maybe she can redeem herself. We definitely need to see one of the gyrls from RuPaul’s Drag Race crossover. However, I don’t feel that this is going to be a huge hit. I love the concept and the idea of using her African roots to draw upon for subject matter, but it doesn’t have that crossover appeal to hook an audience. Even though there are mixes by Mark Picchiotti, Ceven Fisher & Twisted Dee and I am most definitely going to add this to my playlist, but I don’t see it charting. ***
“It Ain’t Over” (The Remixes) Mishal Moore Normally when I hear a title like “It Ain’t Over” it conjures up memories of First Choice and Traxx in NYC. I think of a diva belting out an anthem of broken hearted love and a serious House bassline. Well, I was sadly mistaken when I heard this track. I was not expecting to hear a Moloko impersonator. And with Kenny Dope Gonzalez as the producer of the original track, I definitely thought it was going to be a great House track. No such a thing. And to add insult to injury, the Wideboys remixed the track to sound like “Stereo Love” by Edward Maya. Now, the sad thing is that this might be a hit before it is over.