Archive for the Old School Flava Category

Cant C Me

Posted in music, Old School Flava, poetry, social commentary with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 28, 2010 by blackstarr

There probably has not been a more loyal fan of Tupac Shakur than yours truly.  First, though, a few “despites” –

despite the fact that I hate the “N” word and the “B” word, and

despite the fact that I am not an advocate of either profanity or violence, and

despite the fact that I am anti-drug abuse, I have always been in awe of Tupac and his musical genius.

Perhaps the one song that makes him stand out from the crowd more than any other song is “Can’t C Me”., from the CD “All Eyez On Me”.  The entire song is the epitome of his musical genius, but, let’s forget the entire song – the opening verse is the ultimate in word manipulation and lyrical sculpting.  In the event that you aren’t familiar with the song, you can click >HERE<  for the lyrics.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Although there are probably many depths to his genius, I believe that his greatest assets were threefold – lyrics, music, and the ability to spit words out as easily as you and I breathe air.  He had a peculiar penchant for re-using lyrics from previously recorded songs.  Other artists have done this before him, but the way in which he did it and the meaning that his re-used lyrics brought to the songs took on a life of its own.

I cited this song from his collection because it is my favorite rap song ever, but, his repertoire was seemingly endless when it came to great lyrics, music, and spitting.  A few that come to mind which, in my humble opinion, that come close to the greatness of “Can’t C Me” are “Hit “Em Up”, “Death Around The Corner” and he even did a few love songs that were worth mentioning, which included “Can You Get Away?”.

There you have it – my short and sweet tribute to Tupac.  You owe it to yourself to check out this song .  You can find it on Youtube, of course.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t get it to load here.  In the event that you want to save time, here’s a link to the song from Playlist.com:  Can’t C Me.  Perhaps you’ll be as impressed I have been all these years.

Afeni, wherever you are, thank you.  Peace.

 

copyright  2010  blackstarr

freerealm@gmail.com

Photos from The Huffington Post, and The Judiciary Report.

Old School Flava 12.11.08

Posted in Old School Flava with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on December 11, 2008 by blackstarr

inn-01In years past, we have never been a family that stayed at hotels when visiting family, even when it came to our first few family reunions.  You would drop by the house, set your bags on the floor, and it was back out the door to see others who lived in that particular city.  Once the visiting was done and it was time to lay one’s head, it was catch as catch can – first come, first served.  All who were not lucky enough to find a bed or sofa, grabbed a blanket and caught a snooze on the living room floor.  Never a complaint to be heard.

Today’s generation, in my family, has been spoiled by the modern day conveniences of hotels and motels.  It shows no more evidently than when we all sit down to Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, when there are out of town guests.  Not only is there no place to sleep, but there is also no room to sit at the dining room table, with our big family.  Inevitably, one young’un would have to ask the proverbial question “Where am I supposed to sit?” All of the old heads would give him/her the side-eye, awaiting the well-deserved quip from either my mother or one of her sisters:  “Sit on your fist and re’r back on your thumb.” Now, first off, “re’r” means “rear”, as in lean.  Secondly, it is basically an impossible task to accomplish, and, no – you should not try that.  That was of no consequence.  It simply means “Just find a corner somewhere and stop worrying me”.

belt-01

A belt.  An ironing cord.  The back of one’s hand.  A switch.  Those are a few of the things things with which we were disciplined. That was in the days before that old “touchy-feely” sh*t came into play.  That was in the days when there was no such thing as “calling 911 if your parents put their hands on you” nonsense.  And long before the days of the infamous “time out”.  Time out?  I think that the back of a hand was one of the worst whoopings that one could receive.  You probably think that you know what it means to be “b*tch-slapped”, but you have no idea of the meaning of the word unless you’ve been hit upside the head by a parent’s hand.  Very humiliating.  As humiliating and demeaning as physical beatings can be, when I say that I am all the better for it, I really do mean it.  I look back on my graduating class of 200 students, and remember that because of no home-training, about 50 went to the armed services with that being the only job they could get, 50 went to jail and remain there to this day, and 50 are still working as cooks in fast food joints or diners.  There, but for the grace of God, go I. The other remaining 50 of us went on to lead productive lives in our respective communities.  Upon reflection, there was usually one saving grace.  We were always given the chance to weasel out of a beating by heeding the warnings ofIf you don’t knock it off, I will cut the blood outta you!” I think that’s pretty much self-explanatory.  Peace.

copyright  ©  2008  freedom

freerealm@gmail.com

Photos from hometown-inn.com and coaches-choice.com, respectively.

No coresponding music today, so, enjoy the sound of  “Marimba”, by Paul Hardcastle.

Old School Flava: 8/29/08

Posted in humor, Old School Flava, social commentary with tags , , , , , , on August 29, 2008 by blackstarr

Quiz time.  Did you pay attention?  If not, you’re probably jumpin’ up and down cryin’ “It’s not Wednesday!  Why, oh why, is he doing Old School Flava on a Friday??!!”  Freedom has no schedule, no rhyme, and no reason.  He just does what he does when he does it.  So, on this last Friday of August, allow me to entertain you with more phrases that my Moms has laid on me through the years.

FOOD

It’s a huge mistake to walk into my mother’s kitchen while she’s cooking.  Her first words are “Get outta my kitchen!”  After you ignore those words and continue to try and catch a glimpse of what’s in the pots, she tosses a wet dishrag at you and repeats herself.  Finally, when you can’t determine what’s cookin’, you ask.  Her reply?  “Daddy’s old britches”.  That means that she has peeked into the refrig and gathered up whatever has been left from the previous few nights and came up with one of her creations.  It basically means olio, stew, soup – anything that does not require starting from scratch.  There’s an underlying statement there, as well:  “None of your business!” Now, you casually stroll outta her kitchen, no wiser than the moment that you ventured in, moments of time that will never be retrieved.

GENERAL

Ever try to help someone out and end up causing more confusion than anything else?  I’m the kind of person that just hates it when someone says “You could probably . . . “ I don’t take too kindly to advice unless it is solicited.  Give me a job, back off, and let me do it.  If I need assistance, I’ll ask for it.  Otherwise, let me do what it is that you asked me to do.  Moms has an answer for that one:  “Don’t help me, help the bear”. That means “I don’t need your help, thank you”.  Now, I have no idea why the bear needs help, or why I should help him at all, but, I guess it is what it is.

Sometimes, things are just “over the top”.  I mean, plain old you-done-outdone-yourself-this-time over the top.  This particular phrase usually refers to food or beverages, but, can also be used for fashion, hairdo’s and just about everything, but, is meant specifically for food and beverages: “It’s enough to make you wanna smack your mammy down!”.  That’s definitely “mammy”, as “mommy” just won’t work here.  The statement exudes sassiness.  It alludes to the idea that something has got to be awfully good in order to make you slap your mother.  Even more so to make you wanna slap her down.

I’ll be back with lots more “down home” phrases that my Moms has laid on me.  It’s called “Old School Flava”, and it could be on a Wednesday, it could be on  Sunday, it could be on any day of the week that catches my fancy.  That’s not a bad thing, though. Just think about it: if I said it was gonna be a a particular day every week and you came back on that day and it wasn’t here, you’d be real upset with freedom.  We wouldn’t want that, now would we?  See you next time.

copyright  ©  2008  freedom

freerealm@gmail.com

Old School Flava: 7/23/2008

Posted in blog marathon 2008, humor, Old School Flava, social commentary with tags , , , , , , , , on July 23, 2008 by blackstarr

Yeah – it’s Wednesday and here I am keeping to a schedule with this Old School Flava.  Don’t get used to it, because it probably won’t last.  As I may have mentioned before – Freedom doesn’t take too kindly to deadlines and schedules.  But, alas, here we are.  Speaking of the dadblaned devil, I failed in my first attempt at thirty (30) straight days of postings.  This post should rightly be entitled “Day One . . . Again”.  I got a bit frazzled over a thing or two, percolated on ’em, then just digressed myself into total anger.  Over.  It’s over now, and we are moving right along.

THE DOZENS

I was listening to Ramsey Lewis earlier this a.m. and he and his cohort, Karen Williams, began to speak of “playin’ the dozens”.  She proclaimed that she had never heard the term before.  OK, sure.  Ramsey went on to explain that it was originally a game played by Black folks that pitted one against the other in a match of spewing out insults about each other’s family.  Eventually, it became more than just a game, and evolved into an intentional dissing of one’s family, usually leading up to fisticuffs.  The ultimate insult?  “Yo, mama!!” Back then, that might have gotten you a black eye, or worse,a real beatdown.  What about today?  Do you guys still used that phrase?

FOOD

When my brother, sister and I were young, real young, we would complain about having to eat those yukky vegetables.  The complaining came with every dinnertime meal, as there were always vegetables on the menu.  Of course, the complaints were neither here nor there, since the vegetables were always eaten before anyone arose from the table to go their separate ways.  As we grew a bit, and aged a bit, we all either became more appreciative of the vegetables, or decided that it was useless to continue to try getting out of eating them – whatever the transformation was that took place, we simply ate the veggies and moved along.  As we ventured into our adolescent years, we became familiar with a newer phrase, and I say “newer” meaning newer to us.  It’s a phrase that’s been around for a long time, so says my mom – “You can either eat it or lay your head down beside it!” That was mom’s retort to the complaints of “meatloaf, again?” or, “tuna casserole????”  In recent years, and only recent years, I have heard a few variations on that phrase but the general intent and words remained very close to the way that my mom spit it out.  My kids hear it and crack up.  That phrase, for the uninitiated, translates to “take it or leave it”, but, to this day, I still don’t know its origin.  You think I should ask mom, don’t you?  You think that would be a good idea, I bet.  Yeah, me too.

That’s gonna do it for today.  I’m going to give this thirty-day thingy another try.  It’s really no big deal.  I’ve always believed that any blogger worth his/her “html” and “publish button” should be able to post ad infinitum without very much effort.  After all, it’s what we do, right?  I know for a fact that I bleed html.  Peace.

copyright  ©  2008  freedom

freerealm@gmail.com

Flava of the Day is “Right Direction” by En Vogue from EV3

Old School Flava: 7/16/2008

Posted in blog marathon 2008, Old School Flava with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on July 16, 2008 by blackstarr

Disclaimer: Freedom is retired.  As such, I has no schedule and meet no deadlines unless I feel so lead.  I am introducing “Old School Flava” today (the way we said it, did it, expressed it back in the day, back in my generation).  That can cover music, language, lifestyles, customs and everything else.  Just because today is Wednesday, don’t come back next Wednesday looking for it, because it just might not be there.  Don’t get all up in arms because you stop by on a Saturday, and lo and behold, there it is.  Freedom is not scared of your lawsuits or your Johnny Cochran, so bring it on.  Freedom does what Freedom wants to do, when I want to do it.  Right about now, I take my lead from Maxwell: Whenever, Wherever, Whatever.  So, with that . . .

DANCE: Back in the day, a lot of songs were written about a new dance that had just come out.  The artists often explained how the dance was done.  I suppose that the greatest, most popular song was “The Twist” by Chubby Checker.  There was another dance called “The 81”, which was covered by two different songs and artists.  “The 81” by Archie Bell an the Drells, and there was another by the same name, female group, whose name I can’t recall (senior moment, as it were). Then, there was a fabulous song by The Dramatics, entitled “Get up, and Get Down”, which merely gave tribute to the way we danced.  There is one very memorable line in the song that goes “Look at mama, she’s tearin’ you up!” “Tearin’ you up” meant that someone has “out shined” you on the dance floor.  Another word that described pretty much the same thing was “squirreled”.  If you got squirreled, it meant that your dance partner’s steps were waaaay better than yours.  What do you kids say today?

Harmony:  It seems that the further we go back, the better the harmonizing was.  In recent history, we have Boys II Men, whose harmony touched souls from several generations.  If we go back a bit further, we come across KC and JoJo, who gave us “Tell Me It’s Real”, one of the best songs to come from that era  Even further back, we find Take 6, an a cappella group who, with its gospel influence, put us in mind of the Men’s Chorale at just about any Baptist church in town.

I plead with you to go back as far as the 1960’s and reminisce upon a group of a cappella singers known as The Persuasions.  In my humble opinion, this group presented the very best of a cappella singing and the greatest harmonizing ever.  EVER!! It is unfortunate that their album “We Came To Play” is no longer available, to my knowledge.  That album personified the flava of the group better than any of their other albums put together.  Since that is the case, Freedom offers you a small taste from another album, “Sincerely” with “Members Only”.

That’s Old School Flava for this week.  Enjoy.

copyright  ©  2008  freedom

freerealm@gmail.com

Flava Of The Day that I’m feeling is Sweet Sensual Love by Big Mountain.  Yeah!