Friday, September 12, 2008

Guest Blogger- Elliott Wilson

So make no mistake about it, with the new baby, travelling, and the VMA's etc. I've been incredibly busy. I really enjoy doing this blog and will continue to do it until it's not fun anymore. But that's just it- I do it for enjoyment, and sometimes there are just too many other things that take priority and need attention.
So, in the interest of keeping your interest, I have decided to try- for the first time- a guest blog posting. The following is by former Editor-In-Chief of XXL magazine, sometimes radio personality on Shade45, and all around hip-hop madman Elliott Wilson. Elliott went to the VMA's and saw Kanye's performance etc. and wants to share his views on his new single "Love Lockdown" with the world. So, take it away, El...

Roc Boy Live Show Curse?

"Fuck it, we'll do it live."—Bill O'Reilly

OK the CDQ is out. "Love Lockdown." The masses of Internet geekdom are downloading it as I type. It's the song everyone had an opinion about it even before it was even officially mixed or mastered. Hate it or love it, we can't ignore it. Why? Well because Kanye West decided to try out his new material on one of the biggest stages on the planet: MTV VMA's. (This wasn't no Lupe goin' back to Indiana shit.)

It's been done before in rap land, I still remember gettin' hype over Jay-Z giving us a taste of "Izzo" at the BET awards awhile back. But you hip-hop cats should know this is quite a risky venture. See as the tired saying goes, You only get one time to make a first impression. And as the career of Rakim proves, what you hear on wax (hey I'm old school) is not always what you're gonna get for your ticket stub.

When Jay (with Kanye's urging) decided to perform the second verse from this then still unfinished "Dope Boy Fresh," at a Glow in the Dark MSG show, he reluctantly obliged. Turns out, it might've bit him in the ass. The vocal aggression found on that night was lost on the song's final audio version on which Jay prefers to playfully hanglide prose over the crunchy drums especially on his end lines. "But they know the words to my shit." Or "I'd probably jock me tooooo!!!!!"

Kanye might have slipped on the same banana peel. If you didn't like "LL" live, you won't feel it now. If you fell in love with the live "LL" and played it relentlessly, you're not gonna be feelin' the CDQ. That's at least, at first listen. Some songs you don't like at first do grow on your ears. Believe it or not ?uesto.

As previously revealed, autotune is aplenty here. But that's not the problem. Try the chorus where the drums kick in and one of the strongest pop hooks in recent times gets lost in the mix. Plus Ye's scatting and humming instead of really delivering his words with the passion he did last Sunday.

The moral of the story, kids. Perception rules reality. The other day when people kept pressing me for my opinion: I boldly declared "LL" would be bigger than "Gold Digger." Now of course, I'm not so sure. But I'm gonna stick to the script cause no one likes a Nasir Jones and Jayceon Taylor (aka The Hypocritters).

The world's one big A&R. And are opinions seem to change like we change our drawers. Still I for one, wouldn't mind if Mr. West did one more take.

P.S. I'm so glad "Swagga Like Us" mp3 leaked before any live attempts were made. Somebody thank that bootlegger. He needs a hug.

A link to Kanye's "Love Lockdown" is here. The opinions expressed above are, of course, not that of nor those of it's editor/writer/creator.


Charm said...

I really liked the flow of Elliot's blog. He must of went to college to write like this. He's expertise in music and the way he conveyed his messaged flowed. It was an interesting read, and shows expertise. I liked his quote in the beginning of his text. His documentation was well written and supported. Elliot, is an excellent guest blogger, and thanks it was a joy to read.

N/A said...

Mr. West does not deserve the hype he gets. His voice does not flow with his beats and he talks through most of his songs, instead of flow through with out missing a beat, like the best do. Dre, Snoop, Em, Fifty (Some songs) and the rest. Lil Wayne was good at the VMA's, his energy was what made it happen.