Seasons change mad things rearrange
But it all stays the same like the love doctor strange
Fugees - How many Mics
Someone just reminded me that now I'm in the suburbs I'll have to give up hip-hop. God forbid I ever play some reggae or soca. I can already see my neighbors saying "Why does he keep referring to bloody cloths? Just don't understand the significance."or "Obviously he's really into cars because they keep on referring to Bumpers". Actually I've been thinking about going straight country; save that achy breaky heart for billy ray cyrus type ish. Yea right!
Anyway when I was moving (haven't actually settled in yet mind you) I made a few trips up and down the highway ferrying random breakable items, plants, my precious CD collection (if you touch it I break ya neck) etc to the new spot before the bulk of my stuff was moved. What I learned in these trips (in a car with no CD player) is that urban radio here (Flow 93.5) plays the same 10 songs over and over. Its like radio BET up in here. I swore I heard John Legend's single like every single time I got in a car. Mind you its a nice song but still...
Listening to that song though got me thinking about the Fugees a bit. Actually the thought process was more like hmmm John Legend's 'Used to love you' is a nice song, oh wait didn't Common do a song "I used to love H.E.R" about hip hop back in the day, hmmm Hip hop in the 90s; Tribe, Fugees, Gang Starr, Brand Nubian that was nice. Fugees hmmm why'd they break up oh yea heard they are getting back together. What's that all about?
Anyway I'm sure most of you have heard that Lauryn, Pras and Clef finally got back on stage together at this jam that comedian Dave Chappell threw on Labor Day. Well apparently the reunion is official and they are planning on working together to create some new music. My initial response was wow the Fugees are back, Saints be praised! death to the wack mcs (masta ace slaughterhouse), its about time, that's going to be a nice album. Now after some time to think it through I'm like whoa slow ya roll son should they really be attempting a comeback?
Yea for purely nostalgic reasons its hype to think of new Fugee stuff being some amazing, off the hook music but realistically how many rap reunions have actually lived up to the hype? Think about it, Think a-bout it, Think about it. (I'm quoting some Special Ed here for you non-rap folks) I mean lets face it, stay out of the game for too long and you are history, you're ghost,finito, its a (w)rap. This rap game is unforgiving, does not give many second chances and does not encourage comebacks. Its mainly because the core audience are teenagers and young college students. They listen to the music for a couple of years grow up and move on. Sadly I haven't either grown up or moved on but that's another blog. sigh! Anyway because of this phenomena (with the college students, teenagers not with me not growing up) its hard to have any continuity in the rap game so the turnover of artists is crazy. If you can make it past three albums you are lucky.
I mean Think about it, the Score was the joint back in 96 but again think about it, that was 8 almost 9 years ago (It came out Feb 96, I remember buying it during Reading Week and listening to it on a long bus ride to Detroit). The kids listening to rap now think songs like Whoa (2000) by Black Rob are old school, they think Dr Dre's 2001 (1999) is old school, they think Get at Me Dog (1997 or was it 98) by DMX is old school heck they might even be thinking Nelly is old school by now. So by that reasoning the Fugees must be like the great Grand-pappies and Grand-mommies of this biz. Its going to be really tough for them to come back as a group and get the kind of buzz they had before.
As an aside, I know I could turn this blog into my personal tirade against Lauryn Hill and her self-righteous, holier than though act but my spider senses are tingling saying 'don't start none, wont be none' because I know I'd probably get beat down by the quickly gathering mob of down to earth, Jill Scott listening, natural hair, head wrap wearing "conscious" type sistas who think Lauryn is so sinsurrre (sincere) and since I tend to bruise easily please ignore any disparaging comments I make towards L-Boogie who believes that she is Bob's latest reincarnation.
Sigh! That off my chest back to business. Its true that Clef has kept himself in the public eye and Lauryn has done enough onstage crying to be a more than a distance memory but still as a group can they really pull off a comeback? (don't call it a comeback they been here for years?)
Lauryn's fanbase is intact , Pras never had any fans ( I 've got the solo album how sad is that ) and Clef well Clef is Clef, he's going to do his thing regardless.....but they are 8 years older can they pull it off? Eight years in Hip hop is like 25-40 in regular years. The Fugees are no longer relevant to the Chingy crowd. The Fugees cannot pull off a comeback. I just don't see them coming back together and having the same energy, vibe and chemistry as previously. PLUS they have to live under the shadow of the Score. Making a dope, well classic album early in your career always haunts your later efforts. Ask my man Nas if you don't believe me. Any album the Fugees make now will be compared to the Score and unless its better which I truly believe it wont be then any new album just subtracts from their legacy. Its like Jordan playing for the Wizards after an extended break. Unless you can win another title then everyone is going to say you should have just hung up the boots and called it a day instead of coming back to struggle even if you have your odd sparks of former glory every now and then.
Guys don't go in the studio together and do this. don't let the record company and the fans pressure you. don't ruin your legacy. Leave it as it stands. Let kids 10 years from now say "yo that Score album was tight, that was the ish, that was a classic" not "Well yea the Score was a classic but that follow up I don't know son, it wasn't all that. I mean I heard dem cats was nice but maybe it was a fluke because those follow up albums just weren't banging"
Come on guys I'm begging you please don't go back in the studio. You cant repeat the magic of the Score. Do it for me guys. Let me have my nostalgic moments untarnished. Let me remember when The Score was the record. When Clef was all like 'I haunt MC's like Mephistopheles, bringin swords of Damocles, Secret service keep a close watch as if my name was Kennedy' and Lauryn was reppin with lines like "behold, as my odes, manifold on your rhymes Two MC's can't occupy the same space at the same time" and Pras yea Pras was all on some "Like my man wyclef I wear my sunglasses at night". Come on guys do like Pras said and make "A clean Getaway like Alec Baldwin Driving in my fast car playing Tracy Chapman"
Put down the microphone ha!
Put down the microphone
baa who listens to me anyways. Do whatever!