DJ Premier & Mr. Thing
The Kings of Hip Hop
BBE continues its Kings of… series with underground hip-hop legend Premier and former Scratch Pervert, Mr. Thing, exploring hip-hop (after already delving into the origins of funk and disco). Premier has the task of collecting rap’s influences. He offers up Percy Sledge, Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Nina Simone, Jerry Butler and Rufus with Chaka Khan, among others.
Mr. Thing concentrates mostly on ’90s hip-hop, with a lot of Black Moon, a couple Pete Rock and CL Smooth cuts and Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s “Shimmy Shimmy Ya” and “Brooklyn Zoo.” There are other classics, like “Microphone Fiend,” Big Daddy Kane’s “Set It Off” and a remix of Das EFX’s “Mic Checka.”
This double disc collection’s a lot of fun, but the dilettante crate digger in all of us will be a little disappointed. There’s not much obscurity on either disc. If you’re a fan of old soul and hip-hop, most of these songs will be familiar to you and are probably already on your iPod. But it’s still worth checking out — though don’t expect many “rare gems” here. Maybe Masters at Work’s Kings of House will put the series back on its intriguing track.