I’m not going to limit myself just because people won’t accept the fact that I can do something else.
— Dolly Parton
It Was a Good Day

It Was a Good Day

A few weeks ago, I sat down at a coffee shop and outlined nine – NINE – posts about the music of my childhood. Roughly a week later, I started watching Breaking Bad with the hopes of finishing it before tonight’s finale. While I totally reached my goal, productivity of any other kind was out the window. If I write nothing else, it seems like today would be best served by letting you into a history of rap and hip hop, from this young G’s perspective.

We're so street.

1987: I can’t pin it down with 100% certainty, but I’m pretty sure that my gateway into hip hop was Salt-n-Pepa. Ed had the cassette tape and I remember listening to “Push It” over and over and over. (Interesting to learn while writing this – did you know it was a B side? Best B side EVER!) Also notable in 1987: Beastie Boys’ “Fight for Your Right,” Heavy D’s “Overweight Lover in the House”

1989: Biz Markie, “Just a Friend” – The song is an instant party hit; everyone knows all of the words, and no one knows how. The video, well…you can’t deny the nostalgia of a video that starts with Your Momma jokes. She knew Central Park when it was just a PLANT, y’all.


1990: Bel Biv DeVoe, “Poison”

1991: Naughty By Nature, “OPP” – Long before Frankie in Sister Act Two made this song popular with my friend group at school, my brother and I were blasting this through the house in Moulton. Also in 1991, on the more innocent side, I was really into ABC’s “Playground.”

1992: House of Pain’s Jump Around. Released the year he graduated from high school, Ed used to send me videos of him starting up this song at his house – the kids would come running in to, well, jump around. Another instant party hit. Maybe thanks to Mrs. Doubtfire.

1993: SNOOP, y’all. I cannot express my love of Snoop enough. In 1993, he was still Snoop Doggy Dogg and he was on FIRE. We’d moved to Prattville and somewhere around in here Beavis and Butthead debuted on MTV. Even though we didn’t have rules about TV watching, somehow we knew that B&B wasn’t a show for family viewing. Ed bought a TV for his room and I remember seeing the video for both “Who Am I?” and Beck’s “Loser” for the first time on that show.  This seems pretty groundbreaking to me, because (and maybe it just had to do with my age at the time) it wasn’t a logical assumption that people who liked Snoop (and by association Dr. Dre) would also like Beck. But it was a glorious matchup. 1993 was a very, very good year. Other favorites were Cyprus Hill’s “Insane in the Brain” and Ice Cube’s “It Was a Good Day.”

1994: We’ll wrap up here, but only because I could go on for days. Naughty by Nature’s “Hip Hop Hooray” was released in 1994, and it of course resulted in more speaker blaring. Was this also in Sister Act Two? In 1994 I was in the sixth grade, and confession: the thug life might’ve chosen me for a little bit, at least in the fashion-sense. For that entire school year I wore baggy jeans, button down shirts (sometimes flannels over solid shirts) and black boots. True story.

I’ll try to get back on the ball with the posts, because ACL week is upon us! Don’t forget that you can follow The Jackers on Twitter (@_TheJackers) for posts from the road.

Now, feast your eyes upon these great videos and enjoy the Breaking Bad finale, bitch.

Ummm…don’t watch this at work. Or in a place with children.

Subject: Opportunity knocks only once, but temptation leans on the doorbell.

Subject: Opportunity knocks only once, but temptation leans on the doorbell.

Conversations Through Space and Time: Darlin' Companion

Conversations Through Space and Time: Darlin' Companion