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Name: Adam Bernard
Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States
About Me: Entertainment journalist with 15+ years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, fringe movies, & chicken shawarma. Part time ninja. Nerdy, but awesome.
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Give Me That Feel Good Vibe
Friday, December 15, 2006

The other day I was watching some old music videos on BET Jazz or VH1 Soul (it was one of the two) and a video block came on that consisted of Heavy D & The Boyz “Nuttin But Love,” Chubb Rock “Just The Two Of Us” and Salt N Pepa “Shoop.” I can’t lie, I rocked out to ‘em. It wasn’t some deep nonsense like it reminded me of a simpler time or brought me back to my youth. The fact of the matter is the songs just made me feel good. There was an innate quality about each one that just makes me want to smile and vibe with them. To me, this is a quality that’s harder to find in music today, but it’s completely worth it when you do.

I hate to sound all old and curmudgeonly, but back in the day we had a lot of artists that produced music that made us feel good, that old school summer barbeque with family and friends type of music. Everyone knew the lyrics to Biz Markie’s “Just A Friend” and DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince’s “Summertime,” even more so than some of the artists that are more revered now from that era. Some of the listeners and historians out there are quick to name drop KRS-ONE and Rakim, but for as great as those artists were there’s no denying the ones who focused on the fun aspect of Hip-Hop still grab us to this day just as well, and at times even more so.

Don’t get it twisted, I’m not saying I don’t catch a vibe whenever I hear “I Ain’t No Joke,” but the vibe is a different one, it’s a “that’s why I love Hip-Hop” vibe. With the fun songs the vibe has less to do with the song or the lyrics, even though a lot of the fun songs had dope lyrics, but instead has everything to do with the mood the song puts you in. I’m not talking about the songs we as Hip-Hop heads love because we love Hip-Hop, I’m talking about the songs that make us smile because they make us happy.

During my channel flipping I came across the Gym Class Heroes video for “Cupid’s Chokehold.” The song had my laughin with its chorus of:

Take a look at my girlfriend
She's the only one I got ba ba da da
Not much of a girlfriend
I never seem to get a lot ba ba da da, ba ba da da

It’s funny, it’s harmless, and you can’t help but smile the way it’s delivered. I’m also reminded of the Murs / Supernat collaboration on Z-Trip’s Shifting Gears album titled “Breakfast Club.” On the song the two MC’s talk extensively about their favorite Saturday morning cartoons and the cereal they used to eat while watching them. Murs even opens the song by reminding listeners “if you can’t relate to this song, you’re taking the shit too serious. It’s hip hop man, its fucking fun.” I only wish more MC’s had that attitude more often. Say what you will about rappers like Young MC and Tone-Loc, but they always made us feel good. C’mon, admit it, you still know all the lyrics to “Principal’s Office” and “Funky Cold Medina” and neither song was either artist’s lead single. Do I even have to mention “It Takes Two” by Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock? I think you catch my drift here.

I know I’ve been harsh on a lot of artists both on this site and in conversations with others, but in all honesty what I want out of my music sometimes is just some good old fashioned fun. Hearing about how rich you are, how many people you’ve shot, or how you’re the greatest isn’t fun to me, it’s boring. You’re rich? That’s great, congrats. Really, you’ve done a great job. Now say something interesting. Please.

Personally I’d almost always rather hear a song like “I Think I Can Beat Mike Tyson,” “They Want EFX,” or “Luchini” than someone yelling at me about how great they are. Don’t say it, show it! Tony Toni Tone’s “Feel’s Good,” anyone? Yeah, you know exactly what I’m talkin about!


posted by Adam Bernard @ 8:16 AM  
  • At 9:17 AM, Anonymous mos said…

    Man I love your post, thats real shit right there. Crew54 is all about that, we even did a song called Feel Good Music. At shows, we switch the beat midverse to SUMMERTIME from Fresh Prince, then SUMMERTIME IN THE LBC from the Dove Shack. People go wild because it takes them right back to that time when they were just enjoying life. Alot of artist tend to forget that, especially super underground hip-hop type cats, there is room for music that just makes you feel good.

  • At 8:15 AM, Blogger Conscious said…

    Good music is simply good music.

  • At 5:51 AM, Blogger Mik Nahoy said…

    I love that Gym Class Heroes video.

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