Hey Hey all, and Happy Israeli Independence Day!!! I have to also send a huge shout out, as the day before was the Israeli equivalency of our Veteran’s Day, to all the fallen soldiers, victims or Jew hating across the globe, and the many Jewish fighters who made it all possible. I am very proud of all the Israelis who put themselves aside for the sake of the nation. I’m also a bit biased as I have some friends in the military, as well as a younger brother – shout out to Yoni, and my favorite ex-Israeli Private, my father – Gene Cipriani.
But, for the sake of my usual theme I want to veer from the political to the art world. I want to highlight all those great rap albums, and singles, with amazing artwork that have some Jewness in them. And here…..we go in the immortal words of Slick Rick the Ruler…..
I recently stumbled upon an amazing mix, or actually a de-construction and reconstruction, of the classic Beastie Boys album, Paul’s Boutique. This is an amazing mix, which is mixed by three DJ’s – DJ Cheeba, DJ Moneyshot, and DJ Food, which reinterprets while telling the story of the creation of this magnum opus.
The reason I’m mentioning this, besides being the sitting cheerleader for this mix, is because this is an immortal album that still holds on to the sands of time. Today it still has this fresh element, and unlike most of today’s so-called rap albums, carrying this aura of authentic hip-hop performance, as well as creative dexterity. I also love the album cover…
Here’s another great shot…
It should also be mentioned that the art of their first album cover for Licensed to Ill was also interesting. Actually they also have some frat humor attached as you can see here:
And if you turn it in the opposite direction it reads like this…
Besides this amazing mix, I began to sift through the many great mixes made by DJ Moneyshot, there are more. Another great deconstruction made by Moneyshot is to the politically charged, and still very relevant, sophomore album by Public Enemy. It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back was their slap in the face of the “cold-get-dumb” fanfare that was on the rise during this time.
I bet you didn’t know that the man who designed the album cover, along with the group, was the Jewish wonder photographer Glen Friedman.
The image is powerful, showing Chuck D’s no-nonsense demeanor, while a more serious looking Flavor Flav is behind him. No matter the issues, and centuries of oppression, they are saying that nothing can stop us now. This album was amazing in many ways, blasting politics, while introducing both their black and white audiences to the history of racial injustice in the United States. Unlike their contemporaries they attacked these issues, in the same vein as their representations, which was personified by hard, sonic booms, and bombastic flair. Hearing it for the first time in Israel I was floored, and frankly scared, of this insane country known as America.
This cover is from the album titled Doom, which is the debut album of the rap group Mood. This is very interesting as a very young DJ by the name of DJ Hi-Tek was part of the group. He produced most of the album, which featured guest spots from his future Reflection Eternal partner Talib Kweli. This launched their careers, and the group Lone Catalysts with producer J. Rawls.
Let’s not forget all the other uses of the famed Star of David….
Apparently Rick Ross just became a man….Mazal Tov Maybach!!!
Anyway, this is a short dispatch but I hope for the best and send a shout out to all of you.