The 25th installment of I Used to Love H.E.R., a series in which artists/bloggers/writers discuss their most essential or favorite hip-hop albums (read intro), comes from Man Man drummer Pow Pow, who was cool enough to put this together before the band headed out on an extensive tour in support of its new album Rabbit Habits.
Man Man plays the Brickhouse in Phoenix on Sunday with Yeasayer. (Buy tickets.)
De La Soul
3 Feet High and Rising (Tommy Boy, 1989)
It’d be best to start with this record. 3 Feet High and Rising was the first record that made me want to be in a “band” and make a record. The record was way ahead of its time. It has a constant fun & positive vibe to the entire record. There’s interludes and funny skits. There’s AMAZING beats and rhymes. It wasn’t just one MC. It was a group. It has a free “do whatever you want” kinda attitude about it without coming off as too too artsy or too abstract. It made me understand the importance of putting together a cohesive record that jumps around in styles and direction and NEVER once takes itself too seriously. It’s well thought out. It sounds like a collaboration. AND…..
Then there’s the cherry on top….. The album cover.
This record cover was the start of my obsession with fluorescent colors. I started wearing these types of colors when this record came out. Fluorescent yellow. Fluorescent pink. Fluorescent orange. I remember drawing them raw looking hippie flowers all over my schoolbooks.
[VIDEO]: 3 Feet High and Rising press kit.
Push It (single, 1986)
This single was probably the 1st song that made me start playing music. The keyboard/synth lines in this song are so unbelievably catchy !!!!
Hearing it over and over again on the radio made me want to play an instrument. Period. It got me hooked on beats and melodies.
I bought a Casio SK-1 so I could learn how to play this on a keyboard. I would play back the song over and over and over and over again until I learned the melodies front to back. This was most likely when I realized I could easily teach myself how to play an instrument.
The lyrics are great, straightforward party lyrics !! I was really young when i first heard this, so it made me feel cool listening to it cause they were talking about SEXXX !!!
Salt-N-Pepa. YESSSSSS !!!!
Arrhythmia (Warp Records, 2002)
This record is oozing creativity everywhere.
The beats on this ???!? The beats sound like nothing before it. A pleasant awkwardness. Brilliant, fun, colorful verses. A fresh new take on hip hop.
Another record that doesn’t take itself too seriously, yet is totally successful in seeking and destroying. This record has the perfect mix of glitched out beats, creative verses, catchy keyboard lines & tough ass bubbling bass.
It’s too bad they split up because this is by far one of my most listened to records and they were one of my favorite bands at the time. AMAZINGLY huge influence !!!!!
Antipop Consortium | Ping Pong