You might remember Eric Steuer (aka Cuzzo D.) from his “Bad at Rap” mix – one of the most incredible/terrible things you’ll listen to – and now the man who also makes up half of Meanest Man Contest is back with more.
Just in time for Valentine’s Day comes his latest: “The Best Way To Tell You Is To Say It In A Rhyme.” Steuer put together this collection of tender rap songs for Hit City U.S.A.’s “Nice Touch” mix tape series. It’s available for $5 in cassette form – cheaper than a box of chocolates, which is so played out anyway – or you can stream the two sides below.
I got to meet and chat with Steuer in San Francisco last year, and we rapped a bit about the fetishism of collecting – records, books, baseball cards, whatever. He clearly has vast knowledge and probably a deep collection of music to back it up, taking up space somewhere – a closet, a hard drive, his brain. This is museum-level curating of the obscure/offbeat/oft-forgotten rap of yore.
And about that image up there: Steuer recently became a father for the first time (congrats again!), and he started a Tumblr called Nocturnal Commissions, in which he commissions an artist at Fiverr to turn a photo of his “puffy, creased, new-dad-in-the-middle-of-the-night face” into a portrait for the world to see. I bet his son will get a kick out of looking at these later in life.
1. Raheem – “You’re the Greatest”
2. Rated X – “Be Cool to Your Girl”
3. L.A. Dream Team – “You’re Just Too Young”
4. M.C. Shy-D – “I Don’t Want to Treat You Wrong”
5. Black Rock & Ron – “True Feelings”
6. Misty D – “Out On a Limb”
1. Hansoul – “Imagination (Philly Cheesesteak Mix)”
2. Little Shawn – “I Made Love (4 Da Very 1st Time)”
3. Yo-Yo – “Tonight’s the Night”
4. Kwamé – “Hai Love”
5. Prince Markie Dee and the Soul Convention – “Typical Reasons (Swing My Way)”
6. Nikki D – “All About You”
7. Brotherhood Creed – “Helluva”
It takes a special type of dedication – a sick and twisted dedication – to seek out and collect bad rap for the past 25 years. Eric Steuer (aka Cuzzo D. of Not the 1s and also half of the great Meanest Man Contest) has done just that. There is no doubt plenty from which to choose.
Steuer has compiled a treasure/trash trove of some of the greatest worst raps you can imagine. It literally took everything in me to make it through Mr. T’s “I Am Somebody.” Not surprisingly, a few athletes show up on the mix (Darryl Strawberry and Ron Artest), but the real gem here might be Beach Boy Brian Wilson, who unbelievably tried his hand at rap with “Smart Girls” (produced by Matt Dike, no less). WFMU has the story on it here.
Says Steuer: “I’ve been collecting bad rap songs since I first heard Darryl Strawberry kick his endearingly wack verse on “Chocolate Strawberry” back in 1987. This mix is made up mostly of stuff from the late ’80s and early ’90s (the golden era of cynical, inept stabs at cashing in on hip-hop’s popularity), although I threw in a couple of newer terrible raps at the end, to keep things fresh & current. I just started working on the second volume of this mix, and my fingers are crossed that Denny “Average Homeboy” Blaze will record a drop for it (he turned me down for this one).”
Bad rap never sounded so good.
Download and/or stream the mix over at Dublab. The track listing is below.
1. DC Talk – I Luv Rap Music
2. Outlaw Posse (f/ David Faustino) – Brand New Star
3. Icy Blu – It’s Your Birthday
4. Mr. T – I Am Somebody
5. Darryl Strawberry – Chocolate Strawberry
6. Hulk Hogan and The Wrestling Boot Band – Beach Patrol
7. A to the D – The Renegade Jew
8. Dee Dee King (aka Dee Dee Ramone) – German Kid
9. Brian Wilson – Smart Girls
10. MC Skat Kat and the Stray Mob – I Ain’t No Kitty
11. Vanilla Ice – Havin’ a Roni
12. Biscuit – Biscuit’s in the House
13. Elvira – Monsta’ Rap
14. Dan Aykroyd and Tom Hanks – City of Crime
15. Surf MC’s – Can’t Get a Tan
16. 2 Bigg MC – High on Your Love
17. Joey Lawrence – I Like the Way (Kick da Smoove Groove)
18. Gerardo – My Name Is Not Rico
19. Aaron Carter – That’s How I Beat Shaq
20. Ron Artest – Michael Michael
21. Kids Hit Masters – Crank That (Soulja Boy)
If we have learned anything in this age of Odd Future think pieces, it’s that rap takes itself too damn seriously. No, seriously. Lighten up.
Everyone could learn a lesson from Not the 1s’ Why You Cryin?, an eight-track offering of party-rap swagger (out digitally now on Gold Robot Records).
I mean, what is there to question or decipher when, on a track like Fly As Fuck (which we’re premiering here), you hear a line like this: “Rolling down the street / bumping Humpty Hump / out the fucking trunk / and it fucking thumps.” Coupled with bass-rattling production from Young L of the Pack and a guest verse from Tucson’s own Isaiah Toothtaker, Fly as Fuck flaunts a back-to-basics style that Not the 1s embrace throughout the album.
Check out a few more tracks, and download Fly As Fuck below.
I Used to Love H.E.R.: Mawnstr (Not the 1s)
Not the 1s: You Dress Like an Asshole