An underserved radio market and the (not) Random Ten
I'm switching up today because I've been in a strange music mood lately, and I had an idea occur to me. I'm sure that I'm not the first to think about this, and maybe it's even been tried in a market or ten, but what with the plethora of classic rock stations in any given city, are there any classic rap/hip-hop stations out there? It's not difficult to find stations that are playing current stuff, but again, where do you go if you want to hear classic Run-DMC or KRS-One or, to go really old school, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five? There's plenty of awesome music out there that would really turn a lot of heads, and maybe get people to tune into stations. My generation is of the age when hip-hop really started to make itself known in the mainstream. I was in high school when Run-DMC covered Aerosmith's "Walk This Way," which is often considered the moment that rap went mainstream, and if there's a period in people's lives where music is more important than when you're in high school, I'd like to hear it. (I have a whole series of thoughts on that subject that I'll explore some other time.)
So I have the same nostalgia for LL Cool J that I do for the Violent Femmes or Siouxsie Sioux or (gods forgive me) Duran Duran, and I'd like to hear it on the radio somewhere, but I never do. Once in a while, I'll hear some breakthrough song on a classic hits station--one of those "Best of the 80s, 90s and today" dreck formats, as long as it's something not too controversial. But I never hear Flava Flav yelling "911 is a joke in your town" on the radio, and forget someone who is now as forgotten as MC Shan. How about some De La Soul? A Tribe Called Quest? Lets even move forward in time a bit. I'd love to hear some Black Star on the radio, or The Roots. The genre is old enough now to support that kind of a station, I believe, and it might revive some interest in some groups that have disappeared, but who deserve remembering.
So no Random Ten this week. Here, in no particular order, are ten songs from my iPod I'd like to hear more regularly on the radio, from some of my favorite rap and hip-hop artists. They're pretty much in the order that they're popping into my head, and I'm sure I'll leave a huge number out.
1. Goin' Back to Cali--LL Cool JPlease, add to this list in the comments. There's only one female group on the list, and I missed tons of awesome performers.
2. My Adidas--Run DMC
3. It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back--Public Enemy
4. None of Your Business--Salt N Pepa
5. Criminal Minded--KRS-One
6. Killafornia--Cypress Hill
7. Rock n Roll--The Roots
8. B Boys Making With the Freak-Freak--Beastie Boys
9. Set It Off--Stereo MCs
10. Vivrant Thing--A Tribe Called Quest