Friday, July 24, 2009

Soundtrack of My Life

Song: Everything is Everything
Artist: Lauryn Hill a.k.a. L-Boogie
Album: The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill (1998)

This is what hip hop needs to sound like.

Not necessarily a female MC delivering brilliance the way Lauryn did here, but well-written, well-produced music with intelligent lyrics instead of pedestrian rhymes over manufactured beats or bastardized samples of quality songs turned into oral sex opuses.

Yeah, I said it. Flo Rida's "Right Round" is horrible, regardless of how much it makes you wanna dance.

Back on topic, this album was one of the best of the last 25 years, a brilliant collection of creative and intelligent thoughts with original beats and musical, all accompanied by a delicate voice that could hit the high notes and flip rhymes without missing a step.

For me, this track was the epitome of everything incredible about Lauryn Hill and this album. The combination of her singing and rhyming paired together with a sonically-appealing melody featuring some unknown cat named John Legend on piano just clicked instantly for me.

Though the first single "Doo Woop (That Thing)" was the bigger commercial success, reaching #1 on the Billboard charts, this song received the greater critical acclaim. Lyrics like this are why:

L. Boogie spars with stars and constellations
Then came down for a little conversation
Adjacent to the king, fear no human being
Roll with cherubims to Nassau Coliseum
Now hear this mixture
Where hip hop meets scripture
Develop a negative into a positive picture

This was supposed to be here coming out party, announcing herself as a beautiful voice for a generation heading into the new millennium.

Instead, it stands as a one-off testament to her talents, as Lauryn all but disappeared, leading to her placement on The Rundown a couple weeks back.

Regardless of all the crazy rumors that circulated back in the day or how aloof and unhinged L-Boogie comes across these days, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill is a classic that anyone who enjoys great music should have.

And if you just want one track, this is the one.

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