West Hempstead H.S. Beats (1990s)
Back when I a was teenager I had my (then makeshift) “studio” set up in the basement of my parents’ house. I called it Port Authority Studios only because I liked the way that looked & sounded. I started buying equipment such as a Fostex 4-track cassette recorder, a 16-channel Mackie mixing board, Technic turntable, etc. after I was GIVEN the Akai MPC 3000, which I’ve named “Raw Dawg” (I borrowed that sir name from the living legend Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called Quest), by dear ol’ friend Prince Be of P.M. Dawn.
Since day one, I got on my beat game heavy. Not saying I was making “club bangers” straight out the gate (far from it actually) but remember that Kanye line from “Spaceships” I’ve quoted in my previous blog post: “5 beats a day…”? Well that, my friends, was indeed me. I used to average about 5 beats a day back then.
To my recollection, I’d say the ratio was broken down pretty much like this: 5 beats per day = 1 solid beat, 2 decent beats & 2 weak-*ss beats.
Now I didn’t have a ton of placements back in the day, actually none at all during the early to mid ’90s, but my beats back then took me a long way & was the start of my (un)professional career. It eventually landed me in the studio with The Artifacts, Shawn J-Period, Hard 2 Obtain, KMD, A Tribe Called Quest, The Roots, meeting D’Angelo, Mos Def, Da Beatminerz, Erykah Badu amongst countless of others both known & not so known (like myself *sigh*).
Well, it just hit me the other day, when I glanced over at a pile of 3.5″ floppy diskettes (so girly) that I have all of these beats just lying around literally collecting dust. So I figured, “Hey, I might as well put these out for sh*ts n’ giggles.” I’m hoping people wouldn’t be foolish enough to think these are the kinds of beats I currently make or would think that I consider these beats dope by any means. It’s just me opening my time capsule here in your presence.
Most, if not all, of these beats I haven’t heard since I was a teenager. A lot of DISKS wouldn’t even load up… Even after I tried the “Nintendo fix”. I’ll have to say that some of the samples I chose were pretty fresh though; I still have all of the records I’ve owned since I started collecting around 14 years of age so I plan on revisiting some of these records (if I could locate the actual songs) & re-approach with my current ears.
So friends, enjoy a good laugh & hear what I’ve been holding onto these past 15+ years. I will try & add to these every 2 weeks or so. Keep checking back in with me or, to make life that much easier for you (you lazy bums you), just click here on: Follow 88-Keys On SoundCloud.
- Prince Be for moving way faster than your attorney was & literally changing my life with your gracious gift: “Raw Dawg” (The second half of that entire sentence deserves a *pause*).
- Krista, thanks for taking these flicks & yes… I will now clean our master bathroom as per our agreement. (How do I get myself INTO these messes?!?!??) *slaps forehead*
- Philip & Regina Njapa. Thanks mom & dad for putting up the “boom-boom-boom” for as many years as you had. I love you both. Also, I will be stopping by soon with Kris’ & the girls. I’ll use picking up some more of my ‘diskettes’ as an excuse to come by. (As if I need an excuse to visit my folks.)
- Nat Sabio my old best friend who used to come thru almost everyday while I made beats. We would just bullsh*t around but you kind of became my driving force/”A&R” rep’. Miss you dude. Stop ice froggin’ (as Consequence would have said) & come thru to vibe out on some new sh*t with me!!! Just like old times dude. Hey, we could even talk about cats around the way or go on ‘missions’ with Dez & ‘Touch if you want… The Four Horsemen.
- West Hempstead, Long Island, NY… I love you. Always! Exit 18 STAND UP!