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Playlist May 1 2018 Written by

29TUNES | Run-DMC

#23 (15)

Years after the release of Run-D.M.C.’s eponymous 1984 debut, the group generally was acknowledged to be Hip Hop’s Beatles – a sentiment that makes a lot of sense, even if Run-D.M.C.isn’t quite the equivalent of a rap Please Please Me. Run-D.M.C. were the Beatles of rap because they signaled a cultural and musical change for the music, ushering it into its accepted form; neither group originated the music, but they gave it the shape known today. But, no matter how true and useful the comparison is, it is also a little misleading, because it implies that Run-D.M.C. also were a melodic, accessible group, bringing in elements from all different strands of popular music. No, Run-D.M.C.’s expanded their music by making it tough and spare, primarily by adapting the sound and attitude of hard rock to Hip Hop. Prior to this, rap felt like a block party – the beats were funky and elastic, all about the groove. Run-D.M.C. hit hard. The production is tough and minimal, built on relentless drum machines and Jam Master Jay’s furious scratching, mixing in a guitar riff or a keyboard hit on occasion.

It is brutal urban music, and Run and D.M.C.’s forceful, muscular rhymes match the music. Where other MCs sounded cheerful, Run and D.M.C. prowl and taunt the listener, sounding as if they were a street gang. And while much of the record is devoted to braggadocio, boasting, and block parties, Run-D.M.C. also addressed grittier realities of urban life, giving this record both context and thematic weight. All of this — the music, the attitude, the words, the themes – marked a turning point for rap, and it’s impossible to calculate Run-D.M.C.’s influence on all that came afterward. Years later, some of the production may sound a bit of its time, but the music itself does not because music this powerful and original always retains its impact and force as music. (Bio by Stephen Thomas Erlewine @ Allmusic)

Tracklist:

  1. Sucker MCs (Krush Groove 1)
  2. Rock Box
  3. Jam Master Jay
  4. Hollis Crew (Krush Groove 2)
  5. Here We Go (Live At The Funhouse)
  6. King Of Rock
  7. Darryl & Joe (Krush Groove 3)
  8. Slow And Low (Demo)
  9. Together Forever (Krush Groove 4)
  10. Lord Of Lyrics (Demo)
  11. Peter Piper
  12. It’s Tricky
  13. My Adidas
  14. Is It Live
  15. Hit It Run
  16. You Be Illin’
  17. Dumb Girl
  18. Proud To Be Black
  19. Raising Hell
  20. Run’s House
  21. Mary Mary
  22. Beats To The Rhyme
  23. Papa Crazy
  24. Tougher Than Leather
  25. I’m Not Going Out Like That
  26. MIss Eliane
  27. Crack (Demo)
  28. The Ave
  29. Down With The King

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