During a very spirited conversation with good friends of mine this past Sunday, someone asked the question what 3 hip hop songs changed your life? Since we are all hip hop (not rap) lovers; some said Straight Out Of Compton (me), some mentioned songs from A Tribe Called Quest and EPMD, while others mentioned songs from The Wu-Tang Clan.
This caused me to think about what albums – from any genre not just Hip Hop – that changed my life. After much consideration, I decided to share with you Breazy’s life changing albums.
NWA – Straight Out of Compton
I have to admit, around the time this album came out my world view was pretty limited. I had moved back to Denver two years earlier after living in Germany for two years and my likes, dislikes and other opinions were still forming. Besides, all I knew at the time was Germany and the little bit I remembered of Denver before moving to Germany. I thought Denver was the only place that had Crips and Bloods, not knowing that both gangs migrated from Los Angeles. So, to see people on TV that dressed like us wearing t-shirts, khakis, Chuck Taylors and Nike Cortez, and speaking in a similar accent, gave us something to relate to more so than we could people from New York.
Michael Jackson – BAD
The reason why this album, of all the Michael Jackson albums, is included is because this was the first Michael Jackson album that I was cognizant of at the time it came out. His previous albums came out before I even turned 6, so this was my formal introduction to the world’s greatest entertainer – no disrespect to Dougie Fresh. The fact that I knew every word on this album helped.
Kirk Franklin – Kirk Franklin and God’s Property
During the time this album came out, (believe it or not) I was singing in the Church choir, and this album was the begin all end all when it came to gospel to me. It had the right mix of soul-stirring praise filled songs and the right amount of mainstream influence to help attract and bring younger listeners to the Lord. The songs on this album touched my spirit in a way that even today is still with me.
Guy – Guy
Man, back in 87-88 you weren’t a player if you didn’t have Al B. Sure’s In Effect Mode, Keith Sweat’s Make It Last Forever or Guy’s Guy albums. Having said that, I wasn’t yet a player, more like a player-in-training, since I was only 8. But this was the album to have no matter what, from Teddy’s Jam to Goodbye, this album is full of sing-along songs.
Ice Cube – AmeriKKKa’s Most Wanted
From 1990 until 1996, Ice Cube (my favorite rapper of all time), was the hardest rapper out. With the perfect blend of gangsta tales and social commentary, Ice Cube along with Public Enemy and KRS1, were revolutionary but gangsta before Dead Prez. His first album introduced West Coast lyricism at it’s finest to the world (and New York) and proved that the West should be taken seriously.
As you can see, my taste in music is unique to say the least, but like I said these 5 albums have had a profound effect on my life. What are your life changing albums?
Talk to me, I’ll talk back.