Patrick Adams (pictured) and Peter Brown: Back in the early days of hip-hop before Run DMC and LL Cool J, rappers would rock the mic over a backup track. Usually the backup track was the B-Side of a disco single. The extended, instrumental version as it were. One of the more common tracks used was entitled The Patty Duke by the band Cloud One and it’s amazing. It’s got this slinky fucking bass line that must have STOOD as an open invitation for rapping. In Spoonie Gee’s hands it becomes a strut through an urban nightmare. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
You ever hear of Patrick Adams? How about Peter Brown? Probably not right? Well these were the dudes behind Cloud One and their reputation is legendary with a certain group of record collectors. Both were producers in the late 1970′s disco scene that gave rise to hip-hop. Adams later surfaced in the mainstream with Musique’s In the Bush and worked as an engineer on several Eric B. & Rakim albums. Along with Brown, Adams also operated a series of Harlem-based labels that released a shitload of rap and disco singles. Many of them stand as Adams’ and Brown’s most imaginative, inspiring, and flat-out wild works, involving their input as songwriters, arrangers, producers, musicians, talent spotters, and businessmen. These two guys were on the scene as it were and the fact that you don’t know about them while at the same time can probably tell me what Paris Hilton had for breakfast yesterday is indicative of our general cultural miasma.
So let’s remedy this situation. Below are three tracks all using the The Patty Duke as a background for some serious microphone damage. The clear winner from a historical perspective is the metro politician of the microphone himself, Spoonie Gee. When he kicks into the “in jail there’s a thing and its called survival, they teach it down to you on your first arrival” bit, you know that this is a person that is speaking from experience. Spoonie was in my opinion, the first GREAT rapper. He was multi-dimensional which you experience first-hand in this track as Spoonie goes from seducing young ladies in the car with an 8-Track to surviving prison.
With that said, the track I listen to the most below now is Scoopy Rap by Scoopy. I know nothing about the guy and the rap does not in any way touch upon some of the themes Spoonie hits. It’s essentially a boast rap but it plain KILLS. All three of these tracks were produced by the great Peter Brown by the way. There are all kinds of retrospectives out there of Adams and Brown. Check them out and tell me they weren’t geniuses.
Which one of these is your favourite?
Scoopie Rap – Scoopy
Spoonin’ Rap – Spoonie Gee
Family Rap – Family