Saturday, June 25, 2011

Celebrating Greatness

Today is the anniversary of two totally different things. 15 years ago, my favorite rapper Jay-Z released his debut cd "Reasonable Doubt." And, two years ago, the world lost the musical genius that was Michael Jackson. I distinctly remember both days. Jay's release made me a lifelong fan. Michael's death affected me in an odd way. I just couldn't believe that he was gone, especially given the way he died.

My absolute favorite MJ album is "Off The Wall." In my opinion, OTW totally trumps "Thriller." It is the most complete and cohesive album. I love it from beginning to end. It's superior to "Thriller" musically, lyrically, and conception wise. I think that it shows MJ and Quincy Jones at their best. One of my favorite songs by him is "I Can't Help It." Michael was the gift that my Mom passed on to me. He was her favorite child star. The first concert she ever attended was a Jackson 5. And, many years later, my first concert was that of another wildly popular boy band New Edition. I'm not one to get into all of the controversy that surrounded him. That is not important. He was a gift to music. He is missed.

"Reasonable Doubt" is a classic cd. I've owned no less than 3 copies of it. Jay-Z's flow and lyrical wordplay captivated me from my first listen. After Tupac's death, I wasn't necessarily moved by anyone. Until I discovered Jay's "Reasonable Doubt." It's hard to believe that it's been 15 years. I have a bunch of favorites on this cd. Granted, I knew nothing of the Marcy Projects or New York street life, but I felt him. There was something so sincere in his voice and delivery. Jay painted a picture with his words. I could see his story. I could feel his pain. This creates always brings me back. I still love it. I own every Jay cd but this one will always be special to me. Here are two of my favorite songs off of RD.

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