the west coast dominated my soundscape as a teenager. the chronic, doggystyle, it’s on 187 killa the list goes on and on. my life revolved around the sounds blaring from my walkman. who cares that i couldn’t relate to mc eight or ice-t? they made me feel something, and that’s all that mattered. there’s something funky and soulful to the west coast production style. layered, textured with keys and heavy bass…it’s music to ride to.
today, top dawg entertainment brings us jay rock, the pride and joy of watts. imagine the bravado of the game mixed with dmx’s gruff delivery. but the most interesting thing about jay rock isn’t the comparisons to other rappers, its his flow. contradictory as it is, jay is both abrasive and lyrical. at times dmx got by because of “how” he said it rather than what he said. jay rock delivers his rhymes similar to x, but puts his bars together in a thoughtful, creative way. listen to “the hood gone love it” jay rock’s smash single where he effortlessly trades raps with kendrick lamar and see for yourself. this kid is more than street, he’s got the skills to match the reputation.
last month saw the release of follow me home jay rock’s fantastic debut. it’s a true west coast classic that paints the picture of what it means to live and learn on the streets of southern california. it’s the sound of a rapper on his come up, earning cash and the respect of the industry as he storms through each of the records eighteen stellar tracks. look no further than the standouts “westside” and “elbows” for a slice of that vintage west coast sound we’ve all been missing for far too long. california love.