Saturday, June 27, 2009

June 27

Homage must be paid to another influential musical icon today: the late DJ Screw.

For those who don't know, or aren't all that familiar with the Houston hip-hop scene, June 27 is the name of a legendary Screw freestyle session and mixtape. June 27 was also the birthday of D-Moe, one of the couple handful of local artists from the Screwed Up Click to flow over the 35-minute track.

Hard to believe, but this really means something in H-Town. Even today. I can't explain it to you. You simply had to be there.

Here's Part 1:

Also, here's Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

Growing up - I can't lie - I was not a big fan of Screw. In fact, I openly mocked the music and its fans - which included most of my friends at the time. I was more of an East Coast hip-hop head: Biggie, Nas, Wu, The Roots, Mobb Deep, KRS, Jeru, etc. By comparison, I thought Screw and the SUC were unsophisticated and primitive, music for morons.

But I'd like to think I'm much more diplomatic than that today. If anything, the music has earned a permanent spot in my heart: I remember hanging out with my boys, listening to this very track and taking our turns in the cipher. And I was awful - almost every verse started with "I'm coming through..." and I'm sure I made some mention of niggas or candy paint.

Those were the days.

In the end, Screw was impossible to escape. And I'm glad he didn't let me get away.

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