The Backpacker Manifesto/a.


I will admit it: I was and still am a colossal dork. But I was and still am happy being that dork. And no matter what it is that we all, respectively, are, we’re inclined fairly strongly to hang onto those identities if they make us comfortable. Perhaps we might gain some perspective as we grow older; I can’t watch Voltron beyond the opening theme because it’s too slow and simple. But while recognizing the limitations of our old routines and habits, we can still appreciate how much joy we derived from them.

Loving 89-92 hip hop publicly, is seen as being a backpacker, an old fart, in authentic, behind the times, old, wack and old.

I listen to Main Ingredient about once a week.

I started playing Supreme Clientele last week, every day, and truly began appreciating how inspirational it was. I FORGOT how dope that album was. Ghost has the ability to make you feel like he is in the room with you.

Bahamdia or Missy?

Nia or Halle?

Hip hop is interesting in that its ascension corresponded to the advent of the music video, the internet and the usage of a Black Angry Urban music as a marketing tool for Fritolay-Pepsi co and their ilk.
Some people would call me a backpacker.

Am I offended? Nah.

It is a statment that is intended to declare my musical taste as irrelevent, old, stupid, not hip, out of touch.

Besides, I know that everyone has their core music.

Your core is your ipod play lists that get rocked every morning when you are in the shower.

Or On Friday nights while you get ready for a date. THAT. Kind of music.

If Das Ef X, Gangstarr or Doom is on your list.

You, are probably a bpk’r.


Or.

If Boot Camp Click, Souls or De La dominates your list then,

You are probably a bpk’r.

But you know what? There is beauty in it.

I KNOW how Coltrane was clowned. How Miles was clowned. How the hard bop cats were clowned. All for getting experimental with Jazz and pushing the boundaries. I guess it comes down to,

being eccentric and special

Or.

Being liked and “normal”.

Does this means that I can’t appreciate Rich Boy, Jim Jones (innocent) or The Pack.

Hell to tha naw.

It just means that they are not in my core.

Please believe.

I bumps ’em. That “tho some D’s remix w/ Dre” is some mighty fine rap music.

Jim Joneses ad libs be as dope as his rhymes.

The Pack’s minimalistic beats and East Oakland girl hooks, make for nice kickin’ it music.

Below Joey waxes nostalgic on being a young buck and all that it entailed for him.

Back then, I watched SportsCenter (when it was still emerging as a cultural force and long before it became unwatchable) multiple times per day, caught “Pop That Coochie” on The Box in the morning with my dad seemingly all the time, offered daily NBA recaps to start off what would have been homeroom had my school been a traditional place, started at the point on the basketball team, had a girlfriend, stayed up as late as I wanted, ate whatever I wanted, did well in school, didn’t catch any grief for my quirks, and internalized the shit out of just about everything pop culture.

I have some amazing friends whose musical tastes overlap with mine and often run the gamut from,

Softster, “You heard that knew Akon?”

to

Minnesota, “The reason why N*ggas love Pac is because he is SO real. I don’t respect Jay. Thi*s nigga don’t even WRITE for Christ Sakes”.

to

S.bot, “I hate tha Freedom Party. If I hear engine, engine number nine one more time Im gonna scream”, “Just give me my boom bap”.

to

Wil.e. “Ghost is dumb ignorant. I can’t belive you like him as much as I do”.

to

Gotty “Yo, We Got it for Cheap 3 IS NOT out yet. Stop textin’ me!”

Ironically, this week, I just started listening to hot 97 again. I have to know what the young bucks are peepin’.

Ironically, on blogs, I read about people talking about new songs, before they even make it to the radio, so in that way, radio is obsolete to me.

However, hearing “This is Why I’m Hot” ten times between showering, checking my mail drinking coffee and getting out the house in the morning certainly cements the hook in my head for the rest of the day. Ummm. The power of repitition.

Joey gets to the heart of our repetitious playing of ’89-’92.

But the point is that hip-hop regularly provides us with an audible demonstration of the nostalgia-driven search that just about all people undertake as they seek comfort. And really, is grasping at that one old single that you put out ten years ago all that different from summoning a smile by throwing on the theme song from Fat Albert?

Joey says that hip hop accomplishes it. I would argue that ART and MUSIC in general does it.

Why else would people love Michael the way they do

or

The Beatles

or

The Dead

or

Biggie, Jay, Nas & Pac?

At the end of the day. Backpacker is a term of enderment, a term of love if you will.

I claims mine.

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Hi Blog Fam.

Muah!

Hope you like this post.

Or for that matter hate it.

Lets tawk.

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Comments

  1. neo says

    I don’t have to be labelled anything based on what I prefer/like for that matter, imo. I just like what I like and don’t like what I don’t like..

  2. Hummingbyrd says

    Oh please.

    Neo.

    You just like to dissent, w’ you lil Scalia @ss.

    The bottom line is that humans use categories to sift through the messiness of life.

    And yes n*gga.

    YOU.

    Are.

    A.

    BACKPACKER.

  3. neo says

    I couldn’t be a backpacker..or else how would I rationalize owning a Diplomats album?

  4. Hummingbyrd says

    Thats the thing blood.

    You have your core, and your have your fringe.

    Duh!

    Your core is __________ _________ and ____________.

    So wait you like the Dips, but find Kim offensive.

    hella funny.

  5. Nexgrl says

    My core is more the backpacker than anything else. I am a bit older than you, so hip hop and I go back to the begining. The backpacker era is when I was hitting the clubs and the concerts
    semi-hard.

  6. Hummingbyrd says

    The backpacker era is when I was hitting the clubs and the concerts
    ————–

    Im telling momma.

    A. The Omni in North Oakland/Berkley.

    B. The Elbow Room in Frisco.

    C. The Upper room in Frisco.

    Oooooosh.

    I wanted to be down.

    Hawwwwwd.

    Man

  7. neo says

    In my defense, I copped the dips first joint on the defunct Rocafella strictly on the strength of the Heatmakerz..

    I still stand that this whole bp versus non-bp don’t really hold water..cos at the end of the day I meet folks who you would almost swear up and down they couldn’t get down with something other than synth-driven music..but prolly own more LB albums than you!

    but I’m outta here..’fore I get labelled as the angry afriCAN.

  8. Hummingbyrd says

    angry afriCAN.
    ============

    Oh Come on.

    We LOVE neo hear at MM.

    The dope thing about being a writer in PUTTING YOUR SH*T OUT THERE is that you are forced to define andn refine your theories.

    Perhaps my article should have addressed the CLOSET pack packers.

    Lol.

    That will be part two.

  9. Commish CH says

    I don’t know how “backpacker” becmae a negative term to many. I consider myself one, my core is the 89-95 steez, and I got so fed up a few years back, Im all up into the underground now.

    I remember Sean Price saying once, yeah they’re backpackers, but you should see the sh*t they carry in the backpack.

  10. Hummingbyrd says

    Ha ha ha.

    Yeah.

    It be 9’s, trees, cans of paint, co papers.

    All o that.

    Hi Comish.

  11. Marshall says

    I’m glad someone else feel the way i do about capo’s ad-libs. I’d buy all his albums if it was just the beats and his ad libs. (Twinkle, Twinkle)

  12. Hummingbyrd says

    Dude.

    Innocent…..He sounds like a lil Oakland dude when he be saying that sh*t….

    Jim Jones Adlibs interspersed w/ Cam/Skits.

    They would be like the new prince paula and de la.