Thursday, March 18, 2010

Old Skool Review: Biz Markie

You may not immediately think "Renaissance Man" when you consider Biz Markie, but that's just because you're ignorant. Let's review the facts, shall we? While he started off as some kid on the corner beat boxing for Roxanne Shante, the man has had one of the longest, if not most successful, careers in all of hip-hop-dom. He has played opposite Will Smith in Men in Black II, has starred in numerous commercials, created dance crazes and even taught our brats to make the music with their mouths on Yo Gabba Gabba! For a mush-mouthed MC originally from Savage, Maryland, the man has managed to hold onto the spotlight for more than two decades now. Not too shabby, if you ask me.

For better or worse, even if he weren't one of the original premiere beatboxers of his or any other day, his indelible print still would be stamped on the rap world for his part in Grand Upright Music, Ltd. vs. Warner Bros. Records, a landmark case that essentially stated all future samples on any record must first be cleared by the original artist. Biz sampled "Alone Again (Naturally)" by Gilbert O'Sullivan, and the judge decided that was a no-no. (Ah, to be back in the days when any and everything was sampled, semi-legally. Good times, good times.) Having one of the earliest rap tracks to chart on the Billboard Top 10 for "Just a Friend" doesn't hurt his standing any, either.

All this from a guy who's first big hit was about picking his nose. Go off, Biz. Nobody beats you.

Tell me this guy wouldn't be your coolest uncle, and i'll call you a liar.

mp3: Me Versus Me (Biz Markie from The Biz Never Sleeps)

Oh, and guess who's on the Fresh Fest bill for March 19 at DAR Constitution Hall? i hope the Missus didn't already have plans for us, 'cuz we gots some now.

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