An early member of producer Marley Marl’s iconic Juice Crew, the Brooklyn-bred Masta Ace emerged shoulder-to-shoulder in the late-’80s with a host of iconic emcees, including Big Daddy Kane, Kool G Rap, Craig G and more. When Ace showed up at the Tiny Desk, he brought with him stripped-down versions of the concrete-shaking classics that built his legacy, backed by the impressive Lee Hogans & Pursuance band.
Watch him move the crowd with his biggest single, “Born To Roll,” from the 1993 album SlaughtaHouse, and introspect on a life lived in the public eye on “Story Of Me.”
In the elevator, minutes after wrapping, one of his bandmates noticed that he’d gotten a little emotional during the performance. Ace relayed that the intimacy of the Tiny Desk set had allowed him to hear anew the personal nature of the lyrics he’d shared about his late mother; a bittersweet nostalgia that’s palpable during his performance of “Son of Yvonne.”
It’s that ability — to realize the moment, and to wield it — that makes Ace resonate so readily, from ’80s Brooklyn to NPR.
“Son of Yvonne”
“Born To Roll/Jeep Ass Nig**”
“Story of Me”
Lee Hogans (trumpet), Anja-Christin Nielsen (trumpet), David Stolarz (keys), Jameison Ledonio (guitar), Rob Collazo (bass), James “Biscuit” Rouse (drums), Pearle Gates (guest vocalist), Masta Ace/Duvall Clear (lead emcee)
Producers: Abby O’Neill, Morgan Noelle Smith; Creative Director: Bob Boilen; Audio Engineer: Josh Rogosin; Videographers: Morgan Noelle Smith, Kara Frame, CJ Riculan, Dani Lyman; Production Assistant: Joshua Bote; Photo: Eslah Attar/NPR.
Watch more episodes of NPR’s Tiny Desk HERE
Y.F.N.D.D. – Soviet – Boom Bap HipHop Instrumentals
Sydney, Australia producer Y.F.N.D.D. of O-Nei-Ric Tapes dropped 10 boom bap HipHop instrumental gems on “Soviet”! All the beats on this joint are thick, dirty and make you want to snap ya neck! Y.F.N.D.D. has some interesting sounds and tunes on this project. It’s definitely something the real underground HipHop head! This Is HIPHOP!!
Check out more selections from O-Nei-Ric Tapes on Facebook
Listen to more tunes by Y.F.N.D.D on Soundcloud
Konducta Beats – Born To Life – #HipHop Instrumental
Barcelona, Spain HipHop producer Konducta Beats dropped a nice, instrumental album called “HipHop Instrumentals Vol1”! The album has a bunch of interesting beats on it.
Two of our favorite joints on the album are
And “Born To Life”
“Open Your Eyes” is a smooth gem too
Check out more of Konducta’s music on Soundcloud
VANS x A Tribe Called Quest Collection
Two iconic legends, VANS x A Tribe Called Quest come together for an amazing collection of footwear. Inspired by ATCQ’s impact on Hip Hop and Hip Hop culture, Vans takes it’s Old Skool, sk8-hi, Ultrarange, slide on and slip on models and customized them with ATCQ album art themed images. There’s inspiration from the”Low end Theory” album, the Bonita Applebum video, the “We Got It from Here… Thank You 4 Your Service” album and there’s also one inspired by the lyrics of Phife Dawg. The kicks are available in adult and kid sizes.
The VANS x A Tribe Called Quest Collection are available now on the Vans website and at Vans retailers