1. Sucker M.C.’s (Krush Groove 1)
2. Walk this Way
3. Together Forever (Krush Groove 4)
4. King of Rock
5. Run’s House
6. It’s Tricky
8. You Be Illin’
9. My Adidas
10. Here We Go (Live at the Funhouse)
11. Rock Box
12. The Ave.
13. Hard Times
14. Beats to the Rhyme
15. Jam Master Jay
16. Peter Piper
17. It’s Like That
18. Christmas in Hollis
If you have any question as to why Joseph Simmons, Darryl McDaniels, and Jason Mizell are revered as much as they are, you simply haven’t heard this album.
It is a rare moment in one’s life when you find an album that is perfection from beginning to end. This is one of those moments.
From this 18 track set you will find the many, and there are many, reasons why Run DMC are truly the musical legends they are often referred as.
“Sucker MC’s” was their way of saying hello to all the showy, flashy, dance oriented crews of the day. It was also their way of saying, “Hey fellas, it’s time to take it to the next level or start packing your bags.” Even today, when I play this song I have to stop whatever I’m doing and say every word.
Even the title of “Walk This Way” is almost prophetic when you look back on it. When it was released it climbed into the top 5 on the charts and told anyone who wasn’t hip to the rap scene that they better plan on making a few adjustments. Not only did open the door for basically every group to follow, they even brought partners Aerosmith from the brink of oblivion themselves.
Since I first heard “Together Forever” with its pounding bassline on Priority’s 1986 compilation “Rap’s Greatest Hits Volume II”, it has always been one of my favorite songs. Crowd sounds in the background only add to the fresh lyrics.
“King of Rock” solidified the group’s status as stars after their first album’s success.
“Run’s House” attempts to capture some of the live feeling of a Run DMC show.
“It’s Tricky” as the follow up to “Walk This Way” drove the rap stake fully into the heart of the country (remember that crazy video with Penn & Teller?).
“Pause” was their foray into the new danceable era that was early 1990’s rap. Even with the newer sound it still is all Run DMC.
Hip hop comedy at its best flows from “You Be Illin’.”
“MYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY AAAADIDAS”….nuff said.
I’ve always wished that I could travel back to New York in the early 80’s just for a weekend and attend every block party I could. While “Here We Go” won’t exactly do that, it gives it a good effort.
When Russell Simmons (Run’s brother) suggested the guitars for “Rock Box” the group thought he was losing his mind. He wasn’t. Can’t you just picture Run and D sitting on that record needle in the video? And, by the way, Calvin Klein still ain’t no friend of mine.
Like “Pause,” “The Ave.” helps move the group from the striped down sounds of the 80’s to the more musical 90’s.
“Hard Times” was originally recorded by Kurtis Blow, but this version is far superior and says a lot that they would lead off their first full album with a track as politically charged as this.
Many people downplayed “Beats to the Rhyme” when it was first released. Run was quoted years later as saying “Now it is one of the crowd favorites at every show.” I concur.
When the group first signed to Profile, the label refused to feature Jay on the album covers. As a tribute to him, they recorded “Jam Master Jay” one of the best deejay tributes of all time.
Now when “Peter Piper” first came out, who didn’t sit down and try to learn ever word of that introduction? What a way to kick one of the most important hip hop albums ever.
Every time I hear “It’s Like That” I think about the scene in Krush Groove when Run is all pissed off backstage and he storms out into this “This is my muthaf*%&in’ house…” routine then drops into this song. One of my all time favorite hip hop moments, and that’s the way it is.
How could you not dig “Christmas in Hollis?” You have to be pretty good to pull that off and not lose credibility. They did it.
When it comes down to it, this is simply one the best all time albums period. There is little denying the influence of this trio of Hollis. Unfortunately it is only available as an import right now. They will be including a greatest hits along with their upcoming album at the end of the summer.
Bottom line: If you’re ever disgusted with the current state of hip hop, put this album in and remember what it is all about. -JohnG