Supernat vs Nardwuar
There were times during the 90s that Freestyle rhymin became a structured sub-section within the Hip-Hop format on radio. There were sessions from many parts of the world and from many radio stations, some were lengthy, some were short, some were painfully excrutiating and some featured unsung and unsigned artists that later went on to big things.
The concept alone of unexpectedly throwin subject matter at a Rap singer and expectin them to spit accordingly is pretty bananas, let’s face it. Some had the talent, some fell short.
None of them took the freestyle crown like Supernatural. Yeh, Supernat was all that, yeh he was incredibly gifted, but even with production assistance from KRS, the album never made it to the shelves, but the poor fecker never went on to make a hit, as he discusses with super-nerd Nardwuar in the clip above [Nice millinery homeslice].
Hotasballs are sittin on some gems, that’s cos we been there since 1981, we been tuning in to those stations, we been swappin tapes while everyone else be sleepin and schleppin, and we been ‘tapin, tapin, tapin, tapin, tapin’ since we were whippersnapper yoot.
Now we be grown folk and some of us be havin babies, but we still cant help what the eff we be listening to. The format is still pretty much the same, inventive verbosities and a bangin drum is addictive like crack on a Percy Ingles yum-yum bein eaten suggestively by Sasha Grey.
This is that crack. It aint new crack, it’s way-back to the mid-90s crack.
This is Supernatural on Kiss FM New York with members from the Bootcamp Clik [from 95 we think], it’s simple and fertile freestylin. Essentially it’s fundamental freestylin, basic muckin about on the mic, but the way that Nat kicks it, is beyond comprehension why he never really blew the feck up. It’s from a compilation called Off the Dome, a rare mixtape of firin MCs doin their freestyle thing, from 94.
The 2nd clip is from KMEL in LA. Sway & Tech [with DJ Revolution] on the Wake-Up Show was a stronghold for the talent that needed to market itself on the left coast, but even Sway & Tech couldnt believe there ears as youll hear. Supernats performances had preceeded him by this stage and the hosts knew this, so instead of lettin him do his own thing, they gave him subject matter. This was waaay before the world record, but came the year after he took the title in the 1993 New Music Seminar’s MC Battle for World Supremacy.
I had the fortune of knowing him personally, I initially interviewed him for Hip-Hop Connection during this period and hung a couple of times at shows in London. I was later fortunate enough to be taken under his wing during a typically drunken escapade on hols in New York. He saved my monkey-ass from a fate worse than a beatin’ whilst being thrown out on the street by the security at some nutty venue in the LES. I missed one of the greatest shows ever, cos I was hopped up on Whiskey and juice, and beer, and whiskey, and more whiskey….. that’ll be the Oirish in me.
Biggest shouts to Rico for stayin true to the game
Peep a section of lyrics from the KMEL session
Old school hip-hop, it don’t stop,
So I got to give it mad props,
Let me start to flip it as I exactly do work,
Got to go back to the old school can’t forget Kool Herc,
Kool Herc, that’s exactly what I said,
From Busy Bee to Treacherous Three and can’t forget my man Red,
‘Cause he goes way back, way way back,
Love the way that I explode through the track,
The Cold Crush Four, Plus One More,
Everybody lookin who’s up at the door,
Double Trouble, Double Trouble, Double Double Trouble Trouble,
Every time that I flip it, now I come to burst your bubble,
As I can flip it so naturally,
In the style of my man Mister Busy Bee,
I can flip flop, brother, go non stop,
Afrika Bam was another Godfather of Hip-Hop,
So that’s the way it goes,
What’s the next topic so I can continue with this freestyle flow?
FYI. The next topic was corduroy doo-rags….