Name: DJ Clue
Mixtape: Where Ya Hood At?? Pt. 1
Hometown: Queens, New York
Joints to check for: “Dead Mutha—-ers,” by Cam’ron; “Quick to Back Down” by the Bravehearts featuring Lil Jon; “Talk to Me” by Cassidy featuring Jadakiss; “That’s Me” by Gravy featuring Busta Rhymes, P. Diddy and Juvenile; “Clientele Kids” by Raekwon featuring Fat Joe and Ghostface Killah
Previous mixtapes: What, are you kidding me? You haven’t bought a mixtape until you’ve copped at least one of DJ Clue’s street discs
The 411: DJ Clue says he’s getting so upset with certain mixtape DJs for tainting the streets with garbage that he’s going to start paying some of his fellow turntable-loving peers to go on vacation. The Question Mark Man took a break himself this week from his multitude of jobs to return to the gig that made him who he is — the mixtape master.
Where Ya Hood At?? starts off with guns blazing as Fabolous drops a freestyle over DMX’s “Where the Hood At?,” while 50 Cent laughs at MCs he feels are biting his style, rhyming over the Diplomats’ “Gangsta Music.”
Swizz Beatz’s protégé Cassidy has nothing but lyrical grimaces and malevolent punchlines to shell out on “Talk to Me.” When he’s not threatening to cut off MCs’ feet, Cass is bragging about how his superior rap style can bash that of any foe. The song’s guest, Jadakiss, also strikes down on the track like a hungry hawk. Kiss reminisces about how as a child he was so money-hungry that he charged his friends when they wanted to come over to his house and watch wrestling. Although Swizz doesn’t rhyme on the song, he serves as an equally important contributor by supplying torrential horns that sound like they belong on a ’70s police show.
Elsewhere, Lil Jon continues his quest to become the Southern equivalent to P. Diddy. Taking a break from producing and adlibbing on everyone’s tracks, Jermaine Dupri’s former employee pairs up with none other than Nas and the Bravehearts on “Quick to Back Down.” The song, another unruly Jon-flavored track, has the Queensbridge clique pulling the cards of “cornflake n—as” who act like they’re hard but are really scared.
We all know that Joe Budden isn’t scared to throw his lyrical jabs around on the mixtapes, but the question everyone on the streets has is if Budden has called out 50 Cent yet. While serving as guest editor for the August issue of XXL magazine, 50 put Joe and his lyrics on blast in a section of the magazine called “Step Your Rap Game Up” where editors make fun of lines they think are corny. During a freestyle on Where Ya Hood At??, Joe defends his lines and retaliates against a certain rap dude who travels in a bulletproof truck.
DJ Clue’s trash-talking nemesis Kay Slay keeps the healthy spirit of competition alive this week by putting out two new mixtapes. He’s got The Drama Hour, which is hosted by Pharrell Williams and features hip-hop records, and R&B Drama for people who want something smoother to listen to.
Elsewhere on the streets is Mick Boogie’s Rock the Mic mixtape. Now don’t confuse this CD with the official Rock the Mic mixtape that the G-Unit are putting out soon, but Boogie’s offering, nonetheless, has live performances as well as freestyles from the different acts on the tour.
For other artists featured in Mixtape Mondays, check out Mixtape Mondays Headlines.
For a full-length feature on the role of mixtapes in the music industry, check out “Mixtapes: The Other Music Industry.”