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A skill is a skill; Skills don’t age.
Jaz-O, a King’s County’s legend famously known for his ties with JAY-Z as his mentor and friend, recently released an outstanding project called ‘The Warmup‘. Well-composed and delivery from the gods with a variety in sound, the new extended play is wholesome.
Starting his EP off like the OG he is, the monster production on ‘Fisher Pricer’ and The Originator’s signature flow allows him to pick up where he left off. If you were a JAY-Z fan when the Timbaland-produced ‘Nigga What, Nigga Who? (Originator 99)’ came out in 1997, you’ll hear a familiar lyric.
Next, a masterfully-written track about a special someone inspired ‘High’ (implemented the Rap style where the songwriter builds their lyrics are written to land on a word in the beat), and ‘Kingz Kounty 4Evva’ with the revived Big Band sound in the 90s. ‘Lookin’ Like’ samples Nipsey Hussle’s ‘Overtime’ from his 2014 album, ‘Mailbox Money’. ‘M-A-R-See-Why’ pays homage to the place that showed him, love, before he knew what love was. It mentions the gentrification-related changes in the area and other dear moments.
In ‘My Reality’, the veteran explains how he lived in the late eighties with a quarter of a million dollars for a budget and donning designer gear. Moreover, my favourite line in the record was when he said he doesn’t mind if he isn’t his girl’s favourite rapper. Famously, Drake made a record about a girl he dated who would rather listen to Ludacris (See: ‘How About Now’ from his 2014 album ‘If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late’).
‘So-So’ samples now-defunct Neo-Soul duo Floetry’s 2003 charted record, ‘Say, Less’, and is one for the ladies as they say.
Back in the Myspace days early to mid-2000s, Jaz-O and I would communicate about potentially interviewing for my magazine and supporting one another. We had each other’s phone number. I wasn’t as knowledgeable and as experienced as I am now.
Listen to the project below, out right now through his imprint: Kingz Kounty Media Group–distributed by Roc Nation’s Equity Distribution. It was released yesterday (February 7, 2020). Back in 1990, Jaz-O, then The Jaz put a young JAY-Z on his record called ‘The Originators’. Now, the astute 55-year-old is releasing music in partnership with his friend and one of the world’s few Black billionaires/Hip-Hop’s first billionaire, JAY-Z. What a time!