Friday, April 29, 2005

Lest We Forget: Hard 2 Obtain



Hard 2 Obtain: "LI Groove" (includes preceding skit)
Hard 2 Obtain: "Ghetto Diamond"
Hard 2 Obtain: "Street Dwellers"
from Ism & Blues, Atlantic, 1994

The year was 1994, and as classics fell from the rap heavens nearly every Tuesday, our Walkmans devoured double-As to power the new Nas, Biggie, Jeru, or Gang Starr. Meanwhile, damn good LPs were gathering dust in record bins, including the debut "Ism & Blues" from the SD50's-backed group Hard 2 Obtain. This was an era when major labels would actually sign dope rap groups who had little or no gimmick--practically the entire Heiro fam were on Jive, RCA was blowing up with Loud (Mobb Deep, Wu, Alkaholiks), and everyone else was seemingly on Elektra (Brand Nubian, LONS, Del, KMD, PR & CL, and Digable Planets).

The first single released, "L.I. Groove", set it off with sparse production. Heads around the tri-state instantly perked their ears up when that chorus kicked in, horns flowing, culminating with Rakim's "rough enough to break New York from Long Island." Lyrically, it was typical backpacker fare; humorous metaphors sprinkled between vast stretches of relatively meaningless wordplay, but it was fun music. DL and Taste, the vocalists, are competent but derivative--as Dante Ross described, "one of the dudes wasn't really an MC, the other dude sounded like Puba." The SD50s put a lot of heart into the production on this joint, and you just wonder what MC's of the caliber of Sadat X or Common Sense would have sounded like flowing over this type of flavor. From the sounds of it, Dante probably wonders the same thing.

Extrablogicular reading:
Oliver Wang interviews Dante Ross, who dismisses H2O outright: "...I never really liked [Hard 2 Obtain]...I thought they were kind of wack actually and I kept saying that the whole time."

The Broke BBoys covered this album last month with a few nuggets of trivia.

5 Comments:

At 7/14/2005 4:34 PM, Anonymous Kevin A. Calhoun said...

First off "FUCK Dante Ross" he is a snake as muther fucker. John Gamble does all the work and doesn't really like him.

Dante you are a dick rider and you have rode dick from NY to LA, and any stop along the way.

Please remember correctly that GEEBEE and Gamble was the SDs. People didn't even want to fuck with you. You always acted as if someone wanted something from you. All we wanted was your weed and your resources. That's it.

You're a "Montana Max ass nigga." MINE...MINE...MINE...That's the way people get along with you.

When I see you we'll probably have a choice word. SO YOU CAN BE TOUCHED and YOU CAN"T BEAT ME. I kinda know you but I know people who know you. You have associates not friends. Back then most of your beats were looked over. You were the least talented of the three in all areas; personality, integrity, LOYALTY, and a host of other shit.

I bet you are a lonely muther fucker and I almost feel sorry for you...No, I don't your rich you can buy friends.

See, I'm broke with too many friends to count. I never really liked you 'for the record during or the record.'

Don't dismiss this and be like 'whatever.' I don't give a fuck because I am a nobody, just a DJ I'm expendable the least important in a group after 1991, and you are one of them white boys who have 'say so' in this industry.

Actually I got my own shit now lab, label, store, and plus a fan-base. I'm eatin well down in Baltimore so this won't do me none.

I just have to let all the people, who saw that article, see another angle, from a an unbiased point and again I say FUCK YOU..from the bottom of my balls...

Take a look at yourself before you speak a word about others, YOU BITCH.

I don't give a fuck what other pop hop you made with light skinned rappers. Everlast ain't need you, he was already official.

Your beats ain't worth the cost, gotta pay for sample clearance.

H2O was subject to all the 'industry bullshit' (do this do that) we were young, anxious, and trying to get out. Did you ever see us live? We were alright with room to grow. That Fucking Pearlman and Atlantic didn't know how to market hip hop at the time. Ask Dame Dash.

Your only production success is with white boys. I guess Fred Durst is the next to get a pop hop song for you. Hey Fred bring enough money to clear the samples.

Wasn't Step to the rear Geebee's?
Wasn't Pop Goes...Weasle Geebees's?
Wasn't the attitude of you partners the reason why people dealt with yall at all. When did you start splitting money amongst the three. Look up the word GROUP and write me a two page essay, pussy.

I will see you soon. You Bitch Ass. This ain't a threat so don't get scared. I'm just a grown man talking shit back to you, cause I can do that 'But I mean It'
Stop Lying and TELL THE TRUTH.
YOU FAGGOT.

Peace to Geebee and Gamble the true SD50s.

Clearing the Air,
DJ 67
Formerly of H2O
Baltimore, MD


P.S.
YOU CAN'T BEAT ME!
WHAT?

 
At 10/29/2005 3:36 AM, Blogger D. Ross said...

Light Skinned rappers? White Boy this white boy that? Have problems with my color now but when dudes were getting checks it was all love huh? your a lying hypocrite,Geebee defintly aint do Pop goes the weasel but could have cause it was wak and you got no place to talk about me and Gamble. Him do all the work nah dont think so my dude since he's retired and Iam still rocking check out the new Santana record for clarification chump! True SD50's cat you wouldnt even know the half and me Iam not gonna air out anyones dirty laundry here thats not gangster at all. But then again your were never the brightest bulb on the block. Hate much Kev? Another thought you dont know anything about my work,my work with Everlast or my as a person. By the way yeah it was me who encouraged him to play guitar and sing and cowrote a couple of the tunes on his record. Hey mr crabapple watch David letterman next thrusday November 3rd so you can really hate me when Anthony Hamiltons singing my song(yep music+lyrics too jerkoff!) with Santana and the band. By the way after all these years glad to know your still a clown. WHy not beat me up when you see me your like twice my size I'am sure it'll make you feel good you bigoted retard. Funny shitn is I did Li groove and all the hot shit on that record,yeah maybe I'am harsh at times no doubt but me Iam focused and a hard worker no time for slackers and losers Guess thats why I stoped fucking with your 4.3 seconds after the record was done. Dick rider nah,someone that blessed you when you basically didnt deserve it yep and for telling the truth in a magazine I finally get to see you for the piece of shit you truly are. Have a great life idiot.

 
At 10/16/2007 5:31 AM, Blogger riccarda said...

this was hilarious!!

 
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At 7/25/2013 4:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

beefs that as it may, to the uninvolved listener, still bangin!

 

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