Underrated: "Just The Lyrics? It Would Be Some Simple Stuff That Would Just Sound Complex"

Thursday, Sep 13, 2012 12:15AM

Written by SOHH for Brian "Rydar" Ellis

[Each week, SOHH asks two entertainment personalities to name who they feel is the most underrated emcee in hip-hop. After Erica Mena gave Cory Gunz the title earlier this week, J Dilla Ensemble founder Brian "Rydar" Ellis crowns J Dilla SOHH Underrated.]

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There's so many artists I could name for SOHH Underrated. Not to sound cliché or stay on this topic but no one really gives J Dilla enough props as an emcee.

Dilla as an emcee? People talk about swag and all types of stuff, that's swag. To put it clearly, that's swag. The way he would rap on a record, the way he would perform on the stand, with the kicks, it was confident but casual and still aggresive.

It was all of those things all at once. Tone. The way he would stack his background vocals to support him, everything. If you listen to the way he did "Give It Up" and it's just incredible. The way he uses those "Word is bond," they're just stacked and crazy how they were right in the middle of the verse. It was just great.

His ability to multi-task himself and combine his cadence to his tone and then just the lyrics? It would be some simple stuff that would just sound complex.

"I'm from where cats bang where they celebrate/So don't let it be a holiday."

It's crazy and I just think he doesn't get enough shine as the emcee he was because he could really rap and sing too.

Brian "Rydar" Ellis is an instructor at Berklee College of Music. His resumé includes B.M., Berklee College of Music, music business/synthesis, Vocalist, Leader of Champs vs. the League, Member of Igmar Thomas & the Cypher, Chris Dave and Friends, and Short Bus Alumni Performances with 7L & Esoteric, 5 ft. (Black Moon), Kev Brown, Mos Def, Renee Neufville, Robert Glasper, Derrick Hodge, Casey Benjamin, and Meshell Ndegeocello Recordings include Late Pass (debut album), Boombox (Raheem Jamal), Egoclapper (Esoteric), and Mr. T's Revenge (Short Bus Alumni) Publications in URB Magazine, Elemental Magazine, The Source, Okayplayer, HHC, and Stealth

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