Independence weekend is here and you can smell the charcoal and bbq in the air. Half of the year is over and the summer concerts have been on point in NY so far. I recently saw "Beats, Rhymes, Life" documentary on A Tribe Called Quest. The documentary was produced by the actor Michael Rappaport.
Being a huge fan of this groups music, it no doubt shaped the sonic structure of 90's Hip Hop. I have seen the group preform when there albums were first dropped and i saw them perform (rip) at last years Rock The bells concert. Without any kind of fall-off musically and performance wise. When they decided to stop making music together it left an unusual void in hip hop. The movie captures the group going on the 2008 Rock The Bells tour, but it also gives a great background on the groups origins and their connection to the "Native Tongues". After watching this film, i felt a certain disdain for the producer of this film. Maybe it is my overall appreciation for the group, that makes me bias towards the story that was told in the movie. I felt that the movie portrayed Q-Tip and Phife always at odds with each other. There is an underlying power struggle within the group that broke the group up. I was dismayed with the way it seemed like a ton of finger pointing and character assassination distracted the Tribe movement. I almost don't believe that it was that bad in the group, alas i was short twitteration with Jarobi that leads me to believe that there was an insurmountable struggle within the group.
The shining light is that at the end of the movie there is a caption that says A Tribe Called Quest owes one album contractually to Jive records. So hopefully when their Karma is correct they will be able to capture that magic again. Until then, I will play the shit out of their albums and go to there shows knowing that they can perform their classics and i will be a happy camper.