DJ Jazzy Jeff on Sound Session

Posted in Interviews, Sound Session on March 19th, 2013 by Hyphen

J. Moore and I recently had the honor of sitting down with the legendary DJ Jazzy Jeff while he was in town to judge the Red Bull Thre3style Regional Finals.  His album with The Fresh Prince, He’s The DJ, I’m The Rapper, was literally the first album I owned and to say I was a die-hard JJ+FP fan growing up would be an understatement.  From the albums to The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air, I consumed everything those guys released together from the late 80’s to the mid 90’s and when they moved on to their solo work, things didn’t really skip a beat.  Will’s gone on to be the biggest movie star in the world and Jeff has released some classic records, plus become one of the most sought after DJ’s around.

J. and I often casually debate who’s the “greatest” in a particular field and whenever we discuss DJ’s, Jeff is at the top of our list.  He can simply do everything a DJ can possibly do, but better than pretty much anyone else.  Rocking a party?  Check.  Producing classic music?  Check.  Cutting up records with battle DJ skills?  Check.  Hell, the man invented a type of scratch.

Jeff’s the best DJ ever in my book and amazingly, he’s even a better person than DJ.  We’ve interviewed him a few times on the phone but this was the first time we got him on Sound Session in person and he didn’t disappoint.  We discussed all things related to DJ’ing, from his background to his current success, including his philosophy on a DJ’s responsibility, the rise of the DJ in popular music (while it seems to wither in hip-hop), and whether or not “real DJ’s” should take requests.  He also told stories about the early days of his work with Will, transitioning from rocking parties in Philly with the Fresh Prince to selling millions of albums and touring worldwide.

We could have talked for hours, so I can’t wait until we get him back on the show.  Thanks to Red Bull, the Cashmere Agency, and Detooz Films for making it happen and ultimate respect to the Magnificent himself!

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Throwback: DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince – He’s The DJ, I’m The Rapper

Posted in Artists, Joints, Throwbacks on July 1st, 2008 by Hyphen

He's The DJ, I'm The Rapper

In honor of seeing the latest Will Smith flick, Hancock, last night, I thought I’d post up one of my favorite albums of all time.  DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince literally changed my life, since they’re responsible for the first hip-hop I ever heard.  Plus, my entire sense of humor was shaped by their music and the greatest TV show of all time, “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.”  The first cassette I owned was Rock The House when I was 6 years old (woah…20 years ago), but their second album, He’s The DJ, I’m The Rapper, was the joint that put me over the top.  I must have listened to it a million times, and to this day, I still have every line, adlib, and scratch memorized.  Clearly, part of my affinity for this LP is sentimental, but I think it’s still dope music that stands the test of time.  Peep the title track for example, where Will absolutely blacks out.  Black Thought has said it was his favorite verse growing up, and that rhyme alone is greater than the careers of most contemporary rappers.

If you’ve never heard this album, listening to it for the first time in 2008 clearly won’t mean the same for you as it did for me, but you need to check it out.  If you remember it, but haven’t pulled it out in ages, do so.  Afterall, it’s summer…and that’s officially JJ+FP time.  There are even rumors that we might see some tour dates from Jeff and Will over the next few months (if they come to Seattle, it’s a WRAP).  And go see Hancock…it’s dope.

DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince – He’s The DJ, I’m The Rapper

Bonus: The Smoking Section has the other JJ+FP albums up for download right here.

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