“Hypnotize” by The Notorious B.I.G. (1997)

The first time I heard “Hypnotize” on the radio, I knew it was gonna be huge. Biggie’s impeccable flow had seemingly improved in the two-plus years since he’d released his debut Ready To Die. Puff Daddy and his Hitmen sampled Herb Alpert’s 1979 disco hit “Rise” in a way that had equal appeal to the… Read More “Hypnotize” by The Notorious B.I.G. (1997)

“Freeway Of Love” by Aretha Franklin (1985)

After becoming anointed The Queen of Soul following a lengthy string of hits in the late ’60s through the early ’70s, Aretha Franklin’s career became volatile.  1976’s Sparkle soundtrack provided a temporary relief, but it was followed by a string of underwhelming albums that ultimately necessitated her departure from her long time home of Atlantic Records.… Read More “Freeway Of Love” by Aretha Franklin (1985)

“Comin’ From Where I’m From” by Anthony Hamilton (2003)

In the music industry’s pre-streaming salad days, the bigwigs at RCA/Arista Records would rent out an auditorium at a fancy hotel somewhere in New York City and usher in tastemakers for 2 or 3 days of new music and performances. This convention was part of their 4th quarter rollout every year. In addition to rubbing… Read More “Comin’ From Where I’m From” by Anthony Hamilton (2003)