Andy Bowen D&A Hip Hip Hop

August 15, 2006

Andy Bowen’s “D&A: Mix Tape” (feat. Danny Arellano) could be the best of the best of any genre. That’s a lot coming from me, since I’ve never claimed to be a queen of Rap/Hip Hop. Bowen took a sampling of his songs (reported to total more than 800) and came up with a hefty 19 for this CD. And he although he dared me to in the first song, I never found a cliche.

This guy’s range – and intelligence – is daunting. I want to call this Hip Hop for the Head, but that dismisses the way his words touch the heart. I risk getting all trite myself, but these songs literally had me laughing or crying or both.

Bowen’s ability to spin between sexual, political and spiritual spheres is impressive. “Kama Sutra” should tip you off that things are gonna get a little nasty in here, but you don’t expect the humor that he blends in with the testosterone rhyme.

“Go BIG or Go Home (Live to Skate)” is an anthem for everyone who indulges in extreme behavior on wheels, whether 2, 4, 8 or more, and would make a perfect X Games theme. Who among us – who has gone way too fast and way too far – can’t relate to the advice: “Pre-order them veneers / cause teeth is souveniers.”?

And yeah, until you’ve heard “Grand Junction” in the lyrics of a Hip Hop tune you just don’t know the variety of flavors the genre has to offer – cowboy dip apparently being one of them.

I can’t write a tenth of what I want to say about this collection and have it fit in the paper. There’s no posing. No cliches. No gangsta. No misogyny. No hatred. Andy Bowen just drops rhymes like this:

“Mister Bush, my grandfather
pulled your father
out the water,
did you bother
to thank him for your life?
Now try and fucking swallow.”

What can I say, other than thank you for the music and the meaning? Visit Andy’s Myspace and download everything you can.


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