Wednesday, November 19, 2014

done by the forces of nature

The Jungle Brothers did their own dang and brought an afrocentric positivity to the funky methamorphosisms of this ambitious hip hop house hybrid.  The trio of Michael Small (Mike Gee), Nathaniel Hall (Afrika Baby Bam), and Sammy Burwell (DJ Sammy B) had changed the game with the jazz rap innovations of their debut 'Straight Out The Jungle', the opening salvo from the Native Tongues collective, which led to a deal with Warner Bros. Records.  The major label juice led to an increasing quality in the production of their sound.  

'Done By The Forces Of Nature' was produced by The Jungle Brothers at Calliope Studios in New York City and mixed at Apollo Studios with executive producer Kool DJ Red Alert.  The sessions also featured contributions from such guest performers as:    A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, KRS-One, Monie Love, DJ Towa Towa, and Caron Wheeler.  Dr. Shane Faber provided keyboards and engineered along with Gregg Mann and Greg Curry.  Abdullah Rahman did the artwork.  

Baby Bam:   "Back in the days before we became a group, I was b-boying and popping on cardboard mostly for fun and to get loose to the breakbeats!...Most of the breaks and grooves we used to make records are what we heard at block parties, neighborhood jams, and on boom boxes. It was the sound of those records that we understood and identified with...Those breaks speak a language to us that we can communicate our ideas and tell stories about our experiences with...The art of breaking and the culture is a positive recreation. It saved a lot of youth from gangs, drugs and a life of crime...It gave the youth something positive to do with their life that they could feel proud of and respect. This was before the sponsored events and media attention. I think it’s important for people to remember that when they’re battling in competitions."

Mike G:   "Hip-hop parties were more about the actual people. When you think about hip-hop now, you think about the artists. Back when I was growing up, it was more about the people. It was still break dancing friendly, electric boogie friendly and graffiti friendly. We still encompassed music from all different styles...That's what generated the jams, you know. Bob James. 'Funky Drummer' by James Brown. Roger Troutman and Zapp. That's what made up a DJ's crate in those days, those records. It wasn't necessarily the Run-DMCs and the LL Cool Js. That came right after that...We may not have had the greatest record sales, but we have had an impact on the business, as far as crossing different genres with each other, house music, drum-and-bass and so forth. Those things are just as important as a Jay-Z or Master P, who actually took the music and the business to another level...We weren't as sophisticated as we should have been.  There were a lot of things that were overlooked because we were trying to keep our creative edge. In this business, if you don't have your business edge intact, it leaves your creative edge out in the open. I think we all had a good idea about the business but I don't think we knew how the business could help us...In high school, myself and Af, we were friends and having fun with it and it led to what we're doing now. We created a strong friendship first, which helped us communicate with each other later. If you don"t have communication in business, it leads to problems later."

 'Done By The Forces Of Nature' peaked at number forty-six on the US R&B/Hip Hop album chart.  It has gone on to become an influential underground classic.  

"Doin' Our Own Dang" (with De La Soul, Queen Latifah, Q-Tip, and Monie Love)

"Beyond This World"

"What U Waitin' 4?"

'Done By The Forces Of Nature' 
full album:

All songs composed by the Jungle Brothers, except "Doin' Our Own Dang", which was composed by De La Soul, the Jungle Brothers, Q-Tip, and Monie Love.

"Beyond This World" – 4:08
"Feelin' Alright" – 3:35
"Sunshine" – 3:44
"What U Waitin' 4?" – 4:02
"U Make Me Sweat" – 3:59
"Acknowledge Your Own History" (with Vinia Mojica) – 3:38
"Belly Dancin' Dina" – 3:41
"Good Newz Comin'" – 4:37
"Done by the Forces of Nature" (with Jungle DJ Towha Towha) – 3:47
"Beeds on a String" – 3:32
"Tribe Vibes" – 3:53
"J. Beez Comin' Through" – 3:32
"Black Woman" (with Caron Wheeler) – 3:54
"In Dayz 2 Come" – 3:54
"Doin' Our Own Dang" (with De La Soul, Queen Latifah, Q-Tip, and Monie Love) – 4:16
"Kool Accordin' "2" a Jungle Brother" – 1:55

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