Common hit the big time with the perseverance of a rebel in the sublime socially conscious soulquarian spirituality of this cool jazz hip hop hybrid. Born Lonnie Rashid Lynn, he adopted the pseudonym Common Sense for the release of his first album Can I Borrow a Dollar? in 1992. Resurrection in 1994 fueled an East Coast - West Coast rivalry with his critical assessement of the misogyny of gangsa rap. He also shortened his name to Common after being sued by a California reggae band. Three years later One Day It'll All Make Sense saw collaborations with Lauryn Hill, De La Soul, Q-Tip, Black Thought, and Questlove and led to a major label deal with MCA Records.
Common became a father after the release of the album and relocated to New York City where he become involved with the Soulquarian musical collective with executive producer Questlove. 'Like Water for Chocolate' also includes production by Jay Dee, James Poyser, DJ Premier, D'Angelo, Karriem Riggins. The sessions took place at Electric Lady Studios in New York City and Studio A in Dearborn Heights, Michigan and featured contributions from Vinia Mojica, Roy Hargrove, Femi Kuti, Bilal, Jill Scott, Mos Def, MC Lyte, Slum Village, D'Angelo, Cee-Lo Green, Macy Gray, and Lonnie "Pops" Lynn.
The title comes from the novel by Laura Esquivel. Common would consider: "In that statement the water was representing the water sign of me: the emotion within the music. And the chocolate is representing the Soul: the Blackness in this music. And in that film, this woman was a very good cook. And she was in love, but because of the tradition of her family she couldn't marry. So within the love that she had for this guy and being in love, she could only express it through meals. And each meal that she cooked; however she felt at the time is what the people who ate the meal felt. Meaning when she cried, the people who ate the meal started crying. It was symbolic in a way. I use that as a metaphor to represent what I strive for my songs to do. If I'm feeling angry, I want the people who listening to feel mad. Or if I'm feeling like, 'Yo Man, this is the struggle we goin' thru. Man we gotta fight, we gotta uplift', I want them to feel that. So it was symbolic to the meals. We all cooks in this game anyway, just tryin' to put together the right thing. The face meaning is about the water sign and the chocolate to Soul. These songs are like meals for the Soul."
'Like Water for Chocolate' became his first album to chart in the UK at number one hundred and sixty-five; and hit number twenty-four in Canada, sixteen on the US Billboard 200, number five on the US R&B album chart.
"The 6th Sense"
'Like Water for Chocolate'
1.Time Travelin' (A Tribute to Fela) 0:00
3.Cold Blooded 10:19
5.The Light 18:57
6.Funky for You 23:17
7.The Questions 29:13
8.Time Travelin Reprise 33:22
9.The 6th Sense 34:55
10.A Film Called (Pimp) 40:15
11.Nag Champa (Afrodisiac for the World) 46:20
13.Payback is a Grandmother 56:12
14.Geto Heaven Pt.2 1:00:44
15.A Song for Assata 1:06:02
16.Pops Rap III...All My Children 1:12:50