In 1990, one of the world’s greatest rap groups was formed and gave the world a slice of greatness.
A Tribe Called Quest’s consistency is because of Q-Tip and Phife Dawg. They met in high school and later met up with DJ Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Jarobi White, who parted ways after the debut of their first album.
This piece is something that I wanted to write because first, I’m upset that I missed their reunion tour this summer, which ended Oct. 1. Second, I believe A Tribe Called Quest is one of the most important and best groups in all of hip-hop, with Wu-Tang Clan coming in second.
They mixed fun, charismatic and intellectual lyrics with the ability to make one realize that hardships don’t always have to upset life. This column is somewhat of a dedication, as I will highlight The Anthology, a compilation of the group’s most well-known and impactful songs.
“Check the Rhyme,” the album’s opener, warms up the audience to playful taunts and introduces each member of the group. “You’d be the fool / To reply that Phife is not the man / Cause you know and I know that you know who I am.”
This song also hints at how strong of a friendship that this talented group of poets has with the lyric, “Back in the days on the boulevard of Linden / We used to kick routines and presence was fittin’.”
“Award Tour,” the Tribe’s most acclaimed song, is a reward for all of the people in their old neighborhood that supported them and graciously donated their $9.99. It talks about how the Tribe would go all over the world just to inject people with the pleasurable clamor that makes them wake up with a smile.
“Electric Relaxation” serenades the audience with a sweet harmonious beat and a deep bass mysteriously stuck as the background.
From the song, “Stretch out your legs / Let me make you bawl / Drive you insane, drive you up the wall,” this reminds us that relaxation is only granted to those who are young, fine and sexy, which is something I don’t want to really think of myself as.