Tuesday, October 27, 2009

What Jazzy D Did

This is a fun one. "That's What I Did (For You Baby)," by Jazzy D on Unknown's Techno Hop label from 1986. This was surely intended to be a reference/answer to Janet Jackson's "What Have You Done for Me Lately?" that was a huge hit in '86. But besides the title and the loose theme, there's not a lot, lyrically or instrumentally, that really ties it to Janet's record, and it stands better now on its own.

At a few points, the beat actually uses the melody from the Green Acres theme song; but wisely, for the most part, it just sticks to some fast, old school west coast style beats, hand-claps and funky bass notes. There's also a funky (live?) guitar breakdown and some keyboard horns. Jazzy kicks light-hearted narrative raps about all the things he does for his girl but still goes unappreciated, like a prototype Fresh Prince. And lyrically he has a fast, high pitched delivery with a voice that sounds similar to Rodney O.

Now, if you notice on the label, it says this record features The Organization, which seemed to be a loose collective of various West coast artists and producers associated with Techno Hop. On this record, it mainly boils down to an appearance by Cli-N-Tel, who comes on to spit a verse of helpful game as a master in "wack womenology." ...In that way, you could say this is as much a follow-up to his own, debut single (1985's "Wack Girl") as it is to Janet's. Towards the end, Vice Lord also comes in and kicks a short human beat-box routine, including some cool, mock scratching.

This 12" isn't gonna appear on anybody's top 10, but it's a heckuva fun record, and it's a nice piece of west coast history. It even includes an acapella (pretty rare back in those days), as well as an instrumental version.

Jazzy made another record or two before seemingly disappearing from the game. He's actually still around, though, now on the management end. He has a myspace here, and one of his acts is Kam.

1 comment:

  1. I remember Jazzy D from the west coast back in 1982 follow him on instagram @JazzyManagement