Wednesday, December 29, 2010

E-40 & The Click Week: Day 4, Tryin' To Get a Fuck and Get Up

Before we get started, I would just like to point out that five - count 'em, five - songs on this album begin with one dude askin' another dude, "what's up?" I find that impressive, because I believe it was unintentional. I mean, I don't think he kept asking "what's up" by accident. I just don't think anyone involved with the production of this album at any point noticed how much the "what's up" intros were piling up, to the point where it's funny in an absurdist kind of way. Anyway, if you can't tell from the title or the picture, the album I'm talking about today is B-Legit the Savage's debut album, Tryin' To Get a Buck.

If you've read my past entries this week, you already know the story even if you don't already know the story. B-Legit released his debut on Sick Wid' It Records (in 1994) and upon The Click's major label signing, Jive rereleased it (in 1995). Now, if you bought this album concerned you weren't sure how B-Legit would fare on his own without The Click's resident wunderkind to back him up, you needn't have been concerned, because E-40 appears on a full six songs on this album (that's even more than how many songs he has saying "what's up!").

But let's cut to the crux of the matter. The question at the forefront of our minds isn't whether B-Legit is able to release a quality album on his own merits (though he is), the question is what the Hell did Jive do the album this time? And actually, the answer is not so much.

...At least, when compared to the major changes to Federal or the complete devastation of Down & Dirty. Nothing's been remixed here... I mean, yeah, "Daily Routine" is different and inferior to the version first featured on Down & Dirty, but it's the same across both versions of Tryin' To Get a Buck. Jive can't be blamed for that alteration, except for the fact that they opted to remove the original from The Click album. No, Jive had no songs altered here for the better or worse. They only removed one song.

Fuuuck. Yes, once again, the internationally distributed major label release was flawed and the original is the definitive one you should've gotten but probably didn't. So which song did they remove?

"Fuck and Get Up," which is one of my favorites on the album. I mean, it's probably not my very favorite - I think that still goes to "B-Legit" which makes fantastic use of "Eazy Duz It" on the hook, and creates an anthem out of the guy's name (always a smart move if you can pull it off). And "Dank Game" is kinda fun, but sort of ruined once you realize the keyboardist is just playing "Mary Had a Little Lamb" throughout the song. No, if "Fuck and Get Up" isn't my favorite, it's the definite runner-up...

See, one of the drawbacks with this album is that B-Legit has a low-key flow... which is good in general, 'cause the crew doesn't need two E-40's. But when he's on his own, his albums can feel a little lethargic. That's worsened when his production is that slow, keyboard heavy kinda g-funk stuff that's all over this album. But "Fuck and Get Up" breaks that stagnancy. The concept is simple and aims low, but it works as a song, and while the music's emphasis is still on hardcore funk like the rest of the album, it's also got some serious bounce to it. And though B-Legit more than adequately carries the bulk of the song and proves he could do it perfectly well by himself, his cousin Little Bruce drops by and kicks a final verse. And, after all, any additional voice is a welcome one on this album. So, bottom line: this song is catchy.

...So of course Jive got rid of it. This makes the original once again the definitive version to own, but unlike the previous cases, there's no reason for even hardcore fans to pick up the rerelease, because there's nothing new or unique about that Tryin' To Get a Buck. All it's doing is missing a song.

Oh, and yes. "Fuck and Get Up" starts out with B-Legit asking his friends "what's up?"

1 comment:

  1. Fry's electronics has a bunch of old rap albums for $5. I bought this and the Click's Down and Dirty just for kicks.