Dear Lord, I've Actually Paid Money for Rap
But not entirely on purpose. I had hoped there wasn't any rap when I laid down the samolians, but was willing to take the risk.
Y'see, Gnarls Barkley's CD St. Elsewhere is one of those CDs I fell in love with instantly upon hearing a couple songs. It has one of those instant classics like Outkast's "Hey Ya" (go here or here, scroll down), entitled "Smiley Faces." (Btw, you can nab a low sample rate (but still great-sounding) mp3 of the best song, "Smiley Faces" by the method I describe in this post.)
My but the song is catchy. It's got this galloping bass riff and a hook that sounds much like orbiting kittens reentering the atmosphere. My 15-month-old has already given it the butt-dance seal of approval. Kottke.org can't get enough of it, either.
Gnarls Barkley is Danger Mouse, a/k/a Brian Burton and Cee-Lo Green, a/k/a Thomas Calloway.
Danger Mouse came to fame by creating the infamous Gray Album which mashed up Jay-Z's The Black Album and the Beatles' White Album, then released it into the wild on the web. It got him noticed.
Cee-Lo Green is relatively unknown, until now, of course. What a voice this guy's got.
The beginning of summer has always seemed like the time to get some new stuff for basking in the glory of a perfect hot day, when grooves seem to wrinkle the air itself. Once in a while an album comes out that's a product of everything that came before it, and this is one of those albums. If those two events coincide with one another, you've got a little slick of heaven and a bag of chips (throw on a cold beer you're there). Past alignments of summertime and great albums have been Fleetwood Mac's "Rumours", Dave Matthews Band "Stand Up", Steve Miller's "Book of Dreams".
Btw, the best way to find mp3s for sampling before you buy is Altavista's Audio Search. That's how I found those two versions of "Hey Ya."