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Thursday, November 22, 2012

[Comp] AYATOLLAH - "A Meeting of Soul & Hardcore"

It's been some time I brought you one of our trademark compilations on the site, but the time has come to break that ice. And what better way to kick things off with a compilation showcasing 20 of the outside productions by the extremely versitaile producer Ayatollah; which in many cases are a super overlooked producer for many so called "hip hop heads".

The first time I heard the works of Ayatollah must have been on Mos Def's impeccable soul/hip-hop classic "Ms. Fat Booty" single in early '99. Although the credits read DJ Kool G, I assume that to be an early alias of 'Tollah as once the album dropped the latter was the credited man behind the beat. No matter what the credits read, I was flabbergasted by the beautiful symbosis created between the producer and the album artist that was full on display on his two contributions to "Black On Both Sides". Mos' waiving an intricate story about a very special lady he met and managed to get her attention and phone number; all over Ayatollah's perfect musical balance between classic '90s hip-hop and that classic old school soul that worked perfectöy through Kool G's well execiuued use of the many samples . Once Mos released his album the following year (1999); the credits had been straighted out, and Ayatollah was also responsible as a co-producer for the harder, but equally impressive "Know That", featuring Black Starr mate Talib Kweli going back and forth concering the artist's stand on the rap game. Very impressive to say the least, and definitely two of the best songs on a superior album.

Needless to say this stellar cuts told me to the start checking for any future mentions of Ayatollah in any other album credits (this was in '99/'00), ad the prolific producer has rarely dissapointed me over the years. I'm not gonna front that there's been some (although very) few clunkers along his extensive catalouge, but I doubt you could give me an example of some equally prolific beat wiz that hasn't a small amount of duds in their catalouges. When he's at it his best though he's probably one of the illest producers doing it right now, and has been doing it for the last ten years. Through his work on an MPC and other quipment 'Tollah has showed his incredibleness time and time again with his contributions to Talib Kweli's debut, part of INS' second LP, and RA The Rugged Man just to name a few; The Last Emperor, Rakim, GURU, and more recently he's been heavily involved in J-Love's two last albums - and the list goes on. Many of the unbelivably dope, and often relatively new, goodies are collected here:; an amazing 75 minutes trip into the mind of the master producer/remixer only.

So, the time has come for an obvious time to do a well-thought out compilation with the sptotlight on Ayatollah; orginally plann to do it sometime, but my homie Mal of M-Phazes Productions reached out to me to really make it happen. I picked out about 20 songs from my Kweli CD:s and mp3-folders, ending up picking about 50/50 of the songs each and in usual The Lost Tapes order, the sequencing is incredible and really gives a good look into 'Tollah's career, with classics spanning between 2000 and 2012. Don't sleep on this, and recommededly play it from front-to-back because you won't dissapointed, whether or not you're familiar with Ayatollah before or not... TURN IT UP, and major thanks again to Mal Moe for his contribution and collaboration on this comp which we have decided to call "A Meeting of Soul & Harcore". This, I think is a good description of Ayatollah's style and are chock full of dope guess; so even if you've heard this songs, please don't sleep!!

Last but not least, I want to stress that Ayatollah is still very much active in the music business; in 2008 he was supposed to produce the complete collaborative album by "THUG Angelz" with Hell Razah and Shabazz The Disciple, though that never materialized. Two years later he released the innovative three disc instrumental album "Fingertips" to rave reviews, aiming for that warm sound you can oly get from sampling soul and jazz classics. Last but not least, an instrumental three set LP hit selected stores on a three LP album entitled "Live From MPC-3000"; but the real treat that hit the pubertity yesterday; "Live From The MPC 3000". Aight, 'nuff talk, head over to the aforementioned site and enter tour

01. Ayatollah - "Top Billin' (Intro)"
02. Mos Def / Ghostface - "Ms. Fat Booty Pt. II"
03. Tragedy / Imam THUG - "Lift Ya Glass"
04. The Odd Couple (Ghost & Cappa) - "WTC Pt. 2"
05. Last Emperor - "Tiger Trail"
06. Rugged Man / Killah Priest / Masta Killa - "Chains"
07. Inspectah Deck - "Venndetta"
08. Styles P / Pharoahe Mondh - "The Life"
09. Sean Price / Ruste Juxx - "Spliff-N-Wessun"
10. J-Love / LAD / Willie The Kid - "Fuck That Man Up"
11. RA The Rugged Man - "Don't Fuck With" (Ft. Havoc) [12" Mix]
12. Bald Head Slick / GURU - "Don't Cry"
13. Cormega - "Bring it Back"
14. EMC - "The Grudge"
15. Apathy / Celph Titled - "School For Scounnndrels"
16. Cella Dwellas - "Game Of Deah"
17. Killa Sha - "A Thing Called Love"
18. Sean Price - " Don't Say Shit to Ruck"
19. Rakim - "Cold Feeling"
20. Royce Da 5'9" - "Life" (Ft. Amerie)



  1. Good job on paying respects to the producers Claaa, thanks for helping us connect some dots.
    As a side note though, i'm more into Ayatollah's earlier work with Bee Why as "Gee The Nutty Professor". The Boros is one of mu favorite indie tracks ever.

  2. Just a heads up: Agallah produced Sean Price's "Don't Say Shit To Ruck".. not Ayatollah.