RepDaBeaNdex: Did GURU Ever Really Rep Boston?
Boston-based record collector/hip-hop writer Pacey Foster is the type of scholar who makes the rest of us look like posers. Dude knows his regional rap history cold, and even got original Boston rap radio DJ Magnus Johnstone to open up his vaults. In November, a must-read $195 tome called Hip-Hop America: A Regional Guide is dropping, and Foster wrote the Beantown chapter. No doubt we’ll be hooking up JTTS readers with exclusive leaks from that project in the next few weeks.
For now – just for cats to get an idea as to how seriously Foster takes this shit – I offer his new blog post regarding the extent to which GURU is (or is not) technically a Boston MC. Instead of repeating the same arguments that always bubble when this question comes up, Pacey went straight to the raw data. He writes:
As I read through Guru’s early lyrics, the pattern seemed pretty clear. I had remembered his frequent Brooklyn references on the early records, but had forgotten about the New York homage “Place Where We Dwell.” In addition to including shout outs to all the boroughs, the track is built on a bed that includes the oft repeated chant “Go Brooklyn” — over, and over and over. Reading the frequent New York references, my Beantown blood bubbled a bit and I became curious what the actual ratio of Boston to New York references was in these early Gang Starr songs. Did Guru simply fail to mention Boston much or did he actually use New York as his lyrical home base?