More Reasons Why Being Deaf Sucks/Rocks – Resolution: Week 50

This week’s album is Jazzyfatnastees’ The Once and Future. And to anyone who thinks that Scott Storch is a talentless bag of douche, you need to listen to this album. And anyone who thinks that Dr. Dre isn’t evil incarnate who absolutely corrupts and taints anyone associated with him, they also need to listen to this album.

Now, I’m not really an R&B type of dude. I usually find the modern variety, at its best, trite, and, at its worst, vomit-inducing, with most stuff landing somewhere in the middle, right around “please switch the bloody channel.” So this album was a hard sell for me.

Basically, I picked it up because of the affiliation to The Roots. The Jazzyfatnastees provided a lot of back up vocals on late-’90s releases from The Roots and the rap group executive produced the album. So, worst-case scenario, I’d be promoting a brand that I liked.

Of course, the album made its way to the wayside because of the lack of a song that I would fit on one of my “chill” mixes for when the ladies came over. And I’m sure that similar lack of a hit single doomed the album with low sales. I didn’t give the album its due, and you probably didn’t know it existed.

As for the album itself, it’s pretty much a laid-back affair, as you’d expect from an album with The Roots’ fingerprints all over it. It’s chill and mellow and just a degree off from being “neo-soul”, which was the craze at the time. That might have to do with neither member of the group having a particularly powerful voice. The vocal presence is slightly more commanding than Janet Jackson, if that puts things in perspective.

But that laid-back vibe hurts the album, too, because nothing really stands out. Everything is mellow—almost too mellow. This is definitely an album you put on when you’re having a get-together with friends and you need some background music; something non-offensive that won’t distract from the conversation.

But back to Scott Storch, he produced (or co-produced) eight of the album’s ten tracks, three of those with ?uestlove. And as I said, the production is low-key. Scott Storch isn’t a completely bad guy, despite the public persona that he’s adopted recently.

Of course, this album came out in 1999, which means it was done before Storch hooked up with Dr. Dre, so that would kind of make Scott Storch like Anakin Skywalker with Dr. Dre being the Emperor. Of course, that would make ?uestlove Obi Won, and Black Thought Mace Windu. Naturally Hub is Yoda and Kamal could probably fit the Luke role, sorta.

Anyway, if you take anything away from this, it’s that this album should be owned by everyone if only as a testament to Scott Storch before he became completely tainted.

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