I always like to hear the backstory behind tracks from artists, producers, whoever. Oddisee broke down 15 of his tracks with a thorough explanation for each. If you got 20 mins or so, this is an interesting read from one of the best producer/emcees out. Check it out over at Pigeons and Planes.
Streets Wont Let Me Chill
Oddisee: “Back to us putting our stamp. That vocal sample on the hook is from [popular Go-Go group] Backyard Band’s frontman. I was listening to a clip on YouTube of Smoke, the conga player. And the frontman was hyping up the conga player, and somewhere right in the middle, he was like, ‘The streets won’t let me chill!’ And I was like, ‘Oh, that’s it.’ If you listen to that sample, there’s a crazy, rapid sound in the back. And that’s a conga. So again, it’s that whole, east coast vibe, but come down 95 South a bit more.
“That song really sums up what we were trying to do with Diamond District. We were trying to represent the D.C./Maryland/Virginia area from three different perspectives, to make sure everyone knows that we’re all the same, and really stamp that identity. I come from P.G. County, and I lived in a house with my mother and my step-father, and I went to a school that was pretty rough, but still decent. And X.O. is born and bred in the city, and has had a relatively hard life. And yU is the reason why the term DMV exists, because he was born in D.C., moved to Maryland, then he lived in Virginia for some time, and had some really good, and really bad times in his life. [He represents] that wealthiest block in America, but also that largest economic gap in the country. That extreme between rich and poor.
“The opportunity for African-Americans to become affluent, and become entrepreneurs, is where I come into the picture. The stark reality of a lot of those economic differences are [talked about on the album.] X.O. talks about it from within, whereas I talk about it from a removed perspective, with the privilege to talk about it. A lot of times, when you have the opportunity to discuss ideas, or social behavior, it’s a privilege, because you’re removed from it. And yU talks about it from being around it. I was outside of it, X.O. was in it, and yU was around it, and that’s Diamond District. And all of us have different [local] fans that gravitate to each of us, because one of us tells their story.”