“Gotti*, Can we get a Guru post???? I didn’t see a story about my man, one half of one of the most significant duo’s in hip hop. Not a mention yet?” — Pooch
Sheesh. I’ve gotten roughly six emails regarding Guru and seen a few comments like the one above. Honestly, I was rather busy today so I couldn’t get to a post. Plus, I was awaiting confirmation, hoping that last night’s reports that Guru lay comatose after going into cardiac arrest would end up being false reports. They weren’t.
What do I say? “I’m sad that a rapper is in the hospital” just doesn’t seem appropriate, not strong or sincere enough. Truth be told, Guru’s said enough sideways shit over the past year or two that leaves a bitter taste in my mouth regarding where he stands. The guy who rapped about “Just To Get A Rep” seemed to be hellbent on tarnishing his, at least to me. Damn near turned into that uncle who you equally loathe for his faults but still love because he’s family. Previous to, he was indeed a part of one of the greatest duos in Hip-Hop’s history. There’s no denying that and there’s not much he can say or no number of subpar solo (or Solaar-assisted) releases he can drop that would outweigh what he and DJ Premier achieved as Gang Starr. In fact, we’ve argued their discography several times here, a debate we reserve only for those we revere. Where other people place Erick and Parrish, that’s where I place Guru and Premo. It’s not an embellishment when I say they are “my favorite duo.”
However, even if this was face-to-face, it would be awkward for me to find words to say. I’ve learned that, when someone dies, “I’m sorry” doesn’t help the grieving family members. Therefore, I’ve grown into saying “My condolences to you and your family. If there’s anything I can do, let me know.” In this situation, I’d simply say “My prayers are with Keith Elam and his family. We as a Hip-Hop community are praying for his survival and recovery.” Then, I’d most likely go and listen to old Gang Starr tracks, reminding me why Keithy E. the Guru aka Gifted Unlimited Rhyme Universal, aka Ill Kid Slick was indeed once one of our most respected voices in the game.
Thankfully Shade 45’s DJ Wonder provides the music, so that’s one less thing I have to figure out while I watch as a lot of my rhyme heroes get older.
1. Dwyck – Gang Starr
2. Doe In Advance (unreleased) – Gang Starr
3. The ? Remainz – Gang Starr
4. Full Clip – Gang Starr
5. I’m The Man – Gang Starr/Lil Dap’/Jeru The Damaja
6. Step In The Arena – Gang Starr
7. Soliloquy Of Chaos – Gang Starr
8. Just To Get a Rep – Gang Starr
9. Trust Me – Guru/N’Dea Davenport
10. No Time to Play – Guru/N’Dea Davenport
11. Hustlin Daze – Guru/Donnell Jones
12. Patti Dooke – De La Soul/Guru
13. Borough Check – Digable Planets/Guru
14. B.Y.S – Gang Starr
15. Mass Appeal – Gang Starr
16. Fed Up (remix) – House of Pain/Guru
17. Speak Ya Clout – Gang Starr
18. What I’m Here 4 – Gang Starr
19. A Little Spice (Gang Starr Mix) – Loose Ends
20. 1/2 &1/2 – Gang Starr/M.O.P.
21. Royalty – Gang Starr/K-Ci & Jojo
22. You Know My Steez – Gang Starr
23. All 4 The Ca$h – Gang Starr
24. Moment of Truth – Gang Starr
Edit: Rumors aside, Guru is still alive at the moment.
Update: On Monday night, Guru underwent a successful surgery and is recovering.
*Gotty™, not Gotti