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Rap Classic “The Message” Gets A New Sound Thanks To Producer TallBlackGuy

By / 01.07.14

tallblackguy message remix

There’s an unwritten rule about remixing classic rap records, “Don’t-d-d-d-don’t-don’t do it!” Well rules get broken every day and it sometimes opens lanes up to new perspectives. Now Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five’s “The Message” faces said treatment by enterprising beatmaker TallBlackGuy.

TallBlackGuy’s edit honored the tradition of Hip-Hop remixes by re-imagining the source material from top to bottom. Listeners can instantly notice the song’s revamped swing and flow. The producer took the song, set in 4/4 time i.e. your typical 1-2-3-4 count, and made a new rendition in 6/8: six eighth notes per measure or a 123-456 count. Click the links to get an idea of the counts in each time signature.

The quick theory lesson proves essential to understanding this record. Rap doesn’t regularly delve in the 6/8 time signature. So now you can see why re-doing a whole song not meant for it has to cause headaches. TallBlackGuy somehow perseveres over a month’s worth of work and the result gives the record a fresh bounce in the process. The kicks nestle in the pocket along with added vocals, effects and synths providing just enough variation without taking the bite away from the source material.

Do you like TallBlackGuy’s take or does he commit hip-hop blasphemy? Let us know, folks. I think this joint jams so there goes my vote.


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