Old School Hip-Hop: Back from the Dead

I've been a Sirius Satellite subscriber (hello alliteration) since the night before Howard Stern broadcast his first censorship-free show. But in that time, I've come to love certain aspects of the other channels and have recommended this product to everyone from friends to my parents.

Sirius and XM, its competitor, merged a few months ago after what seemed like an endless battle to turn two into one. To be honest, I didn't follow the merger as much as I should have because ultimately, I really didn't care.

But something happened in the merger that really pissed me off: They got rid of my favorite channel, Backspin. This station was home to old school hip-hop ranging from the Sugarhill Gang to Snoop. They played all kinds of songs that took me back to the days when I first got into music. For me, before there was Pirate Radio, Guns N' Roses and Metallica, there was DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince and Eazy-E. This station reminded me of how awesome hip-hop is (or should I say was) when done properly. And by that, I mean no songs with some dude or girl singing the hook, no repetitive chorus over and over, no million guest stars on every track.

Beats and rhymes. When hip-hop is hitting, it's just beats and rhymes.

And that's what I got from Backspin. Well, luckily for me, Sirius was smart enough to bring this station back and I've been bumping it non-stop since. Just yesterday, within an hour I heard RUN-DMC's "It's Like That," House of Pain's "Jump Around," LL Cool J's "I'm That Type of Guy" and Cypress Hill's "Dr. Greenthumb." This weekend I heard N.W.A's Fuck tha Police and three songs by Boogie Down Productions, which reminded me just how great KRS-One is.

I can finally recommend Sirius again and I'm not lying when I say if you are a mega music nerd who just can't get enough, satellite radio is for you (I swear I don't work for them and they did not pay me to write that).

I'm going to write more about other Sirius stations in the future, but for now, I'm stuck on Backspin.


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