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YouTube Finds: “B-Ball’s Best Kept Secret”

Posted by Neil Paine on May 1, 2010

16 years later, music historians generally look back at 1994 as a time of major changes to the cultural landscape -- the death of Kurt Cobain, the arrest of Tupac Shakur, Green Day breaking through into the mainstream, etc. They also consider it the end of the so-called "Golden Age of Hip-Hop", the genre's most innovative and artistically-fulfilling era. Perhaps not coincidentally, 1994 also marked the release of B-Ball's Best Kept Secret, a "compilation album released by Epic Records that featured NBA players performing songs with hip hop artists". With the likes of Brian Shaw, Dana Barros, and Jason Kidd on the mic, is this the album that led to the Golden Age's end? Or was it merely the final ray of brilliance in the Era? You be the judge:

Dana Barros - "Check It"

Malik Sealy - "Lost in the Sauce"

Shaquille O'Neal - "Mic Check 1-2" (feat. Ill Al Skratch)

Cedric Ceballos - "Flow On" (feat. Warren G)

Brian Shaw - "Anything Can Happen"

Chris Mills - "Sumptin' to Groove To"

Jason Kidd - "What the Kidd Did"

Isaiah Rider - "Funk in the Trunk"

Dennis Scott - "All Night Party"

Gary Payton - "Livin' Legal and Large"

Dana Barros & Cedric Ceballos - "Ya Don't Stop" (feat. Grand Puba, Sadat X, AG and Diamond D)

8 Responses to “YouTube Finds: “B-Ball’s Best Kept Secret””

  1. Neil Paine Says:

    If we ever do a podcast, I nominate Dana Barros' "Check It" as the theme.

  2. Ricardo Says:

    "Music historians" LOL.

    There is an inverse relationship between fame and musical ability. Anyone who learned to play guitar last week can play all of the garbage by Nirvana and Green Day.

  3. Neil Paine Says:

    You'll get no argument from me there, I just was looking for cultural touchstones to establish the context of the year 1994... The important part of the post is that players like Chris Mills and Cedric Ceballos released a rap album once upon a time. When else but the early-to-mid 90s could that happen?

  4. Ricardo Says:

    Oh, I wasn't quibbling with you, Neil...but I know that there are no shortage of people who believe in the virtuosity of popular musicians. I was making fun of the existence of people who believe in that stuff.

    And yeah, life in general was a little goofy during that time period. I think the turning point, at least in the NBA, came when the Houston Rockets decided to coat almost their entire floor with blue paint. After that, everyone in basketball just kind of snapped back to reality and decided to get rid of all the excessive, gaudy colors, the silly logos, the short 3-point line. People stopped with the hair dye and the shaven messages on their scalps.

    But it's all coming back around. There are a lot of guys in the league who've got a couple of acres of tattoos on their persons, and about half the league is using FIVE (!!!) colors in their color schemes. (Three different blues, Memphis? Really?) The good old days are returning...

  5. Neil Paine Says:

    I just listened to the Chris Mills track again, and ... wow. "C-Mills" needed to stick to things he was good at, like bringing down the Kentucky basketball program.

  6. Johnny Twisto Says:

    I haven't checked the clips but I actually own the Dana Barros 12" and it was definitely dope. It had a couple nice remixes too.

    I recall the Ceballos "Flow On" getting some video play and that it was horrible.

    I seem to remember Chris "C-Webb" Webber putting out some horrible song. Maybe that was on a later compilation of some kind. He didn't actually release his own album, did he?

  7. Neil Paine Says:

    I found two ridiculous C-Webb songs:

    Kurupt could only do so much to carry that last one... Webber was so terrible that he destroyed the whole track.

  8. Jessia Kurnik Says:

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