ISWHAT?! – "The Life We Chose" (2006)


Recently, I’ve been really feeling all things that are brass. Well, maybe it isn’t so recently (who could forget the AWB sampled sax/trumpet (trombone?) on ATCQ’s “Check the Rhime,” which I had “recently felt” as a 12-year old). But as I’ve meandered why way up & down the hip hop family tree, I’ve taken a special liking to brassed instruments, particular trumpets and cornets, and for alliterative, phonetic fun, the flügelhorn (Note: I probably could not identify a flügelhorn as such if I heard it). But at any rate, in addition to listening to hip hop to maintain my street cred, of late, I cannot get enough Dexter Gordon, Coltrane, & David Murray (Sax), Dizzy (Trumpet), and perhaps my personal fave, Olu Dara (Trumpet, Cornet). All this background is to introduce myself to ISWHAT?! The hip hop – jazz marriage isn’t new but I couldn’t help being intrigued by a group featuring a beatboxin’ emcee (Napolean Maddox) and a saxophonist (Jack Walker); some kind of back-to-the-future-esque meeting between the young and the old; Pete Rock & CL Smooth playing with Tom Scott as opposed to sampling his “Today.” That’s pretty much the backdrop for my interest in checking Life We Chose (incidentally, ISWHAT?!’s second LP – 2004’s You Figure It Out…). Emcee + Sax + drums = peaked interest…


4 Responses to “ISWHAT?! – "The Life We Chose" (2006)”

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  4. Rick Pennington Says:

    here is some footage of ISWHAT?! .. live in Paris with some interview clips with Napoleon .. good energy .. worth checking

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