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Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sunday Afternoon Beer Music

The Lessondary (featuring Tanya Morgan): "Brazilian Grooves" [from the Welcome 2 Loud Minority LP]
Unreleased, 2006

From left to right: Donwill, Von Pea, and Ilyas
Because (like Gabe said) I'm into movements, I have been a major supporter of Tanya Morgan since being turned onto "She Moved Outta Cincy," the Brooklyn-Cincinnati triumvirate's moving reinterpretation of D'Angelo's "Africa," back in the fall of 2004. In fact, a few of you might remember that on my old Troublecrunk blog I even went so far as to include the group's single in the Top 10 slot on my "Best of 2004" list. At the time I had not only been impressed by their easy chemistry, but also by their overall zaniness, which is somewhat apparent in their unorthodox moniker—presumed to be a faceless neo-soul siren. For the record, Tanya Morgan consists of three male MCs—Ohio natives Ilyas and Donwill, and Brooklyn's Von Pea—and their 2006 debut, Moonlighting, was a personal favorite of mine in a year that wasn't exactly lacking in quality releases.

From an abandoned 2006 project titled Welcome 2 Loud Minority, featuring Tanya Morgan's extended family, the Lessondary crew (a loose collective of MCs, artists, and DJs, many of which are signed to California-based independent label, Loud Minority Music) rapping over the late Jay Dee's Welcome 2 Detroit instrumentals, "Brazilian Grooves" is a perfect example of the group's magnetism. Over Dilla's hazy, church-infused, guitar-driven groove, Donwill lets off steam aimed at homoerotic rappers—"I don't need y'all lame niggas screamin' at me, 'I love my niggas! Fuck bitches!'/Fuckin' homo thugs/Trying your best to go to jail and show your niggas some love"—while a mellowed-out Ilyas keeps it fly, with lines like, "Just let my spirit lead, 'cause this is my ascension/Now she's staring at me, guess I got her attention/So I approached her and asked her dance/Said she was from Brazil and her roommate from France." Although Von opts to sit this one out, limiting his participation to the chorus, everything still gels here and ultimately provides a playful vibe that's as chill as Kool-Aid popsicles on a lazy afternoon.