When I first heard the clipped rapping and the Miami jeep beats on the title track of Miley Cyrus’s new album Bangerz (the song’s title is actually “SMS (Bangerz),” featuring Britney Spears) . . .
. . . I flashed back to the Video Jukebox Network in the late ’80s.
Afternoons were the best time to watch the cable network. That seemed to be when high school students called in to request the latest hip hop videos, at a time when the genre was still largely absent from mainstream video outlets. I first heard MC Hammer there, some time before anyone else wanted to touch that. “The Box” featured new artists on smaller labels, so you could hear them there long before they might appear on the recently premiered Yo! MTV Raps.
One of my favorites was L’Trimm’s homage to Miami bass beats, “Cars with the Boom”:
J.J. Fad was from LA, not Miami, but their big song, “Supersonic,” sported a similar sound:
Hard to believe the electro-pop J.J. Fad was produced by NWA not too long before they released their gangsta rap defining album, Straight Outta Compton.