Northern VA = Jazz Hop Capital of the World
by Winston "Stone" Ford
While DC is slowly blowing up on the hip-hop radar, with Wale and Tabi Bonney both getting acclaim from the New York crowd, the suburbs had to step its game up. DC Hip-Hop ranges from the flashy (Wale, Tabi) to the conscious (DJ Eurok, Head Roc), however every track that I hear from Northern VA is coming from that 1992 Tribe Called Quest vibe.
Most of NOVA’s recent Jazz Hop history can be traced back to former VA (now Cali) resident DJ Ragz. Actually, anything that has even the least bit of jazz influence is somehow connected to this man. Ragz is making a name for himself in this genre, and his beats are definitely influenced by that early 90’s era of jazz influenced hip-hop. Think Digable Planets, ATCQ, etc. Not much is known about MC Mudd, but his style and flow is definitely a throwback to that era.
Their bio is ready and willing to point out that the group is willingly trying to bring back the Tribe Called Quest Era. I haven’t gotten a chance to listen to their full album, but the beats are straight up amazing on this one. If it’s any good as the album preview, then its definitely a must buy.
The album, Oxygen Refreshed, drops on May 24th.
Also, hitting my inbox is the album sampler from Northern VA crew the Exiles. Check it out and let me know what you think.