Single Review: Jay Electronica – The Ghost of Christopher Wallace

Jay Electronica is making me believe in hip-hop again.

Jay ElectronicaThe Ghost of Christopher Wallace
[audio:|titles=Jay Electronica – The Ghost of Christopher Wallace (feat. Diddy)]

The hip-hop community has put New Orleans artist Jay Electronica in a difficult position. With only a few songs under his belt, and no album in the foreseeable future, he was instantly crowned the “savior of hip-hop,” putting pressure of Jay to meet or exceed expectations every time he drops a track.

So far so good. Exhibit A and C are what we call straight bangers, fusing modern styles and clever wordplay with exceptionally great Just Blaze East Coast throwback beats. And now, the next “single” comes from none other than Mr. P Diddy, whose presence can make (or more likely break) careers.

And as for Jay himself, no one can doubt that he’s a skilled MC, but what stands out more than Jay’s rapping is the beat. Jay recruited unknown producer Quincey Tones to craft which is quite possibly one of the best beats of 2010 (and 2009 for that matter). As most of his beats tend to me atmospherically, Ghost of has more of a classic, and downright gritter feel to it than his other hit singles.

The only downfall of this track. Puffy’s 3 minutes of ranting at the end. Seriously, I think when Puffy senses he’s going to “go off,” the sound engineer takes that as a signal to take a smoke break. Also, the Puffy influence is evident in the title. “Ghost of Christopher Wallace?” Really? Even though Jay tells MTV that it’s not a tribute, and that the title was moreso to “inspire a mood.” Unfortunately I feel these comparisons only contribute to Jay’s “next big thing dilemma.”

Having that said, this is a solid track, and it will get many spins in the iPod this summer. And even though I might be contributing to the dilemma, but I have to say it: Jay Electronica is making me believe in hip-hop again.