It was a really good year to be into local hip-hop. Whether you were at the Capitol Club, the Corner, parties down on Airport Way, the Hidmo, Croc, Nectar, or on Twitter, things cracked off; a bevy of local releases and parties, matched with the glorious weather, made this summer one for the Seattle music history books. Sometimes I wonder if this is how excited people early in the grunge and punk scenes got in the mid-1980's (it sounds so far away ago...) when they witnessed such solid music being released by their city. Not only have the quality and attention been stepped up, but the cameraderie is what truly makes the success of local hip-hop so remarkable. Defying the crabs in a bucket mentality that's fostered by the colder sides of industry, artists came together, collaborated to make great music and produced outstanding live performances. Now, the scene is percolating; national attention is already brewing, and breaking out of the Seattle bubble is truly inevitable as we launch into the next decade.
Besides The PhysicsHigh Society EP and Shabazz Palaces' two-disk masterpiece that were listed on our Top Music in 2009 list, I wanted to highlight some great achievements-- songs, albums, mixtapes, and videos-- that were produced out of our town. Not a complete and definitive list, but a good wrap-up if you were living under a rock.
Also a reminder that quality local hip-hop radio is a reality on Sunday evenings: check Street Sounds on KEXP 90.3 with Larry Mizell Jr. and Sunday Night Sound Sessions on KUBE 93.9 with Jonathan Moore & DJ Hyphen, the best way to experience the new new in the town.