Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Rarities: Banned

UGK - "Pregnant Pussy" | zShare
UGK - "Muthafucka Ain't Mine" | zShare
from Banned EP (Bigtyme, 1992)

Banned is an EP that includes two tracks that were cut from UGK's major label debut Too Hard to Swallow, no doubt due to their explicitness. It's yet another example of the fuckery going on at Jive, which the EP's cover elaborates on: "They took our samples, they took our hardness, they took our friendship."

And when I say these tracks are explicit, I mean it. "Pregnant Pussy" is probably one of the most hilariously disgusting rap songs I've ever heard. I mean, what else can you say about a song where Pimp C raps about babies licking up nut? "Muthafucka Ain't Mine" on the other hand is UGK's take on coat-hanger abortion rap, and the duo puts a decently unique spin on it.

The EP includes a pretty tame intro track (compared to the other two tracks anyway) and then instrumentals for "Pregnant Pussy" (called the "Pusi Mental") and "Muthafucka Ain't Mine."

NOTE: Most people are probably familiar with the CD reissue, but like The Southern Way before it, Banned was originally released as a cassette. Like the EP's cover, the titles of the each side of the original tape—"Brought Nuts" and "Took Nuts"—further reference how Jive fucked with UGK's music.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Rarities: The Southern Way

UGK - "Something Good" | zShare
UGK - "Cocaine in the Back of the Ride" | zShare
UGK (Pimp C) - "Use Me Up" | zShare
from The Southern Way cassette tape (Bigtyme, 1991/92?)

Well, here is where it all started: the debut cassette tape from The Pimp and The Bun. Recorded between 1990 and early 1992 and released through Bigtyme Recordz, The Southern Way can be considered as a demo tape of sorts, since the duo signed with Jive not too long after its release. All of its tracks also went on to appear on their major label debut Too Hard to Swallow. Being a cassette, the tracks are spread across two sides: Side A is the "Short" side, and Side B is the "Texas" side.

Unfortunately, when these tracks appeared on the new record, they were severely butchered. Lyrics were changed to be more "radio friendly" and samples were ripped from the original beats, most likely due to clearance issues. (Or in other words, the stuffed shirts at Jive were too lazy to pay for the samples.) In fact, only one track from this tape, "Short Texas," survived the transition intact, in both lyrics and beat.

And really, the originals are far superior. The "new and improved" versions just can't compare to the rawness on display here. Not only that, but the versions on this tape were fully endorsed by Pimp C, who called the majority of Too Hard to Swallow garbage—mostly because of Jive's fuckery. Hearing this tape is a must for any UGK fan, if only to hear how UGK's first album was supposed to sound like.

While The Southern Way was originally limited to a release on cassette, there's also a web-only reissue (not sure how official it is, though) that I've seen floating around. It comes with a "bonus disc" full of extra tracks—such as the ones found on the Banned EP—from UGK's short stint with Bigtyme.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Assorted Bun B Guest Spots II

Second verse, same as the first. Enjoy some more Bun B features.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Remembering the Pimp (1973 - 2007)

Pimp C passed away two years ago today. You already know what it is.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Mixtapes: Trill Azz Mixez

UGK (Pimp C) - "Deep N' Da Game b/w Top Notch Hoes (Instrumental)" | zShare
UGK - "2 Real b/w Diamonds & Wood (Instrumental)" | zShare
UGK f/ 3-2, Ronnie Spencer - "One Day (Remix)" | zShare
from Trill Azz Mixez (N/A, 1998/99?)

I guess "eventually" came sooner than I thought it would. After posting the link to the version of "Free" off this mixtape, I started listening to the whole thing again and decided to share it with y'all. I won't go too much into the history behind this tape, since Maurice Garland already did that way better than I possibly could.

Basically, all you need to know is that DJ C-Wiz put the mixtape together during the period between Ridin' Dirty and Dirty Money as a way to sate UGK's fanbase. I'd say it worked pretty well, given this tape's popularity. He even did a sequel to it in 2003, called Some Mo' Trill Azz Mixez, but it lacks the same punch as the original.

The best known track from this tape is "Top Notch Hoes," and it's the one that everybody remembers.1 I've seen it sometimes labeled as a possibly unreleased track or an album left-over, but it's really just a combination of the parts of two different songs, like the majority of the tracks on this tape.

The second chorus ("I'm deep in the game…") and the first two verses are taken from a track called "Deep N' Da Game" that Pimp guested on. The track originally appeared on The Smoking Section, a 1998 album from Atlanta, GA native Meen Green. It's also worth noting that on Meen Green's version of the track, Pimp saying "Fuck BET!" was censored, while it remains intact on Trill Azz Mixez.

3re Tha Hardaway f/ Pimp C - "Top Notch Hoes" | zShare
from Undacontruction (Dead Serious, 1999)

The intro, outro, and last verse, along with the instrumental and the first chorus ("Smokin' hydrophonic…") are all from a song actually called "Top Notch Hoes" which appeared on Undacontruction, an album put out by Miami, FL trio 3re Tha Hardaway. Like "Deep N' Da Game" the track was originally recorded in 1998, as Pimp mentions that year in the intro of the Trill Azz Mixez version. However, that part was re-dubbed in the 3re version so that he says '99 instead, probably so it coincided with the release year of Undaconstruction.

Besides the "Top Notch Hoes" blend, the tape includes another rarity in the unreleased (but unfortunately edited) remix of "One Day" with 3-2 and Ronnie Spencer. That alone makes Trill Azz Mixez a required listen for any UGK fan.

1 While this version of "Top Notch Hoes" is an exclusive to Trill Azz Mixez, an unmixed (but lower quality) version also appeared on the myriad of Dirty Money bootlegs and fake promo CDs that came out around the time of the tape's release.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Guest Spots: "What U Wanna Hear"

Profound, Ltd. f/ Dolby D, Pimp C - "What U Wanna Hear"
from Possession with Intent to Distribute (Red Boy, 2000)

Been meaning to post this for awhile, but I haven't had the chance to. As always, props to Qdawg for posting the album—especially since his write-up is the only concrete info I can find on these dudes!

Profound, Ltd. is a duo from Houston, TX, made up of Groove and Banoe. Released in 2000, Possesion with Intent to Distribute is their one and only release by the looks of things—they haven't put out any new material since, at least as far as I can tell.

Anyway, with these guys being from Texas, it's only natural that they'd have a UGK-related guest verse somewhere on the album. In this case, Pimp C shows up on the album's second track, "What U Wanna Hear." Dolby D lays down a guest verse as well. The track is produced by Groove, and it sounds like he's trying to channel the Pimp in his production. It's a nice track, and definitely has that Houston sound.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Guest Spots: "Mrs. Good Pussy"

Lil' Sin f/ Pimp C - "Mrs. Good Pussy"
from Who Got Yo Back (BLVD, 1998)

Here's a little bonus for y'all: the only other UGK-related feature on Lil' Sin's sophomore album. With that kind of title and the Pimp's sung chorus and production, you know it's worth a listen or two. C actually has a few production credits on Sin's album; if you're interested in hearing the whole record, Qdawg has it up for download.

Guest Spots: "Free"

Lil' Sin f/ UGK - "Free"
from Who Got Yo Back (BLVD, 1998)

Lil' Sin f/ Mr. Joshay, UGK - "I Wanna Be Free"
from Greatest Flames (S.U.C., 2006)

This is another semi-obscure joint that's shown up in a few different places. I think most people know this one from it showing up on a lot of the Dirty Money bootlegs that were circulating around the Internet around 1999 to 2001.

"Free" first appeared as the fourth track on Lil' Sin's sophomore album Who Got Yo Back in 1998. The production on the track is much more laid-back than its later remix, and has less of a sing-song chorus. This version of "Free" was also on a compilation album called Drank Sippas: Let's Po' a Fo', which was put out at the start of 2000. A screwed version of that comp is available, but it's just as out-of-print as the O.G. version.

In mid-2000, the track was remixed and given a new title: "I Wanna Be Free." This remixed version appeared on both of the albums that Sin put out that year: My Secret and Livin'-N-Sin (which, confusingly, called the remix by the O.G.'s title). The album that Sin put out in 2006, Greatest Flames, also does this same title switch for some reason. The remix features a different beat, which also makes it much more urgent sounding than the original. The chorus is also slightly different, which is now being sung by Mr. Joshay, a dude who did some guest vocals on a few other tracks on Sin's albums.

As I mentioned earlier, this track showed up on many of the Dirty Money bootlegs that hit the Internet in the early '00s. It makes sense, since I think this was one of the stronger UGK-related tracks to come out during that long drought between studio records. Oddly, the version of "Free" that shows up on the bootlegs is the older '98 version, rather than the newer remix.

Both versions of "Free" are produced by Pimp C, naturally. Oh, and just for reference: there is a 12" single of the '98 version available (though actually finding it is probably another matter entirely), in case you want the track's instrumental and accapella.

[UPDATE: I just remembered that the "Free" accapella is blended with Scarface's "Homies & Thugs" instrumental on the Trill Azz Mixez mixtape that DJ C-Wiz put out. Here's a link, in case anyone is interested in hearing it. I'll probably post that whole tape eventually; there's a lot of good stuff on there.]

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Assorted Bun B Guest Spots

I noticed that I've been neglecting Bun lately, which is weird, given his guest appearance grind. So here's a few obscure tracks that he jumped on. Most of 'em are coming from the mid '90s.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Guest Spots: "Finger Fuckin'"

Wow, it's been a minute… sorry about the lack of content recently, but you know how real life can be. But you don't wanna hear about that shit—you want some of that UGK goodness. So let's get to it.

Lil' Boosie & Webbie f/ Pimp C - "Finger Fuckin'"
from Ghetto Stories (Trill, 2003)

The Boss Pimps f/ UGK - "Diamonds On"
from Pimpin' Off Top (Boss Play, 2004)

"Finger Fuckin'" and "Diamonds On" are two different versions of a track called "Fuckin' Wit' My Diamondz On" that was supposed to be on a Pimp C solo double disc album from the late '90s; it never materialized however, possibly due to some label related bullshit or his later incarceration. Since it was never released, most of the information about the album comes from this handwritten tracklist.

Thankfully, a lot of those tracks did see release in some form: "Livin' This Life," "Heaven," and "Shattered Dreams" were of course on UGK's self-titled double disc; "Hairy Hole" is probably "Harry Asshole" on 4 Life; "Fallin' in Love Again" was given to Sleepy Brown for his record The Vinyl Room; and "Play Hard" ended up appearing on Ghetto Stories by Lil' Boosie and Webbie.

Unlike the other tracks from Pimp's unreleased solo album, "Fuckin' Wit' My Diamondz On" has appeared at least twice on two different albums. It was first given to Lil' Boosie and Webbie for their aforementioned 2003 album Ghetto Stories. Simply titled "Finger Fuckin'," this version of the track is probably a little bit more well known, if only because the album that it appears on is more well known. The second—and much lesser known—version of the track, "Diamonds On" showed up a year later on Pimpin' Off Top, the debut album by Pimpin' Ken's rap group The Boss Pimps. The only thing that I know about those dudes is the fact that Pimpin' Ken is the group's front man. [The homie B B S from the Word of South forums tells me that the Pimpin' Ken version of the track was indeed the original version; Boosie and Webbie used the track without permission, and Ken sued them for it. Big props to him for that tidbit, as I definitely didn't know that.]

The big difference between the two versions, besides the dudes rappin' on them (Steve Below's beat stays the same thankfully—I don't think it'd be the same without that slinky griminess), is that Bun B shows up for a little outro at the tail-end of "Diamonds On." I think that's a nice little touch that ties the whole track together, though it's too bad that he didn't drop a full sixteen.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Guest Spots: "My Bitch"

MDDL FNGZ f/ UGK - "My Bitch"
from Trouble (Perfecto, 2000)

While this track might not be particularly obscure, as it's been a staple track of a lot of UGK bootlegs, I thought I would talk about it, since I already posted one Ridin' Dirty leftover, and this one was also recorded during the sessions for that album. It was even slated to be on the album, originally.

At the time, the track was titled "Black Horse (My Bitch)," probably because of the flipped "White Horse" sample. I have no idea if the MDDL FNGZ (Bun B's side group) appeared on this version of the track, but the lengths on this version and the one off of Trouble are the same (5:53), so it seems likely. Either that, or the song had more verses from Bun and Pimp originally, and they were cut to make room for verses by the MDDL FNGZ.

Here's a shot of the original back cover of Ridin' Dirty that shows off the album's original track list, with "Black Horse (My Bitch)" as track five. Judging by that list, it looks like the track took the place of—or was replaced by—"You Don't Know Me" before both tracks were ultimately left off the record.

The track did finally find official release on the MDDL FNGZ album Trouble about four years later; however, that album didn't get very much distribution, so it's hard to get a hold of. Also, since this was around the time of all of those Dirty Money bootlegs and fake advance CDs, I think the track probably showed up on quite a few of those as well.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Rarities: "You Don't Know Me"

UGK - "You Don't Know Me"
from Ridin' Dirty cassette tape (Jive, 1996)

This track is a bit rare, as it was only available on some early pressings of the cassette and vinyl versions of Ridin' Dirty. I'm kind of sketchy about it's place on the track list, but I think it was sandwiched in between "Pinky Ring" and "Diamonds & Wood."

I remember reading about this track a couple years ago from a post on Cocaine Blunts, but I didn't actually have a chance to hear it (dead links are a bitch) until I found it kicking around on SoulSeek. It's a great track, and a great compliment to an already great album—if that's even possible. However, it is the clean track, but I'm not sure why—issues with the sample? I don't think an explicit version was ever released either, not even a low quality leak. Still, it's a gem, and it's shame that it's not more well known.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Guest Spots: "Grippin' Grain"

Ace Deuce f/ UGK - "Grippin' Graine"
from Southern Gutta Butta (BackWoodz, 2000)

Ace Deuce f/ UGK - "Grippin' Grain"
from Raw & Uncut (BackWoodz, 2001)

Here goes another track that has a later variation. Ace Deuce has been an underground staple in Houston, and has done collabs with almost everybody in the Texas rap scene: from Chamillionaire, to Big Pokey, to H.A.W.K., and of course, UGK. "Grippin' Graine" (note the superflous "e") first showed up on Ace Deuce's 2000 album, Southern Gutta Butta. The beat is a bit fast-paced, at least faster than a lot of Texas shit, but I still like it.

The track would show up again a year later, on the 2001 album Raw & Uncut, but with a different beat. I think I might actually like the beat on this second version better; it's slower and bit more pimped out, which I think better suits UGK's verses. And finally, the track showed up yet again two years later, on Street Muzic. This time though, there's no discernible changes/differences from the second version.

You'll also find a semi-related (in name only) bonus cut after the jump.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Unreleased: "The Southern Sound"

UGK - "The Southern Sound"
technically from 4 Life, otherwise unreleased (N/A, 1995/96?)

"The Southern Sound" was used to create the "7th St." and "Texas Ave." interludes that are on 4 Life. It was making the rounds through the blogs a while back (I originally copped it off of BLVD ST.), but I figured I might as well post it. It's unreleased UGK, after all.

This track contains the original sample that was removed/changed for the album, as well as a completely different Bun B verse. If I had to guess, I would say that this is an unfinished song that was chopped up into those interludes and tweaked slightly for the album, but I can't be sure. Shit is still tight, regardless.

[UPDATE: Apparently, this track was recorded during the Ridin' Dirty sessions, so it could be grouped together with all the other leftovers from that album: "My Bitch," "You Don't Know Me," "Family Affair," and "Hiside."]

Guest Spots: "Pimp Walk"

Big Blac f/ Pimp C - "Pimp Walk"
from Pimp Walk promotional 12" single (Tony Mercedes, 2000)

One more post today, and this one is pretty obscure and rare. Big Blac released an album in 1995 called Strikkly 4 Da O.G. Hustlers through Nationwide Records. Google fails me at the moment, so I dunno how active she's been since. "Pimp Walk" looks like a promotional single for her sophomore (?) album, but I can't find any mention of it anywhere, much less a title, so it looks like it got shelved and the 12" seems to be the only evidence of it. Still, it has a Pimp C guest feature, and that's all that counts.

Apologies in advance, but I don't have access to the 12" myself (and even if I did, I lack the right equipment to rip it… one day, maybe) so all I have is this fairly low quality 128 kBit/s rip. Still, shouts to the homie Methlab on SoulSeek; he's the dude I got this from.

Too $hort and Pimp C Collabos

(from left to right: Pimp C, producer Mike Dean, and Too $hort)

Nothing too obscure today, but I still feel like sharing. So I'm gonna hit y'all with some tracks with Too $hort and Pimp C exchanging verses. I've always had a soft spot for $hort Dawg, and when you add Pimp (or Bun) to the mix, you know some great music was gonna result. I even remember reading somewhere that they—$hort and Pimp—were thinking of doing an album together, before Pimp's untimely passing. Damn, what I wouldn't give to hear that.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Guest Spots: "Get the Green Boy" Part II

Dirty Red f/ Pimp C, Six-Two - "Get the Green Boy"
Dirty Red f/ Bun B, Shogun, Young Muhammad - "Real Live Soldiers"
from Gift of Gab (Mob Muzic, 2005)

I finally got a hold of Dirty Red's album, courtesy of Deadly Grounds, so here are those Bun and Pimp guest spots. Qdawg has a good write-up on the album too (and on other obscure 3rd coast shit), so check it out.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Guest Spots: "Get the Green Boy"

Starvin' Artists f/ Pimp C - "Get the Green Boy (O.G. Mix)"
from The Lost Tracks bootleg (N/A, 2001?)

Young Muhammad f/ Magno, Pimp C, Thira - "Greenboy (Swishahouse Mix)"
from Get the Green Boy... By All Means Boy! (Starvin', 2004)

I guess we'll start things off with something pretty obscure. This joint has shown up on a couple of UGK bootlegs—The Lost Tracks comes to mind—except under the name "Trill B-Boy." I'm not sure who produced it, but some dude named Big Rod gets a shout out during the intro, so it's a safe bet that it's his production.

According to some of the write-ups on CDBaby, the Starvin' Artists are a stable of rappers out of Dallas, TX that includes some dudes named Young Muhammad and Dirty Red. I have no idea what album this track is from though, as Google is coming up empty, but I'm assuming it's from a Starvin' Artists comp, back from around 2001-ish.

This track is a bit interesting, since it has at least two other different versions. One, a Swishahouse mix, shows up on Young Muhammad's 2004 album Get the Green Boy… By All Means Boy! and some Swishahouse affiliates (Magno and Thira) show up, hence the name. The second version surfaced a year later, on Dirty Red's 2005 album Gift of Gab. This version has a much less organic feel, and is a little more clubby. Unfortunately, I don't have that version on me, so I can't share it—you can peep a preview of it at the CDBaby page for the album though. Red also has a Bun B feature on that album too, which means I really should try and get a hold of it some time soon.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Introductions & Things of That Nature

DJ DMD f/ Pimp C - "Candy (The "Introducing Percy Mack" Mix)"
from Eleven (Inner Soul, 1997)

I'll save you all the long introduction, since I'm sure you'll be here for the music, rather than listening to me talk about myself. I'm Percy Mack, and this is The Trill Connection.

The main focus of this blog is to try to catalog the 20+ year long discography of UGK, especially their guest verses on other people's albums. If you don't already know about the Underground Kingz, you need a late pass. And a copy of Ridin' Dirty.

Anyway, Bun B and Pimp C rhymed on a lot of records and a lot of them are out of print by now. But with the help of modern technology (read: Rapidshare, SoulSeek, eBay, etc.) these tracks can be pretty easily liberated and be made available once again. So I'll be posting them here with some relevant info for your listening/learning pleasure.

I'll mostly be sticking with the rare and the obscure here—so that means I won't be posting any of UGK's studio albums or solo projects. If you want them, you should go out and be supportive and buy that shit.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Coming Soon...

"The home of obscure and rare UGK features and tracks."