All Hail the Queen!


I have been listening to a lot more rap albums then I normally do. A lot of these records I missed out on or haven’t heard in a really long time. In some ways it best encapsulates the time since so much of it sounds nothing like modern rap and hip-hop. Especially what I guess is categorized as New Jack Swing. I really like it but it seems like everyone just decided to abandon that sound so the music really stays in and of that time.

Queen Latifah's

Incredible Interplay

of Rapping and Singing

Anyways a few days ago I was listening to Queen Latifah’s “Black Reign” (1993) and this song comes on near the end “Just Another Day…” This song has these soothing vocals interspersed with her harder rap style. It is a little like the Fugees’ mega-hit “Ready or Not” (1996) where they rap on top of Enya’s softer vocals. Another comparison is Suzan Vega’s updated 1992 remix hit of Tom’s Diner that came out a year before. What amazed me about “Just Another Day…” is when the song came on I checked to see who the guest vocalist was (as guest vocalists and rappers are frequent on these records) and there wasn’t one. It took me a long time to realize she was interchanging between both vocal styles, smooth vocals and harder rap effortlessly. Wow! I also love the Mr. Rogers shout-out lol!


An album review I read in Rolling Stone said that rap was always more of a singles art form then about the full length album but I don’t know if I agree with that assessment. It sounded like this track was somewhat of a deep cut. I mean it was a single and charted but I don’t even remember this song. My point is that great rap songs can fall under the radar even from major well know talent.

I like how there would groups mixing rap with jazz too. There was some 90s group that did jazz rap exclusively that I was listening to about a year ago which I would really like to re-visit. Most the rap I listen to is mixed with other styles of music.