Looking for a hip hop track about a trumpeter... De La Soul, maybe?
July 26, 2013 2:29 PM   Subscribe

So: the year was 1994? 1995? And I was obsessed with late night radio shows. I was driving around DC in the very, very early hours when a peculiar song came on the radio. It was during a hiphop show I think on Howard U's station. This song had a subtle beat playing under it but was pretty ambient. What was featured was a man's voice talking about playing the trumpet as a jazzer. Telling his own story (or so I remember). Interspersed was some rapping and a little trumpet playing. The effect was sublime. And I loved it. I waited until the DJ read off the songlist and I think he credited to De la Soul. Well, it either is or it isn't: all these years have passed and I've not found the track. Help?
posted by n9 to Media & Arts (19 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I might be wrong, but I don't think it's a De La song (or if it is, it's a relatively obscure one).
posted by box at 2:33 PM on July 26, 2013

Is it US3 - Cantaloop?
posted by efalk at 2:34 PM on July 26, 2013

Digable Planets - Rebirth of Slick?
posted by LionIndex at 2:39 PM on July 26, 2013

Response by poster: not contaloop, not rebirth of the slick.

The majority of the track is a man talking, not rapping at all... like he is just telling a story. Thanks for the help! If we find it I think it will be rewarding!
posted by n9 at 2:44 PM on July 26, 2013

You may be thinking of De La Soul's "I Be Blowin," featuring Maceo Parker, though he plays the saxophone and doesn't speak again after introducing himself.
posted by black_lizard at 3:10 PM on July 26, 2013 [2 favorites]

Not De La Soul, not a trumpet, not 1994, but could it be "Jazz Corner of the World (Introduction to Birdland)" from Quincy Jones' 1989 album Back On The Block?
posted by DaddyNewt at 3:41 PM on July 26, 2013

1996, talking about drums not trumpet... so doesn't tick all your boxes by any means, but your description triggered the memory very strongly in me of DJ Shadow - Building Steam with a Grain of Salt
posted by protorp at 3:54 PM on July 26, 2013

Response by poster: Thanks for the responses!

Not Quincy Jones. Not DJ Shadow (but it was great to hear that track again!)

HMMM! Re: "I Be Blowin" that's a possibility... I wonder if the DJ was mixing in some kind of spoken work material on the broadcast I was listening to. The effect really was that I was hearing fragments of a players story. And my memory, for all the good it is, my memory is telling me that it was a trumpet player with an unusual technique... subtle trills and quartertones.

So my memory says this isn't it. Might have been mixed into the set I was listening to...

I really appreciate the help!
posted by n9 at 4:01 PM on July 26, 2013

My immediate reaction was "I Be Blowin" as well.

RIP Maceo.
posted by mkultra at 4:55 PM on July 26, 2013

Maybe something by the Roots? They have a trumpet player.
posted by Koko at 6:32 PM on July 26, 2013

Longshot, but maybe Gang Starr's 'Jazz Thing,' or something from Guru's 'Jazzmatazz' albums?
posted by box at 6:46 PM on July 26, 2013

Soul II Soul's Jazzie's Groove? if not, it's sure in the same vein...
posted by Soap D. Spencer at 6:53 PM on July 26, 2013

Miles Davis' Doo-Bop?
posted by BostonEnginerd at 7:38 PM on July 26, 2013

Here's a random guess: Time is Moving On by Donald Byrd & Guru from the Red Hot & Cool compilation. From 1994.
posted by gnutron at 7:39 PM on July 26, 2013

Best answer: Or more likely Loungin by Donald Byrd & Guru from the first Jazzmatazz album.
posted by gnutron at 7:42 PM on July 26, 2013 [1 favorite]

I am almost positive this can't be it, and I can't find a sample longer than thirty seconds for you to listen to, but I am going to toss it out anyway because the era is right and the song's topic is a match: Trumpet Man (A Tribute to Miles Davis) by Damian Dame.
posted by trunk muffins at 8:48 PM on July 26, 2013

"We Got the Jazz" by Tribe Called Quest? (Sorry on phone can't link easily)
posted by tristeza at 8:59 PM on July 26, 2013

I'm on my phone so can't find a link, but you might be thinking of a track from the soundtrack of Spike Lee's Mo Better Blues. It's sort of a spoken word jazz thing featuring Denzel Washington talking about jazz. I will look for a link when I'm on my computer.
posted by Clustercuss at 11:40 AM on July 27, 2013

On second thought, maybe not, but here is the track I was talking about.
posted by Clustercuss at 12:44 PM on July 27, 2013

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