Earlier this evening I was listening to Fight The Power off a Public Enemy compilation CD that brought back one of my favorite moments in time: being a radio dj for the show Chocolate in Ya Ear. Although this was a small town college radio show with a couple of my buddies, we aired the smoothest grooving mix of rap, reggae, soul, funk and any other chocolaty genres of music.
We’d typically kick the show off with something that would make you want to get up off your feet and shake that groove thang. A jam such as James Brown’s Super Bad would launch the hour-long chocolate explosion into the ears of our listeners and then we’d follow it up with our intro theme song, Flava in Ya Ear, by Craig Mack. After our two kick off tracks, Mackadonna, Crza and I would drop a few thoughts or perspectives on things. Mostly, we acted a fool; yet, I think wise fools we were. Nevertheless, we kept the funky jams steady bumping with a track like The Message by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five.
Keep in mind that Chocolate In Ya Ear doesn’t reference the color of the artists, rather the flavor and texture of the dope sounds. That bittersweet, silky smooth richness that tickles the eardrum, thumps the soul and probably causes a twitch in the hip if the bass is kicking properly.
Amidst the myriad of delicious hip-hop, funk and soul, Bob Marley graced the Chocolate In Ya Ear playlist weekly. Whether it was the sultry and sexy Stir It Up, the dance-inducing Could You Be Loved, the yearning tone of Satisfy My Soul, the politically uplifting Africa Unite, or the jammin’ Roots, Rock Reggae, there was always a Bob Marley record to suit the mood and drench one’s ear with chocolaty goodness. Mmmmmm mmmm mm.
We amused ourselved with all sorts of antics, practical jokes, hoaxes and typical college-aged tomfoolery, but it was always about the music and the culture behind the composition of sounds. Word! I can’t forget the first time that I saw this video from Pharcyde called Drop:
Wow! I couldn’t stop thinking about it for weeks. If you’re still wondering why it looks so surreal, it’s because they filmed the video while performing the song backwards and play the tape backwards for the video production. Mmmm…so delicious to the ears and eye! Oh, and that mind-blowing video was directed by the amazingly talented Spike Jones, who consistently produces sublime works of art. Obviously we couldn’t air videos, but we’d be sure that everyone and their momma caught wind of the hottest videos, djs, breakers or media coming from the world of chocolate.
One our favorites, who dominated the air waves on Chocolate In Ya Ear, was Outkast. Two Dope Boys (In a Cadillac) rockin’ with Atliens, like Aquemini, moving on up in Elevators with E.T. (Extraterrestrial). Ah, to hear their mesmerizing tracks like Spottieottiedopaliscious and Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik that entrance anyone who opens themselves to the chocolate vibrations. These southern gentleman fused their distinct personalities and talents to create an original sound that transcended whatever the mainstream music industry considered hip hop. There’s no doubt about that!
The Chocolate In Ya Ear radio show cannot be captured with words and pictures alone, and there’s many more stories to tell. In the near future I’ll be sure to share stories about a culture of music, radio, jokes, the FCC, college antics, hoaxes and chocolate. In the meantime, venture over to the reincarnation of Chocolate In Ya Ear radio, a station that I created on Pandora or check out Chocolate In Ya Ear videos. Enjoy!