This Ghostface, Cappadonna & Jeru Freestyle From 1996 Still Does Damage (Audio)
In the mid-90s, there were few more dominant crews in Hip-Hop than Wu-Tang Clan and Gang Starr Foundation. Unlike today, however, where it’s more common than not to have guest artists on tracks, in that era crews stayed more self-contained and collaborations outside of the collectives were more rare. As such, there were not many records featuring members of the two outfits together. In 1996, however, Wu’s Ghostface Killah and Cappadonna and Gang Starr Foundation’s Jeru The Damaja were in the studio together on Tim Westwood’s show in London, and they ripped an 18-minute freestyle. While a portion of this cypher has been on the web for years, Westwood has made the entire version available on this Throwback Thursday.
For the first 3 minutes and change, each MC takes turns blazing the mic over the track Ghost used for his classic “Daytona 500,” with Cap and Raekwon. Cappadonna kicks things off with a verse that would resurface 2 years later on his song “Slang Editorial.” Jeru is up next, followed by Ghost who re-purposes a verse from “Real Live Shit (Remix).”
At around three and a half minutes in, things change up. With Westwood flipping the beat to Jeru’s “Ya Playin’ Yaself,” Jeru decides to go off the top over the DJ Premier production. From there on, the session eases into a cypher with the MCs trading freestyle bars over various tracks, including an extended session over Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg’s “Deep Cover.”