In 2011, Murs & Tabi Bonney Made A Proper Song Celebrating Love For Hip-Hop
Whether or not it always seems it, love is at the core of Hip-Hop. Whodini made “One Love.” Common looked back at the challenges of his affair with “I Used To Love H.E.R.” Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth reminded Heads that “Lots Of Lovin'” was necessary to make any good thing work.
In 2011, “Hip Hop & Love” was a story expertly delivered by Murs and Tabi Boney. A moment from Murs & Ski Beatz’ Love & Rockets, Vol. 1 album provides a compelling backdrop. The graffiti-adorned walls, skateboard ramps, blacktop hoop courts, and B-girls are synonymous with most inner cities, while the sun shines brighter than a thousand-watt bulb. The truth is, this scene could play out anywhere Hip-Hop is a fixture in the community – which is what makes it special.
Washington, D.C.’s Tabi Bonney gets the day-party started with a verse that touches on his inseparable ties with the culture: “And I, and I, need to be with you tonight / Tell a broad get with me at the speed of light / Neo-Soul flow, Jill-Scott overload/ Tour bus, 50 cities, meet me on the road / P.Y.T count max, on overload / Gorgeous girls all around, don’t overdose / I need a real girlfriend, baby hope you know / We can make love all night, in slow mo’ / You don’t even know.” At the same period Ski Beatz produced Murs’ album, he made The Summer Years for Tabi Bonney. This song was included on both projects. The MCs also toured together with Dame Dash’s BluRoc family, whose outfit originally released these projects with Roc-A-Fella Records hit-maker (and Roc-A-Blok founder) Ski at the helm.
Bonney continues, citing A Tribe Called Quest and MC Lyte as sources of inspiration and closes out his verse, vowing never to grow too old for his true love. “Play the lead role in my life, such a killer part / And if we ever grow apart, which is never / Cause’ forever we will have Hip-Hop / So let’s rock.”
With the track effectively warmed up, Murs goes in as only Murs can: “She the one, to my two-step / Perfect 16, that I ain’t get to do yet / New J’s, no hoodie just a crew-neck / Then I got with you, when I knew that I was too fresh / She swag me the hell out / Knew Public Enemy ain’t ever gonna’ sell out.”
Interestingly enough, the love affair with Hip-Hop has matured as its offspring have. While once thought of as a fleeting fad, the art form has un-apologetically spread over the years into other industries, a message Murs masterfully executes: “‘Cause what we got is priceless / Mary J, real love Spike couldn’t write this / Watching Brown Sugar with the lights off / Used to sleep over on your nights off / Used to call me your sugar bear / Listening to Tupac, you would let me pull your hair / Throwing that D’Angelo and slow up / The type of love to make a b-boy grow up.”
The final verse finds the duo dressed up in matching Adidas sweatsuits, harking true B-boy status and reminiscing on the good ol’ days. Since illustrating their ongoing love affair, Murs delivers a quick blow that suggests their true love could be gone for good. “Used to listen to The Fugees’ The Score / Nowadays we don’t talk no more / Before you hooked up with your new thing / We was bumpin’ that Wu-Tang / Blasting OutKast, and the Roots/ Those were our favorite groups / I remember music we would listen to / When I’m reminiscing over you, my god, so let’s rock.”
Recently, Murs announced the seventh album in his 9th Wonder collaborative discography, The Illiad Is Dead And The Odyssey Is Over. The first glimpse of that music is due in three weeks. It marks his follow-up to 2018’s acclaimed, A Strange Journey Into The Unimaginable with producer Michael “Seven” Summers. He also launched a podcast, Felipe’s Garage, with L.A. Symphony member CookBook.
Last year, Tabi released EP, Le Bon Voyage.