Monday, January 10, 2011

HUTCH, “Fully Exposed.”

“Being with you and not being with you is the only way I have to measure time.”

— Jorge Luis Borges, describing how I feel about my record collection.

Name: Willie Hutch, Fully Exposed (Motown, 1973).

Is this title acceptable? Yes. Short/sweet. Perhaps it is a metaphor. Willie could've been talking about actual physical exposure, like how we get when we are preparing for sexual activity, or maybe he just meant he was releasing the contents of his heart into his microphone in more of an emotional kind of exposure. I'm not sure. Music names, lyrics, titles, so full of mysteries. My new Magic City pop lock and drop it anthem "Wet," for example, with its coy and ambiguous lyrical content--Be my head coach, so you can put me in/And never take me off 'til you can taste the win/Do it again and again, 'til you say my name/And by the way I’m so glad that you came. Huh? WHAT DOES IT MEAN SNOOP PLEASE EXPLAIN.

What is not acceptable is later-years Willie releasing an album called Sexalicious. That was in 2002, which means he was 58 when it came out. Ew, Willie. This is just like when the elderly Ronald Isley put out songs about sex with Kells (he was 60 when "Contagious" came out). Stop it, old men. (Except future Kells, who can do whatever he wants when he's an old man.)

Produced by: Willie himself. He also did most of the guitar playing, as well as 100% of the large lapel wearing and Rodin sculpture impersonating in that cover photo.

Additional album personnel that make me sigh with desire and yet somehow fulfillment of desire at the same time: Leon Ware, THE GOD for producing Marvin’s I Want You, appears but only as songwriter. Fred White handled the drums, just like he did for Donny Hathaway. King Errisson played congas, just like he did on albums by Grant Green, Lalo Schifrin, Lamont Dozier, David Axelrod, Eddie Kendricks. Joe Sample from the Crusaders played piano and was named Joe Sample; that band has had their snippets chopped up by so many in rap over the years, but it's the title track from Chain Reaction that I feel I must mention because of Jeru's "Can't Stop the Prophet." That's a song about knowledge of self and the fear of somebody strapping you down and cutting off all your hair. I can relate. Mine is my shining glory too, Jeru.

Rank of album in artist's canon: Low. Pretty low. Fully Exposed had the misfortune of being the album to precede 2 of Willie's greatest--the soundtracks to The Mack and Foxy Brown. Poor thing gets lost in the shuffle a lot of the time, even with its Three 6 cachet. The Mack is the most superior album, all those singles with basslines just made for girls with hips to feel good about themselves walking down the street (not even talking about “I Choose You,” even though I know you thought that’s the one I was going to cite as ear canal porn). Instead I shall freak out over “Brother’s Gonna Work It Out” and simply say flute, harp, estrogen-powered harmonies, and Olinga v. Goldie in that intro dialogue (“I mean, you wanna get rid of the pushers, I’ll help you. But don’t send your people after me”). And OK, fine, since you're all screaming for it: RAT-TAT-TAT-TAT.

Global events at the time of its release: Oh god, ’73 was perfection on the car radio. “I’m Gonna Love You Just a Little More” and its first 20 seconds of magical sweaty bass was a hit. Barry's voice is a little too thick and pervy for my taste but that instrumental is quite the enjoyable piece. Wilton Felder was Barry's bass player and a founding member of the Crusaders, a band that showed up earlier in this post and here they are again! A marvelous turn of events. Felder put out a solo album in 1985 with the Womack-sung "(No Matter How High I Get) I'll Still be Looking Up to You." I’ll try to fold this into the weed theme that runs throughout this post as well.

Entered my life: '07, Bagatelle in Long Beach. $6. Nothing exciting to report there. But did you hear about my trip to Amoeba last weekend, when Ellwood rang me up? ELLWOOD. Two Ls! I wonder if that’s his real name, even though I shouldn’t because it annoys me when people ask me if Logan is my real name or just my stripper name. Idiot, Louise is my stripper name.

Difficulty of finding, vinyl-wise (1-10 scale): 6.7.

Breaks contained:

"Tell Me Why Has Our Love Turned Cold," notable for its awkward title syntax and for being flipped by Paul and J for Three 6 to further their satanic agenda in "Stay High"*. The 8 best things about that song are Willie’s voice; “I ain’t Denzel but I know I’m a star”; the care and thought taken to slowwww dowwwwn (chopppp/screwwwww) the “Vision messed up cause I'm drinkin the lean” line - actually J's entire verse most especially that intro where he intro's himself (what do theyyyyy call him? The Juice.); “Three Six Mafia them my kinfolk” 'cause it reminds me of the speaking styles of my own Southern kinfolk; MJG rhyming Tennessee with Hennessy; that purple/y-yurple part; and Crunchy Back getting all slow with it right after Young Buck’s quick/manic flow. The notion that a bag of kush costs $650 always confused me, though; I’m not a smoker but I stay up on the fluctuating prices of various kinds of controlled substances, both schedules I and II, to help put mixtape lyrics in context plus I am descended from moonshiners (them my kinfolk) so it’s in the blood. And I understand that I get the general female weed discount, plus a special “female not wearing pants on the Internet” discount of an additional 15%, but still--$650 is a lot, especially when you consider that it was ’05.

A lethal pairing of hotness, Willie and his instrument (either his smile or his guitar; I haven't decided) fully expose themselves in 1972.

Annnnd no musical talent, but just as exposed.

Sartorial accompaniment: Bikini and boots from Santa, chopped up photographically because I am self-conscious about my skinny frame. Full-body shots happen after we get to know each other a little better (or if you just scroll down, or back through past posts). Anyway, I put on the suit for 5 minutes just to brag about it because it’s so cute, it's red n white like a candy cane, then put my jammies back on. My aesthetic is either “Logan at Coachella, pre-crankiness and exhaustion from being around too many humans” or “Bardot minus 15 lbs, channeling Kate at Glastonbury.”

Life lessons, important messages contained:

“I Just Wanted to Make Her Happy”: first side of the record (with a heartbreaking “I guess she'll neverrrr knowwww” intro begging just begging to make it onto a Just Blaze Blueprint-era single). “If You Ain't Got No Money (You Can't Get No Honey),” second side. The “you fucking materialistic bitch” lyrical theme will never go away.

Best YouTube comment (it's a draw):


“Now shut up you religious fucks, 'stay fly' had nuttin to with no devil.” - Mr Crafty

* “Three Six Mafia was 100% a satanic-themed group in its earlier days, but that did not gain them popular support, or most importantly money. This song has nothing to do with Satan, Lucifer, Beelzebub, Pandemonium, or really old food that you may mistake as evil incarnate.

“A man loved a woman, that’s about it.” - Louishuff23

Other notable things about today:

- “Vaccine blocks cocaine high in mice.” But it has no effect on rats, snakes, weasels, or stool pigeons. Hot slugs are still the best way to prevent highs in those creatures. Also, science, you are a jerk because how come you did not figure this vaccine out in time to save the beautiful and doomed David Ruffin.

- New pop lock and drop it song alert: Jeremih & 50, “Put It Down On Me.” I am a terrible person, into lowest-common-denominator radio sludge, but you don't seem to mind that during my shift at Magic Citayyyyy. Thanks, Drumma! And thanks to the Power 106 DJ who mixed it into “Beamer Benz” when I was out driving today. He let the instrumental play for an extended period and it was heaven. In the world of instros, “Know the Ledge” is the perfect song to power your running and jumping from one NYC rooftop to another, and “Beamer Benz” is the perfect song to lie in wait and plot your murder to. It's also apparently the perfect song for resting on one's laurels, since when we last heard from Prime he was working on, um, remixing Beamer Benz. Time to stop milking it, sweetheart.

- Human beings. Look at us and our odd ways. Some of us have to document our bathing-suit-clad exploits on the Internet just to kill time in between Curren$y mixtapes, and some of us bury our children in the sand when there's a solar eclipse. I subscribe to the belief that When you believe in things you don't understand, then you suffer/Superstition ain't the way. But Jesus, these are kids with disabilities we're talking about. I can understand any potential solutions grasped for in this situation, any superstitious behavior that might improve these kids' condition. Bring me some eye of newt, a thousand virgins and a freshly bled-out baby goat.

Followers of a traditional superstition hope that burying ailing persons during a solar eclipse will help cure them. (Pervez Masih / AP)

Lubna, a nine-year-old handicapped girl, lies buried in sand up to her chest during a partial solar eclipse at Karachi's Clifton beach in Pakistan on January 4, 2011. Children with disabilities were buried chest-deep during the partial solar eclipse as part of a traditional superstition that it would bring healing to their bodies. (Athar Hussain / Reuters)

- I get confused about things, then irritated. Sorry, everybody. I am sometimes filled with dread about the possibility of nuclear war and the possibility that Doomsy will stop rapping one day. I am disappointed that there will be no Winston Justice in the Super Bowl this year (his name's WINSTON JUSTICE) and that the Saints won't repeat. All those good-luck plays of "Nolia Clap" in apt. 15 had no effect; superstition apparently ain't the way. The Fully Exposed sessions were held at Village Recorders in Westwood, a popular studio that amazingly exists to this day, with a website listing everyone who laid anything down. Willie Hutch is stupidly omitted from that list. Many thousands of beautiful dead birds fall from the sky in Arkansas and Vice mag has just gone on yet another urban anthropology mission and discovered exotic specimen Lil' B, so clearly it's the Apocalypse (not the great kind of Apocalypse*, unfortunately). It is stressful. If I were in the NBA I’d constantly be getting fined for ranting and throwing things. Then I hear that fucking Spongebob/cat daddy song crackin like a newborn rooster on my radio while I'm out driving and it's like, I cannot imagine there being a more perfect song to go out to/Is this a new Dischord release in '86 'cause it's got that energy. Bitch I go to WORK. Then I see it still only costs $13 to experience live basedness! Everything's beautiful. Apocalypse avoided (narrowly); brain chemicals regulated.


- The Big Picture, of course, again. Hi-res documentation of the elections to decide whether the southern part of Sudan will secede from the north. Look at the symbols on the voting card for Unity and Secession!

“Put a fingerprint on the symbol of the option of your choice, or the circle next to it.”
(Simon Maina / AFP / Getty)

(Spencer Platt/Getty)



charlieP said...

my girls a singer and higher ground is one of her favorite songs... where did you get that shirt??? i would really appreciate you letting me know, ill be checking back here...or we could just start dating... thank you!

good medicine said...

quoting borges in relation to ones record collection? sheesh! also, many praises to the GOD leon ware. his first two solo records are things of almost untouchable beauty. lastly, i gotta find some time to sequester myself in some southern california record shops...