This Week in Hip-Hop/ R&B History: Young MC’s Debut Album, Stone Cold Rhymin’ Hits Shelves

This Week in Hip-Hop/ R&B History: Young MC’s Debut Album, Stone Cold Rhymin’ Hits Shelves

–London-born rapper, Young MC, dropped his debut album Stone Cold Rhymin’ on the Delicious Vinyl record label on September 5th, 1989

Young MC may not be one of the more familiar names of hip-hop’s Golden Era, but his debut album, Stone Cold Rhymin’, definitely held its own amidst the competitive 1989 hip-hop scene. Young MC showcased his verbal skills throughout this project and didn’t disappoint in the slightest.

On most tracks, Young MC barely takes a breath and leaves little room for catchy hooks. He takes it a step further by also incorporating a bit of storytelling in tracks like “Principal’s Office”. However, with “Bust a Move” as his leading single he also showed that he had the ability to make a mega-hit – one that still gets spins at backyard barbecues to this day.

Stone Cold Rhymin’ is an internationally acclaimed project and reached No. 9 on the Billboard Top Pop Albums Chart with “Bust a Move” winning the 1990 Grammy Award for ‘Best Rap Performance, reaching No. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart, and topping the charts in Australia. “Principal’s Office” reached No. 33 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was nominated for ‘Best Rap Video’ at the 1990 MTV Music Awards. However, even with all of these accolades, Young MC wasn’t fully given his due respect by many heavy hip-hop fans mostly because of Stone Cold Rhymin’ being presented as a “pop-rap” crossover project.

Though Stone Cold Rhymin’ takes criticism for its direction, there is a strong case to be made that its categorization as a “pop-rap” project shouldn’t take away from its greatness. With legendary producers, composers, and engineers like the Dust Brothers, Mario Caldato Jr., and even Quincy Jones having production credits, it goes without the saying that the sounds and samples were placed, tuned and executedto perfection.

Stone Cold Rhymin’ is easily one of the catchiest and most family-friendly crossover hip-hop albums of all time, but they were also able to do something extraordinary – maintain a high level of quality in lyricism, songwriting, and production all at the same time.

Written by DJ Robinson


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