Sunday, June 28, 2009

Mixtape Mix: BJ The Chicago Kid - A Taste Of Chicago Mixtape

I recently realized that Ant & I stay really current on the mixtape circuit. We have had plenty of conversations about what our favorite track is on this mixtape or why we don't particularly care for that one and I figured why not share that perspective with you. So this is a new section of the blog where we give you our take on the hottest mixtapes on the net. Let us know your take and feel free to suggest tapes for us to check out. - MiKe

Last week, I started seeing a couple different sites posting about this R&B cat named BJ The Chicago Kid and that he had an ill mixtape released to the web. I didn't really know what to expect but I figured I would give the tape a play. BJ starts off the mixtape with a intro that samples the late great Sam Cooke's Change Gone Come. From there I knew that he might have something to take notice of. Even with contrived lyrics on the first two joints (Friday Night & Nasty), BJ showcases a rich voice that references obvious influence from R&B greats such as Marvin Gaye and New Jack Swing crooners, Jodeci. The collection of songs really starts to take flight on the slow jam, Make It Right and immediately hits a high point with the Aretha Franklin sampled stand-out, Call Me.

BJ's vocals sound like a mix of J. Holiday & Mario, but with more soul styling. With no major features, the mixtape puts BJ's style front and center and allows it to shine. With two rap songs featuring BJ closing out the set, the final full BJ song on the collection, Denial, is a bass-heavy message driven record about the loss of a loved one, and it perfectly showcases the depth of his voice and the promise of his song choice. I feel that with a greater variety of production and more skillfully crafted writing, BJ has a strong place in the new school of R&B.

Mixtape Mix rating: 4 out 5 Stars

Download The Mixtape HERE


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