What did you do today, 5 years ago? Some of you probably went to a CD store and grabbed a copy of Lupe's debut album. I personally can't say that I bought the album on that day, I'm not even sure if it dropped on the same day over here in Germany.
What I can say though is that I immediately bought it when I saw it in a store. After grabbing my copy I went through the same routine that I go through with every album that I buy, I put it in my CD player, pressed play and read the booklet.
While checking the booklet of Food & Liquor one of the first things I noticed were the pics of kids in school with guns and I found that whole imagery very fascinating. It kinda took away from the first listening cause I really looked at those photos and tried to catch all the details.
Same goes for the album cover, which in my opinion is one of the dopest covers ever. I mean what other artist could have all these things on his cover and actually get it all cleared from every company...alone that is a crazy little detail about the album.
Let's get into the music now. I have to say that I just made the transition from listening to more 'gangster rap' like 50 Cent, Ja Rule, DMX, Xzibit and a bunch of others to listening to Kanye, Common, Talib and acts like that 2 years prior to F&L dropping.
Now I could never really relate to most of the things that 50 or Ja Rule were talking about but when I listened to F&L and heard Lupe talking about comics, robots, video games and certain family issues, I felt like I found an artist who I could actually related.
I didn't listen to Lupe's mixtapes up until Food & Liquor leaked for the first time. After hearing that version of the album I was so soaked in to the sound and interested to hear the final version that I didn't really take time to dig deep into the tapes which makes Food & Liquor so important to me on a personal level..it was what really made me realize how great of an artist Lupe is.
I could always and I still can play this album whenever and not get bored of it cause it just talks to me in a certain way that a lot of other albums don't. That's one of the main reasons why I put Food & Liquor before every other Lupe and every other hip hop album in general...I can just relate to the content.
Another aspect about this album is the influence it had and still has on todays hip hop scene. Look at the new generation of rap artists, no matter if you look at someone like Cudi, Tinie Tempah, Mickey Factz or XV, all of them have been influenced by Lupe. Their style, the music and what they rap about, you can't deny that Lupe and especially his first album has influenced a lot of up and coming artists.
Lupe made nerd rap cool.
No matter how you twist or turn it, Food and Liquor is a classic album that opened up doors for a lot of other young, up and coming emcees who were different from what was the norm in hip hop during that time. Let's all take this day of its 5th anniversary to listen to this masterpiece again and reminisce about it a little. Share your own story relating to the album in the comments.
Here's to hoping that Food and Liquor 2 will pick up where the first one left off. Another great album with intricate lyrics that you can listen to every day without it getting old or losing any of it's appeal.
We'll celebrate Food & Liquor week all week and bring you some throwback entries to look back at what went down back then. - Join us on the ride!