When it comes to art, nobody can ever be sure when, or if, they will be able to produce something really awesome. For most artists of any medium, it takes a minute to find their stride. Particularly in the realm of music, it isn’t uncommon for a group or musician to take a few years or a few projects to really become comfortable with themselves and find their sound or style. I like to think of one of my all time favorite groups, Rush, as an example of this. Their self titled debut is a fine album, but it really isn’t anything more than heavily Led Zeppelin inspired basic rock album. As the years went on and Geddy and Alex were joined by Neil Peart, they found their style and became comfortable with each other and exploring their musical boundaries. Within 5 years Rush would give us an all time prog rock jam 2112 and their more radio friendly top shelf fun to the core rock project Moving Pictures. Some artists are just young and need the trial by fire to get going. Think of the crown prince of rap, Kendrick Lamar. As a youngster, under the name K-Dot, Kendrick put out a number of mixtapes which showcase his raw talent for lyricism, my favorite of which is Overly Dedicated. None of these projects can hold a candle to Kendrick’s more recent masterworks Good Kid, m.A.A.d. City, To Pimp a Butterfly, DAMN., or even The Black Panther Album or Section 80. It took a minute, but experience pays off.
This is not the story of every musician though.
Sometimes a group or artist are just ready for greatness from the very jump, without any warm-up. That’s what this month’s Musical Training Plan is all about. This month I selected 7 albums which can be seen as the musical equivalents of hitting a dinger over the fence in a player’s first major league at bat. Letting the world that they mean business before anybody even gets the chance to write them off, the artists featured this month said “Here I am, I rule, get used to it” almost instantaneously. The rockers, singers, shredders, and rappers that I chose to feature this month are a diverse crowd, but if there is one thing they all have in common, it’s their abilities to get off the line hot.
I know I said last month that this month we would try giving away all 7 at once, but I really enjoyed how it went in October, so we are going to stick to the daily reveal format. I am so very genuinely excited to get to work on my blogs about this week worth of albums, relisten to all of these gems, and interact with you all about them.
I hope you will all enjoy this month’s Musical Training Plan, Lord knows I will.
DJ Boogie, signing off.