This one took me a minute. My original intent was to post this soon after Guru passed. But I just couldnâ€™t do it. I must have read the Portishead article in this issue 3 or 4 times to avoid re-reading the Gangstarr article. I just wasnâ€™t ready for it because you can hear Guruâ€™s voice in the article. And he said it best, â€œItâ€™s mostly the voiceâ€¦â€ My wife saw me walking around with this issue everyday for a month and probably thought I was going crazy. On top of that, I refused to listen to their music during the month of May. But finally on June 1st, I scanned it, read it again and started listening to them again. Most people donâ€™t understand. Gangstarr was one of my all time favorite groups. Right up there with Public Enemy, Tribe, De La Soul, EPMD, Run-DMC, etc. And for older folks like me who feel connected to their music and the artists who created it, it can be difficult to handle. Hip-hop has been dealing with death since its origins but for the first time weâ€™re regularly dealing with rappers who are aging and dying from things other than violence and it will only continue during this next decade. Guru didnâ€™t die from a drug overdose. He wasnâ€™t shot down or stabbed at 25 years old. He died in the hospital from other medical issues at 49 years old, I think. Thereâ€™s no glory in that and it can happen to any of us if weâ€™re hit by a car, have an asthma attack, eat too many of the wrong foods or just get too old. I remember hearing about Guru passing and I immediately thought of Premier, KRS-One and Chuck D. I mean, if I feel this way after hearing about Guru, how will I feel when I hear that those guys have passed, too? You know, hip-hop itself is ageless but the artists will eventually pass on. I told my wife that I wanted to go to The Roots picnic on Saturday, June 5th at Pennâ€™s Landing to see them and Raekwon, Ghostface, and Method Man. But it just so happens that we already have an important family event happening at the exact same time. Another missed opportunity for me to see the Wu live. I need to get that off my bucket list before they pass, too.
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