Young Black Brotha: “Too Hard for the Fuckin’ Radio” (Strictly Business Records)
Regardless, Mac Dre’s “Too Hard for the Fuckin’ Radio” is the clear standout on this four-track project, with a sing-song chorus that serves as both provocation and invitation. The teenage musician was clearly inspired by Oakland’s Too Short and Vallejo’s The Mac, the latter whose name inspired Andre Hicks “Mac” persona. (The Mac was murdered in 1991.) Like those local greats, he floats between flamboyance (“I sport Nike shoes”) and blue-collar business hustle. He’s not a “pimp daddy” or a gangsta criminal, but he speaks in street codes, and the throbbing keyboard funk pushes forward his flawlessly smooth flow. It would be several years — and a years-long stint in prison — before he evolved into the uninhibited Thizz jester. But the blueprint of the Mac Dre legend was already present.
Originally published on criticalminded.com.