I know that all of my Ridin Musics have to do with rap, but before Ready to Die, Reasonable Doubt, Illmatic and other countless number of classic Debut Albums, there was a Debut Album that to this very day, that I still play in the ‘Voy…
18 Years Ago today on July 28th 1992, Mary J Blige released her debut album “What’s the 411?”. This was back when Sean Combs was known as an Uptown Records intern named Puffy. “What’s the 411?” was actually the first album to combine Hip Hop with R&B thus birthing “Hip Hop Soul”. It also birthed the art of sampling music, but we won’t get into that.
12 tracks (10 songs, one interlude from an up-and-coming rapper named Busta Rhymes, and one intro with Mary playing her answering machine), this album does live in my Envoy.
I have to admit, when this album came out, I was only 8 years old, so I didn’t understand the lyrics then. It took me some years, but I understand why Mary is appreciated as much as she is because she wrote about real life situations that most females go through, including me.
My favorite track has to be Changes I’ve Been Going Through. That song still speaks to me, and yes, I do sing to this song when I’m driving.
A year later, this same album was Remixed, but the remixed album (to me) wasn’t as good as the original, but I still bought it. But after What’s the 411? came Mary’s most loved, cherished, respected work (fan-based wise), but I won’t talk about that until November 29.