Friday, April 4, 2014

Handsome Boy Modeling School -- "Rock 'N' Roll (Could Never Hip Hop Like This) Part 2" (2004)

They taught me to look beyond the superficial 
At the Handsome Boy Modeling School . . .
Wait one second, my illegitimate son is here!

The previous 2 or 3 lines introduced you to Prince Paul, a very innovative DJ and hip-hop producer, who collaborated with fellow producer Dan the Automator on the two brilliant Handsome Boy Modeling School albums.

Prince Paul and Dan the Automator
The Handsome Boy Modeling School concept was inspired by an episode of Chris Elliott's truly bizarre  Get a Life sitcom, which aired on Fox from 1990 to 1992.  In the second episode of the show, which was titled "The Prettiest Week of My Life," Chris Elliott's character -- a 30-year-old paperboy who lives with his parents -- responds to a classified ad inviting wannabe male models to attend the Handsome Boy Modeling School.

Here's "Look at This Face (Oh My God They're Gorgeous)," a track from the first Handsome Boy Modeling School album, So . . . How's Your Girl?  It consists of snippets from "The Prettiest Week of My Life":

Here's a promotional video for the Handsome Boy Modeling School that features Prince Paul and Dan the Automator:

Famed rock critic Robert Christgau described today's featured track as a "multipartite tour de force," but that term applies equally well to the two Handsome Boy Modeling School albums as a whole.  Those albums featured a huge and varied cast of performers, including rappers (like RZA, Pharrell, and Beastie Boy Mike D), singers (like Cat Power, Jack Johnson, and Mike Patton of Faith No More), and comedians -- including the inimitable Don Novello (a/k/a Father Guido Sarducci).

So . . . How's Your Girl?, which was released in 1999, opened with a track titled "Rock 'N' Roll (Could Never Hip Hop Like This."  The second and last Handsome Boy Modeling School album, 2004's White People, featured a track with the same title (with "Part 2" added), but the two have nothing to do with one another.

"Rock 'N' Roll (Could Never Hip Hop Like This) Part 2" opens with a dialogue between first-generation rap DJs Jazzy Jay and Grand Wizard Theodore (the inventor of scratching).  The accompaniment to their discussion features a sample from Vivaldi. 

"Part 2" also features Chester Bennington and Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park, Lord Finesse (whose "Right about now, the funk soul brother" vocal sample made Fatboy Slim's "The Rockefeller Skank" what it was), beatboxer Rahzel (formerly of the Roots), and DJ Qbert.

Tim Meadows
The track closes with a comedic monologue by Tim Meadows, who was a Saturday Night Live cast member from 1991 until 2000.  The lines quoted at the beginning of this post are from that fabulous monologue.

Here's "Rock 'N' Roll (Could Never Hip Hop Like This) Part 2":

Click below to order the song from Amazon:

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