Hip Hop Forever

Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez

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Hip Hop Forever Review

by Andy Kellman

The first of the three discs in this set from BBE is an ace set of mostly golden-age hip-hop tracks mixed by Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez, who rolls through classics like Kool G Rap & DJ Polo's "Ill Street Blues," Jeru the Damaja's "Come Clean," Ed O.G. & da Bulldogs' "I Got to Have It," EPMD's "You Gots to Chill," and Method Man's "Bring the Pain." With 19 cuts presented in just over an hour, Gonzalez can allow the bulk of each track to play out before switching to the next one. The mixing, the selections, and the sequencing leave little to be desired. Apart from an pseudo-ominous voice that comes in every now and then to announce "Kenny 'Dope' Gonzalez," it's a smooth, uninterrupted ride. Just as remarkable, discs two and three allow each track from the mix to be presented in full, free of mixing. As a bonus on top of that, a handful of tracks that aren't on the mix are also present, including the Basement Khemists' "Everybody," Sunz of Man's "Shining Star," Common's "Resurrection '95," and Xzibit's "Los Angeles Times." Just like Gonzalez' similarly formatted Disco Heat set (also on BBE), Hip Hop Forever can be either nostalgic or educational to the listener, and it's undeniably fun regardless.

Track Listing - Disc 1

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez 01:00 Amazon
2 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Kool G Rap 03:27 Amazon
3 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Jeru the Damaja 04:00 Amazon
4 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Reflection Eternal 04:58 Amazon
5 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Redman 03:20 Amazon
Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Ed O.G & da Bulldogs 03:16 Amazon
7 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: A Tribe Called Quest / De La Soul 04:29 Amazon
8 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Special Ed 03:26 Amazon
9 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Black Moon 03:46 Amazon
10 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Gang Starr 03:38 Amazon
11 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Tha Alkaholiks 03:11 Amazon
12 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Punisher 02:24 Amazon
13 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Naughty by Nature 02:14 Amazon
14 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: EPMD 03:39 Amazon
Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Jungle Brothers 03:33 Amazon
16 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: YZ 04:02 Amazon
17 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Black Sheep 03:46 Amazon
18 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Sunz of Man 03:34 Amazon
19 Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez feat: Method Man 03:37 Amazon
blue highlight denotes track pick