EWA100 - #79. LL Cool J - The Boomin' System

79. LL Cool J - The Boomin' System (Def Jam/Columbia. 1990. From the LP Mama Said Knock You Out)

Raven Mack: LL, at this point, had been known as the old school legend, and still at a relatively young age, and this was one of a number of updated repackagings he did of himself. I remember riding around in my boy Rob's mom's Hyundai Accel, drinking Miller Genuine Drafts like fools, smoking stank-ass ghetto buds drizzled with rum, and pumping this song. LL had made the transition from '80s mic hero to still-relevant in the '90s. And this, for me, is one of my favorite non-'80s LL tracks, because unlike him knocking out people's mamas or trying to crush the sugarwalls, it's not him pretending to be Luke Cage Powerman or Big Daddy Sweet Dick; it's just a simple-assed song about playing music real fuckin' loud, which at the heart of hip hop, just like rock-n-roll, is the whole fuckin' point. Because sometimes you just need the loud catharsis of escaping all the ass-kicking and pussy-waxing and the hardly-acknowledged stresses that come with both.

Mike Dikk: I really have nothing creative to add to this except I’ve never heard of putting rum on weed. Does that even do anything outside of make a mess? I remember one time when I was young and dumb and first found out codeine could fuck you up something proper, I dipped some weed in that and it didn’t do anything except stain the rolling papers. Maybe it just gives the weed a nice aroma.
Mama Said Knock You Out was such a good record. I remember even back then people were writing LL off, but he came with it on that record. Unfortunately, that was the last time he really came with it and that was 17 years ago now. I used to think LL was so bad ass. My friend Kenny’s sister had this giant door size poster of LL in all of his Troop gear back in the day and I wanted to grow up and be just as cool as LL was. Now it’s just kind of embarrassing that he’s still making records when he doesn’t really need to.
I know this is completely unrelated, but I need to fit it in somewhere in this list. Remember the video for “Jingling Video”? Specifically the part where he’s talking to his manager on the phone and LL hangs up the phone so hard that it hurts his manager’s ear? Then later on in the video, the manager is wearing a bandage on his ear. That’s one of the greatest music video moments of all time for me. Better yet, remember in Krush Groove when a very young LL comes into the audition room after being told there would be no more auditioning? Then Jam Master Jay reaches into his pants for a gun, but LL is not phased. Then he’s all like “BOX!” and goes the fuck off with the rappin’. Jesus Christ, what an awesome scene. To sum up, LL Cool J 1990 and earlier = so fucking good. LL after 1990 = not so much.

Download: LL Cool J - The Boomin' System

The video isn't on Youtube so here's the aformentioned clip from Krush Groove: