So for the first installment of No ID’s new series, Throwback Thursday, we’re giving you an album we’re almost positive you’ve never picked up. I only listened, because somebody I trust in music tweeted about it on its 20 year anniversary almost a month ago.
Life in 1472 by Jermaine Dupri.
The strength of this album doesn’t lie on Dupri’s vocals or raps at all, but his production and arrangement of artists. In 1998, a lot of the artists featured were in their primes, making it easy to get great performances out of them paired with great production. Obviously “Money Ain’t A Thang” was a hit, but after that, there are a number of dope deep cuts.
The pairing of The Mad Rapper and DMX (emphasis on DMX) ON “Get Your S**t Right” is a dope one, Mariah Carey on “Sweetheart” doesn’t disappoint, and Eightball drops GEMS on “Jazzy Hoes” alongside Too $hort and Youngbloodz.
Dupri isn’t done with his great pairing because after that there are still greater collaborations. One of my favorites is Krayzie Bone and Da Brat on “Don’t Hate On Me,” which was later flipped by Dom Kennedy and Polyester for their track “Hellagood Intermission.” Jermaine then comes through with a crazy hook for “You Get Dealt With,” that a primetime Ma$e glides on and Lil’ Kim lends a monster verse as well. The next standout is “Lay You Down,” which features a young Trina and Tamara Powell. This is another instance where Durpi’s production comes in clutch and he adds a lot of sauce to a track making it impossible for the artists not to deliver.
Outside of my standouts, the other tracks are crazy as well. The only weak song in my opinion probably would be the Slick Rick track, and even that isn’t unbearable. Life in 1472 led to a career full of gems for Dupri and with great musical instincts that were on display here, it’s no confusion on why that was. It went #3 on the Billboard 200 and propelled JD into an elite class of producers.
If you haven’t heard this album, we suggest you listen to it today.