Song of the Day #3,911: ‘Check the Rhime’ – A Tribe Called Quest

I definitely prefer the rap and hip-hop artists of the 80s and 90s to the ones we hear today. I regret not being more into the genre back then, because every time I spend a little time with what are now considered throwbacks, I love it.

A Tribe Called Quest released their second album, The Low End Theory, in 1991, to critical raves. The Queens-based trio took hip-hop in a new direction, introducing elements of jazz to their low-tempo sampled beats and call-and-response lyrics. It’s a great sound.

The groundbreaking band released just five albums before breaking up in 1998. A true 90s phenomenon. They did reunite just a couple of years ago to release another critically-praised album, We Got It from Here… Thank You 4 Your Service.

[Intro]
Uh, uh, uh, uh
Uh, uh, uh, check the rhyme

[Verse 1: Q-Tip & (Phife Dawg)]
Back in the days on the boulevard of Linden
We used to kick routines and presence was fittin’
It was I, The Abstract
(And me, the Five Footer)
(I kicks the mad style so step off the frankfurter)
Yo, Phife, you remember that routine
That we used to make spiffy like Mr. Clean?
(Um… um… a tidbit, um… a smidgen)
(I don’t get the message so you gots to run the pigeon)
Heh, okay, you on point Phife? (All the time, Tip)
You on point Phife? (All the time, Tip)
You on point Phife? (All the time, Tip)
Well, then grab the microphone and let your words rip

[Verse 2: Phife Dawg]
Now here’s a funky introduction of how nice I am
Tell your mother, tell your father, send a telegram
I’m like an energizer ’cause, you see, I last long
My crew is never ever wack because we stand strong
Now if you say my style is wack that’s where you’re dead wrong
I slayed that buddy in El Segundo then Push it Along
You’d be a fool to reply that Phife is not the man
‘Cause you know and I know that you know who I am
A special shout of peace goes out to all my pals, you see
And a middle finger goes for all you punk MC’s
‘Cause I love it when you wack MC’s despise me
They get vexed, I roll next, can’t none contest me
I’m just a fly MC who’s five foot three and very brave
On top remaining, no home training ’cause I misbehave
I come correct in full effect have all my hoes in check
And before I get the butt, the jim must be erect
You see, my aura’s positive I don’t promote no junk
See, I’m far from a bully and I ain’t a punk
Extremity in rhythm, yeah that’s what you heard
So just clean out your ears and just check the word

[Chorus: Q-Tip]
Check the rhyme y’all, check the rhyme y’all
Check the rhyme y’all, check the rhyme y’all
Check the rhyme y’all, check the rhyme y’all
Check it out, check it out
Check the rhyme y’all, check the rhyme y’all
Check the rhyme y’all, play tapes y’all
Check the rhyme y’all, check the rhyme y’all
Check it out, check it out

[Verse 3: Phife Dawg & (Q-Tip)]
Back in the days on the boulevard of Linden
We used to kick routines and the presence was fittin’
It was I, the Phifer (And me, the Abstract)
(The rhymes were so rumpin’ that the brothers rode the ‘zack)
Ayo Tip, do you recall when we used to rock (What?)
Those fly routines on your cousin’s block?
(Um, let me see, damn I can’t remember)
(I receive the message and you will play the sender)
You on point Tip? (All the time, Phife)
You on point Tip? (Yeah, all the time, Phife)
You on point Tip? (Yo, all the time, Phife)
So play the resurrector and give the dead some life

[Verse 4: Q-Tip]
Okay, if knowledge is the key then just show me the lock
Got the scrawny legs but I move just like Lou Brock
With speed, I’m agile plus I’m worth your while
One hundred percent intelligent black child
My optic presentation sizzles the retina
How far must you go to gain respect? Umm…
Well, it’s kind of simple, just remain your own
Or you’ll be crazy, sad and alone
Industry rule number four-thousand-and-eighty;
Record company people are shady
So kids watch your back ’cause I think they smoke crack
I don’t doubt it, look at how they act
Well off to better things like a hip-hop forum
Pass me the rock and I’ll score ’em with decorum
And proper—what you say Hammer? Proper
Rap is not pop, if you call it that then stop

[Outro: Q-Tip]
NC, y’all check the rhyme y’all
SC, y’all check it out y’all
Virginia, check the rhyme y’all
Check it out, check it out
In London, check the rhyme, y’all

One thought on “Song of the Day #3,911: ‘Check the Rhime’ – A Tribe Called Quest

  1. Dana Gallup says:

    I’ve definitely heard of this band, and the chorus of this song is vaguely familiar. I like their sound. This is some high quality vintage hip hop.

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