The Plug One 2000s: Cormega, “The Realness”

83. Cormega, The Realness
Legal Hustle/Landspeed Records
Released July 24, 2001

Cormega’s debut arrived during a moment of reconciliation between the oppositional worlds of underground and mainstream rap. The Realness was distributed by Boston-based Landspeed Records, an indie distributor known for Premier-leaning hip-hop; its success would encourage Landspeed to indulge in so much Queensbridge-Infamous Mobb records that the company cleaved in two (out of which the backpack-friendly Traffic Distribution was formed). And The Realness’ status as an album borne from the ashes of a shelved Def Jam debut (The Testament, which was finally released independently in 2005) endeared it to a growing cult of New York street rap collectors. Cormega’s appeal lies in his plainspoken voice. “R U My Nigga’s” asks, “If I die, would you cry/Need, would you provide/If I got heat, would you be squeezing side by side?” “Fallen Soldiers” shouts out fellow crooks, asking, “Did you ever lose a nigga to love/Then ask yourself is there a heaven for thugs?” He’s not a technician, and won’t dazzle you with his verbal dexterity. The Realness is simple stuff, really, but its themes of brotherhood and broken bonds make for a compelling drama.

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One Response to The Plug One 2000s: Cormega, “The Realness”

  1. L.V. says:

    I don’t give a f#%* what any one say you don’t want it was the main ingredient to NAS ethir which makes mega the KING of NY but people don’t no shit about real music and must I say how fifty took his beat and sounded stupid if you like RAP and no the different’s between RAP & hip-hop then you no don’t care if he didnt get enuff props to be recognize I no who’s the real NINO BROWN MEGA don’t stop you and AZ str the last of are breed CORMEGA TOP 5 dead or alive !!!!!!!!!!!

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