A film about Northwest hip-hop from 1999
Platinum, a 1999 G-Funk album from Seattle rapper E-Dawg opens with a skit on an airplane. E-Dawg and Big Loon-E-Toon are on tour and debate the viability of smoking tree on the plane.
The debate continues into “No More Tears,” featuring Money-B, on whether it’s better to settle down to home and marriage and family, or to move on, to a new job, a new relationship, to aim for another appearance on Arsenio. This is a funky record, but also full of thoughtful contemplation.
Case in point, on “Eye for An Eye,” a close buddy of our gangster protagonist is shot and killed. He raps that his first priorities are to take care of his friend’s family, ensure the widow and his kids are clothed and fed, and help them pay for the funeral. Only once this task is complete will he walk the streets in search of the murderer.
This record, Platinum, was anticipated as early as 1993 when “E-Dawg” contributed the catchy summer hit “Drop Top” to Sir Mix-A-Lot’s Seattle, The Dark Side compilation. Mix-A-Lot himself is featured on the floor-shaking “Shackles.”
For us, the standout track here is “Coolin’.” It’s a chill 206 summer anthem that opens with an allusion to “Drop Top” and features gorgeous vocals from Francci. The relaxed verses are about enjoying the sun: “I’m just cooling… and enjoying the summertime… Remy Martin sippin’, Lap pool dippin’.”
After a few delays, Platinum finally landed in 1999, “put out by some Denver cat who also did the cover” says E-Dawg. This perhaps explains why it’s nearly impossible to find today. But no mind, E-Dawg has a brand new limited-edition CD out this year. You gotta DM him for a copy of the 45. Nobody’s Safe… Mixtape. It’s a ballsy $45, but respect the hustle and grab your copy today.