RAVEN MACK is a mystic poet-philosopher-artist of the Greater Appalachian unorthodox tradition. He does have an amazing PATREON, but also *normal* ARTIST WEBSITE too.

Monday, April 2

EWA100 - #65. Rob Base & DJ E-Z Rock - It Takes Two

65. Rob Base & DJ EZ Rock - It Takes Two (Profile. 1988. From the LP It Takes Two)

Raven Mack: I have always been contrarian by nature, and thus never gave this song it's propers. Goofy sterilized party lyrics where the punch is not spiked and an impossibly mind-numbing catchy beat that makes it so even white people can hold dance moves with more than two steps to it... that's anti-Raven. From where I sit, upon my throne of misanthropic condescension, this a song that white girls love. And not white girls who talk like they're from Brooklyn and wear skintight ponytails, but the type of white girls who shop at Whole Foods and know what a sarong actually is.
Still though, even with my contrarian frustrated condescension where I am the expert of all things Tha Rillest, if that "whoo.... yeah.... whoo.... yeah" came on the radio with that ridiculous double time beat, I'd mark out. Because deep inside, every frustrated dickhead nerd contrarian of obscure sub-culture expertise just wanted to be the coolest kid in class, and the coolest kid in class loved this song back in the day, and could do that crazy shit where he kind of bounced back and forth but spun his body around in between steps, so if there had been two of him to be equally smooth, that shit would've been like Scoob and Scrap. I never was destined to be a Scoob or a Scrap, much less a Big Daddy Kane or even a Rob Base, so I can take Expert Whiteboy solace in making reference to Scoob and Scrap twenty years later and someone won't even know what I'm talking about and then I can think about what a dumbfuck the person is who wouldn't even know Scoob and Scrap, and it makes me feel better about wasting so much of my brain on stupid hip hop nonsense, as if one of my duties on earth was to be a half-informed encyclopedia for it.

Mike Dikk: I really didn’t like this song when it was out. It straddled that line between actual good rap music and the Tone Loc/Young MC/MC Hammer pop music which made it confusing for me. I’m American, and by nature, I don’t like confusing things. I like meat and potatoes for dinner and movies with lots of explosions. I can’t dick around trying to figure out if “It Takes Two” is closer in relation to EPMD’s “The Steve Martin” or Young MC’s “Bust A Move”. Rob Base’s record never sold Hammer numbers, but they sure as fuck played it like it did, and it never added up.
I don’t mind this song now, mostly because I’m older and complacent, and it takes a lot to get my dander up. I’m not going to flip out over a song the same way I would have when I was 18 and I still thought music was this big sacred thing that had nothing to do with making money or getting pussy. I’m sure Rob Base and even DJ E-Z Rock got a good amount of sweaty Doorknocker earring and tight dayglo spandex pussy after cold rockin’ a party with this jam back in the day, and I can totally respect (and envy) that.
I was never a fan of party rap. Most old rap records I like all have a throwaway party track that was par for the course at the time, but I imagine a Rob Base full length record was all of those songs I never listened to. That “Wooo….Yeah” combo was at one point the most sampled thing in music, not even rap music, just music. Right now I can’t remember any other songs that actually used it, but they’re out there in droves, all less successful than “It Takes Two”.
There’s no evidence to back it up, but I bet Rob Base pioneered that whole Elderly Rap Concert Circuit where you could go to some random bar one night and see Rob Base for free doing this song and a few more. That’s a real sad gig and a lot of rappers have been down that path. Even people like Run DMC have had to stoop down to those levels at one point. Of course, now we’re in the age of reality television where only true has-beens would have to play free shows in front of oblivious young and drunk people who would be just as excited to see some dude in an MC Skat Kat costume doing all his parts from “Opposites Attract” while the Paula Abdul parts were done by a pre-recorded sound-alike bumping from the karaoke version that was cued up over the bar’s suspect sound system.

Download: Rob Base & DJ E-Z Rock - It Takes Two

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