The Most Hip-Hop Non-Hip Hop Album Of All Time
For years we’ve wondered whether or not Michael Franks knows he made the most low-key hip hop album in 1976. Hidden under all of that 70s jazzy goodness, there are some of the most hard-core lyrics and beats.
But before we delve into the the musicality of the album, let’s start with the obvious: the title, “The Art of Tea.”. Doing deep research on the origins of “tea” e.g. spilling the tea, sipping tea, etc., we wonder, was Franks a psychic?
The Art of Tea therefore perfectly encapsulates the documentation of a relationship that has some good times, some bad times, some crazy times, some obsessive times, and lots of sexy times. Doesn’t that sound like some good tea?
The Album Highlights
Nightmoves: Is the sexy soulful jumpstart to The Art of Tea album. We’re surprised this hasn’t been sampled by a hip hop artist yet. If one does, Duende is taking full credit.
Eggplant: He has a song named Eggplant. Emoji-users, I say no more.
St. Elmo’s Fire: This song is Franks’ “piece de resistance,” when it comes to convincing listeners that he has the soul of a hip hop artist. To reinforce his cred, the song was sampled by rapper Logic.
Jive: “You cut me loose, I hit the juice” Like Drake, Franks is not afraid to admit when he’s messed up over his woman and needs some libation therapy.
Popsicle Toes: Like Tyler, the Creator, Franks has no problem admitting his love for women’s toes, and in the most poetic way possible, makes one forget how gross that is. I mean, who doesn’t love sucking on popsicles?
Sometimes I Just Forget to Smile: A.K.A. Stop telling me to smile.
Rolls Royces, pharaohs, and being wavy are some of the central themes.
Listen to the entire album here.
Franks, if you’re out there, and we imagine you’re out in the mountains of Vermont making your own microbrew in between jam sessions, we’d love to get your thoughts!