After 16 solo albums, Too Short has one of the more extensive discographies, especially before considering his feature work and Dangerous Crew LPs. DubCNN.com recently asked Too Short to select his five most definitive songs that should be on every fan’s playlist.
The Oakland, California Hip Hop pioneer answered in great depth. “My personal ones would be ‘Blow The Whistle,'” said Short of his 2006 single from the album of the same name. “Not necessarily because of the beats or the rhymes, but just because the song was magical; it won’t go away. It may not have gone platinum, but it made me more money than any other song I made in my life! The amount of requests I get from people who want me to sing them that song is incredible. I never had a song like that, and it just amazes me that I made that song at the age of 40. Most artists get that song early in their career, but my shit comes like way later,” he ended with a laugh.
Short also selected another Blow The Whistle cut, “Call Her A Bitch.” “I was always proud of that song,” began the vet. “I never said ‘bitch’ so many times in one song, I don’t know anybody that could memorize that song including myself. Nobody could recite it word-for-word because it has too many lines in it. I wish I could sing it in concert, but I can’t memorize it, I’ve tried many times. I know I told people I will give you a thousand dollars if you can memorize that song, but I haven’t had anybody come cash in yet. It was just something I was fucking around with in the studio and it just kept going. I counted and there’s like 200 and something bitches in there, definitely a lot of bitches in there.”
Third, Short pointed to “Freaky Tales,” one of his most seminal hits from his studio debut, Born To Mack. Although over nine minutes long, the Dangerous Crew co-founder spoke of its minimalism. “[It is] the most simplistic song, it’s a classic and it’s like five tracks of music, including the drums. It couldn’t be more than seven fucking tracks with the vocals included. It was recorded in a very nice studio, but it’s just not quality, you know what I mean? If we would have recorded ‘Freaky Tales’ now, with the same notes, with the same amount of instruments, and same everything it would just sound a lot better. It probably wouldn’t be a classic.”
He added, signaling that two songs technically count for his third selection. “‘Freaky Tales’ and ‘Dope Fiend Beat’ I always considered them one song because they come on the [Born To Mack] album back-to-back and they were always very near and dear to me, and to my live performance; as well as to the evolution of Too Short and what Too Short was to become. ‘Freaky Tales’ and ‘Dope Fiend Beat’ were the foundation of me going platinum and going nationwide and not being a local artist anymore. So those two I would put on the list together.”
Short selected another title track for his fourth in the list, this time from his 1996 LP, a #3 debut. “‘Gettin’ It’ is another song that means a lot to me,” stated Short. “because I got to work with George Clinton who’s always been my musical hero. He brought the bulk of the [Funkadelic] band with him and everybody did something on the song, they were talking and singing, playing instruments, and it was a memorable session. We did two songs that night, and it was a session that lasted clear into the next morning. We also did a remake of a Parliament song ‘I’ve Been Watching You.’ If you notice on the Gettin’ It album, I’m not even on that song. I left the studio and they did it without me. I liked it so much that I put it on my album, without me on the song. I don’t know another artist that would do that, but I did.”
“Last, but not least, I would have to say it’s a tie ‘Life Is…Too Short’ and ‘The Ghetto,'” he said, hitting on yet another album title track, this one from 1989 and the Short Dog’s In The House single. “Just because I was more in tune with what kind of artist I wanted to be back then. I hadn’t strayed too much off into Too Short-the dirty rapper and I hadn’t really been labelled a 100% just yet. When I would do videos and drop singles there would be positive songs and shit, you know?”
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