It’s been a decade since Little Brother came onto the scene and producer 9th Wonder immediately became a production star. The ability to make boom-bap production and get commercial critical acclaim was a feat that hasn’t been met since hip-hop’s glory years of people like his counterparts DJ Premier, Pete Rock and more.
Now, heading his own label Jamla records and more credentials than a little bit on his resume, 9th puts out ‘Wonder Years’, a smorgasbord of his artists, independent hip-hop elite and soul artists.
The album starts off with 9th’s autobiographical verse on “Make It Big” with fellow producer-turned-rapper for the song Khrysis. The song immediately made it clear that 9th is completely comfortable in his skin.
Some of the key records on the album include “Band Practice” with a newly squashed beef with Phonte and Median going back and fourth over one of the album’s strongest cuts.
“No Pretending” featuring Raekwon & Big Remo, “Enjoy” with Warren G., Murs and Kendrick Lamar and “Peanut Butter & Jelly” with Marsha Ambrosius are clear examples of 9th’s ability to have a variety of work. The ability to comfortably make backdrops for soul music, hip-hop and even pop records with ease, a feat rarely seen.
For 9th Wonder, the future could only be brighter. A list of accomplishments including parent, producer, professor, label exec could in the near future have one of the greats included on the list. -PJ