MP3: A Tribe Called Quest – “Can I Kick It?” (King Most Redirection)

DJ/Producer King Most Pays Tribute to the Legendary Group with a Remix of Their Classic


king most kick it

Critical Praise for King Most:

“One of San Francisco’s most well-rounded DJs”SF Weekly

If you are interested in Soul, Disco, or Hip Hop this is the guy is for you.” – Tucker-Bloom

The Redirection:

RIP Phife Dawg. We at Audible Treats can’t imagine how different our lives would be without A Tribe Called Quest being the soundtrack to so many poignant moments of our lives. Thank you for the memories. Our hearts go out to you and your family.

25 years ago, legendary rap group A Tribe Called Quest released their classic debut People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythmseamlessly merging Hip-Hop with Jazz influences and paving the way for conscious rap. “Can I Kick It?” with its looping, Lou Reed-sampling bassline and universally known call and response chorus, is arguably the album’s most iconic track. Though the Tribe recently stopped touring, the members of the group live on in the public eye, with Q-Tip recently becoming the first-ever Artistic Director for Hip-Hop Culture at the Kennedy Center, and Ali Shaheed Muhammad a popular radio host on NPR. Despite the intimidating pedigree of “Can I Kick It?” even the most ardent old-school Hip-Hop head would agree that San Francisco DJ and producer King Most‘s new redirection does justice to the original track.

“When I found the a cappella online it was a moment of, “This exists?!” It was like finding an awesome sample or synth sound,” King Most explains. “It inspired and gave me a bit of confidence to try something that would normally feel like a challenge: remix an already great song and make something worthwhile. When I started a draft of this remix on Thanksgiving night 2015 and posted it onto my Instagram, I never could imagine it would be dropped in a “Post Phife world.” Regardless, I am grateful that I lived in a world where Phife and The Tribe made it alright to be yourself in music. We are so lucky for that. Thank you.”

How do you remix a classic? King Most’s answer: combine it with two other bonafide classics. King Most removes the original backing track for “Can I Kick It?” and replaces it with a seamless mashup of James Brown‘s “The Payback,” and Fela Kuti‘s “Water No Get Enemy.” The beat combines James Brown’s signature grunts, his band’s horns, Fred Thomas’s inimitable bassline and Fela’s liquid keys, bringing some funk to the kickback anthem. “All of them are timeless artists, James & Fela alone are obviously in-step with each other but ATCQ’s raps make it a perfect triangle,” details King Most. “I also wanted to make sure it knocked as much as anything else today. That’s why I added a deep bass and gave the drums that low end that I always need in my music. I didn’t take all them to the trap, but I didn’t leave them in 1993 either.”

King Most is a mainstay of San Francisco nightlife. A capable technician with the brain of a crate-digger and a crowd-friendly sensibility, he regularly mans the decks for the likes of Red Bull and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. His nuanced productions show up in sets of the likes of JazzyJeff, Giles Peterson and radio support from KCRW and Triple J to name a few. “I call them redirections,” King Most explains, “because sometimes it’s just a mission of improving a song by adding keys and bass with different drums, sometimes I’m just putting a vocal over a different already existing beat, and sometimes it’s both: making the beat from scratch and then finding the right vocals.

Listen to “Can I Kick It?” (King Most Redirection):

Read Okayplayer’s premiere:

King Most Background:

King Most is all about passion for the craft. His hard work is paying off too—as a full-time DJ he now sits at the top of San Francisco’s DJ elite. His consistency has earned him recurring gigs with Red Bull, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and Microsoft. As a cutting-edge remixer, King Most’s releases on Soundcloud have logged over 230,000 plays by listeners worldwide. When he’s not sharing the decks with favorites like Jazzy Jeff, Flosstradamus, Ali Shaheed Muhammad (A Tribe Called Quest), Odd Future, and Rich Medina, luminaries like Giles Peterson (UK/Radio One), DJ Spinna (NYC), Mick Boogie (Roc-Nation), Sammy Bananas (Fool’s Gold) and Anthony Valadez (KCRW/Los Angeles) are sharing his tracks in their own sets.

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“Can I Kick It?”: