Proof – “Searching for Jerry Garcia” review

After releasing his 1st full-length solo album last year, Detroit hip hop icon Proof is back with a follow-up. The album starts off with “Clap wit Me”, which has a beautiful sped-up vocal sample in the hook & the horns throughout completely fits the vibe as P’s enthusiastically shouting out all of his homies (namely Shady Records which was founded by P’s childhood friend/fellow D12 member Eminem) & he even rightfully compares himself to the 66th Mayor of Detroit Coleman Young near the end of the song. The track “Biboa’s Theme” has an abrasive yet kinda funky beat & Proof’s just hilariously talking about shit like speaking at AA meetings while drunk & beefing with the KKK because they take his curtains. His technicality throughout this track just goes to show how underrated the dude was, in my opinion. The track “Forgive Me” has a somber beat, a nice sample of “Ghetto Qu’ran (Forgive Me)” by G-Unit leader 50 Cent in the hook & Proof’s just talking the dirt he’s done in his life. He sounds so serious about it while’s delivering theses rhymes too & the line “just because the reverend listen don’t mean he care” near the end of the last verse completely hit me the first time I heard it like over 5 years ago. The Black Milk produced “Gurls wit da Boom” is a club track & while it may sound lame because of Proof’s reception in the Detroit underground, he makes it work. The track “High Rollers” sees P talking about weed & what better way to make a weed track then having verses from Cypress Hill frontman B-Real & Method Man of the almighty Wu-Tang Clan? The track “Pimplikeness” sees P getting all of his fellow D12 members with the exception of mR. pOrTeR & including Eminem to talk about the shit they’d do if they were pimps. The track “72nd & Central” has a ominous beat & P’s trading lines back & forth with Obie Trice as well as J-Hill. Lyrically, it’s like “10 Crack Commandments” by Biggie but the 3 are talking about the streets of Detroit rather than drugs. The album closes out with “Kurt Cobain”, which has a sad but beautiful sample of “Blue Sky & Silver Bird” by Lamont Dozier & Proof’s lyrically channeling his inner “Suicidal Thoughts” Biggie from start to finish. The sample was already used in “The Woman With the Tattooed Hands” by Atmosphere, but this track takes the cake because it fits the whole depressing vibe perfectly. Not only that, but he was unfortunately murdered 8 months after this album’s release & it was like he knew he was gonna die soon even though he was finally getting more recogition on his own. When talking about classic Detroit hip hop albums, this one ALWAYS seems to be left out & I find that to be a damn shame

Score: 4.5/5

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