If you haven't run across him yet, Madlib is a prolific hip-hop artist, releasing under other monikers like Quasimoto and was half of the duo that made up Madvillian (with MF Doom). He does it in what I feel is a more respectable fashion than the televised video-rap industry does. Using myself as an example I dislike the vast majority of hip-hop, but Madlib has undeniable talents. For those like myself disinclined from hip-hop or rap, even better news about this release, it is not really either. The title Shades of Blue is a reference to the fact that this is a set of remixed jazz singles from Blue Note Records. Personally, I find this mixture of the two forms of music to be a match made in heaven, for although there is damned good jazz out there, sometimes it is too mellow for me to sustainably listen to. With Madlib's additional beats and sounds it makes a wonderful album for working, driving or relaxing to. Moreover, there are segues which remind you're listening Shades of Blue by notables connected to Blue Note, somewhat like listening to old Ed Love on the radio. My brother who introduced me to Madlib asked me to remove them, but I feel like give the album a special tone it'd otherwise lack. Definitely check this out if you haven't before, a fan of hip-hop and jazz not required.
To be had here:
Madlib - Shades of Blue [160 kbps]