A New York Times Best Seller | February IndieNext Pick
Named A Most Anticipated Book of 2019 by Buzzfeed, Nylon, The A. V. Club, CBC Books, The Rumpus, and Vanity Fair
"Warm, immediate and intensely personal." ― New York Times
How does one pay homage to A Tribe Called Quest? The seminal rap group brought jazz into the genre, resurrecting timeless rhythms to create masterpieces such as The Low End Theory and Midnight Marauders. Seventeen years after their last album, they resurrected themselves with an intense, socially conscious record, We Got It from Here...Thank You 4 Your Service, which arrived when fans needed it most, in the aftermath of the 2016 election. Poet and essayist Hanif Abdurraqib digs into the group’s history and draws from his own experience to reflect on how its distinctive sound resonated among fans like himself. The result is as ambitious and genre-bending as the rap group itself.
Abdurraqib traces the Tribe's creative career, from their early days as part of the Afrocentric rap collective known as the Native Tongues, through their first three classic albums, to their eventual breakup and long hiatus. Their work is placed in the context of the broader rap landscape of the 1990s, one upended by sampling laws that forced a reinvention in production methods, the East Coast–West Coast rivalry that threatened to destroy the genre, and some record labels’ shift from focusing on groups to individual MCs. Throughout the narrative Abdurraqib connects the music and cultural history to their street-level impact. Whether he’s remembering The Source magazine cover announcing the Tribe’s 1998 breakup or writing personal letters to the group after bandmate Phife Dawg’s death, Abdurraqib seeks the deeper truths of A Tribe Called Quest; truths that―like the low end, the bass―are not simply heard in the head, but felt in the chest.
Hanif Abdurraqib is a poet, essayist, and cultural critic from Columbus, Ohio. His poetry has been published in Muzzle, Vinyl, PEN American, and various other journals. His essays and music criticism have been published in The FADER, Pitchfork, The New Yorker, and The New York Times. His first full length poetry collection, The Crown Ain't Worth Much was named a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Book Prize, and was nominated for a Hurston-Wright Legacy Award. His first collection of essays, They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us was named a book of the year by BuzzFeed, Esquire, NPR, O: The Oprah Magazine, Paste, CBC, The Los Angeles Review, Pitchfork, and Chicago Tribune, among others. His most recent book, Go Ahead in the Rain: Notes to A Tribe Called Quest, debuted on the New York Times bestseller list.
- Item Weight: 10.4 ounces
- UNSPSC: 55101500
- ISBN-10: 1477316485
- ISBN-13: 9781477316481
- Paperback: 216 pages
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 7.4 inches
- Publisher: University of Texas Press (February 1, 2019)
- Language: English