PMJ Strikes Again: Gangsta’s Paradise

by Gene Howington

I never tire of finding great new arrangements of good songs, but even more so when it is a song rearranged in an unexpected and clever way. If there was ever rap song suited for a 1920’s style jazz arrangement, it has to be this one. Here is Postmodern Jukebox (featuring Robyn Adele Anderson) doing their rendition of Coolio’s “Gangsta’s Paradise”.

Certainly Al Capone and Nucky Thompson approved. If you’ve never heard the Grammy winning original, here is the for comparison.

Enjoy.

About Gene Howington

I write and do other stuff.
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7 Responses to PMJ Strikes Again: Gangsta’s Paradise

  1. Mike Spindell says:

    Coolio’s song is brilliant and give me new appreciation for his depth as an artist. This is confirmed by the 20’s version since great musical art can transcend genres.

  2. po says:

    As a fan of both styles of music, this is a great convergence of both… Am I wrong to feel a certain discrepancy between the speed of the singing and the beat? Feels like she is singing too fast at times then slowing it down to keep up with the beat.
    Hurrying up the beat slightly might have taken care of that. And perhaps isolating the chorus between some vigorous piano teasing.

  3. po says:

    replace beat with tempo in above.

  4. swarthmoremom says:

    Like the original much better but the 20’s version is certainly pleasant enough.

  5. The cover is pretty good, but I also prefer the original. More authentic in the performer and his delivery.

    Look at the situation they got me facin’
    I can’t live a normal life, I was raised by the streets
    So I gotta be down with the hood team
    Too much television watching got me chasing dreams
    I’m an educated fool with money on my mind
    Got my 10 in my hand and a gleam in my eye
    I’m a loc’d out gangsta set trippin’ banger
    And my homies is down so don’t arouse my anger, fool
    Death ain’t nothing but a heartbeat away,
    I’m living life, do or die, what can I say
    I’m 23 now, but will I live to see 24
    The way things are going I don’t know

    Tell me why are we so blind to see
    That the ones we hurt are you and me

    ~ COOLIO LYRICS – Gangsta’s Paradise.

  6. pete,

    I heard Al tell a story about his cover of this song. Apparently someone at the record company dropped the ball on getting Coolio’s permission (which is a nicety as parody is protected but Al likes to get it just because he’s just a nice guy). Coolio wasn’t real happy about it at the time, but he eventually came around to appreciate it as the honor it is. Not just everyone gets the Weird Al treatment. Thanks for posting it. I think Weird Al is a lot more talented than most people give him credit for.

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