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Ode to the Ghetto

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iTunes Review

It took Guilty Simpson almost 20 years to finish his debut album, and his old-world authenticity and sense of determination instantly distinguish Ode to the Ghetto. Simpson was largely unknown outside of his hometown of Detroit until his friend and collaborator J Dilla relocated to Los Angeles, thereby helping connect Guilty with the venerated hip-hop label Stones Throw. Much like Dilla’s late-career work, Ode to the Ghetto became a melding of L.A. and Detroit voices. The production work was split among longtime Simpson pals like Dilla, Black Milk, and Mr. Porter, and Stones Throw associates like Madlib and Oh No. Simpson’s no-nonsense approach resulted in the toughest and most direct album of the label’s catalog. “Run,” “Get Bitches,” and “The Future” utilize idiosyncratic beats, but Guilty has an unshakeable presence that keeps the tracks from becoming too frivolous or indulgent. In the face of a rap industry obsessed with youth, he proved the value of an older emcee’s POV. Rather than bust down the door with unbridled enthusiasm, he embodies the coarsened skeptic who's seen it all.

Customer Reviews


Stones Throw records & Madlib, Oh No, J-Dilla, Black Milk & Mr. Porter of D-12 on the production boards with the one of the best spitters in the game equals classic album support true hip hop.

Dope Album

I been waiting for this dude to come out since I heard him on some of Dilla's stuff. Good album overall, worth the buy

One More Dilla Beat + A great MC

I Must Love You is an instant hip hop classic/gem in my opinion. It's the only Dilla beat on the album. More of his beats would have made it...but due to sample clearance issues they couldn't make it. Alot of the beats have a J Dilla style, but i don't believe the production is up to Jay's level. Mostly because the drums aren't taped out start to finish without quantization as Dilla did. However, they due sound very similar to Dilla's later style. That just shows his legacy and influence in hip hop i guess. But every song here is quality, mostly due to Guilty Simpsons delivery, vocal tone, and straight forward lyrics.


Born: 1980 in Detroit, MI

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '00s, '10s

In contrast to his imposing presence and hard thug posture comparable to rappers like Bumpy Knuckles or Big Shug, Detroit rhyme-slayer Guilty Simpson first achieved exposure on records by eccentric left-field producers like Madlib, Dabrye, Four Tet, and one of his biggest admirers, Detroit's own J Dilla. His lyrics and distinctive flow can also be found on locally released material dating back to the late '90s as a member of local hip-hop brigade Tha Almighty Dreadnaughtz, but those independently...
Full Bio

Top Albums and Songs by Guilty Simpson

Ode to the Ghetto, Guilty Simpson
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Customer Ratings