Introducing my first ever music review (and it’s going to be fresh to death).
Album: The Re-introduction of MuMu Fresh aka Maimouna Youssef
Artist: Maimouna Youssef aka MuMu Fresh
Talent: Singer/Song writer, MC, producer
Type: Feel good vocals & hard hitting rhymes
Ok so I’ve know Maimouna and her whole family since I was a round 6 or 7. I have become like an adopted daughter to Momma Walks on Water MuMu’s mom and feel very close to the whole family like their my own.
Maimouna gets her spirited voice and talent from her mother and grandmother who where and are other worldly singers themselves. As long as I’ve know them they have been a music family and it helps to keep there culture alive. On her mother’s side she has Choctaw, Chickasaw and Cherokee from Mississippi and on her father’s side they are descents of Africa (African American).
In a lot of her music her cultural upbringing bleeds through wether a song about an African queen or a Native traditional song. Being a product of the DMV (DC, MD, VA) she would go travel a lot through Baltimore where she grew up, DC where she currently lives and Southern Virginia where her grandmother’s land lays and where her mother now lives.
Her music has taken many different avenues like singing the hook to a Roots song “Don’t Feel Right” and becoming Grammy Nominated for it in 2007, putting out different EPs & putting out an album with her mother for their family gig Three Generationz that they started with her grandmother Mountain Eagle Women when she was still alive.
She has gotten the attention of so many world known hip-hop & soul artist like MC Lyte, KRS-One, Nas, Jill Scott, Lauryn Hill, Erykah Badu, The Roots, Dead Prez and others. She has gone on tour with the likes of Zap Mama, The Roots & Common and even headlined her own world wide tour.
In 2011 she put out her first full length album The Blooming which was a big hit among music lovers everywhere. It was a mix between blues/neo-soul hits like “I Got A Man” which really showed her vocal talent well and her famous rhymes on songs like “Reach Into Your Mind” and “You Ain’t Hard”.
This year she is back after a long year of touring around the world with her latest mixtape The Re-Introduction of MuMu Fresh. If you were a big fan of the Blooming like I was then this mixtape might be a little different for you. Take her rhyming on “Reach in to Your Mind” but go a step futher.
The premiss of this album is to take some hot beats or songs and revamp them in a different style a MuMu style. It also helps to show off Maimouna’s dope rhyming skills. A mixtape is sometimes a little unfinished, raw & witty which is what you will get when you listen to this one.
This mixtape starts off introducing you (or re-introducing you) to the record with DJ Dummy the in house DJ. Towards the end of the first track a shout out from Common comes on and he says how great and fresh MuMu is. The second song takes it back to the beginning and samples her vocals on “It Don’t Feel Right” and has a shout out from MC Lyte who is excited about MuMu’s music.
Some favorites: “We’re Already Royals”- A take on Lorde’s “Royals” it explains to the world that we might not have much but “We’re Already Royals” and you have to believe that with in yourself.
“You Crank Though”- An interlude skit of MuMu as a teacher and one of her students saw her music video on VH1 Soul and asked her if it was really her and if she is famous. She then says a very we’ll written line and a favorite of mine “even thought you like a grown up or whatever you crank though”.
“Student Lone”- This one talks to the student in me and all those who just graduated. It depicts the story of how many people can’t get by these days because of student debt. They graduate but can’t get a job and then can’t pay their student debt, end up living at home and get harassed everyday by bill collectors. Sad story of how so many post-grads live.
“Good Hair”- Another interlude with a clip from the Chris Rock hair doc about black hair “Good Hair” (good movie watch it) where he has some black hair that he is trying to sell on the street corner, but no one wants to buy it. They say that it’s no good because it’s natural/nappy hair and they want straight or good hair.
“Nappy”- That interlude leads into a song which is a take on Pharrell’s Happy. It’s talks about our natural hair and all the beautiful wonders of it. For me this is a great song for any person going natural and learning to appreciate your nappy hair even though it can be difficult to manage. “clap along if you know that Africa’s in your roots” “clap along if you know that your hair looks good on you”
Some other notable songs are “Crunch and Grub” a spin on Bey’s song “Drunk In Love” about being hungry on welfare, “Best Behavior” a spin on Drake’s “Worst Behavior” about actin right and not doing dumb stuff (it’s funny at some parts) “you leave the kids in the car with the window rolled up- get your mind right”, A Wu-Tang sample song & the spin on Frank Ocean’s “Novacane”. The record ends with the reciting of a beautiful poem and then some MuMu free styling and close out with DJ Dummy.
In traditional reviews you are suppose to give out a grade or a number. Mine would have to be an A. Now I guess I kinda miss her amazing singing voice a little but this mix-tape is more then dope. I love hip-hop but feel the lyrics & rhymes of today are less then anything note worthy but the beats most times are on point. What she did was take the good parts of today’s music and add her MuMu flavor to it. Most artist today are too afraid to write truth and elevate people with their lyrics as it won’t be popular. MuMu on the other hand elevates everyone while telling a story or just joking around. She takes you higher to another plane of conciseness and teaches you a lesson while just having fun.
Well you heard it hear go peep that mix-tape at http://mumufreshness.flavors.me where you can also stream it and other albums like The Blooming. Like her on social media as well:
FB: Maimouna Youssef
Also you can listen to an interview of hers from The Flavor from 89.3 the Pacifica station in the DMV about the mix-tape: https://soundcloud.com/thefl0w/mumu-fresh-mixtape-fm-interview-with-bobby-rox-today
Blessings too All! ❤️