Something must be in the air, with this bizarre concurrence of Houston rap and classic rock. We blame the supermoon.
This morning, Rocks Off told you about ZZ Top using the chopped-and-screwed standard "25 Lighters" in the Texas band's new commercial for flavored malt beverage Jeremiah Weed. Not an hour after we published that article, we got a press release that ZZ's fellow Southern rockers and onetime tourmates Lynyrd Skynyrd would release their first album in three years, Last of a Dying Breed, in August.
Something about that sounded familiar, so we did a little searching. Last of a Dying Breed -- or The Last of a Dying Breed, close enough -- is also the title of former Geto Boys MC Scarface's 2000 album. Its songs include "Sorry for What?," "Conspiracy Theory," "They Down with Us" and "Watch Yo Step."
"It's a good, smart, focused album that accurately portrays how (I imagine) he felt about life relative to where he was in his career," says Shea Serrano, Rocks Off's designated Geto Boys scholar.
To be fair, Lynyrd Skynyrd would not be the first person to "borrow" Scarface's title. His was actually the third album of the same name released in 2000 alone. Must have been a bad year at the kennel.
In February came then-Denver rapper Apostle's album. Ohio hard-rockers American Dog, whose family tree is twisted up with Texas's Dangerous Toys, released their own Last of a Dying Breed in April. That one had songs such as "She Had It Comin'," "Be a Man" and "Drank Too Much"; we'd love to hear a copy.
The ensuing years have seen even more dying breeds, like a 2006 album by the rapper Monster and a 2010 drum-and-bass compilation with Raiden, Ink, Optiv & Phobia, BTK & Meth and about a dozen others. Another rapper, Josiah Williams, put out another album called Last of a Dying Breed last year; he's only 19 years old, though, so he may not remember the others.
It's all enough for us to wish there was some kind of site somewhere on the Interwebs artists could go when they're thinking about naming their latest album to see if the name is already taken. And that they would actually use it.
As they usually are, Lynyrd Skynyrd is currently on tour, although they are inexplicably not scheduled for Houston at the moment. Once they get here, allow us to suggest an opener...
This is shaping up to be a very odd Tuesday.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.