Love Letter To A Record: Tasman Keith On OutKast’s ‘Speakerboxxx/The Love Below’

Many of us can link a certain album to pivotal moments in our lives. Whether it’s the first record you bought with your own money, the chord you first learnt to play on guitar, the song that soundtracked your first kiss, the album that got you those awkward and painful pubescent years or the one that set off light bulbs in your brain and inspired you to take a big leap of faith into the unknown – music is often the catalyst for change in our lives and can even help shape who we become.

In this series, Music Feeds asks artists to reflect on their relationship with music and share with us stories about the effect music has had on their lives.

Here are their love letters to records that forever changed their lives.

Tasman Keith – OutKast’s Speakerboxxx/The Love Below

I remember hearing ‘Hey Ya’ and ‘Roses’ everywhere when I was a kid, and even as a young dude I could tell how special those songs were to hip-hop at that time. It wasn’t until a few years later though, that I really listened and appreciated the genius of OutKast. The diversity and sound that they weren’t afraid to show in hip-hop was something really inspiring to myself, it showed me not to be afraid to step outside of the box and show confidence through other sounds, especially on songs such as ‘Prototype’ and ‘She Lives In My Lap’.

But the way ‘Ghettomusick’ BANGS and ‘The Way You Move’ has a certain funk is something unmatched. Even if you put aside the hits from Speakerboxxx/The Love Below, it is hard to fault it.

I could really go through every song on that record and talk about how beautifully constructed that album is; the way that Big Boi is just constantly in the pocket and out of the pocket at the same time to André being one of the best artists we’ve seen, all makes for one of the best albums.

Growing up with a father who would play their joints definitely impacted the way I listen to music, and this certain album was always on rotation, that along with the Idlewild film.

The way OutKast could connect these two separate albums into one double album and make it sound so different yet fitting with each other is crazy, and the film clips that came with it were on another level.

I strongly thank OutKast for not complying to trends and, for the most part, setting the trend, I thank André 3000 for not being afraid to show emotion in hip-hop at a time when it was more often than not, unseen. I thank Big Boi for being one of the OGs with one of the most unique flows in the game, and I thank Speakerboxxx/The Love Below for continuing to inspire me.

P.S: 3 Stacks is top five. Quote me.

Gumbaynggirr artist Tasman Keith’s new track ‘My Pelopolees’ is out now. Described as “a confronting statement of identity for him and his people”, the single’s new video is ready to stream below.

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