SCENE AND HEARD// Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest [Review]Published by Larry Ossei-Mensah on Monday, April 18, 2011 at 2:10 pm.
Like most projects that are shrouded in drama, the controversy surrounding Michael Rapaport’s A Tribe Called Quest documentary, Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest has only served to pique interest amongst faithful Tribe and hip-hop heads alike. The media “beef” between Rapaport and group members Q-Tip, Ali and Jarobi; is a movie storyline in and of itself, but that didn’t stop its inclusion in this year’s Tribeca Film Festival. And while I consider myself a fan of the group, I didn’t allow bias to cloud my thoughts.
The doc chronicles an era in hip hop that many of us 80’s babies long for every time we turn on the radio and are bombard with the foolishness they call music in 2011 (Granted its not all bad, just a good chunk of is…but I digress). Watching Beats, Rhymes & Life reminded me of why I fell in love with hip hop. Groups like Tribe created music that was expressive, reflective, empowering and conscience without being preachy.
To Rapaport’s credit, the film does a great job of chronicling the evolution of hip hop through the lens and sounds of A Tribe Called Quest. Moreover, illustrating the impact that Tribe has not only cultural, but also on the next generation of artists.
Beyond the beefs, breaks-ups and make-ups; nothing could take away from the contribution that A Tribe Called Quest has made to music. It is safe to say if there were no Tribe there would be no Kanye, Pharrell, The Roots, Common (and the list goes on). This documentary proved A Tribe Called Quest’s music was a pivotal point in pop culture that continues to effect the public conscience in 2011.
Check out Beats, Rhymes & Life: The Travels of A Tribe Called Quest now showing at the Tribeca Film Festival. Go here for more information
Photo Credit: Robert Benavides, Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics