DJ Premier with Killah Priest on Hot97 (1998):As a fan of hip hop I have listened to many DJ Premier productions and seen some of his interviews, from reviewing both I think the voice and feel of the music he makes matches the beliefs he stands by in spoken word. His work is inspirational in the importance of discovering and embracing underground hip hop first, because it's where the true essence of the music, talent and artform is born from. Part of the legacy of Gangstarr to me is their career example of how to stand by your beliefs in life and build upon them towards your own success and freedom of voice, no matter what obstacle or odds may exist that threaten to knock you off your path. I imagine it was no easy process to release consecutive classics on commercial labels the way they did, with albums speaking in rebellion against record companies and the corporate machine that threatens hip hop culture.
Premier has and continues to release gems independently, also bless the radio airwaves with quality material, here are a few I've listened to recently. This first one was a visit by him up at Stretch & Bobbito's show a few months before Moment of Truth was released, Premier was filling in for Stretch on this episode. I remember '98 as a period of great production output by Premier and a time when independent hip hop releases and artist careers were emerging against the mainstream hip hop machine. I still go back and find songs from this era I like from many unheard-of artists.
Killah Priest stops by to promote his Heavy Mental album and kicks some rhymes for Bobbito, Premier runs through some quality underground hip hop cuts of '98, such as Neek The Exotic's "Exotic is Raw", Tame One and Fatal Hussein's "Everyday", N.O.T.S. Click featuring Big L "Work Is Never Done" and a world premiere of "New York Straight Talk". If you manage to find radio sets by Premier or Pete Rock from this period online, expect to hear quality material spun by them every time.
DJ Premier with Just-Ice and Mike G on CMFamalam Show (1998):