The Guidelines By Aceyalone
This song and I have a long history together. Back in 95, Aceyalone dropped his first solo album “All Balls Don’t bounce”. However, about a year prior to that, i was in college and heavily trading tapes on the internet. Through trading tapes, I had met a dude who worked for capitol records. I was a huge Freestyle fellowship fan and he told me he had an advanced copy of Aceyalone’s debut. I jumped on it and he sent me a dubbed copy of both Aceyalone’s album and Ganja K’s unreleased album. The first song on the entire album was “The guidelines”. I was blown away. It was pretty much everything I wanted out of a rap song at that time. I loved the rest of the album but that song was like the apex to me.
About 8 months passed and the album finally dropped. Only problem was that “Guidelines” wasn’t on there. I wasn’t too bummed cause, by then, I knew it front to back but I thought it was a curious choice. It eventually dropped on his follow up album “A book of human language” and actually made a lot of sense in the context of that album.
I remember seeing Aceyalone live in NYC opening for bum ass Spearhead about a month before “all balls don’t bounce” dropped. My friends and I were hyped. We got in the front row and rapped along like herbs (two things I NEVER do or did in general at any shows). At one point we started yelling out song requests and he stopped cause we were yelling titles of songs that didn’t come out yet. This was way before shit got nuts on the internet so a crew of three white nerds knowing your album that hadn’t dropped yet was fairly unheard of. We were yelling “Play Annalillia” and he was like “Wait…what!?!?!?”. After the show (in which no one who was there cared about him being there but us) we geeked out and went over to him. I was like “Hey man, I just wanted to tell you that the new album is amazing and I’m definitely gonna buy it” Acey seemed half complimented and half confused that some random 18 year old kid in NY would have his album. It’s funny cause, now that I’m older and have been making music for a while, I know EXACTLY how he must have felt. It’s like the equivalent of someone coming up to me saying “Hey, I downloaded your upcoming album…It’s aweseome”. Bittersweet.
Anyway, This song was special to me cause it had years of relevance in my life. From 94-99, it was in steady rotation. I can’t think of many songs that have held my interest that long and that steadily.