Quincy Jones' The Dude (1981)


In a New York magazine interview in February 2018, Quincy Jones claimed he and Ivanka Trump dated, his evidence of which is that they went to dinner once. It speaks to a kind of shitty music scene in which success is a backstage pass to make all sort of free associations because we, Read: The Common People, have no idea how fucked this culture really is.     

You’ve heard all of these songs before – if not the actual songs, their antecedents. Everything you hate about 80s and 90s R&B can be placed squarely on the weird lumpy shoulders of The Dude. Slick Production, Guest Vocalists, and Inoffensive Grooves are this record’s Three Wise Men laying shiny gifts at the feet of a tin messiah with no exit strategy.

There’s no progression of songs here, just enough watery Latin, jazz, radio pop, and (wait for it) harmless Rap singles to cover the range of Midwestern radio stations still unsure if this BLACK MUSIC thing is going to last. Of course it did – some of it because of The Dude, but the best in spite of it.   

— Ghil Scraw

Phil Shaw