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Large Professor

Large Professor cut his teeth as a MC/producer with the notorious NYC/Toronto trio Main Source in the late '80s and early '90s. After parting ways with Main Source partners K-Cut and Sir Scratch in the mid '90s, Large Professor (Paul Mitchell) lent his productions skills to the likes of Eric B & Rakim, Pete Rock & CL Smooth, Kool G Rap, Big Daddy Kane, and A Tribe Called Quest.

Now a full-time producer, Mitchell has twiddled knobs in the studio for hip hop household names Nas, Masta Ace, and Busta Rhymes. In '99 he released a single on Replay featuring Neek The Exotic ("Ryme Mania '99"), and Masta Ace on the flip ("NY Confidential"). In '00, Matador (known primarily for its eclectic indie rock and avant-garde electronic artists) started a hip hop series. Sensational provided the first installment with "Party Jumpin'" and Large Professor was drafted in for number two. "'Bout That Time" employs tight beats, slick production, and smooth rhymes -- isn't it about time you checked him out yourself?

In 2002, the hip hop legend finally issued his first proper solo record, 1st Class, like the man himself. Large Professor's talent at beat science remains as prodigious as ever, as does his ability to arrange a track around the skills of any given MC. And he does have some big names drop by on this album, including Nas, Akinyele, Q-Tip, and Busta Rhymes. LP's own MCing is laid-back, tough, and incisive. His beats are smooth-flowing and as large as his name, his production simple and free of gimmick, neither old-school nor new-school, but simply timeless.