Producer: Grand Puba
Album: Reel to Reel
Label: Elektra

What better way to introduce a new act who isn't actually that new than by directing listeners to his curriculum vitae? While Grand Puba's "360 Degrees (What Goes Around)" did manage to make some noise by topping the Billboard rap charts, the album it was drawn from—the rapper's solo debut, Reel to Reel—failed to make as much of a commercial or critical mark as the work of Puba's group Brand Nubian. But creatively, Reel to Reel was an excellent record, and no track better defined that quality than "Check Tha Resume." With a stop-start drum break and a ghostly, reverberating Otis Redding vocal sample looped up by Puba himself, the MC's playful verses feel off-the-cuff yet effortlessly clever. —David Drake